What would make a car smell like natural gas?

Asked By: Ibrahym Graffe | Last Updated: 21st April, 2020
Category: automotive road side assistance
4/5 (467 Views . 24 Votes)
What you smell when you think you smell natural gas is the sulfur smelling additive called mercaptan. But that's neither here nor there. What you are smelling from her car is probably the catalytic converter going bad. An overcharged battery can also sometimes emit a sulfur-like smell.

Click to see full answer


Beside this, why does my car smell like gas?

A bad fuel pressure is one of the potential reasons that make a car smells like gas. A failed pressure regulator can cause your car burn fuel until the mixture gets too rich or too thin. Gas fumes will also come inside the car if a leak makes the exhaust enter the ventilation system.

Also, is it safe to drive a car that smells like gas? If you notice the smell of gas once you get into your vehicle, this could be a sign of a gas leak. A gas leak can be dangerous to drive with because it is flammable and it creates a slick surface for other drivers. A gas leak is one of the leading causes of a vehicle fire. This is because gas is very flammable.

Also question is, what else smells like natural gas?

Rotten Eggs The two most common sources of a rotten egg smell are a natural gas leak, and escaping sewer gas. In its natural state, natural gas is actually odorless. That's why utility companies inject a substance called mercaptan, which emits an odor that smells like sulfur or rotten eggs.

How do I know if my car has a gas leak?

Finding the Leak Check the top of the engine for wet gasoline. You want to look near the fuel pump, spark plugs, and injector lines. Also go to the back of the car and check if there are any drips coming from the fuel tank.

32 Related Question Answers Found

Why does my car smell like gas but no leak?

Even without seeing fuel visibly leaking from your car, if you have a fuel smell, you have a fuel leak somewhere. Usually the cause of a leak is a worn or damaged part, or due to an engine that is not running properly. One place we see this very frequently are fuel hoses in Subaru engine bays.

How much does it cost to fix a gas leak on a car?

Fixing a leaking fuel line is a simple task for a repair facility and costs between $60 and $120. Lavacot says it can easily be done at home by the semi-advanced mechanic.

How do I fix a gas leak in my car?

  1. Step 1 - Jack up the Vehicle.
  2. Step 2 - Find the Leak or Hole in the Gas Tank.
  3. Step 3 - Sand the Leaky Area of the Tank.
  4. Step 4 - Clean the Surface.
  5. Step 5 - Mix the Epoxy.
  6. Step 6 - Shape and Apply the Epoxy.
  7. Step 7 - Insert the Epoxy in the Hole.
  8. Step 8 - Fill the Tank with Gas.

Why do I keep smelling gas fumes?

Brief episodes of phantom smells or phantosmia — smelling something that's not there — can be triggered by temporal lobe seizures, epilepsy, or head trauma. Sufferers report smelling hydrogen sulfide (rotten eggs), bad perfume, garbage, a gas leak, wet dog, pungent body odor or spoiled fish or feces.

What does a bad catalytic converter smell like?


Another common smell is similar to rotten eggs. Unless you have rotten eggs in your car, this smell is a burning sulfur smell which is a clear symptom of a catalytic converter problem in your engine, or damage in the emission control system. It may also mean that your engine is running with a rich air/fuel mixture.

Can bad spark plugs cause gas smell?

Fouled or Worn Out Spark Plugs
A widened gap causes a colder spark, which can create incomplete combustion, as it cannot burn all of the fuel in the combustion chamber. This results in a rough idle and a fuel smell in the exhaust.

How do you diagnose a bad fuel pump?

Usually, a bad or failing fuel pump will produce one or more of the following 8 symptoms that alert the driver of a potential issue.
  1. Whining Noise From the Fuel Tank.
  2. Difficulty Starting.
  3. Engine Sputtering.
  4. Stalling at High Temperatures.
  5. Loss of Power Under Stress.
  6. Car Surging.
  7. Low Gas Mileage.
  8. Car Will Not Start.

What are the symptoms of exposure to natural gas?

Exposure to high levels of natural gas can cause:
  • Death by suffocation.
  • Loss of consciousness.
  • Nausea.
  • Severe headaches.
  • Fatigue.
  • Memory problems.
  • Lack of coordination.

What does natural gas smell like outside?

Rotten Egg-Like Smell
Natural gas gives off a garlic-like smell. It can also be described as smelling like a rotten egg or sulfur. This smell is actually added to the natural gas by utility companies to warn customers of a potential leak. When a gas leak is present, it can interact with electrical and fire sources.

How long does it take for natural gas smell to go away?


The smell should dissipate within a few hours. If it doesn't, contact your gas company and report the problem – there may be a more extensive leak. If anyone is suffering from nausea, headaches, dizziness or flu-like symptoms, call 911 immediately, as these are sign of carbon monoxide poisoning.

What does natural gas smell like skunk?

That's sewer gas. It's easy to get sewer gas confused with the smell of natural gas. Because natural gas is odorless, the skunk odor comes from a chemical called mercaptan that is added to the gas to help warn people of danger if they smell it.

Why does it smell like gas when my heater is on?

if your heater smells like gas this could be caused by a leak in the exchanger. There aren't any normal reasons for your heater to smell like gas. If the smell is coming from the air ducts a leak in the heat exchanger is the most likely cause.

Will a carbon monoxide detector detect a gas leak?

A carbon monoxide detector will only detect carbon monoxide unless otherwise stated. However, natural gas companies often put an additive in the natural gas to give it a distinct odor. This makes it easy to detect a gas leak. Carbon monoxide (CO) is an odorless and tasteless gas that is lethal when breathed in.

What do you do if you smell natural gas?

If you smell a natural gas odor, hear the hissing sound of gas escaping or see other signs of a leak:
  1. IMMEDIATELY EVACUATE the area, and from a safe location either call 911 or SoCalGas at 1-800-427-2200.
  2. DON'T smoke, or light a match, candle or other flame.

Why does it smell bad outside 2019?


It's not you that smells — it's the air. While more common during fall or winter, temperature inversions can technically happen any time, and they can sometimes cause a certain foul smell. Temperature inversions happen when the air at the surface becomes cooler than the air higher up.

What does leaking gas smell like?

Natural gas is an efficient, safe, colorless and odorless gas. For easy detection, we add a harmless chemical called mercaptan to give gas a distinctive odor. Most people describe the smell as rotten eggs or hydrogen sulfide like odor. It smells bad for a good reason - in case of a gas leak!

Can a car explode from a gas leak?

No, it is not safe to drive with fuel leaking from your system. While it is true that a fuel leak is one of the many causes of vehicle fires, it also happens to be the number one cause. This is true in the case of gasoline as it has the tendency to catch fire a lot easier than diesel.