Hey folks, I am attempting to rid my bug of the rust from the vents in the rear. It seems VW filled the area behind the vents with foam, thus trapping any moisture there and rusting out the area. Can I just remove the foam, or will this mess up the air coming into the interior or engine compartment? Has anyone just sealed these up and forgotten about them?

What to do? I could use some advice...


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Yeah bud, you got a real problem there.
I went throught the same thing and cured it.
This is what I did.
As I was gonna do a full restore on my 73 sb I had the headliner out.
This gave me access to the area where the rust is, (and the foam).
I cut out 2 interior sections, one on each side just below the rear window vents and just above the wheel well hump in a triangle shape.
This exposed the foam of which the is a lot.
I scraped it all out and there was conciderable rust as this foam is like a sponge and holds water. Not such a bright idea from the Germans.
I scraped all the rust to the point of poking holes in the body cuz it was so thin. I wire wheeled it with a brush type wire for my drill and then treated it with POR-15's rust kit.
On the outside I grinded the bodt to really remove more rust damage.
The ideal thing would be to cut out and weld new metal in there but that wasn't an option for me so I just treated it.
We'll see how long it last.
So thats what I did.
If you want your spouse to listen and pay strict attention to every word you say, talk in your sleep.
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you may want to fill that area with a closed-cell foam, once you treat the area for crust. the factory used an open-cell foam (like a sponge) for insulation as well as a sound barrier. also to help keep fumes out of the interior.
one method to use for removal of the old stuff: take a rigid heavy wire (maybe something a little stronger than coat hanger wire) about a foot and a half long, and put a crook in the end of it. chuck the other end into your trusty drill and go to town! access it from the engine bay. never used this method myself, but heard others talk about it.

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Sounds like a bugger of a job to get that foam out. Hmm... Guess it is time to go shopping for a wire brush or something...

Any other hints?

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My car is an Arizona car from day one. And it still started bubbling under the paint in that area from rust underneath.  I just took her to the paint shop and had them sand it and coat it with something (don't know what they used) then re-painted it.  Looks great and it's been 8 years.  Who knows it may come back and if it does I'll do the same thing.

Loren R. Knapp
In The Hot Sonoran Desert of Arizona - 73 Super Beetle "The Blues."
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I am sooo lucky with my '73. No rust around my vents. I need to dig out all of the old foam and poke around. Also, I was thinking about sealing the vents with silicone just to make sure no water gets in.
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Mine's in the shop now getting the finishing metalwork done. The only thing left is stripping the paint and cutting the metal out as was mentione earlier. I have some pics posted of the actual operation. Ii just have to overcome the sticker shock of what this is all costing. I envy you guys that have the time to DIY!

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