What Is That Smell?: 4 Odors That Indicate Trouble For Your Car


There are a lot of different signs that your car can give you that it is time for an inspection by a mechanic. One of those is the way your car smells. Here are some of the odors you might notice coming from your car and what they could mean:

Burnt Toast

If you notice a burnt toast smell coming from your car as you drive, it could be an indication that the insulation that surrounds your wires, connections, or fuses is melting or burning. As a result, there is a possible electrical short that could spell big trouble later. Depending on the wires that do not have insulation, you could experience a range of problems, including engine troubles. If you have any other symptoms, such as trouble starting your car, avoid driving it until it is inspected.

Rotten Eggs

A rotten egg smell is usually an indication that there is a problem with the catalytic converter. The smell is actually closer to burning sulfur. Your gasoline has small amounts of hydrogen sulfide in it. The converter is supposed to convert that to sulfur dioxide. When the conversion does not occur, fuel problems can occur. Without getting the converter fixed, you could face an even more expensive repair for your fuel pump and its components.

Syrupy Odor

A sweet, syrupy odor is usually related to a coolant system problem. In some instances, the problem could be as small as a leak causing coolant to seep out of the hoses or its storage vessel. However, it could also be a larger problem with the coolant system, such as a busted radiator. If your car starts to overheat as a result, it is important that you do not attempt to drive it. Driving an overheated car can lead to shorted circuits that can cause engine problems.

Sweaty Socks

If the odor of sweaty socks is coming from the vents of your heating and cooling system when you turn it on, it is time to check for mildew. Mildew can grow in the vents as a result of moisture building up within the vents when you run the air. Talk to your mechanic about drying out the vents.

You should never ignore any smells that are coming from your car. Those smells are often one of the first indications you will get that there is a serious problem on the way. Your mechanic can locate the source of the smell with a quick inspection. If you find yourself in need of more help or that you have other questions, contact a company like Soundside Automotive.


9 June 2015

Keep Your Vehicle Safe

Hello. My name’s Samuel Jacobs. I retired from my job as an auto mechanic last year. During my years as a mechanic, I had the opportunity to meet people from all walks of life. Some have remained friends to this day. When I was working, there is one thing that I came across at least weekly. That is how uneducated people are when it comes to their vehicle’s tires. Properly cared for tires are crucial to the safety of your vehicle. Without them, your car isn’t going anywhere. If they give out on you while you are driving, there is the potential for serious injury. I’m going to share some tire safety information here. Things like the importance of correct inflation, how to check the tread, when to replace tires, tire rotation, and what to do in case of a blow-out. I hope you find this information to be helpful.