Thanks for the heads up. I checked my 2016 ram yesterday and yes leaves and dirt in there. I got it all cleaned out and dry. I'll watch that spot now and keep it clean....Behind your front wheel well liners.
A few years ago, before I bought Thunderhorse, I was helping my dad wash his 2009 Ram 1500 when he pointed out to me that he had noticed a buildup of leaves in the front bottom corner of the front door area. It was only on the driver's side, and he noticed that it looked like there was a piece of foam there that should have been keeping out the leaves, but it looked like it had been pushed out of place somehow. Pic #1 is of the area, and also allows you to see the black foam piece.
Fast forward to a couple of days ago when I noticed a couple of leaves in the same area of my truck on the passenger's side. As I pulled them out, I noticed that it seemed like there were a lot of leaves in there. Curious, I began looking for the source and ended up bending back the rear section of the front wheel well liner. Jackpot. In order to get better access, I removed the plastic rock chip protector which shares 2 fasteners with the wheel well liner, removed the plastic piece, and bent the liner out of the way. FYI, the "screw" on the bottom of the plastic piece is really a push type fastener like a lot of plastic trim pieces are attached with. If you screw it counterclockwise, it will come out and then you have to pull it out because the screw just serves to push out two barbs that hold it in place.
I have attached a pic of what I removed from there: a large clump of leaves and some dirt. I also took the opportunity to clean the paint around the plastic piece.
I told my dad about my findings, and he figured out that that was indeed his problem; he got a good amount of junk out of there too. One of my friends who drives a 2010 Ram was over last night for Christmas dinner, and I looked at his truck and he also had a buildup in that area. Since 3/3 4th gen Rams that I checked had crap behind the wheel well liners, I figured y'all probably do too and probably don't know about it since I've never seen anything about it here on the Z. We all known leaves attract moisture, and moisture=rust=bad, especially those of you living in the salt belt who may have a dirty, leafy, and salty buildup:SHOCKED:.
Mine had no rust or anything, and I hope none of y'alls do either. I'm still not quite sure how all that junk got back there though.