Best of Deals Car Reviews Repair Shops Cars A-Z Radio Show

Suburban Exhaust Fumes

Ok, I wandered through these hallowed halls of wisdom looking for a little nugget of knowledge. Since I haven’t found it yet, it’s time to reach out and …

I have an '05 Suburban. I love the boat but recently have noticed exhaust fumes in the cabin. My first trip to the dealer was a warranty deal where they replace lifters.

And, they said they couldn’t detect any fumes. I picked it up and the fumes were still there … stingy eyes … and my wife wouldn’t get in the car. Ok, so some of you might see that as an advantage, but she has the credit card.

I took it back the the dealer and they swore they couldn’t smell anything except the dog … who, by the way, doesn’t ride in MY car!!! and … nevermind …

On this second trip they said there was a loose smark plug. But they stil couldn’t detect any smell.mThey even said they had someone sit in the car for a half hour with it running and they didn’t detect anything. Even when they woke him back up and revived him (kidding)…

I have to admint it is better. I aired the Burban out … cleaned it out … but when I am idling in the drive or at a light, the smell starts creeping back in.

They say they checked everything including door and tail light gaskets, exhaust, and no luck.

I’m old but not dead. Have re-built a few engines in my day … but not for a few (many) … (lots of) years. I think I know the old familiar smell of fumes and can tell from gas or antifreeze … but just am not good at crawling around under the chassis anymore.

What do you think? The dealer has been reliable for years, but I just think there’s something going on here. Should I try another dealer, find someone to test the cabin air quality, or update the old life insurance?

Unless it is for warranty service or recall work there is no need to take a vehicle to a dealer. You can have any mechanic look at things - especially the exhaust system.

That is what I suggest you do. Find a local, independent (i.e. non-corporate chain) shop. If it specializes in exhaust/muffler work all the better. Have them provide a second opinion.

Get thee to an exhaust shop.
An exhaust specialty shop has the sniffers and smoke tests etc to find even just a crack.
Good thing the odor is warning you because the CO is odorless and will get to you on an extended trip if not handled asap.

I suspected as much. Now I’ll be in search of a shop with the right stuff and snuff to check this out.