I have a 2002 Sebring Convertible LX 2.7 L V6 with the check engine light on. I pulled the codes and got p0442 and p0455 which are small EVAP leak and large EVAP leak.

I changed the gas cap and the light came back and the same codes appeared.

My problem is 75% of the EVAP system is on top of the gas tank and I’d have to drop the tank to get to it. The only thing I can reach is the purge solenoid in the engine compartment which is below the air filter box.

My question is: What can I check next without dropping the gas tank? I think the hoses are the next most likely. My wife wants to change the purge solenoid.

Also, a smoke test is $100 and I’m trying to avoid that. If a mechanic hooked it up to a scanner more advanced than my hand scanner, could they tell what’s wrong from the readings?



A scan of the codes with any other scanner will give you no better codes.

That $100 smoke test could save you a lot of time, aggrevation, and even money. I’d strongly recommend it as your next step. It’s the best way to find the leak.


The cause might be a leak in a vacuum hose ANYWHERE in the EVAP system. Check the vacuum hoses which go to the charcoal canister and at the engine. If any hose shows ANY deterioration, replace. A “small leak” is a pin hole size leak. A “large leak” is a larger pin size leak.
One area you might overlook, when searching for a fuel tank leak, is the filler neck. Rubber deteriorates, and clamps loosen…
Do you have the EVAP system vacuum hoses, and wiring schematics? They are indispensable for troubleshooting. So are the EVAP system troubleshooting charts.

You may have a pump that pressurizes the system for check that has failed, I had that happen once, luckily under warranty but it took 2 trips to one dealer FAIL, and the other dealer figured it out.

My daughter has the same problem with her 02 Sebring. We had the system smoked and repaired twice. Each time check engine light came back on after about 300 miles. The good news is this won’t hurt the engine. The bad news is the car is polluting more than it should and it won’t pass an emission inspection with the check engine light on. I say bite the bullet and have the system smoked. You can shop around for a better deal than $100. I thin it cost me around $60. Any way, I’m sure your mechanic has a boat payment to make and that $100 will help.

Good new. Problem solved. There was a leaky hose from the EVAP system above the gas tank. Took it to a mechanic who put it on the lift and found it in seconds.

Bad news. It was a specialty item. Hose had to purchased from dealer and cost $60.

Not bad though and no problems since.

I’m glad you got th eproblem solved. Thanks for posting. So many don’t bother.

Happy motoring.