Ridiculous Water Leaks through the Dome Light

Posted on
Scott McCracken
A waterfall pouring in through the overhead light

A Leak? How Bad Could it Really Be?

Jeep owners know how severe and annoying this problem can be. Take Brode, from Rawlings, MD for example. In June of 2008 he published a complaint and posted pictures about what appears to be a waterfall from his front dome light.

”Had this to the dealer over 5 times now and no there's no fix. It keeps blowing out lights in the dome light, the wiring must be effected somehow. They don't believe me; they cant find anything.”

It's hard to ignore these pictures; when posted to Facebook most people couldn't believe what they were seeing. It looks like a water-dispensing dome light — hidden feature or terrible engineering?

The Problem Continues

Water leaking down the center console

A reasonable person might assume that such an obvious design flaw in a 2007 or 2008 model would never find it's way into future designs. Unfortunately, reason is not welcome in the Jeep Patriot's world if the newest models are any indication.

Six model years later and owners of the 2014 Patriot are still having problems with sunroof leaks.

Carolyn of Molalla, OR did her research and knew the Patriot had a checkered past with sunroof leaks, but figured there's no way the newest models could have the same issue:

”I did a LOT of research prior to buying my 2014 Jeep Patriot Latitude in October 2013. I saw there had been some problems with leakage from the sunroof area in prior year models, but saw nothing recently so went ahead and made the purchase. You'd figure that with over 40 complaints on 2007 and 2008 models, the problem would be fixed by 2013 - wrong!”

We feel your pain, Carolyn.

A Jeep Patriot or Compass Water Leak Recall?

Currently there is no recall from Jeep, but if your Jeep is having this problem and is still under warranty take it into a dealer immediately and keep going back until the problem is solved. Assuming it is warranty work, they should offer you another car while they make the repairs to you're satisfaction. Do not sign-off on the repairs until you are 100% satisfied. Many Patriot owners have claimed they've had the problem come back a week later and had to bring the car back to the shop. Also, any other electrical damage should be repaired or replaced; Don't cave in, demand these repairs.

Generations Where This Problem Has Been Reported

This problem has popped up in the following Jeep generations.

Most years within a generation share the same parts and manufacturing process. You can also expect them to share the same problems. So while it may not be a problem in every year yet, it's worth looking out for.

What Owners Say About This Problem

My 2009 Jeep Patriot is pouring water from the overhead lights while I'm driving. It nearly causes me to wreck every time as I'm trying to keep the water from frying out my stereo for the second time or making my business attire look disaster as I'm driving to my job. It's awful. I used towels, open umbrellas, etc. to keep the rain from pouring on me in my car. Now it's so bad it's leaking out of the opener on the side of the car.

2009 Patriot Owner in FL

Bought the Jeep used and in beautiful condition, except for some stains on the inside of the ceiling by both front windows. Dealer said original owners probably left windows open ... Sure enough there was water coming through during the first rain. The dealer replaced the seal on sun roof and cleaned the drains. It helped only on the drivers side. The leak still exists and now is coming through the panel on roof in between the visors!

2008 Libery Owner in CT

OK, Now What?

Maybe you've experienced this problem. Maybe you're concerned you will soon. Whatever the reason, here's a handful of things you can do to make sure it gets the attention it deserves.

  1. File Your Complaint

    CarComplaints.com is a free site dedicated to uncovering problem trends and informing owners about potential issues with their cars. Major class action law firms use this data when researching cases.

    Add a Complaint
  2. Notify CAS

    The Center for Auto Safety (CAS) is a pro-consumer organization that researches auto safety issues & often compels the US government to do the right thing through lobbying & lawsuits.

    Notify The CAS
  3. Report a Safety Concern

    The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is the US agency with the authority to conduct vehicle defect investigations & force recalls. Their focus is on safety-related issues.

    Report to NHTSA