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Types of Unusual Vehicle Smells

Optimized car performance needs routine maintenance and servicing. But it also requires you to pay attention to anything unusual, such as smells. Vehicles are typically odorless, except for the new car smell many people like. However, when you notice a different odor in your car, please don't ignore it.

Unusual Vehicle Smells and What they Can Indicate

Many people dismiss car odor as spoiled grocery in the trunk, a fast-food bag you forgot on the floor, a dirty mat, or the driving environment. Except for the new car smell, you should have it checked by an expert. But, here is a breakdown of unusual vehicle smells and what they may indicate.

  • Maple Syrup Smell

While this is usually a pleasant smell that can easily be confused for your snack or lunch box, it may indicate your coolant is leaking from a possibility like the cylinder head, failed intake, water pump, or the radiator. If you notice the smell stronger inside your car, it can even be a heater core problem.

  • Fuel or Gas Smell in Your Car

Typically, accidental gas spillage on your clothes or shoes while refilling your tank dissipates quickly. However, check your gas cap when the smell lingers longer than expected. It could be worn out or wrongly placed. Another problem could be a leaking fuel tank or injector. This is dangerous for your well-being and the car. Contact an expert immediately.

  • Sulfur or Rotten Egg Smell

The smell is usually awful, making your car's occupants uncomfortable and endangered. The odor could indicate that your catalytic converter is not correctly processing hydrogen sulfide in the exhaust. Also, your fuel filters and pressure sensors could be damaged or worn out. While sometimes a simple replacement of the transmission fluid solves the problem, allow an expert to guide you.

  • Burning Rubber Smell

Generally, the smell could come from wheel friction, especially if you are stuck in the mud or snow. But, it could also mean loose engine belts and hoses rubbing against a moving part. In other cases, your clutch plates could be overheating, or there could be an oil or fluid leak.

  • Musty or Sour Smell from the AC

An accumulation of mold or mildew inside your AC produces this musty or sour smell. The smell can be dangerous if you breathe it for long periods. Experts recommend having it checked and cleaned.

Any vehicle smell is a sign of trouble except the new car smell. However, if you are confused about the smells, bring your car to Pickering's Auto Service today for a detailed inspection of any odor. Our experts are qualified and well-equipped to handle the problem. Make an appointment online today!

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