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Q: Strong gas smell when car is sitting

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Anytime the car is sitting, even all day, there is a strong gas smell around the car. It is to the point that we are afraid to park it in the garage. It is only getting 15 MPG, which is much lower than we were expecting. We have only had the car for two weeks. What could be causing this?

My car has 55000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hi, thanks for writing in. The strong gas smell may be an indication of a fuel leak from a fuel line somewhere or potentially an evaporative emissions system leak. Check to see if you see any visible signs of fuel leaking anywhere near or under the car which may indicate leaking raw fuel out. All modern cars are equipped with an Evaporative Emission Control (EVAP) system. The EVAP system prevents fuel vapors from the fuel tank from escaping into the atmosphere. The EVAP system collects and temporarily stores the fuel vapors in the charcoal canister. The charcoal canister is filled with activated carbon pellets that can absorb the fuel vapors. When the engine is running, the fuel vapors are purged from the canister and burned in the engine. When this system has a leak in it or otherwise does not successfully trap the fuel vapors in the charcoal canister, this may cause the smell to be emitted from the car. With regard to the fuel mileage you are getting in this vehicle, unfortunately it is not possible to shed at light on this without any detail as to the make and model of vehicle. I would recommend having an expert from YourMechanic come to your home to properly diagnose your issues related to the fuel smell.

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