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Old 09-23-2008, 06:10 PM   #1
heinzguy
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Gas/exhaust smell coming through vents

Hi, I'm new to the site, but have been browsing it for a long time now. anyway,I did some work on my car 1st time in 95,000 miles. I recently replaced my PCV valve, Spark plugs, and fuel filter, all on seperate occasions.
After I replaced the Fuel filter I was getting a gas/ exhaust smell coming in through the vents whenever I would stop the car at a light and take off. I checked for leaks by the fuel filter, nothing wrong. If you have the hood open, you can smell it. It seems like it is coming from near the spark plugs, specifically one spark plug area has more of a smell. I just don't understand why this would happen after replacing the fuel filter. I'm worried that when I stalled the engine to relieve the fuel pressure I might have caused damage while it bucked. I never had any problems with the car besides the EGR valve which was replaced back in January. Any ideas what might be causing this?


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Old 09-23-2008, 06:16 PM   #2
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When it happened to mine it was the "charcoal canister" on the passenger side firewall according to the dealer. However it didn't fully go away until I replaced my plug which were well worn and probably causing a misfire. Any engine codes?
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Old 09-23-2008, 06:23 PM   #3
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No engine codes, and my plugs are brand new.
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Old 09-25-2008, 12:48 PM   #4
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I unscrewed my oil cap today and noticed a smell of gasoline. Not overwhelming but there is definitly gas in it. I looked at my fuel injectors, they see ok. I did notice that the smell of gas is strongest when I first start my car. Is it possible that when I changed my fuel filter it is causing too much gas to flow. After all I did not change it for 95,000 miles. All this started happening right after I changed it.
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Old 09-25-2008, 02:16 PM   #5
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Did you install the PCV valve correctly? If not, or if it is malfunctioning, it would not properly vent the crankcase causing the buildup of unburnt hydrocarbons. This could be the smell.
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Old 09-25-2008, 02:47 PM   #6
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The PCV valve seems to be okay. I had the PCV valve replaced 2 weeks before the fuel filter. The smell started once I drove the car after replacing the filter
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Old 09-25-2008, 10:39 PM   #7
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Kind of a stumper. Unless improving the fuel flow suddenly made an existing problem come to life. I'm out of ideas.
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Old 09-25-2008, 10:45 PM   #8
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Your fuel filter was probably pretty clogged and the ECU sensed it. In its short and long term fuel trim strategies it probably stored info to make the car run richer because of it. It wasn't running rich before the fuel filter change because it was clogged but now since it flows so well, the computer hasn't adjusted to it and it is keeping the elevated levels of fuel up. Reset the ECU by disconnecting the battery for 10 minutes or so. The car will run a bit weird afterwards for around 10 minutes because it is relearning its strategies. This will reset it and make it realize it doesn't have to use so much fuel.

I am confused though how the smell of gas and exhaust seem to be one with this problem though. You say the smell is promonent right over one of the spark plugs right? Well since you have an SPI the plugs are on the side of the motor instead of the top right above the exhaust manifold. Have you removed the shield and checked for leaks? If you find a leak you might need a new manifold gasket which is easy enough to replace.

I would check out/do both these two things.
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Old 09-25-2008, 10:46 PM   #9
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And make sure there are no fuel leaks in the fuel filter area.
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Old 09-26-2008, 08:05 AM   #10
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Update: I brought my car to a shop today for someone to look at. Really reliable guy, so I know he will not screw me over. Just waiting on a call to let me know what is going on. He is making it his priority to get this car done ASAP. Thats what I love about independant shops.
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