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Most vehicles start out with a "new car smell," but there are other specific odors that motorists should never ignore. Identifying these suspect smells early on can help car owners be car care aware and avoid the hassle and expense of an unexpected breakdown, says the Car Care Council.

"Unusual smells can be the sign of serious, and potentially costly, trouble for your vehicle. By acting quickly and making necessary repairs, you'll be able to breathe easy knowing there is no harmful damage to your car," said Rich White, executive director, Car Care Council.

The Car Care Council recommends a sniff test of your vehicle to identify any unusual smells, including the following six warning signs:

  1. The smell of burnt rubber could be slipping drive belts or misplaced loose hoses that might be rubbing against rotating accessory drive pulleys. Do not reach in if the engine compartment is hot.
  2. The smell of hot oil could mean that oil is leaking onto the exhaust system. To verify the leak, look for oil on the pavement or smoke coming from the engine area.
  3. The smell of gasoline is likely the sign of a gas leak in some area of the vehicle such as a fuel injector line or the fuel tank. Any smell of fuel can result in a possible fire hazard, so immediate attention should be given.
  4. The sweet smell of syrup may be a sign that your car is leaking engine coolant from a leaky component related to the car's cooling system. Do not open the radiator cap when it is hot.
  5. The smell of burning carpet could be a sign of brake trouble and a safety hazard. Have your brakes checked right away, especially if this smell is happening during normal driving conditions.
  6. The smell of rotten eggs is never a good one and, if you smell it coming from your vehicle, it could mean a problem with your catalytic converter not converting the hydrogen sulfide in the exhaust to sulfur dioxide properly. This smell can also be attributed to a poor running engine, causing the catalytic converter to become overloaded and fail due to meltdown.

"When you smell any peculiar odor, you should not ignore it. Instead bring your vehicle to a professional service technician that you trust to get an informed opinion on the nature of the odor," concluded White.

Source: Car Care Council


what our customers say

Took my RV Motorhome for rear brake issues. Dan was my contact at front desk and he kept me up to date on how my repair was going. They were able to do the work needed and in a timely basis. I couldn't be happier with the professional care I received. 10 out of 10! Couldn't have been better. Thanks!
B
, 09/20/2021

Great place, great people to work with. I've been taking my truck to Mitch's since discovering them a year and a half ago. Maintenance and or needing something fixed I'm bringing here. Big THANKS to all of them!!! Eric, Dan, and Adam in the front office when you walk in, Marie, and Mitch and all service techs, thank you. I'm going to mention one tech in particular, Cody, he had his fill with my truck this last time it was in, thanks so much, you're all awesome!!!
S
, 12/22/2020

I had an oil change for my 2020 GMC Sierra and I didn't have much time in my schedule with the holiday and family here. The team at Mitch Smith Auto was able to get me in right away at my convenience and did a get job! Thanks for the care, concern and professionalism! Two thumbs up!!!
K
, 11/24/2020

Completely satisfied. Will go here first the next time I need work done.
C
, 07/10/2020

These gentlemen are the best service team I have used in 63 years I will never trust service to anyone else again I now feel safe driving my older car They went completely over my older model car and made me aware of wear and tear parts needing service soon as well as fixing my current very serious problem. They are more than reasonable in price and do superior work with patience and respect to customers Thank you so much!!!!!
A
, 05/13/2020

Received fantastic service today from Eric, Dan, and Cody...my car alignment is perfect! Thanks so much!
S
, 03/06/2020

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