My 2008 toyota Matrix smells like Dante’s Inferno. If I turn on the heater to the floor position it sucks the sulfurous rotten egg smell right into the car. Previous years of the Matrix had a TSB to replace the catalytic converter to address just this issue. There is not a TSB for my year car. The dealer had the car yesterday and acknowledged the stink, but said that without a TSB they would not replace the $1000 catalytic converter. The dealer is contacting their higher ups at Toyota in an attempt to address the issue. Mine cannot possibly be the only 2008 Matrix with this problem. What is the next step I should take? It has to be fixed.
In the short term, try a different brand of gasoline. It may or may not work, but it’s worth a try. How do fumes from the tail pipe, which is at the rear of the car, get sucked into the interior? The air intake for the interior is at the base of the windshield.
The smell eminates from under the front seats. It doesn’t get into the car if the heater is in defrost mode. It smells no matter what brand of gas I put in.
Don’t let up on them in regards to this issue. It would be interesting and valuable to know what level a carbon monoxide detector read. Is the Dealer interested in what fuel trim values are present? as mixture problems can cause the “rotten egg” smell.
Surely on a 2008 vehicle this is under warranty (especially since the catalytic converter is part of the emissions control system, whose warranty period is set by Federal law (7-yr/70,000 mi, I think people have said here)).
That there might be a design or production flaw is a different issue, but you want to learn about that even if they fix the stink. That is, fixing the stink with a part that has the same weakness as the original is not a good solution. I hope you find some info about that.
You need to remind the dealer politely about the warranty. Dealers seem to have trouble remembering them. But maybe I’m being unkind; perhaps “checking with higher ups” means they want to find out if there is a flaw before they just replace the part(s).
Make that 8 yrs 80,000 on the Fed. cat warranty,you cannot operate the car with a known mixture problem (which can destroy the cat) and expect to use the Fed warranty (this warning really doesn’t apply to the OP since he has made the Dealer aware “somethings up”)You are a long way from having to rely on the Fed. 8yr 80,000 warranty.
The catalytic converter may be located under the car below the front seats, but anything coming out of it comes out the tailpipe. The sulphur smell comes from INSIDE the cat, not from its outer shell.
The air that comes out the defroster vents comes into the car at the same place as the air that comes out the heater or AC vents, so the HVAC mode should make no difference. There is only one air intake for the HVAC system.
Perhaps something under the seats INSIDE the car, or the undercoating under the car, is getting to hot and creating an unpleasant odor. If the heat shield were missing from the cat, or from some other exhaust system component, this could happen.