Help-gas fumes eluding 3 mechanics

Our van has periodically smelled of raw gas in the cab for several months. You can smell the gas outside of the vehicle also. Most intense smell on drivers side. No spillage under the vehicle. Sometimes smells on starting, sometimes starts to smell during a trip. Doesn’t seem related to filling tank. Mechanics not finding any leaks.


[list]Model-Year ? _________ [/list]

[list]Which Engine ? _________ [/list]


Thanks for your post. 2001 Grand Caravan ES, 3.8L V6 Engine, Automatic

Are you quite sure that it is the smell of raw gas? B/c your post title says gas fumes. There is a difference.

If it is gas fumes I’d guess that you have a break in your evaporation system hoses. I had this problem once and mechanics “couldn’t” find it - or more like “wouldn’t” find it. When I decided to look myself it took me about 5 minutes to find the broken connections.

I Recall Recalls For Dodge Caravans Grand Caravans For Fuel Pump Module O-Rings (On Gas Tank) And Fuel Rail Or Fuel Injector O-Rings (On Engine), Both For Leaks, But I Don’t See One For 2001.

It wouldn’t hurt to have a look in these locations, though.


Thanks. I will mention those locations to mechanic #4.

Thanks for the clarification. Yes, it definitely smells like raw gas. I have opened the hood when I’ve smelled it, looked under the vehicle (never on a lift though) and can’t find anything, but then quite honestly, I’m not quite sure what I’m looking for. Plus people have told me that the gas evaporates so quickly, it’ll be hard to spot.

Gasoline does evaporate quickly. But it doesn’t disappear without a trace. It should actually leave clean(er) spots wherever it leaks. The leak areas will also still smell even after the liquid is gone. On top of that, the number of likely leak spots is not really all that large - connections and fittings.

What kind of mechanics have you seen? If you’re talking about asking the Jiffy Lube guy or something then I wouldn’t give up on asking mechanics.

And do consider this: finding and fixing something like this is not a good way for a shop to make money. It involves a lot of time searching, but usually not very expensive parts or intensive labor. There are lots of shops out there (especially corporate chain places) that have a hard time billing for things if they aren’t standard, pre-set repair items in the company data base. You need a little hole in the wall local garage the specializes in helping folks with their cars - one that can explain to you if necessary about billing you for the labor time needed for the kind of inspection it might take to find the issue.