Q: There is a strong alcohol smell in the cabin

asked by on December 13, 2016

There is a strong alcohol smell in the cabin, I did not smell it under the hood but it is coming from the car it is not a spill or anything like that. It is strong when I let the car sit and cool, but fades away when I drive it.

My car has 8000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

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Hello, thank you for writing in. Does it smell sweet at all? I believe you are smelling glycol. This is the type of alcohol that is used in coolant that will keep it liquid at freezing temperatures. If you are only smelling it inside of the car, then you may have leaking heater core. This is the unit in which the hot coolant is sent to so the heater may heat the air before coming into the cabin. These are infamous for leaking due to several issues, but with your vehicle being so new there may be a defect. The heater core is set right behind your firewall (separates the dashboard from engine bay). This would be why you smell it in inside of the cab and not in the engine compartment.

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