What’s Causing That Smell in My Car?

If your vehicle is giving off an unusual or sickening odor instead of that new-car smell, follow your nose and find the source of the aroma. Bad smells can lead to expensive repairs or health hazards and shouldn’t be ignored. Here are some common odors and their possible causes:

Musty: If turning on the air conditioner generates a musty smell, mold and/or mildew have probably formed in the air-conditioning system. Moisture naturally collects on the cold air-conditioning evaporator (a small radiator that carries refrigerant into the car’s dashboard) and it may be harboring mold. Running only the fan at high speed (with the air conditioning off) can dry the evaporator.

However, that doesn’t guarantee the problem won’t reoccur — especially if it’s being caused by a clog in the drain tube that allows water to drip out under the car. A musty smell also can be caused by carpets that get wet when water leaks into the interior.

Sweet: Antifreeze has a sweet, syrupy odor, and smelling it inside a car usually means there’s a leak somewhere in the cooling system. The source may not be easy to see. For example, the leak could be from a corroded heat exchanger (aka heater core), which is usually behind the dashboard. The leak could be in the form of steam that enters the cabin, producing the smell and potentially fogging the windows. Have this problem addressed, because breathing antifreeze isn’t good for you.

Burning: Oil could be oozing onto a hot part of the engine or exhaust system. It also could come from overheated brake pads and/or rotors — due either to aggressive braking, pads that don’t retract when you release the brake pedal or the emergency brake being left on while driving. On a vehicle with a manual transmission, the clutch plate could be worn or overheating from riding the clutch pedal. Leaves or other material in the engine compartment — sometimes imported by nesting rodents — also can burn on hot surfaces.

Rotten eggs: If you can smell rotten eggs or sulfur, your catalytic converter may have gone bad. The root cause could be an engine or emissions-system problem that made the converter overheat.

Rubber: The smell of burning rubber could be an accessory drive belt that’s slipping or getting chewed up by a broken pulley or hose rubbing against a moving part. An overheated clutch plate also can smell like burning rubber.

Electrical: Smell burnt toast? That could be a short circuit in an electrical component or overheated insulation. Take electrical odors seriously, because short circuits and overheated components are common sources of fire.

Gas: It’s normal to smell a little gas when a cold engine is first started because of incomplete combustion. If you smell gas after the engine is warm, though, the gas cap could be loose or the evaporative emissions control system — which is supposed to contain fuel vapors and recycle them through the engine — could be leaking or clogged. Even worse, gas could be leaking from the tank or another part of the fuel system. Always investigate gas smells you discover when your car is parked before starting the car and potentially igniting the fuel.

Rotting fruit: It’s probably what it smells like. Look under the seats for a decomposed apple or banana.

City Ford Sales
14750 Mark Messier Trail,
Edmonton, AB T6V 1H5, Canada
780-454-2000
https://www.cityfordsales.com/

Advertisements

#1 Ford Retail Dealership in Edmonton

You’ve seen us on TV, heard us on the radio, read our ads and helped us continually win awards for Customer Excellence – now we would like to welcome you to City Ford Edmonton on the Web! Take a moment to check out the latest New Ford vehicles, or browse our online inventory of used automobiles – cars, trucks, SUVs & vans. You can also request a price quote, schedule a test drive, and apply for credit using our online forms. City Ford Edmonton is proud to be your #1 Edmonton Ford Dealership. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to give us a call at 1-587-680-0591, or stop by in person at 156 Street and St. Albert Trail.

City Ford Sales
14750 Mark Messier Trail,
Edmonton, AB T6V 1H5, Canada
780-454-2000
https://www.cityfordsales.com/

#1 Ford Retail Dealership in Edmonton And Western Canada 25 years In A Row!

You’ve seen us on TV, heard us on the radio, read our ads and helped us continually win awards for Customer Excellence – now we would like to welcome you to City Ford Edmonton on the Web! Take a moment to check out the latest New Ford vehicles, or browse our online inventory of used automobiles – cars, trucks, SUVs & vans. You can also request a price quote, schedule a test drive, and apply for credit using our online forms. City Ford Edmonton is proud to be your #1 Edmonton Ford Dealership. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to give us a call at 1-587-680-0591, or stop by in person at 156 Street and St. Albert Trail.

City Ford Sales
14750 Mark Messier Trail,
Edmonton, AB T6V 1H5, Canada
780-454-2000
https://www.cityfordsales.com/

Quality Care Maintenance

With Quality Care, your vehicle gets the treatment it needs from the people who know it best. Only Technicians and Service Advisors at your Ford dealer have the training, the equipment and the parts needed to keep your car or truck running in top condition. Quality Care Maintenance is fast, accurate and competitively priced. It’s the best way to protect your investment, maintain your warranty, and ensure that you get top dollar at re-sale. Don’t take chances by taking your vehicle anywhere else. Get the “expert touch” with Quality Care Maintenance.

City Ford Sales
14750 Mark Messier Trail,
Edmonton, AB T6V 1H5, Canada
780-454-2000
https://www.cityfordsales.com/

City Ford Service Department

City Ford’s service team is proud to have been ranked the #1 Ford Service Department in the greater Edmonton area. We are a “one-stop” service center. From air conditioning to windshields, no job is too big or too small. City Ford Service means convenience for our customers. We offer drive-in service, extended hours, free shuttle service, complimentary coffee and of course – the best team in the business!

 

City Ford Sales
14750 Mark Messier Trail,
Edmonton, AB T6V 1H5, Canada
780-454-2000
https://www.cityfordsales.com/

Ford Parts & Accessories

We currently carry over one million dollars worth of Genuine Ford Parts. Because of our excellent service, 10 Ford dealers in Northern Alberta count on City Ford as their resource for specific Ford parts. You can have confidence that the City Ford parts department can take care of your parts requirements.

City Auto Toys Accessory Shop doesn’t just carry Ford Accessories, we carry a wide variety of accessories that can add style, convenience, and comfort to your vehicle. If you want the best accessories for your car, truck or SUV, and you seek the confidence that properly designed, manufactured and installed accessories can give you, there is really only one choice.

City Ford Sales
14750 Mark Messier Trail,
Edmonton, AB T6V 1H5, Canada
780-454-2000
https://www.cityfordsales.com/