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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Kia Soul 2016 Base,

I have found a really large opening in the body right in front of both rear wheels. Not only is is a trap for anything kicked up on the road, but there is has no draining so anything going in their stays. These are big, about the size of a fist.

I am one of those states where they dump tons of road salt every winter and the last car I had where I discovered this too late had rust through the entire frame, body and running boards all the way up to the front wheels. So I am a bit touchy on these particular design flaws.

Anyone have any experience in the body area back there who can tell me if this is an area that is metal or plastic would be helpful. Or if anyone has ideas on what to do. My inclination is to go to a body shop and have them bolt some heavy gauge plastic or stainless steel in front of the hole. Or possibly fill the entire hole with bondo or possibly fiberglass. It serves no useful purpose and it really makes me angry that Kia was so stupid here.

Thanks
 

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2014 Titanium Stick Shift Pacific NW
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Hey Chas,

Any chance you could post a snapshot of this area?

Thanks!
 
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I need to look although for me I do not think its a big deal for my area and were I drive but places like this are points of serious rust for sure and dirt and stuff collects and stays moist promoting rust at a fast rate.
Keep the area clean since its been found or maybe fill the area with something like expanding foam to fill the area in to keep junk out.
The area you live in with salt and all I think its best to just spray some good Rust Preventive spray paint and keep it clean, if you ever do start to see rust get some Corroseal Rust
Converter apply as instructions leave the rust and apply them sand and paint area.
It works great for any metal!.
It chemically converting rust from iron oxide to magnetite, a black and inert substance. Don't remove rust, convert rust.
 

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KIA warrants rust perforation for 5 years or 100,000 miles (US).

They do say its the owners responsibility to clean/flush the underbody as needed, at least weekly, if you drive on salted roads, with clean unsalted water.

It sounds like the area Chas is talking about is a real pain to get to.
 

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used to own a 2016 Soul SX 2.0L - Caribbean Blue
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I'll take a look on mine to see what the OP is referring too as I'm in a salt area, I'll see if I can get some sort of photo as to what he might be referring to. However, if the OP can see if visually he should be able to get a photo of it.

All through the winter whenever my vehicle gets coating in salt I always try to at least give the underside of the vehicle and wheel wells a thorough rinsing as soon as possible, I've been doing this for many winters.
 

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Perhaps those openings ARE the drains. Hard to say without a pic, but if they really serve no purpose, I'm sure it wouldn't be too difficult to find a rubber plug of some sorts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
When you get in there, you will see why a picture is hard to get and really not needed. Anyone who has a Soul and a flashlight can see what I am talking about, and this will affect all of us in the Northern States. The warranty won't help as salt damage in this area will take many years past the five that coverage is good for and the rust will be inside where you won't see it until it is too late. And I washed the underside and wheel wells on the Explorer I had; it didn't help. The damage was massive and ate into the frame as well as eating five feet of metal. The Ford only had a small half inch lip but it trapped enough salt to eat a hole into the body and from there, it just continually fed through and destroyed the metal on both sides.

The opening in these Kias is much bigger and the lip at the bottom feels like it is three inchs deep. So this will really catch a lot of road salt. The minute the salt eats through the coating we are dead.

Thanks for the foam idea. It could fill in this hole pretty well and probably would last a few years as long as I wash it out well first. I'm glad I found this defect early before it was too late. I keep cars longer than the warranty. Left unattended, this will destroy a lot of Kias.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Perhaps those openings ARE the drains. Hard to say without a pic, but if they really serve no purpose, I'm sure it wouldn't be too difficult to find a rubber plug of some sorts.
This is not drained and I can fit my whole hand in there. There is no way a plug will work. A can of expanding spray foam will barely fill both holes.

Go look at your Soul. Look in the wheel well on the driver's side at the nine o'clock position straight back all the way. There is a large open pocket tucked in towards the front of the car. Same thing on the other tire. It is easy to see and when you twist your hand back in there you can feel how deep it is.
 

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This is not drained and I can fit my whole hand in there. There is no way a plug will work. A can of expanding spray foam will barely fill both holes.

Go look at your Soul. Look in the wheel well on the driver's side at the nine o'clock position straight back all the way. There is a large open pocket tucked in towards the front of the car. Same thing on the other tire. It is easy to see and when you twist your hand back in there you can feel how deep it is.
I haven't checked it out myself yet, but if its as you describe, then perhaps a can of rubberized undercoating spray pumped into this opening would offer it some protection.
 

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I think you're making a big deal out of this. A vehicle cannot be completely sealed from elements. If anything, depending where this hole is (I still haven't looked) you may be restricting airflow to cool down wheel/brake components or just simply restricting air escape from the undercarriage. Plus new vehicles are made mostly out of aluminum.
 

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I think you're making a big deal out of this. A vehicle cannot be completely sealed from elements. If anything, depending where this hole is (I still haven't looked) you may be restricting airflow to cool down wheel/brake components or just simply restricting air escape from the undercarriage. Plus new vehicles are made mostly out of aluminum.
I don't think you will find any aluminum on a Soul as far as the body goes.
"An impressive 66 percent of the all-new Soul’s chassis utilizes either Ultra High Strength Steel (35 percent) or High Strength Steel (31 percent)."

Very few new vehicles use aluminum as part of the body structure.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I think you're making a big deal out of this. A vehicle cannot be completely sealed from elements. If anything, depending where this hole is (I still haven't looked) you may be restricting airflow to cool down wheel/brake components or just simply restricting air escape from the undercarriage. Plus new vehicles are made mostly out of aluminum.
Wrong on many points. Go look at your Soul. I'll be talking to the dealer tomorrow. I saw first hand what trapped deposits of road salt can do. This is not a matter of sealing off the underside of the car.

I would hope more posters go look at this on their own cars. The discussion will be a lot more productive when you have actually stuck your hand in this pocket and seen what is happening.

In any case, I'll be fixing mine.
 
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