how to remove the foamed-in rubber sunroof drain tube from inside the A pillar? - AudiWorld Forums

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how to remove the foamed-in rubber sunroof drain tube from inside the A pillar?

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Old 02-11-2018, 07:18 PM
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Default how to remove the foamed-in rubber sunroof drain tube from inside the A pillar?

I cut the 1/2" rubber hose from the right front sunroof drain inside the passenger A-pillar with a 3/4" holesaw about 6" above the dash, from the inside. (Can you say "butcher"? Made an access hole that I'd hoped would let me bang out a dent from the inside. Big oak tree caved in my garage roof and fell on the car on the lift. Smack dab on the A pillar, breaking the windshield. Audi space frame - wow! Just a 0.025" depression in the windshield mounting surface! That's 1/40 inch, smaller than 1/32"! The car has a roll cage! Saved my '67 Pontiac Firebird ragtop on the other lift, too. The windshield mounting adhesive was way more than thick enough to take that amount up.) Didn't blow through the other side of the space frame A pillar box; just had a windshield put in the car and left the 4" long dent without banging it out. Good enough, and a conversation piece. The molding was destroyed by the tree, and instead of buying a new one for $400 I let the windshield guy give me a free rubber molding that is cut off a roll. Top corners don't cover the gap, but at this time, good enough.

Of course the the long A pillar trim piece that adjoins the headliner is off (so I could butcher the A pillar). Saw the drain tube exiting the headliner and going down into the A pillar. The tube is polyurethane foamed in (like "great stuff"), at least near the top. I was trying to pull it back up out of the A pillar, and tore the tube up with vise grips. So now the tube is in 3 pieces - top one from the sunroof drain hole into the cabin, middle piece from the cabin down inside the A pillar to the holesaw cut, and the bottom piece from the cut to the door hinge area. I already took off the rubber exit nipple there. Even that part doesn't seem to be moving when I pull on the tube at the exit.

How do these tubes get replaced, with them foamed in like they are? That stuff is also used for glue (Gorilla glue). I don't know of any solvent that'll dissolve that stuff. Is the tube supported any other way? If I can get the foam and the tube out, I think I can fish a new tube in. I may try to put a connector under the trim to connect with the top piece, so I don't have to take down the headliner to replace the top piece of tube. The rubber seems in good pliable shape.

How about some long flexible drill bit; is there such a thing? I'd think electricians might have some thing like this. Just run it up and down left and right inside the A pillar till I chew enough foam out to be able to pull the tubes? How do the dealers do it?

Last edited by hillpc; 02-11-2018 at 07:24 PM.
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