woman plugging her nose in your vehicle

Vehicle smells and what they could mean

What the smell in your vehicle could mean 

You’re driving home minding your own business when there’s a waft of something unfamiliar in your vehicle. If it has a familiar scent, we have listed out what this smell could mean. Keep reading to debunk the vehicle smell. 

A sweet scent 

A sweet aroma coming from your vehicle could mean your coolant is leaking from the radiator. If, however, the smell is the strongest inside, the heater core could have a problem. No matter which, you should have your vehicle checked out. 

Burning oil 

If your oil smells like it is burning, you should first check the oil dipstick. Your oil level may be low and you’ll just need an oil change. If your oil level is good, next check your transmission fluid, this may also be low. 

Sulfur or rotten eggs 

The catalytic converter may not be processing the hydrogen sulfide inside the exhaust which will have a sulfur or rotten eggs smell. Have this checked out as soon as you can. 

Burnt carpet 

This smell could be from your brake pads wearing down or you may have forgotten to disengage your parking brake. You may need to have your brake pads changed. 

Musty locker room 

If there is something musty in the air, it could be inside your air conditioning. Sometimes mildew builds up in the unit and will need to be cleaned out. A quick solution is to switch it off and blow the fans, this will allow it to dry out.  

mechanic working under vehicle

Read more tips and tricks: Should I get a hatchback or sedan model?

Stop by Freeman Motor Company to have your vehicle checked out 

If any of these smells are happening, bring them over to Freeman Motor CompanySchedule an appointment and we can get you back on the road as soon as possible.  

Read more tips: Where can I get an at-home test drive near Portland?