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Cleaning 1997 G-3500

Old June 11th, 2019, 9:06 AM
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Default Cleaning 1997 G-3500

Hey everyone glad to join this forum! I just picked up a 97 G-3500 for a steal at $400. It runs and drives like a champ but it looks like garbage. So far I have given it an oil change and I'm in the process of flushing the cooling system because I have to replace the radiator. I have also whipped down the dash and plastics and just generally tried to get rid of all the filth I can but it's pretty bad. My next concern is the floor and this is where I need some help. The floor is pretty gross and needs a super good cleaning and I'm thinking that the insulation underneath may have some moisture in it because there are a few rust spots on the floor when I pulled up the back end of the matt. Is it possible to remove the matt, pressure wash it, leave it out to dry and then reinstall after taking care of the rust on the metal floor. This would also be nice because I could just power wash the majority of the inside. Is there some kind of adhesive holding the insulation to the floor or will it all come out as one piece? Sorry for the long post but thanks in advance!
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Old June 11th, 2019, 10:30 AM
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I do not know about your year, but that's exactly what I had done to both of mine after them new. I have a dusty dirty profession and I had hosed them out a several times, at first just trying to be careful about not getting water under the matt, but my matts have been out completely. There is no glue, not my year, but there might have a dab of sticky here and sticky there. Mainly the insulating matt was glue to the underside of the rubber flooring material.

For a van I bought for $400, I would think nothing of ripping out all the fabric type materials so that I could completely pressure wash and degrease the interior. If you are going to treat the rust, that's awesome. At that age, I am not sure if the rust can truly be dealt with. Thinking about reminds me of my very first vans. On some of them you could pee through the floor.
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Old June 11th, 2019, 10:40 AM
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Thanks for that image, dberladyn.

If it hasn't rusted through, it shouln't be too hard to deal with it. And if you pressure wash it, make sure you do your best to dry it afterwards.
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Old June 11th, 2019, 11:11 AM
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Originally Posted by dberladyn View Post
I do not know about your year, but that's exactly what I had done to both of mine after them new. I have a dusty dirty profession and I had hosed them out a several times, at first just trying to be careful about not getting water under the matt, but my matts have been out completely. There is no glue, not my year, but there might have a dab of sticky here and sticky there. Mainly the insulating matt was glue to the underside of the rubber flooring material.

For a van I bought for $400, I would think nothing of ripping out all the fabric type materials so that I could completely pressure wash and degrease the interior. If you are going to treat the rust, that's awesome. At that age, I am not sure if the rust can truly be dealt with. Thinking about reminds me of my very first vans. On some of them you could pee through the floor.
Thanks for the input! I'll try pulling the floor and pressure washing it and then washing the interior. Did it go back in ok when you where done? No crazy lumps or anything?
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Old June 11th, 2019, 11:21 AM
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Also, what would you guys use to fill in any holes in the floor, metal Bondo, fiberglass? If it's crazy rusty I'll probably just grind away what I can and hit the rest with rust reformer.
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Old June 11th, 2019, 12:57 PM
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I thew out the nasty juke padding, but kept the vinyl surface. I replaced it with some non water absorbing foam flooring underlay just for noise absorbtion.

What kind of holes?
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Old June 11th, 2019, 1:02 PM
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Originally Posted by mountainmanjoe View Post
I thew out the nasty juke padding, but kept the vinyl surface. I replaced it with some non water absorbing foam flooring underlay just for noise absorbtion.

What kind of holes?
Have a link to the stuff you used? How did you apply it? And I'm not sure what kind of holes yet cause I haven't pulled it yet. I'll post a picture as soon as I do for some input.
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Old June 11th, 2019, 1:17 PM
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I have no idea what it is. I got it for free at work. It was used for a day at a trade show booth and then they were going to throw it out. It's looks high quality. It's a dense closed-cell grey foam -- about 5/8" thick -- reinforced with a woven backing. I cut it into roughly 2' strips to allow for a bit more air circulation.

I only used a few small pieces of carpet tape just to hold it down while I installed it. (make sure to put packing tape liner layer first so it doesn't get destroyed). But it's pinned down by the 3/4" plywood I put on top of that, bolted down, so its not going anywhere.
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Old June 11th, 2019, 9:32 PM
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Originally Posted by mountainmanjoe View Post
I have no idea what it is. I got it for free at work. It was used for a day at a trade show booth and then they were going to throw it out. It's looks high quality. It's a dense closed-cell grey foam -- about 5/8" thick -- reinforced with a woven backing. I cut it into roughly 2' strips to allow for a bit more air circulation.

I only used a few small pieces of carpet tape just to hold it down while I installed it. (make sure to put packing tape liner layer first so it doesn't get destroyed). But it's pinned down by the 3/4" plywood I put on top of that, bolted down, so its not going anywhere.
After you did all that did you just lay the OEM floor ontop of the plywood?
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Old June 11th, 2019, 10:35 PM
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Exactly. It took a some elbow grease to remove the glue from the vinyl.

It's cut to fit so it works fairly well just laying there. I have some work to do, but when I'm done I'll just use more carpet tape to stick it down.

Last edited by mountainmanjoe; June 13th, 2019 at 2:33 PM.
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