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Avoiding roof corrosion?

Perfectos

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I wonder if @Tomdbreeze could update us on the latest VW position?
Not sure what you mean Tim ?
VW have chosen to ignore this issue (seal failure) and simply continue to fit the faulty / inappropriate part + add a sticking plaster along three sides of the roof to slow the issue.+ issue a work shop action putting the onus is on dealers to check when your vehicle is in for routine works (Yeah right :headbang )

even if dealers do find a faulty seal, the part they are then replacing it with is faulty by Design

I know Tom is good but I don’t think he’ll have a direct line to Hanover.

VW do not accept there is an issue with the seal or the roof !
 
Ozzy Pete

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What about picking the issue up with media using a dossier, particularly of all the very recent and repetitive failures. It is one thing to have a fault but a very different one to continue having it across newer models to such a degree that the fault is even more common than before. Honest John perhaps https://www.telegraph.co.uk/cars/advice/car-advice-with-honest-john/
The media are never interested in something that’s not a danger to the customer. Having you paint bubble a bit is not something any of the mags would be interested in either.
There are so many problems with vehicles nowadays if they took interest there would be no time for anything else. Also don’t forget a lot of newspapers and mags actually rely on manufacturers for advertising and they are not going to put that at risk. This has been a problem now going back many many years and until VW take it seriously and change the rubber seal the problem will always be there.
 
ArunAlec

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The media are never interested in something that’s not a danger to the customer. Having you paint bubble a bit is not something any of the mags would be interested in either.
There are so many problems with vehicles nowadays if they took interest there would be no time for anything else. Also don’t forget a lot of newspapers and mags actually rely on manufacturers for advertising and they are not going to put that at risk. This has been a problem now going back many many years and until VW take it seriously and change the rubber seal the problem will always be there.
I don’t even think that the Motor home / camping magazines would be interested. Based on their product reviews of motoerhomes etc they are never negative and seem afraid to be critical.
 
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Scoobz1

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Some journalists are more responsive than others hence the suggestion
https://vwcaliforniaclub.com/threads/roof-corrosion-nightmare.22397/
its not so much the problem but the continuing nature of it and how VW treat people that is the story

ps just looked at the recent posts and there are 6 separate threads on roof corrosion alone on the first page of threads (plus it is featured in the "what have you bought for your California today")
 
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yossarian

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Interestingly corrosion of the steel part of the seal suggests that the steel is electrically isolated from the aluminium. If they were bonded one would expect the roof to behave as a sacrificial anode and little to no corrosion on the seal.

Reducing corrosion on the seal probably requires isolation from atmospheric oxygen.

Has anyone considered impressed current or a third metal used as a sacrificial anode?
 
Ozzy Pete

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Some journalists are more responsive than others hence the suggestion
https://vwcaliforniaclub.com/threads/roof-corrosion-nightmare.22397/
its not so much the problem but the continuing nature of it and how VW treat people that is the story

ps just looked at the recent posts and there are 6 separate threads on roof corrosion alone on the first page of threads (plus it is featured in the "what have you bought for your California today")
It’s not just VW. All the big car manufacturers are just the same. None listen to their customers which they should because if they did they could save millions of pounds. The thing is they really don’t like to think that a pleb could sort out their problems when they pay R&D a fortune to do the job...
 
Perfectos

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Some journalists are more responsive than others hence the suggestion
https://vwcaliforniaclub.com/threads/roof-corrosion-nightmare.22397/
its not so much the problem but the continuing nature of it and how VW treat people that is the story

ps just looked at the recent posts and there are 6 separate threads on roof corrosion alone on the first page of threads (plus it is featured in the "what have you bought for your California today")
a lot more than 6 threads regarding this issue, the 6 are only the ones currently popping up, there are literally tens of thousands of individual posts and numerous threads about this issue just on this site, let alone the German forum, face book etc etc.

have a browse through this section and you will see
 
SusiBus

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We took the issue of corrosion on the front box section on our California, which at that time was just being rubbed down and resprayed in the UK, to VW Customer Services, saying it was not a satisfactory fix as the corrosion was originating from within the box section. Their response was that was the recognised official VW procedure. So we escalated it to MD level, using the Forum as a base, and finally got the the approved repair changed to the complete front box section replacement.
We did bring up the issue of the seal, but as we all know, this has not been remedied and it's time that it was, both for owners and VW's sake.
We don't currently own a California, and hence do not have have roof seal problems. Some members have got all the information already collated very well. How about someone else taking it up on behalf of owners using the forum as a platform? We did, and as well as a satisfactory outcome, we got lunch at Milton Keynes and a book on the history of VW Vans! We need this issue putting to bed!
 
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Scoobz1

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a lot more than 6 threads regarding this issue, the 6 are only the ones currently popping up, there are literally tens of thousands of individual posts and numerous threads about this issue just on this site, let alone the German forum, face book etc etc.

have a browse through this section and you will see

Agree see above ."there are 6 separate threads on roof corrosion alone on the first page of threads "

Out of interest do VW get away with doing so little in Germany and have the Germans came up with any good preventive solutions ?
 
Perfectos

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Agree see above ."there are 6 separate threads on roof corrosion alone on the first page of threads "

Out of interest do VW get away with doing so little in Germany and have the Germans came up with any good preventive solutions ?
Hi Scoobz1,

The preventative “solution” VW have decided to settle on is the current sticking plaster (clear tape) to three sides of the roof, which obviously and clearly is inadequate to prevent the issue, it merely delays the wider issue long enough to reduce the incidence enough for VW to assume they have carried out remedial measures!

Vw have experimented with customers vans, over a long period of time, trying to come up with a solution to “fix” this issue and prevent it from occurring. None of the measures VW have decided to take, to date, have been successful in resolving this issue that has the potential to affect so many customers and vehicles over a long period of time.

Bearing in mind this is a well documented issue since early production of the T5, VW will be aware of this issue, but fail to provide a fix that would be in the interest of many many loyal customers world wide by removing this issue once one for all !

I believe the German Forum is awash with similar content with regard to the known issue with the roof seal and the wider issues with roof corrosion that is directly linked to the roof seal failure!

perhaps someone whom is on that German board could comment similarly?
 
ArunAlec

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We took the issue of corrosion on the front box section on our California, which at that time was just being rubbed down and resprayed in the UK, to VW Customer Services, saying it was not a satisfactory fix as the corrosion was originating from within the box section. Their response was that was the recognised official VW procedure. So we escalated it to MD level, using the Forum as a base, and finally got the the approved repair changed to the complete front box section replacement.
We did bring up the issue of the seal, but as we all know, this has not been remedied and it's time that it was, both for owners and VW's sake.
We don't currently own a California, and hence do not have have roof seal problems. Some members have got all the information already collated very well. How about someone else taking it up on behalf of owners using the forum as a platform? We did, and as well as a satisfactory outcome, we got lunch at Milton Keynes and a book on the history of VW Vans! We need this issue putting to bed!
Wonder if the book has been revised with a new edition to include the ”California Roof Saga”.
 
ArunAlec

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Hi Scoobz1,

The preventative “solution” VW have decided to settle on is the current sticking plaster (clear tape) to three sides of the roof, which obviously and clearly is inadequate to prevent the issue, it merely delays the wider issue long enough to reduce the incidence enough for VW to assume they have carried out remedial measures!

Vw have experimented with customers vans, over a long period of time, trying to come up with a solution to “fix” this issue and prevent it from occurring. None of the measures VW have decided to take, to date, have been successful in resolving this issue that has the potential to affect so many customers and vehicles over a long period of time.

Bearing in mind this is a well documented issue since early production of the T5, VW will be aware of this issue, but fail to provide a fix that would be in the interest of many many loyal customers world wide by removing this issue once one for all !

I believe the German Forum is awash with similar content with regard to the known issue with the roof seal and the wider issues with roof corrosion that is directly linked to the roof seal failure!

perhaps someone whom is on that German board could comment similarly?
Sadly from VW’s perspective the sticking plaster approach seems to work! Despite all us victims being fed up we still go on handing over a pile of cash to buy new Californias. Many replacing older models with new, fully expecting the corrosion to appear.
 
Perfectos

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Sadly from VW’s perspective the sticking plaster approach seems to work! Despite all us victims being fed up we still go on handing over a pile of cash to buy new Californias. Many replacing older models with new, fully expecting the corrosion to appear.
The specific and real experience of this forum (and other resources) with the tens of thousands of individual posts from loyal customers and the numerous threads regarding the specific & known issue (known by VW since early production of the T5) experienced by an inordinate number of customers world wide, since T5 production commenced, bears real life testimony to support the notion that VW have failed to resolve this issue in the customers best interest and highlights the repeated attempts / experiments VW have made with customers Vans, over the entire production run of the T5 - T6.1, in an attempt to fix this issue, coupled with Workshop action 75A1 issued to the entire dealer network, clearly demonstrates VW have and continue to know the issue exists and and that it has the potential to cause ongoing issues for every Transporter based California VW have produced since the T5 !

It is clear that VW have failed, in every attempt they have undertaken. to fix (remove) this issue fully And in the customers best interest.

VW have merely opted to settled on the current approach, which offers the least cost to VW, and has resulted in another failed attempt to resolve the Known issue Of the faulty / not fit for purpose Roof seal, despite VW clearly and in my opinion blindly, continuing to carry out the failed “fix” on the current T6.1 model.
 
WelshGas

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What I would like to know is why some are affected and some are not?
What accounts for the difference? Luck, how the vehicle is treated, is it garaged, used all year round?
As the elevating roof composition has not changed and nor has the seal then why the difference.

Mine is a 2014 MY 2015 when the front cap alloy composition changed - still perfect after 7 yrs.
Elevating roof section, no evidence of any bubbles or corrosion, nor any rust staining on the seal.

The vehicle has never been garaged, takes the full force of any westerly gales and we live 5 miles from the coast. So, why am I lucky and others are not?

The only thing I do with the roof, is raise it at the end of the season, clean under the seal, wipe over the seal with a seal conditioner, and clean and polish the roof where the seal sits so it doesn't stick.
 
SusiBus

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Why VW have not cured the roof seal problem is a bit baffling when it must be costing them a considerable amount of money, but this was exactly the same as the box section issue.
There is a cure out there, and it's not a bit of sticky tape. Some time ago a forum member posted that he had found a company in America that made a seal that had a plastic insert as opposed to a steel one. Whether it was suitable for the California roof I don't think was progressed. Perhaps another cure could be just simply having the steel insert encased in thicker, or a different kind of rubber.
Ideas please on a piece of paper, and send to the MD of VW commercial vehicles.
 
WelshGas

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Another thing. The California, built by VW was launched in 2003.
Did the models sold between 2003 and 2010 suffer the same problems?

And finally, although there are lots of threads, lots of posts, How many actual vehicles are involved with the threads/posts?

The VW California Forum has some 20,000 or so members probably owning 15,000 VW Californias. Are all 15,000 vehicles affected?

If only 10 to 20% of vehicles come to the attention of VW, because they have the problem, then the present fix is probably cost effective for them.
 
SusiBus

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Could the cure be as simple as removing the steel insert, and just sticking the rubber seal on at build stage ?
 
ArunAlec

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Could the cure be as simple as removing the steel insert, and just sticking the rubber seal on at build stage ?
I get the impression VW are too set in their ways and process driven to try anything that radical!
 
WelshGas

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Could the cure be as simple as removing the steel insert, and just sticking the rubber seal on at build stage ?
It probably is. But making such a seal maybe more problematic.
Another way would be an all rubber seal on the roof itself that the Elevating section sits on when closed and compresses it to form a seal, but then you have the problem of correctly positioning it.
 

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