Whenever you step inside the car with wet boots, soggy rubber shoes, muddy sneakers, or any scrummy footwear, there's a good chance that water, melted snow, sludge, or dirt may get through the car's flooring. Even leaky windows may cause the flooring to rust or corrode. Good thing is, even when it has reached this point, fixing the rusted floor of your car or truck shouldn't be that hard. You can use a floor panel to replace the rusty part that you've cut. This stamped steel sheet metal can easily be fitted to the floor through rivets or welding.
Step-by-step process in floor panel installation
Step 1: Remove seats, consoles, and other interior accessories in the vehicle. After this, you can finally strip off the carpet to access the metal sheet below. Some carpets may be sealed using bolts and screws. For this, you'll have to use the right tools to remove them. Be careful not to tear the carpet or damage other parts of the car interior that you've removed.
Step 2: Use a floor jack to lift the vehicle so you can easily work on cutting out the rusty parts of the floor. Make sure that the vehicle is parked in a shaded area as you repair the damaged flooring.
Step 3: Carve out the corroded or rusted parts of the floor. For this, you can use a plasma cutter, wiz cutter, sawsall, reciprocating saw, or any cutting tool. When using a reciprocating saw, drilling holes around the edge of the corroded or rusted portions will help. The blade should be able to fit the drilled holes, allowing you to easily move the saw. (Note: Before cutting out parts of the floor, you may use the floor panel to mark the area of the flooring that will be removed, or you can adjust the size of the panel by trimming it with metal snips.)
Step 4: Use a grinder for grinding out the floor edges to prepare for welding. Do this above and below.
Step 5: Clamp the edges with C-clamps. You may also secure the floor panel using welding clamps.
Step 6: Power drill a hole (0.25 inch) after marking the braces from the vehicle's power train side. After this, you can affix the panel with the braces.
Step 7: Smoothen out the edges with a welder. Before this, plugging the welds outer edges to the floor may be needed. You also have to hammer out the edges as you go along with tacking. Hammer the spots from tack weld underneath and secure the bond spots. You may use a 3M brushable seam sealer for this. The floor panel can be spot welded every 3 inches. You then have to look for loose sections around the panel until you can finally weld the whole thing to the vehicle. Make sure that you allow this to sit for a while until this has cooled.
Step 8: Put back the parts of the car interior that you've removed. Reinstall the consoles, seats, and other accessories after you have refitted the carpet.