What To Do If You Left Sunroof Open In The Rain: Everything Covered!

Keeping the sunroof open in rain can have severe effects. If water gets inside the car it can damage different components, especially electric components. 

So what do you do if you leave the sunroof open in the rain?

You must first wipe out the water from the car components. It is better to keep the car off to avoid electrical hazards. Next, properly clean the seat if it looks dirty. Then wipe the interior with a clean piece of cloth. Lastly, change the air filter to prevent mold formation.

These are the basic steps of dealing with the issue. To do the work correctly, you will need more distinct information. Check out the next sections for that!

What Would Happen If You Left Sunroof Open In The Rain?

If you leave the sunroof open in the rain, rainwater will get inside the car. So how bad is it to leave your sunroof open? Well, it is one of the worst decisions. There are some severe and devastating consequences of keeping the sunroof open. 

Here are some aftereffects of keeping the sunroof open during rainstorms.

Broken Electrical Connection 

There are several electrical and electronic components present in the car. Electricity is necessary for different functions of the vehicle. From turning on the car to the air conditioning system, electricity is significant. 

Unfortunately, water can easily damage electrical components. The radio, music player, headlight, air conditioner, dashboard, and other parts get easily and highly damaged by water. 

Some of them might work after the water is removed, But most of them will get permanently damaged and will be beyond repair. 

The ignition system will also get damaged due to rainwater. So if you leave the sunroof open in the rain, the car will not start. Sometimes even the whole place can get short-circuited and can cause a fatal calamity too. So it’s better not to touch the electrical components unless they are dry.

Ruined Leather Seats

Car seats are usually made of rubber and they are waterproof. So the rainwater will not cause any harm to these seats. But many car owners use leather covers to increase the beauty of the car and leather can get damaged by the water.

The leather used in the car is processed specially to resist fluid related damages but if they remained soaked in water for a long time, some problems might occur. The seats can get stretched and may produce bad odor. Sometimes the situation becomes unfixable, and then replacement is the only option.

Mildew And Molds

There is always the chance of mold and mildew forming in the wet interior. The water can get stuck in some corners of the car. It might also get soaked by the soft parts of the car. Then fungi and other molds will start to grow. 

They will affect both the car and the user. The mold spores are responsible for several respiratory problems. People with bronchitis, asthma and lung problems will have a hard time in the car. Some of these molds can cause disgusting smells too. 

Now you know what happens if you leave your sunroof open and it rains. You might be wondering about the ways of dealing with this issue. I have got it covered in the next part!


The aftermath of leaving the sunroof open in the rain is hazardous. Making this mistake will damage the car severely. There can be some long-term effects of keeping the sunroof open too. So attention must be given to this matter.
What Would Happen If You Left Sunroof Open In The Rain Infographic

What to Do If You Leave Your Sunroof Open? 

The first thing you have to do is to act smart and fast. You will be able to control the damage with quick actions. Follow the below-given techniques to control the damage due to the rainwater.

Get The Water Out 

Your first job here will be to get the excess water out of the car. So, open the car door and use a bucket to remove the water. Anyway, it will only work for the visible parts of the car. You’ll have to clean the rest of the water more sophisticatedly and dry out the car after leaving it open.

Check for Electrical Damage 

Once you get inside the car, check for electrical damages first. It is better to take help from a professional in this task. Do not turn on the car. This can cause severe damage to the engine, as mentioned earlier. But this only applies if there is excess water.

Dismantle the car battery first if you think the water has affected electric components. Shift the gear position to neutral before going for the battery. Then open the car bonnet and remove the battery pile. Make sure to wear a pair of gloves while performing this task. 

Shut Down the Sunroof 

You have to close the sunroof if it is still raining. It is not essential to close the sunroof if the rain has stopped. Rather keeping the roof open will ensure sunlight. This light will help to dry out the rainwater. 

However, it will not be possible to close the sunroof if the battery is removed. Then keep the roof open and wait for the transportation vehicle. Do not risk your car’s life by closing the sunroof in a risky situation. 

Unassemble The Seats.

The seats of the car are surely wet because of the rain entering through the roof. It is important to soak them to prevent long-term damage. And unassembling them will make this work easier. This will also help you to clean the car more quickly. 

Anyway, not all cars have this option. The seats of many cars can not be unassembled. In such a situation, you have to clean the car leaving the seats intact.

Vacuum The Seats 

Next, you have to take care of the car seats. Use vacuum cleaners on the seat for this purpose. Apply a vacuum to remove dirt and debris from the seats. Then clean the seats with a car cleaning chemical of your choice. Now vacuum again to dry them out.

Wipe The Interior 

Now it is time to work with the interior of the car. You have to thoroughly wipe the walls, steering, and other components with a clean cloth. Take out the car components which are removable. Then clean them with water. Don’t forget about the car mattress. 

Take the mattress out and dry it properly to avoid mold infestation. Also, clean it with soda water or other chemicals if needed. This will ensure proper hygiene.

Ensure Enough Air Flow 

The water inside the car will create a damp environment. Only enough airflow can clear the air. Keep the doors and windows of the car open. Remember to open the windows on both sides. Only then will the air be able to pass through the car and take away the dampness. 

This step is also significant in preventing fungi and mold formation. Air is crucial for this purpose. It is possible to dry out the water without air. But that will not eliminate the chances of foul odor and fungus.

Use A Dehumidifier 

Sometimes the natural air will not be enough to bone-dry the inside. Then an external fan or dehumidifier is to be used. Place the fan in such a position that it covers most of the area. It is better to use a rotating fan.

A dehumidifier also works fine in drying out the water. This device absorbs the moisture present in the air. It is the fastest method of cleaning the car. Place the dehumidifier in the backseat of the car to get the best result. 

Change The Air Filter 

You have to replace the car air filter after performing the above steps. This filter plays a vital role in taking out dirt, dust, and other micro-sized pollutants from the air. But it can cause problems if it is wet.

The wet filter will be the storehouse of molds. It might cause several health problems and can be hazardous. So replace the filter as soon as possible. 

Use Car Freshener 

Now your car is ready to use. Use a car freshener to clear the environment inside finally. Doing this will ensure a fresh scent instead of the wet smell of water.

You can see that the necessary procedures are pretty hard. So it is better to prevent such a  situation instead of fixing it. Even more complicated fixes might be required if the situation is messier.

Here are some tips on saving your car from rain through the sunroof. Make sure to remember these tips!

Always Check the Sunroof 

You should make a habit of checking the sunroof before leaving the car. This is not only important for rainy days but also for dry days. Keeping the sunroof open will increase the possibility of car theft. So always close the roof if you go away from the car.

Park Under A Shed 

It is a wise practice to park under a shed. The car will be safer on both rainy and sunny days by doing so. Even if you accidentally keep the sunroof open, the rain will not enter. So look for sheds while parking your car.

Using A Smart Sensor

This is a handy device for controlling the sunroof. The smart sensor is placed at the windshield wiper of the car. It can detect rain and close the sunroof according to need. This will prevent the rainwater from getting inside the car during sudden rain.

Follow these tips to keep your car’s interior from the impact of rain. You might think that you don’t need these preventive measures because you have insurance. However, there are some concerns regarding the insurance for this case. 


There are some ways of avoiding the phenomenon of keeping the sunroof open. The best method is to check the sunroof before leaving the car. Parking in the shade also protects the car. Smart sensors are also available to close the roof!

Does Insurance Cover Damages Due to Open Sunroof in The Rain? 

No, insurance does not cover damages due to an open sunroof in the rain. You must pay from your pocket if you leave the sunroof open in the rain.

According to the comprehensive insurance policy, it does not cover damages due to self-negligence. And leaving the sunroof open is self-negligence. For this reason, the insurance will not compensate you. So you better be careful! [1]


Keeping the sunroof open is self-negligence. So the insurance will not cover the damage caused by this. The customer will have to pay by himself in this case.


Does rain get in the sunroof?  

No, rain does not get in the sunroof in normal conditions. Drain tubes are present in the sunroof to clear the excess water. However, water might get in it if any of the drain tubes are clogged. Then the water will overflow and get inside the car. Cleaning the tube will solve this problem. 

Does leaving the sunroof open drain the battery? 

No, leaving the sunroof open does not drain the battery. The battery will stop draining as soon as you shut down the car. Keeping the roof open does not require continuous work. So it has no impact on the battery. The air conditioning system, fan, and music player drain the battery. 

How much does it cost to fix a sunroof switch?

On average, the cost of fixing a sunroof switch is between $120 to $130 on average. This is the cost of switch replacement. The switch will cost around $75 to $80. The labor cost is between $40 to $50. The price will be less if switch replacement is not necessary. Then only labor costs will be needed. 


This is all on your query: what to do if you left the sunroof open in the rain. Now you will be able to handle the situation successfully. 

Keep your car turned off as long as possible. It is better to get a professional if the car has been in the rain for a long time. This will save you from severe damage.

Written By

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Gary Wright

Hi, I'm Gary Wright, an automotive industry specialist. I'm an installation, repair, and maintenance specialist of automotive sunroofs, moonroofs, and panoramic sunroofs/moonroofs.

Fact Checked And Mechanically Reviewed By


Talha Atta

Talha Atta, a Mechanical Engineer and experienced technical content writer and editor at Autoglobes.com with a passion for the automotive industry.