Roof Rail Weatherstrip Install


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Sep 25, 2022
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I have tried to read the threads here, and reviewed Utube, and other places to try to figure this out. I have seen notes that there are either screws or pins at the end or ends, and some notes on clips along the roofline. The directions that come include noting that there are pins at the end and use glue in between. So, before I screw this up like everything else.....thought I would again raise this question. Has someone done this on a hardtop, and if so, can you tell me what you found that works, and what does not. IF there are indeed clips along the way, can you describe how they work......thanks for thoughts.
On the roofrail, usually no clips, except at the front end at the base of the A-pillar, kind of out of sight. From there back NO clips using the stiffer sections in the corners (top of the A-pillar and C-pillar) and at the very rear to locate things. Other that there, the weatherstrip just rolls into place easily. No "glue" needed.

Some later operatives might have placed some yellow 3M weatherstrip adhesive to allegedly better seal things, but the factory would not do that for reasons related to possible warranty replacement of the weatherstrip. When a dealership operative might have added the adhesive to ensure "a better seal" as a result.

In more modern times, a black high-heat (usually a bit heavier-bodies) silicone sealer can work better than the old 3M stuff. But, still, the weatherstrip has to be in good condition (soft and pliable) to seal well anyway.

Some of the C-body roof rails had "low spots" at the joints where the various metal pieces were joined with solder (or similar) and then painted. These can be sources of wind noise and water leaks. Smoothing out those low places or high spots with a semi-solid topical item can be good.

From my experiences trying to decrease "wind noise" on our '66 Newport Town Sedan, the wind noise was never about "leaks", but wind rush around the A-pillar area. To that end, I bought a box of 3M black strip caulk (otherwise known as "dumdum". There are a lot of panel gaps near the base of the A-pillar. None look "significant" as to wind noise, but then can be.

One other area is the gap between the door frame and the roof rail gutter, especially at the base of the A-pillar and on the front vent window area. In this area, the choice of some weatherstripping "roll goods" to glue to the top of the door frame can be good.

One example of this can be the additional weatherstrip (on the door itself) which went on 1976 model year Silverado pickups. That piece of rubber had a screw on each end to place it on the door frame, plus a few dabs of sealer for good measure. Many later/current vehicles use something similar around the sides and tops of the doors . . . all purpose-desisgned and configured. Plus additional flaps along the bottom edge.

I suspect the front lower A-pillar was a known area of wind noise issues, so Chrysler and others used a huge front "blob" there to ensure better sealing between the weatherstrip on the doors and on the body, front and back, whether sedan or hardtop, on the doors and or body.

On the doors, the rubber weatherstrip usually has some of the small plastic clips which index with holes in the doors. They are just slip-in style, so they usually stay in the door when the weatherstrip is removed, to be removed with a pair of pliers to be reinstalled in the rubber. Another place where adhesives might have been applied "for a better seal", by observation, but none applied by the factory (or used sparingly).

Sorry for the length. Hope this might help.
Yes, VERY helpful, as I have little experience with weatherstrip. I am going to copy your treatise and add it to my log for future reference on the other sections for later. Really appreciate the help. thanks