Weird One - 'Burning' Smell - JeepForum.com

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post #1 of 32 Old 02-07-2014, 04:16 PM Thread Starter
ChrisHager
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Weird One - 'Burning' Smell

I'll keep this short and sweet.

Dropped of the WJ for the wife to pick up our son. She drove for 20 minutes, let it idle while she picked him up, hopped back in and called me stating that it smelled funny. She stopped by work so I could look at it. Sure enough, weird smell. Another jeep 'fella and myself poked around a bit. I think the smell is resonating from the engine bay and is also getting carried into the cab. There is no smoke, no fluid dripping, no weird noises, etc.

Are you ready for this... It smells to me like burning garbage. The best 'description' we could come up with is it kind of smells like burning plastic.

I did a really quick search on here and saw that 4Tom had a similar issue once that turned out to be an alternator.

I'm curious if anyone has any thoughts on the situation.

Thanks!


~Chris
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post #2 of 32 Old 02-07-2014, 04:28 PM
Darnice
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Did some plastic wrap around the end of the axle. Did a plastic bag get caught on the exhaust?
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post #3 of 32 Old 02-07-2014, 04:50 PM Thread Starter
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Hmmm... I'll have to check when I have access to it. That's a possibility!

~Chris
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt
"You can't recycle tartar sauce."
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post #4 of 32 Old 02-07-2014, 04:54 PM
snoWJ
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I've had the same smell off and on for the last few years, definitely rubber-ish smelling. Always thought it was a bad idler pulley or belt tensioner, but no culprit as of yet.

1999 WJ 4.0L Selec-Trac~ 2.5" OME coils + 3/4 Front Spacer\\Bilstein 5100s\\245-75-16 Bridgestone Blizzak DM-V1\\Zone Extended Rear Links
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post #5 of 32 Old 02-07-2014, 04:59 PM
snoWJ
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Forgot one other thing...I hit the A/C button the other day by accident while the heat was on (and it was like -3 F), which let to a pretty gross coolant smell until I realized what I had done and turned it off.

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post #6 of 32 Old 02-07-2014, 07:44 PM
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I am having the same sort of smell. It is realy only on when the heat is on. It sort of smells like a mix of coolent and trans fluid. Same as you no drips/leaks, checked all my fluids nothing is low...

-2001 WJ Limited, 4.7L V8, Thrush Glasspack muffler dumped before axle(no tailpipe), Spectra CAI,
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post #7 of 32 Old 02-08-2014, 01:18 AM
William2point0
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I had the same smell going on. I pulled the trans dipstick with the Jeep hot and running, noticed a bit of smoke coming out. Replaced the ATF and filter, the smell is gone!

"You needn't die happy when your time comes, but you must die satisfied, for you have lived your life from the beginning to the end and ka is always served." ~SK
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post #8 of 32 Old 02-08-2014, 06:38 AM
BandGauto
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A slight valve cover or oil pan leak can cause a strange odor when engine oil gets on a hot engine or exhaust part. It doesnt take much to produce a funky smell in the cabin. Also if you park your Jeep outside, mice love to store seeds and other items anywhere they can in the engine compartment, often near the exhaust manifold, just something else for you to consider.
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post #9 of 32 Old 02-08-2014, 07:18 AM
doityourselfMM
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Possibly the neighbor's cat ....

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Also if you park your Jeep outside, mice love to store seeds and other items anywhere they can in the engine compartment, often near the exhaust manifold, just something else for you to consider.
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post #10 of 32 Old 02-08-2014, 09:27 AM Thread Starter
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Haha nice.

I talked to the wife this morning and she said it stopped smelling bad after I looked at it yesterday. When I get home this afternoon (was out of town), I'm going to give it a proper look over. I'll report back with what I find. Thanks for the suggestions!

~Chris
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Quote:
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"You can't recycle tartar sauce."
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post #11 of 32 Old 02-08-2014, 06:13 PM Thread Starter
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Looked it over - coolant was good, oil was good, transmission fluid was good, and there was nothing wrapped around the axle. I did notice a bunch of snow packed up in the right front wheel. I wonder if the stink was snow/salt burning on the rotor. I left it in the garage to melt off. I'm going to let it go for now and see if it returns...

~Chris
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt
"You can't recycle tartar sauce."
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post #12 of 32 Old 02-13-2014, 02:53 PM
snoWJ
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Any update or did the smell vanish?

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post #13 of 32 Old 02-13-2014, 05:45 PM Thread Starter
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Well, ultimately the smell vanished. I thought I caught a whiff of it a couple days later but it went right away. We've been driving it all week and haven't noticed it. I'll report back if something changes!

~Chris
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Quote:
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post #14 of 32 Old 02-18-2014, 08:45 AM Thread Starter
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I'm still catching a hint of the smell from time to time. I keep assuming it has something to do with the snow/salt but ultimately, that's just a guess. The highs are above 40 all week with Thursday being 55 and a 90% chance of rain. Maybe if the snow/ice/salt/cinder melts and washes off the roads, I can clean up the jeep and verify my assumption this weekend.

If anyone has any thoughts or suggestions, feel free to throw them my way!


~Chris
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt
"You can't recycle tartar sauce."
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post #15 of 32 Old 02-18-2014, 08:59 AM
dcampbell4
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I have had a lingering smell for a number of months now. Interested to see if you find anything before I do, and if I find something I will definitely report back. I plan on taking advantage of the tropical 50's heading our way to take care of a few things I have been putting off with this wonderful Chicago winter we are having.
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