Why would i smell gas fumes in my 2002 subaru outback sedan only when temperature is 35 degrees or below

170

Asked by Jan 02, 2013 at 10:06 PM about the 2002 Subaru Outback Limited

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

11 Answers

2,195

Temp outside wont necessarily keep the smell of gas fumes from coming... colder temps = more concentrated fuel for motor to run = less fuel burned = gas fumes from heat of exhaust... although once your car warms up, the fume smell should go away.

3 of 3 people found this helpful.
104,825

You shouldn't be smelling any gas in the cabin. Something is leaking and the fumes are coming in the cowl at the base of the windshield. Look at the connections where the rubber lines meet the steel lines from the tank. If it's small, it might not look wet but it will be stained.

7 of 7 people found this helpful.
175

It is likely that your gasoline filler tube has rusted and is beginning to seep gasoline when you refuel. You would first start noticing this only when you fillup past the level of the fuel tank.

10 of 10 people found this helpful.
170

I have noticed it the past couple of years and it only happens with the cold temps. When temperature gets warmer I do not smell it and it happens whether I have a full tank or empty tank

17 of 17 people found this helpful.
1,145

Look at the little hose to the left of your pass. side spark plugs connectors on the top of the engine , it will be under a bracket that is where it usually leaks from when the weather is cold the metal contracts and leaves a little gap where it goes into the hose, I replace the OEM clamps with some hose clamps and it is fine , you can always try tighting the oem clamps . It is a lot easer to take off the bracket so you can get at the hose good luck

17 of 17 people found this helpful.
120

I had this problem wiht my 2002 Outback last winter in the polar vortex weather. The fix was simply to tighten the little clamps on the fuel lines, the cold has caused the metal in the clamps to shrink and that made them loose. Once the guy at the garage took a tiny screwdriver and tightened then all up again, there was no smell.

12 of 12 people found this helpful.
120

https://www.facebook.com/MakeSubaruOfAmericaFixTheirFuelLeaks This is a common problem that Subaru recalled for the 2002-2003 Subaru WRX only (and only in cold certain cold weather states). Unfortunately they have failed to issue a recall on any of their other models...even though many of them are also affected.

12 of 12 people found this helpful.
10

Best take it in to a shop. When cold weather occurs, things contract with temperature. As the engine warms, things expand. Best to have a certified technician look the whole system over for leaks just to be safe.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.
130

I had a friend who has a 2002 outback that had the smell of RAW gas, not exhaust, smell in her interior especially when she turned on her heater. When the weather got below zero it was so bad she had to drive with all of her windows down and turn off the heater. In warm weather there was no smell. She took her car into 2 different Subaru shops and they said there is nothing leaking. So I took off the thick metal steel or cast iron (not sure what it's made of but it's real heavy) bracket ont the passenger side of engine that the spark pug wires bracket are on. There are some bolts (12mm) that are hidden that hold this bracket on. This exposes the fuel lines and all of the fuel line small clamps. It looks like they are Phillips head screws but they are not. This is important! I tried using a Phillips screwdriver and they wouldn't tighten. I found out they are "square head" or "posidrive" screws which look identical to phillip head screws. When I used my posidrive or square head screwdriver, I could tighten all of the clamps from a half turn to a whole turn. This cured the problem. One thing to not there was absolutely no indication of gas leaking anywhere below these fittings. Normally you would think there would be a stain on the engine block or a smell that you could find but I sniffed around and wiped my finger all around these clamps and there was no residue whatsoever. So logically you would think that your wasting your time tightening these clamps but it totally fixed the smell problem. I guarantee that if you try to tighten these with a Phillips no matter how good you think your Phillip screwdriver is, it will not work. I have high dollar German made Phillips which are way better then Craftsman and Snap On Phillips (which I have and tried both) that didn't work. You must use a Square head or Posidrive to tighten these clamps!

13 of 13 people found this helpful.

Is there any demonstration how to do this?

Tightening hose clamps at fuel filter and fuel injector rails helps but I have found that you need to replace the O rings that seal the injectors to the fuel rail. The parts cost about 5 bucks and takes about an hour to do.

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