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Strong fuel smell in cabin, possibly related to low fuel level

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Old 05-19-17, 10:09 AM   #1
Oro
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Default Strong fuel smell in cabin, possibly related to low fuel level

I have a very intermittent strong gas smell in the cabin. She (daily driver) has complained about it for perhaps six months, but I've never been able to reproduce it when I drive it. Finally we were in the car together last weekend. The tank was very low; we filled it up and it went away. I told her to drive it to empty again and see if it returned. It did.

Since it's in the cabin, I can't see it coming from the engine bay, and it didn't appear to come through the vents. I am thinking it must be a vent line coming from the pump assembly in the tank below the rear seat? Has anyone experienced this or know about the fuel/vent routing between the tank and engine bay?
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Old 05-19-17, 12:20 PM   #2
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Any fuel leak would have manifested itself
with a check engine light coming on. So unless you have the check engine light on, or at lease some code in memory, than it's likely something else. Could be an exhaust leak.
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Old 05-19-17, 01:13 PM   #3
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I can think a few ways fuel could leak w/o generating a CEL - but not in the pressurized end forward of the FPR as I think you mean. I don't suspect that but can't rule it out. No CEL. Car is well maintained and in perfect operating condition as far as I can tell.

I *had* been thinking it was an exhaust leak and that was what she was smelling, but it's not. I was all through the exhaust system maybe 2 years ago when I cleaned and tested the O2 sensors and it was A-Ok then. It's definitely raw gas vapor getting into the cabin, not exhaust or mixed exhaust/unburned fuel. I am thinking it's the charcoal canister/evap line somehow/somewhere.

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Old 05-19-17, 04:08 PM   #4
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In addition to the lines check the vapor canister. It may have a crack or overtime the medium inside the canister is no longer effective. Also check the purge and vent valves. The evap system does not fully function with fuel levels above a half tank. That is why when trying to reset a stubborn evap readiness monitor it is recommended to go through the drive cycles with a half a tank of gas. Maybe that is why the smell is not present with a full tank and becomes apparent when the level drops.
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