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Hello everyone,
I bought my 2002 Insight 2 years ago with 89k miles on it, she is now up to 123000. Over the years i have used your forum to solve problems that have occurred. This answer however I could not find after hours of searching.
When I put the heat/AC on (doesn't matter which) there is a smell of gas in my cabin. Not so much when i am driving at high speeds, or even at 30 for that matter. It just happens when I am stopped or crawling in traffic. All the threads I saw that discussed this pointed to the gas lines on the passenger side of the firewall being rusted thru. In my insight this is not the case. I removed the clip that holds the fuel line and moved the rubber grommet behind which is where it is notorious for rotting out, and it is in good shape. for good measure i coated them with some por15 to keep them from rusting out. After looking at images of other peoples' fuel lines at this particular spot, I noticed they all had 2 lines coming up thru that rubber grommet, I only have 1... I dont know if that is relevant or not.
While searching in my engine bay for the gas leak i noticed that the rear passenger corner of the block is leaking oil fairly heavily (I will track down the source of this oil this weekend), maybe I am just smelling that oil which is being heated up on the block? but I am fairly certain it is fuel and it is not coming from the notorious spot on the passenger side firewall.
If anyone has any ideas please let me know what you think and i will check it out and let you know what i find asap.
Thanks!
-matt
 

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When I first started reading your thread, I was convinced it was the usual fuel line rust through issue. But you may have ruled that out for now. (Although I'm unsure why you only have one line. Maybe PO have fixed the issue by rerouting one of the lines?)

So, my second thought is the fuel overfill issue: when we go past the cutoff click of the fueling nozzle, (i.e. overfill the tank), some fuel runs down the vent tube. This smells up the car for a while. I no longer have this issue since I started to finish fueling at the first click every time. I can't remember how the HVAC system operation or vehicle speed affected the smell.

Could this be your issue? Do you try to squeeze in that extra 11th gallon of fuel into the tank? :)
 

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A week ago my son and myself smelled gas in the cabin through the heater vents. Turned out I had a small fuel leak at the top of one of the injectors due to a nicked O-ring. I would do a complete search of the whole fuel loop for leaks.
 

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^^^ +1

I had that too on a Prelude and a BMW E30.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the quick responses guys, i really appreciate it.

@freezin4: I am currently at half a tank. It may be that I tried to squeeze in a little extra gas in there the other day seeing how I waited to get it for 40 mins. Im in westchester county ny, and with the hurricane coming thru everyone and their mother was out at the gas stations filling up. So I may have gotten a little greedy... But I am wondering like you if the speed of the vehicle would have anything to do with the smell. also I let the car idle parked in my driveway for 15 mins today with the fan/heat off and there was no smell in cab, once i turned fan on, it was right there...
I can take pics of single gas line if that interests you just let me know and ile post them.

@uhtrinity: I took off the plastic cover and checked what i believed to be injectors (Truth be told I work on classic chevys and drive to honda to make up for the 10mpgs that i get with them haha)... If they are on the front of the block kind of on top and go down on angle, i have already looked around them for leaks and they were good. I looked hard at what seemed to me to be the rest of the fuel loop when engine was running, and found nothing.

Thanks guys, if anything else comes to mind let me know. If I discover the source of the smell I will let you know right away!
-matt
 

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I'd lean to a broken seal or such as suggested, but ..If it's not fuel and is perhaps motor oil heating on the block and volatilizing, check your oil sender unit [tucked behind exhaust manifold, look between 2&3 cyl ports] for an oil leak that can travel a fair ways from the source;,, ...another thought on gas smell, [more aromatic than an acrid oil stench] is possibly a loose junction at the part where the cat running down from the head meets the exhaust pipe if the join is leaking. Seen in linked image where springclamps are; there's a donut like gasket/seal there. You may even get a rotten egg smell if the cat's really loaded up with fuel following a cold start as happened once recently only for my vehicle. Best luck.
 

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My 2000 5-speed has two lines at the firewall. My 2002 CVT only has one. I don't know if it's the year or the transmission.

Sam
 

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mine did this-check the purge joint on the firewall. Mine had cracked and vented fumes during purge
 

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Have you noticed a significant decrease in gas mileage that has accompanied the fuel odor?

I had to replace my fuel pump last year when I developed a crack in one of the plastic connectors on the top of the assembly. I had the same fuel odor and my MPG had dropped 10+ prior to this.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
good stuff guys, thanks for the ideas.

@biododge1: I searched online, and on the forum for the purge valve, with little luck. Best i can tell it has something to do with lean-burn for the manuals. I may be mistaken tho. I am automatic, do I have one? where on the firewall would i find it if I had one? Also would this throw an evap code?, at the moment i am not throwing any codes.

@Varak: I have have a LMPG of 47. On the way in to work today I set a tripometer and averaged 45.5mpg in 70 miles or so. It has been around this typically in the winters when it gets cold. I will look up the location of the fuel filter and inspect it for issues this weekend.

Thanks again all, I have several things to look for when i pull it in my cousins garage this weekend. If any other possibilities come to mind please let me know so I can inspect, and cross them off the list of possible problems.
 
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