Mice and Exhaust smell - LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-27-2017, 10:07 AM Thread Starter
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Mice and Exhaust smell

Huh?

I think these two might be related.

From searching here:

It looks to me like mice can enter the heater area and get to the recirc plenum, but not in the heater box since the fan has grilles
I think my heater cover will help keep them out although they have yet to try

Mice get behind the dash, which is pretty hard to do from inside the car, but the chassis is open at the back and they can walk right up to the front behind the dash and wreak their tiny havoc. They did get in there a little prior to my ownership, leaving some gnaw marks on the foam under the sill panels and a little pile of paper towel bits forward of the gauges

So this is where the exhaust smell comes in, I put some sloppy foam in the back ends of the chassis last year, and it seemed to subjectively make it better, but not perfect, basically if you are driving and roll the windows up you get a burst of exhaust smell, and occasionally at random times.

this guy:
https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f101...esolved-73344/

thinks he solved it and I was ready to make up the blocks of foam, loaded the pic into cad and measured them even, but I took the pic below and it looks like the factory did at least some sealing of the sills.

So I am thinking of squirting a little spray foam around the edges of the pictured block[it is a pic holding my phone in the sill pointing back]

also the gap shown in the second pic opens straight to the sill, rearward of the foam block i think so I will seal that up

For the mice I bought some fine epoxy coated hardware cloth that should look fairly neat installed at the back of the chassis openings and maybe some closed cell foam there also

Can you tell I live in the woods?
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Last edited by exigegus; 02-04-2017 at 02:37 PM.
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-27-2017, 10:11 AM Thread Starter
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Oh, I was wondering if anyone with a rear panel delete notices better/worse/no exhaust smell

I figure the engine bay must be lower pressure[faster moving] air than the air right behind the car, and the sills must have negative pressure from the fast moving air around them, so maybe the rear panel delete changes the dynamics, or rids the engine bay of exhaust....just a thought
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-02-2017, 12:24 PM Thread Starter
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So quick run down of my sealing efforts

Note the black nylon spiral wrap around the hoses and tubing, to prevent any chafing, or perhaps slowing down rodents trying to chew through

You can just see a few acorn shells in the bottom left of the first pic

the foam is ultra soft closed cell Mcmaster part number 85175K39

Screen is epoxy coated Mcmaster part number 9641T11 Held in with a couple SS #6 pan heads and lock nuts, and a SS sheet metal screw. Edged with some Sikaflex Urethane caulking to avoid tearing hands on frayed edges. All edges turned away from hoses and tubes.



In the front I pretty much replicated the above linked thread, but with softer foam and added the spray foam as pictured to the intermediate foam block, with the pictured extension tube and a mirror.

I was thinking as I was doing it that it didn't really make sense that it should work, but kevinthefro maintained it worked, so it must, but why?

My thought is that filling the front of the sill area fills a void which can become a reservoir of enginey exhaust smell just waiting to enter the cabin.

As I think on it, when you roll up the window the smell appears instantly, it doesn't just creep in, its bang, like it is waiting inches from my nose to get in, not suddenly getting sucked in from the engine bay
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-04-2017, 02:30 PM Thread Starter
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Installed small screens in the top rear mount for the front suspension

Foam is pretty air tight but not mouse proof

Extrusion ID is 1-7/8 x 4 7/16 more or less with one radiused corner. Bent the screen so it binds on the inside of the extrusion. Tabs are 3/8 or less, had to trim as they would not slide in place if wider. tied a piece of wire[string whatever] to pull it through. Feed string from top then grab it from bottom and pull and push screen into position.

Daubed Sikaflex with gloved finger to keep it from moving around[it really cannot come out.

Going to leave trimmed wire in place to ease removal if required

Can you tell I hate mice........
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-04-2017, 03:05 PM
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Another problem with using foam is that it may trap moisture, which can result in corrosion, mold, etc.
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-05-2017, 06:05 AM Thread Starter
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Well, I think not.

First using closed cell foam means it is no different from one piece of plastic against another.

Second, Lotus uses foam, the blocks behind the suspension arms are factory, as is the block in the sill. They even use open cell foam for the big block at the front of the sill, which could turn into a giant sopping sponge.

Third, if this were a 1997 Ford truck, perhaps, but as we are talking about Fiberglas and aluminum, what exactly is corroding?
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-05-2017, 10:26 AM
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Maybe Squirrel Away would discourage them?
Honda makes pepper tape for mousies.
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-05-2017, 11:38 AM
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Dang, I'm not going to lie, I am not jealous of those that have had issues with varmints!

I am a pacifist and a vegetarian, but If a critter started eating on my machine, I would get mid-evil on it's poor soul. Actually if I even thought it possible I would do a shock and awe in the environment. Leave little mice on bbq skewers...

Why does this happen? I can't imagine climbing all through a car is the best place for a nest?

L O T U S
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-05-2017, 01:39 PM Thread Starter
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Mice made a wreck of my +2 a number of years ago.

Why they do what they do is a mystery

But they do it
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-05-2017, 03:20 PM
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The new, less toxic insulation is very tasty to them, hence the honda tape.
There is insulation with pepper in it too.
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post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-05-2017, 03:37 PM
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post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-05-2017, 05:45 PM
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I sometimes use steel wool, which mice do not like or go thru.

I have some stainless steel wool too.

05 elise (BOE Rev300 supercharged, SSRs, shift tower mods, Multivex; HID hi/low beams); 05 Corolla XRS. Past '72 Elan Sprint (I restored), Lotus 7 w/X-flow, TT Supra, Bugeye Sprite, BMW 2002 & 2002tii, '65 GTO.

Driving Tips-https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f10...art-1-a-49665/
Moss Emergency Line-https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f10...cy-line-36631/
Bleeding Brakes- https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f10...-brakes-241138
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post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-06-2017, 12:57 PM
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We have had a mouse or two in our garage. Luckily none have attacked my car.

Whenever my wife leaves food in the garage I banish it right away. She thinks I'm neurotic but I've read a number of these threads.

As well, my father-in-law has had mice chew some cabling in his car. He owns a farm.
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post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-06-2017, 05:11 PM
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My mind is fairly weird. When I saw the title I couldn't help but think the ingenious mice had developed and produced their own internal combustion engine and vehicle and they were joyriding around in the garage, creating exhaust fumes that could be lethal (without cracking a door/window).

San

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post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-11-2017, 11:19 AM Thread Starter
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Still not perfect. Can still get that shot of exhaust smell right as you close the window on the highway.

Wonder how it gets in
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post #16 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-29-2019, 06:49 PM Thread Starter
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So to get back, two years later. While the exhaust smell is much improved, it is still not gone. And several mice did manage to get in when the car sat at home for two weeks last fall

As part of a BOE upgrade, the fuel tank has to come out. Which shows me the first pic, gaping holes open to the engine bay and probable path for fumes

I made thin sheet metal covers sealed with aluminum tape.

Also, the fuel pump access panel has no gasket, and is spaced up off the chassis by the rivnuts.

last pic is 1/16 cork gasket

very very difficult to make the car suck in fumes now, both windows cracked on the highway you can get just the faintest hint
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post #17 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-29-2019, 07:16 PM
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I still have to do these things to minimize my exhaust smell.

** save ~10 lbs gain 1 hp ** EQ: Y=(190*X) / (1984-X) where Y is (HP) and X is (lbs)

'07 Lotus Exige S310


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