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Discussion Starter #1
does anyone experience the smell of raw gasoline while driving the elise with the top off or with the window rolled down just a little bit? i have a strong gasoline odor inside the car when i'm driving. thanks

scott
 

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That's not good, scott. I know nothing about Lotus cars, but I have yet to smell raw fuel on a fuel-injected production car that didn't need fixing.

Seriously, try to track it down, and keep a fire extinguisher handy.

I really hope this isn't a TADTS issue..
 

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Get in back to the dealer ASAP.
I could be a faulty seal on the filler cap.... did you cram extra fuel in?
Could be a bad evaporative purge system resulting in neat fuel in the carbon cannister. I don't know where the cannister is located but if its at the front of the car, the open top will up the efficiency of cabitn ventillation and pull in the vapour.
Or it could be a larger leak somewhere cool. (fuel hose clamp low down )
The problem would be the ignitable vapour filling the engine compartment.
Pop the rear lid and check the strength of the scent.
Look under the car for dirt sticking to fluid leaks and evidence of neat fuel on the ground.
m
 

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No smell with mine, is fuel cap on correctly? Also a fuel leak might not show up as it would land on the diffuser and probably evaporate before you'd see it on the ground.

Chris
 

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The fuel systems are sealed as part of the emission controls, you should never smell gasoline from the car. I would not even drive it to the dealer, have them come get it!
 

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it is the spirit of europas past. take it on a tour of a lotus repair facility to show the car how good life can be once freed of the spirits



as an aside i am reminded of smelling gasoline from the engine compartment of my fiat x 1/9 years ago. openend the engine compartment to hear the sound of gas being flash evaporated as it dripped from a bad fuel line onto the engine block. a true adrenalin rush moment as the image of a flash fire filled my imagination. run away run away!
 

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I only had this when I overfilled the tank once coming across country (not everyone has those nifty shut offs!).

Otherwise, this is not normal.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Randy Chase said:
I only had this when I overfilled the tank once coming across country (not everyone has those nifty shut offs!).

Otherwise, this is not normal.
i noticed the same thing when i overfilled on the roadtrip. but it still continues after i realized that i was overfilling it. even when the fuel is low or half full, it has hints of raw fuel with often strong gusts of it in your face. i noticed turning on the ac helped as it probably pressurized the cabin so the gas could not enter through a vacumm effect. i have an autox this sunday and want to go soo bad!! you guy's think it's safe to go? it's about 20 minutes away from my house, or should i stay home and bring it to the dealer?

man, i used to deal with this problem when i owned datsun 240z's. i loved the z's with a passion, but the raw fuel sucking in from the design of the rear end just drove me nuts(literally)! it was sooo awful, i would come out of my z smelling like gasoline, my cloths would be drenched in raw gas odors that would make your eyes irritated and watery. that was an experience, and i can't believe i'm dealing with it now.:( i hope this get's fixed quickly. thanks for all the advice.

scott
 

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majorbonr said:
i noticed the same thing when i overfilled on the roadtrip. but it still continues after i realized that i was overfilling it. even when the fuel is low or half full, it has hints of raw fuel with often strong gusts of it in your face. i noticed turning on the ac helped as it probably pressurized the cabin so the gas could not enter through a vacumm effect. i have an autox this sunday and want to go soo bad!! you guy's think it's safe to go? it's about 20 minutes away from my house, or should i stay home and bring it to the dealer?

man, i used to deal with this problem when i owned datsun 240z's. i loved the z's with a passion, but the raw fuel sucking in from the design of the rear end just drove me nuts(literally)! it was sooo awful, i would come out of my z smelling like gasoline, my cloths would be drenched in raw gas odors that would make your eyes irritated and watery. that was an experience, and i can't believe i'm dealing with it now.:( i hope this get's fixed quickly. thanks for all the advice.
scott
You're kidding right? or trying to make history.
You want to have the first Fed Elise to burn down because you'll miss a session of tire wear and cone scuffs?
It may be a leak that is non hazardous with regards to combustion, but why play with fire no matter what brand of car you're driving?
It's not worth the potential loss of the machine and injury.

safety first.
m

.
 

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majorbonr said:
i have an autox this sunday and want to go soo bad!! you guy's think it's safe to go? it's about 20 minutes away from my house, or should i stay home and bring it to the dealer?
Dude... take a deep breath, take a step back and consider again.

If you can smell raw fuel, then somewhere deep in your car they are evaporating from liquid fuel. Right there, the fumes are concentrated enough to flash. One spark and you can kiss your new toy goodbye. By the time you get an extinguisher on it, you will have an all new finish on your paint.

The fact that your OBD2 MIL light isn't screaming at you means it's probably not a fuel tank vapor leak, but a real problem instead.

You're only 20 minutes away from a dealer, fer crying out loud. They'll take a look, probably find something loose and tighten it down, and you get to keep your car for years to come instead of driving a rental while waiting for a claims adjuster to sift through the ashes.

If you do go race instead of repair, make sure someone is shooting video! Hopefully a panic ensues, people drop off the waiting list en mass, and I get a car in 2005 after all.. :) Kidding people, just kidding..
 

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Page 77 of the owner's manual mentions to be careful not to top off or "brim" the tank since it

"may cause flooding of the fuel tank breather system charcoal canister, or spillage of fuel"

Sounds like this is a car that you don't fill it all the way up.... as in repeated restarts after the pump nozzle auto-shuts off. I generally add an extra squirt or two past the auto-off as the handle stays in my hand anyway all along. No problems so far, but I think I'll let the auto-off be my boss here from now on.
 

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majorbonr said:
i noticed the same thing when i overfilled on the roadtrip. but it still continues after i realized that i was overfilling it. even when the fuel is low or half full, it has hints of raw fuel with often strong gusts of it in your face.
I've noticed the same thing, but I'm not entirely sure it's a raw fuel smell...

It only appears to occur when I'm driving - I can't isolate it when in the garage.

I will admit, though, that I've frequently topped the tank off when filling up.

Keep us updated if you find anything with your service. I live about 3 hours from the nearest dealer!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
i just took a 2-3 hour drive and noticed it went away if i was really light on the gas or moving really fast. it seemed like a couple of inches before the window was completely winded, the gasoline smell was more noticeable. i drove for about an hour with the windows up and no vent or ac, it was fine but after i left this e46 m3 in the dust, i smelt it again but more sublte this time.:) i think it just may be the overfilling that is causing this, nowi'm not too sure that it's raw gasoline. maybe really strong exhaust? i'll bring it to newport european monday.

scott
 

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majorbonr said:
but after i left this e46 m3 in the dust
:cool:

Also, I haven't smelled gas. I also haven't filled the tank yet. Just a few bucks here and there -- I pump (even though that's a no no in NJ).

I do smell a chemical-like smell coming from the interior components. It disipates over time.
 

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Overfilling is the most logical explanation...or possibly another unrelated smell. If there is a leak, Don at Newport European will find it!
 

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always carry a digi camera so we can all see pix of it burning like a bastard when it ignites
 

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Graydon said:
huh? I've been trying that for years... every time they threaten me with a ticket

threaten you with a ticket for what?
 
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