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Here are some further thoughts on the rust issues...

I wouldn't have wanted to take the rockers off on a just delivered car when I first took delivery, but as soon as I found out about the rust problem on the older cars I bought a daily driver car and stored my Challenger over the winter months. I paid $2500 for an old gentleman's 2001 Grand Marquis that he only drove 6500 miles a year for the 16 years he owned it. Garage kept and he had it serviced regularly at the dealership too w/receipts. Drives like a new car yet. Parked the Challenger and put it on comprehensive insurance only during the winter months. The trick is to find a car owned and driven by a senior citizen...small, medium or large car depending upon where and how much you drive. They usually take very good care of them.

I know some can't afford the luxury of a second car to use when driving conditions aren't nice, but to me, if anyone plans on going to drive that thing in the winter and the salty, briney grunge that they put down on the roads, you really have to go all out and seal up everything by taking off the plastic cladding on both sides and totally sealing up the points were road wash gets into that foam. It's either that or wait for the first sign of rust bubbles and get rid of the car as quick as possible by trading it in or whatever.

To do these rust mitigation procedures that I referred to above, would take most of a Saturday working at a leisurely pace, but once you're done you shouldn't have any more problems with water getting trapped in those rockers. I suppose if you just ran a neat bead along the top edge of the lower rocker cladding it would stop a lot of water from getting down in those clip holes, but I believe water also gets behind the cladding through the bottom from tire splash at high speeds. That's another reason I decided to just pull the cladding off and do the job carefully and completely - sealing 360 degrees around each clip hole. The cladding fits so tight it's hard to get a bead of Strip Calk behind it anyway without removing the entire piece of cladding first.

As far as the well pads go, I'm not so sure that they cause as much of a problem on the 2015 and up Challengers as they did on the older ones with the original well design back there in front of the rear tire. I just chose to pull mine out (they were a "bear" to pull out w/the glue they used) as they served no purpose that I can see. If they are for sound deadening I can't hear anything louder coming from back there at highway speeds. You do want to seal where the plastic rear well tub meets the quarter panel. Some use silicone, but I chose the 3M Strip Calk as it stays pliable and can be easily removed if need be for repairs or service to something behind that tub.

At the bare minimum, if you're not comfortable pulling the rocker cladding off I'd say just run a neat bead along the top of it from front to back between the wheels on each side. It'd be better than nothing if you have to drive the car in winter conditions. Water flowing in from the top side of that cladding definitely goes into those clip holes and into the foam. You might also consider getting and installing some Mopar Splash Guards. They might also help keep the road splash from getting behind the rocker cladding from the bottom side.
 

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Good job XLRRR8, very thorough. I don't think I will remove the rocker panel covers due to expense and hassle.
Will run a thin bead of clear silicone sealant along top edge of rocker panel covers. That should help. Also will make sure wheel well and quarter panel are sealed. If rust appears in 5 years it can be fixed at a reasonable cost. The first body shop I went to with my '10 wanted $3,000 to fix the rust, which is ridiculous. I then want to a small shop with 3 or 4 employees and got a price of $800 to do the work. The mechanic who maintains my Challenger then referred me to a retired bodyman who did it for $350 and it looks great. There are deals out there, the key is to find a handyman/bodyman who has experience in this type of work. Repairing rust is not difficult if you know what your doing.
 

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Good job XLRRR8, very thorough. I don't think I will remove the rocker panel covers due to expense and hassle.
Will run a thin bead of clear silicone sealant along top edge of rocker panel covers. That should help. Also will make sure wheel well and quarter panel are sealed. If rust appears in 5 years it can be fixed at a reasonable cost. The first body shop I went to with my '10 wanted $3,000 to fix the rust, which is ridiculous. I then want to a small shop with 3 or 4 employees and got a price of $800 to do the work. The mechanic who maintains my Challenger then referred me to a retired bodyman who did it for $350 and it looks great. There are deals out there, the key is to find a handyman/bodyman who has experience in this type of work. Repairing rust is not difficult if you know what your doing.
Good for you in shopping around and getting quality work done at a very fair price. Sealing the top edge of that rocker cover will keep a large majority of the moisture out of there I'm sure. Have fun with your car...that's what it's all about. I can't wait for Spring to get here, that's for darn sure!
 

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Hey.
I've been starting to get a rust infection on my passenger side rocker panel. And now I'm talking about the actual rocker panel that is part of the body and not the plastic rocker trim molding.

So the rocker started to rust and now when we inspected it more thoroughly we noticed that the entire panel is filled with foam. I assume for sound dampening properties.
The problem is that the foam have attracted moisture and rust is starting to come on the inside, and I would need to replace a larger portion of the rocker panel.

But the problem is that I can't seem to find anything anywhere. There are replacement rocker for the older Gen 1 challengers but not the Gen 3.

Does anyone know what the OEM partnumber are or where I might be able to order new rocker panels.

Thanks
 

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My 2010 had not a hint of rust on it when I traded it in for my 2016. It was daily driven, and Saskatchewan winters are NOT nice to vehicles. I also washed the underside once in a while, waxed the exterior regularly and kept it clean when I could. The car still looked close to new after 6 years, except for a few scratches and paint chips. I wouldn't worry about it.

Drive and enjoy.
Are your roads salted to keep ice melted? Thats really what causes rust,not so much water
 

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Discussion Starter #108
Are your roads salted to keep ice melted? Thats really what causes rust,not so much water
This is not true for this particular problem. People are having these same rust issues even in areas of the country that never use road salt (warm climates). Any time you have water sitting there against "bare" metal constantly, it's going to cause rust. The problem is that the foam they use inside the panels retains water - and causes rust. Well known issue...
 

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Just bought a new 2020 in March. I notice the quarter panel and wheel well have been redesigned. Possibly they fixed the problem. However, if foam becomes wet and touches the quarter panel, then rust will form. They should attach a thin plastic membrane to the inside of the quarter panel. That would prevent rust.
 

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This is not true for this particular problem. People are having these same rust issues even in areas of the country that never use road salt (warm climates). Any time you have water sitting there against "bare" metal constantly, it's going to cause rust. The problem is that the foam they use inside the panels retains water - and causes rust. Well known issue...
Have we seen examples of this? I have yet to read this from someone in CA, AZ, NM, etc.?

A Guy
 

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Have we seen examples of this? I have yet to read this from someone in CA, AZ, NM, etc.?

A Guy
Yes, I've read multiple posts from people that either don't have winter weather or don't drive it in the winter. Can't link to them off the top of my head (didn't save the posts or anything), but I know i've read them in the various "rust issues" threads on this site. I remember even talking about washing the car may contribute to the rust issue since the water can get behind the rocker covers just by washing the car.
 

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Hmmm, I've read pretty much every post, here anyway. If washing causes rust, mine is doomed :D

A Guy
 

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I also remember that being mentioned, jtrosky. And thinking "Well, I'm safe then since I never wash my vehicles".

Besides, not even bare steel laying outside rusts readily here, and it's not from a lack of getting wet. Where I lived in CA it didn't get wet often, but sure rusted quite well.
The only logical explanation I can think of is that there's not enough oxygen to get the process going.
 
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