Why is there a gas smell inside the car when starting car in A/C heater on?

Asked by Dec 18, 2013 at 02:46 PM about the 2006 Nissan Altima 2.5 S

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

I have a 2006 Nissan Altima 2.5 S with 111,000 miles on it. Lately, I smell sweet
gasoline smell when I start the car engine with A/C heater on. I can smell it through the
front A/C vent which stays for a couple of minutes and then fades away when I drive the
car for about a 1/2 a mile. I noticed this started only when it is cold outside and when I
start my engine in the morning to go to work, or after work to get home. I also tried
turning the A/C to cold the smell goes away. Is this something serious and should be
taken care of immediately?

2 Answers


I think what you are smelling is a coolant leak, because you mention the word "sweet" and heater "ON". Gasoline NEVER has a sweet smell but antifreeze ALWAYS has a sweet smell/taste and that is why animals drink it and die. Check your passenger floor for tell tale signs of coolant leaking from the heater core.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

Take care right away. if it is a coolant leak you dont want to overheat if it gets worse, but if it was that is would get worse as you warm up so i believe it is a fuel leak but from a injector. when air is pulled from outside it brings the fumes that accumulates from higher fuel pressure in fuel lines when car is stopped. it wont do this as much while you drive so it goes away. just a thought.

4 of 4 people found this helpful.

Your Answer

Nissan Altima Experts

  • #1
    Tom Demyan
  • #2
  • #3
View All

Related Models For Sale

Used Nissan Maxima
329 Great Deals out of 21,841 listings starting at $1,200
Used Honda Accord
1,129 Great Deals out of 73,674 listings starting at $1,100
Used Toyota Camry
1,075 Great Deals out of 86,843 listings starting at $800
Used Honda Civic
815 Great Deals out of 60,960 listings starting at $950
Used Nissan Sentra
789 Great Deals out of 51,040 listings starting at $2,100
Used Toyota Corolla
971 Great Deals out of 65,643 listings starting at $1,699
Used Hyundai Sonata
913 Great Deals out of 56,689 listings starting at $1,500
Used Chevrolet Malibu
1,081 Great Deals out of 62,433 listings starting at $880
Used Kia Optima
560 Great Deals out of 32,960 listings starting at $995
Used Dodge Charger
466 Great Deals out of 33,692 listings starting at $1,999
Used Ford Fusion
1,028 Great Deals out of 63,216 listings starting at $888
Used Chevrolet Impala
580 Great Deals out of 34,490 listings starting at $900
Used Hyundai Elantra
683 Great Deals out of 50,724 listings starting at $1,500

Used Cars For Sale

2017 Nissan Altima 2.5 S For Sale
23 Great Deals out of 6,601 listings starting at $12,299
2016 Nissan Altima 2.5 S For Sale
150 Great Deals out of 4,190 listings starting at $8,990
2015 Nissan Altima 2.5 S For Sale
251 Great Deals out of 5,127 listings starting at $7,500
2014 Nissan Altima 2.5 S For Sale
77 Great Deals out of 1,847 listings starting at $3,900
2013 Nissan Altima 2.5 S For Sale
37 Great Deals out of 1,166 listings starting at $4,987

Content submitted by Users is not endorsed by CarGurus, does not express the opinions of CarGurus, and should not be considered reviewed, screened, or approved by CarGurus. Please refer to CarGurus Terms of Use.