rust all around my 8 mos old 2002 MPV

c1d2deanc1d2dean Member Posts: 3
edited March 2014 in Mazda
I have just discovered speckled rust spots (as if someone had very lightly spray-painted pinpoint spots) on both sides of my Mazda on the base of the vehicle frame, yes the full length of the vehicle. You have to open the sliders and or front doors to see it. I was dusting door frames and just below the door sills when I noticed it. It is also present where the rear bumper connects to the main body of the van. I am devastated. I love this car, but if this is happening after only 8 months, it's a very bad sign of things to come. I bought the car new in October '02 with 31 miles on it. Did I get defective metal, defective paint job, a car that was in a flood? I am planning to go to both the dealer and to the Mazda corp simultaneously, but I'd appreciate any and all input as to how I should approach this situation. I can't believe this is happening. As I said, I love this car...


  • moibmoib Member Posts: 49
    Hi. I don't have any input for you, but I just wanted to comment that "ouch", that sounds terrible!

    We've only had our MPV for 6 weeks and no rust yet that we've noticed. When we were reading up on the KIA van, there were lots of posts about rust problems and that helped steer us away from a KIA. I can't say I've noticed any (?or many?) posts here about rust during my time here.

    Your bio doesn't say what part of the country you live in. I was curious because maybe there are environmental factors coming into play with, I live in Minnesota and the winters are brutal on vehicles here.

    Good luck getting some responses here at Town Hall and good luck with Mazda. Keep us posted!
  • lsinclsinc Member Posts: 270
    Wow! How terrible! I would speculate that it may be due to the area in which you live. I know here in New England, the winters can be very hard on cars. The salt they use on the roads is hard on the under carriage.

    Acid rain is another environmental issue in which many of us have to deal with. Living near the ocean is also hard on cars and exposure can lead to rust.

    I have had my MPV since April 5 and can say no rust spots at all. I would contact the dealer.

    Good Luck!


    P.S. One more thought. I do know that Subaru's are notorious for rusting very early on. It's always been the hood and around the wheel wells. These too are Japanese cars. I'm just wondering if there is any coralation to the materials used on these vehicles.
  • just4fun2just4fun2 Member Posts: 461
    With out seeing it, I would believe that it is "Rail Dust", small pieces of steel from the train tracks when transporting. I would try to use a clay bar sold at Wal-mart to remove this. Yes, the dealer should take care of this for free, but the dealers might leave swirls marks in your paint since they want to remove this fast and easy for them. Using a clay bar is easy, I used one for the very first time in my life 3 months ago, it is very simple to use. You will also be surprised at how smooth it will make your cars finish, like glass.

    Wal-mart will take it back if you are not satisfied. If that dosen't solve your problem them you can always take it to the dealer. Good luck.
  • c1d2deanc1d2dean Member Posts: 3
    Just4fun you have given me hope with your rail dust hypothesis. My husband has the van on a camping trip now, but I'll try the clay bar when he returns. I do live in New England (Worcester, MA area) and we did have a horrible winter last year, AND I have driven the van 18.5K since 10/27/03, but STILL no car should rust after 8 months. I traded a Ford Windstar with 165K after 7 years with almost no rust on it. Also have owned a 10 yr/old Camry that made it 170K with almost no rust, so I've seen both American and Japanese cars survive the salty roads here. Not a single other problem with this car. No rattles, no complaints.
  • lsinclsinc Member Posts: 270
    I've never heard of it but it does make sense. I've never bought a foreign car before especially brand new, shipped from Japan.

    I think just4fun2 has a great theory. Let us know how it works out.

  • moibmoib Member Posts: 49
    Hi again.

    Even though I love the idea of rail dust as an explanation to your "problem", the more I thought about it, the more I wondered if it could be right.

    If it's rail dust from the transport of your vehicle, wouldn't you have seen it before now? Or do you suppose it has been there all along and you just never noticed it before?

    I'm hoping it's rail dust too....that sounds so much better than rust! :)

    Good luck with the clay bar and do keep us posted on how it goes.
  • zueslewiszueslewis Member Posts: 2,353
    doesn't usually come up right away, if that's what this is.

    It takes a few weeks or months, depending on the climate, to show up as rusted metal particles.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,482
    Sounds like RD to me, too. It fits the description perfectly.
  • lsinclsinc Member Posts: 270
    I too am from New England and can honestly say that my MPV has no rust. I drove it in the snow and everything. I'm betting it's Rail Dust.

    I'm going to keep an eye on my MPV.
  • bretfrazbretfraz Member Posts: 2,021
    Mazda dealers have a TSB describing how to fix this problem. Basically it involves a multi-step "decontamination" wash followed by an application of a polymer sealant (like a real durable car wax).

    I don't have the TSB # but its from Aug '99 and called something like "Mazda Paint Damage - Iron Particle Fallout Removal"

    Ford and Hyundai also have similar TSB's.
  • bctnjbctnj Member Posts: 5
    Here is the TSB link

  • bretfrazbretfraz Member Posts: 2,021
    Thanks for the link.

    Ahhh, good ol' Valugard. Anyone can order the 3 step system (aka ABC system) if they want to tackle this job themselves. For more info check out
  • just4fun2just4fun2 Member Posts: 461
    After reading the instructions, I sure hope that the dealer puts his best person on this job!
  • moibmoib Member Posts: 49
    I'm glad this chat was never know how many of us may develop these same symptoms!

    I can't wait to hear if it turns out that the problem is indeed rail dust.

  • c1d2deanc1d2dean Member Posts: 3
    Thank you again for all the responses. I am even more hopeful now because, with the exception of the small strip connecting the bumper to the body, all the tiny rust colored spots are inside the doors on the lowest horizontal strip of the body where dealer prep would not have washed/buffed them off. With all the doors shut, you can't see anything. It makes sense that metal particles could have been blown up inside the doors during transit or against the frame before the doors were attached. I should also tell you that the van is white or I might never have noticed it. The van is still away on the camping trip. I won't get a chance to look at it again until 7/27/03. I'll let everyone know asap. Thanks again!
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