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RUSTED rocker panel 2003 Impala

 
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VIKING
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 10, 2013 12:20 am    Post subject:  RUSTED rocker panel 2003 Impala Reply with quote

you know on the rocker panel where you use the factory jack to jack the car. Well I also put my jack stands there, today I noticed some flaking rust. As soon as weight was put on the jack stand it went through the rusted sheet metal. So is that actually called the rocker panel . I see that rocker panels can be ordered, stainless steel too. any ideas , let me know what you think. Guess I will need to learn MIG Welding. My first weld, upside down...LOL

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 10, 2013 12:22 pm    Post subject:   Reply with quote

Your jack was on the pinch weld, right? I often cut a notch into a wood block to help disperse the weight a bit... can't imagine having so much corrosion on my 03 to have a jack go straight through it.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 10, 2013 1:43 pm    Post subject:   Reply with quote

I've seen a couple of cases of this happening on the GP boards. My Monte Carlo wasn't in too bad of shape, but had I tried to jack the pinch weld on my Intrigue, I would have done all sorts of damage.

I would use my floor jack on jack point near the sway bar in the rear (or at the thickest portion of the unibody just before it curves up near the trunk) as my jacking point and jack stand location to avoid the pinch welds entirely.

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VIKING
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 10, 2013 8:37 pm    Post subject:   Reply with quote

apparently the rusting of rocker panels is quite the norm and is not limited to one brand. Google "jacking points rusted" and anything like that. The good news is I found a lot of companies that have replacement rockers and two that had stainless steel. I have slated this project for next summer. Need to learn to weld first.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 10:40 am    Post subject:   Reply with quote

yes its a common problem with the wbody. Wifeys '03 is clean and shiny up top but under the plastic rocker covers it was surprisingly pretty rotten. Last spring I cut the outer rocker out from the back wheel to the rear of the front door on both sides.
Because it's covered by the plastic housing the repair doesnt have to be pretty. I just cut out the rust leaving a 1" strip of metal up top and cut the bottom off flush with the pinch weld / structure. I cleaned out the inner rocker best I could ( it was rusty but still pretty solid after a pass of the wire wheel on the grinder ). I sprayed it down with that waxy rust control stuff and panel bonded a piece of sheet metal overtop with a couple rivits to hold it in place until the panel bond set up. With the cover back on it looks fine.
I broke half the clips taking off the plastic covering and when at the wreckers looking for spares I noticed all the Impalas in there ( there were at least 20 ) and they were all pretty rotten, however the GP of the same vintage seemed much worse.

Good luck with the repair. Be careful if you are thinking of welding stainless the fumes are bad for you. I prefer to use panel bond when I can. Welding upside down is a PIA for the in-experinced like me Smile
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 12:16 pm    Post subject:   Reply with quote

A few years of rustproofing must have done wonders to prserve my car, by the sounds of it. May be worth the investment after all.

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VIKING
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 10:30 pm    Post subject:   Reply with quote

looks like the German autos are hit the worst for rusted out rocker panels, ...octoliebe

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 9:38 am    Post subject:   Reply with quote

Definitely a common issue, but seems even more prevelent in early 2000 GM vehicles.

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