Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: I'm getting a burning plastic like smell after a 45 minute drive but all gauges read normal and fluids look good.

asked by on

I cannot see anything under the van, nothing is leaking, everything looks normal.... but this smell (which is outside the cab - can't smell it inside) is bizarre. Not seeing any smoke from tailpipe either. Brakes feel kinda spongy but i don't think it could be brake fluid. I'm not Mr. Goodwrench but i do know this is weird.

My car has 107000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Check the brakes out on the front of the van. It is possible that the pads are not releasing properly and burning the brake pads causing the plastic burning smell. The brake system could be sticking and not retracting causing your brake pedal to be spongy.

If you need further assistance with your smells in the cab, then seek out a professional, such as one from Your Mechanic, to help you.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. I'm getting a burning plastic like smell after a 45 minute drive but all gauges read normal and fluids look good.

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: Van stalled after filling gas tank which had been low in fuel (on red line but no light) and then it was OK about 15 minutes later

Hi There, This is likely related to your EVAP emissions system and something called a purge solenoid. The EVAP system prevents fuel vapors from the fuel tank from escaping into the atmosphere. The EVAP system collects and temporarily stores the...

Q: Do yukons back brakes have rotors or hubs?

Your Yukon is equipped with rotors and pads in the front and rear of your vehicle. If you need to have this done, consider YourMechanic, as a certified mechanic can perform a brake pad and rotor replacement at your home...

Q: My car brakes are spongy

When replacing a master cylinder, it should be "bench bled" before installing it in the vehicle. This involves filling the reservoir with fluid, connecting rubber hoses to the brake line ports and placing the other end in the fluid reservoir,...

Related articles

How Long Does a Heater Control Valve Last?
Keeping the right amount of coolant in a car is essential in keeping the engine at the right temperature. Failing to have the right amount of coolant or even bad elements...
P2428 OBD-II Trouble Code: Exhaust Gas Temperature Too High Bank 1
P2428 code definition A P2428 trouble code signifies that the PCM has detected a problem in the exhaust gas temperature sensor circuit in bank 1, which subsequently contains the number one...
P2103 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle Actuator Control Motor Circuit High
P2103 means there is a fault with the throttle actuator control motor circuit, likely due to a defective electrical component or part.