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Jeep Smells

1. Maple or sweet syrup:

a.    When:  After the engine has warmed or possibly after shut down.

b.    Reason:  Engine coolant containing ethylene glycol [toxic] possibly leaking from somewhere

c.    Inspect:  Radiator body, radiator cap, hoses, failed intake manifold gasket or cylinder head gasket.  If strong smell inside of rig, check heater core


2.    Gym socks or musty smell:

a.    When:  After you turn on heater or AC

b.    Reason:  Possible mildew growing inside of AC evaporator or water left from your last river crossing inside the AC/heat ducting.

c.    Remedy:  Park rig in sun to dry out


3.    Gas station:

a.    When:  Rig parked inside garage or when weather is warm.

b.    Reason:  Fuel leak or seepage.  On carbureted rigs this is normal just after shut down from some fuel after-boil in the carb float bowl.

c.    Inspect:  Fuel injection line and nozzles or fuel tank vent hoses


4.    Burnt carpet:

a.    When:  After hard or frequent use of brakes.

b.    Reason:  Overheated brake pads.  If you smell this under normal driving, possible seized brake caliper piston or possible emergency brake left on.

c.    Inspect:  Feel brake calipers by hand for one abnormally hot, check hand-brake


5.    Hot oil or acrid burning smell:

a.    When:  Engine is hot

b.    Reason:  Oil leaking onto hot exhaust manifold or pipe.  If you just had a oil change, possible oil drips from filter removal.

c.    Inspect:  Leaking or seeping crankshaft seal, leaking valve cover gasket or lose oil filter


6.    Burnt paper, smoldering newsprint:

a.    When:  All speeds and when shifting gears of manual transmission.

b.    Reason:  Clutch slippage

c.    Inspect:  Clutch for adjustment or replace clutch


7.    Rotten eggs:

a.    When:  Engine is running

b.    Reason:  Produced by trace amounts of sulfur in gasoline.

c.    Inspect:  Possible failed catalytic converter, improper functioning fuel injection

8.    Smoke:

a.   White smoke, sweet smell:  Coolant in combustion chamber, bad head gasket or cracked head
b.   Grayish smoke, burning oil smell:  Burning oil, worn-broken rings, worn valve guides
c.   Black smoke, pungent fuel smell:  Fuel mixture too rich, stuck open injector


Credit:  March ’06, Popular Mechanics

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