Q: I have a strong burnt metal smell.

asked by on December 21, 2016

Got off the highway, and as I stopped I could smell strong burning metal smell. (Jb weld smell) the engine was running fine, no lights came on, heat temp was normal, rpms were normal. Pulled off got out, you can not smell the burning smell but not in one certain area (tires, engine), but could smell it in general. Waited 30 minutes started it again, there is now a weird sound almost rattling, but not loud. Within minutes the smell was back through the heat ducks. Checked the oil, and it seemed normal. Went around the block breaks are fine, and car seems to run fine,minus the new rattle sound/smell. Background- Noticed a pulling to the right 1 month ago. Since then tires were balanced, and aligned. New winter tires were put on, a bushing, and sway bar has been replaced. Since the alignment the car still pulls to the right.
My car has a manual transmission.

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Most of the time, bad smells indicate leaks. Oil, coolant, or brake fluid can leak onto hot surfaces and cause some really potent eye burning type smells. But in your case, I’m suspicious of the brakes. If you have a brake caliper that is sticking, it can cause the car to pull in the direction of the bad caliper. It will also cause the brake lining to overheat and produce a really acrid smell as the binders in the lining burn off. You can check for this if you have a non-contact thermometer. Drive the car for a while and then check the temperature of the front wheels. One of them might be hot. If you want some help with this, you can Contact Your Mechanic. They can send a technician to your home or office to check out your bad smell and tell you what it means and what can be done about it.

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