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Hi, I'm wondering if anyone has had a similar experience with this? I have a 2000 Insight at 65000 miles and I've been noticing that when I accelerate or go up a hill at 65 mph, I smell something like exhaust. It's not a strong smell, but I can definitely smell the difference. I've been told that it could be the catalytic converter, but my mechanic hasn't been able to detect any problem. Any suggestions?
 

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I have noticed certain exhaust like odors during stop and go driving conditions or under heavy load. It only seems to occur during cold weather when the heat is on (not with the a/c or just the vents on during the summer)

I posted a similar question several months ago, but still never found an answer. I had the problem last winter (when I bought the car) and then it was gone over the summer and I've smelled it again since the colder weather has returned. I guess it could be the catalytic converter, but why don't I ever smell anything during the summer? Otherwise, the car runs great, so I've decided to live with it.

Exhaust odor post

Good luck

Jim
 

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It sounds like you have some air comming from the rear , outside, that is going into the car. The only thing I can think of is the hatch weather strip that is not fully closed.

Or there seems to be a vent over the gas tank, maybe you have air comming through that. I do not know why you would be the ones to have that. See :
http://ev.whitecape.org/insight/P0001742.JPG from under
http://ev.whitecape.org/insight/P0001737.JPG from over the black duct

Those pics come from the electric Insight conversion Web site
 

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Hrmm. What sort of smell is it, exactly? "Exhaust odor" seems to vary for different vehicles. There are a lot of components that could generate a smell in the vehicle. The catalytic converter is one of them. The clutch can also make a smell if it is slipping. Gasoline of course has a smell and exhaust has a smell too. In the insight it may also be possible to have an ozone smell.
 

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are you alone on the road when you smell it?
i notice a smell occasionally too, on an onramp that goes uphill to the freeway i get on. but everytime i smell it, i check to see if there's anyone in front of me whose exhaust i'm smelling, and sure enough, almost every time there is some car (usually an older car or truck) in front of me
 

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I also get a smell going uphill and flooring, or nearly flooring it. It's somewhat sulfurish smelling. I had the same smell, doing the same thing, in my Civic.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
sulfur smell?

Wow, thanks for all of the replies! I guess it could be a sulfur-like smell. It's definitely a bad smell. If it is a sulfur smell, what would that mean? I never had that smell in my old civic. I used to think it was other cars, but it happens on the same hill almost every day whether it's hot or cold and whether there are other cars or not. I don't think it smells like a clutch. Could the battery pack or electric parts smell when you are using them heavily?
 

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You could theoretically get an ozone smell from the IMA, though you shouldn't get much if any smell from there unless something is wrong. A sulfury smell I think is usually from the catalytic converter.
 

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Hmmm, we had discussed this a long time ago on the old yahoo list. But I don't think we ever figured this out. Might be worth to try again!

Here a quick summary from memory (no time to search the yahoo group right now).
-There is no sulfur in NiMH batteries, so the smell cannot be caused by the batteries.
-It's common for ehaust smell in catalytic converted vehicles to have sulfur notes to it under certain conditions, but how the heck does it get in the car?
-There was a theory that the smell really came from the car ahead of you, but I think it was disproven.

And one comment on a post in this thread from Foxpaw: the IMA motor doesn't smell. Not ozone, not sulfur. What you're referring to is an ozone-like "electric" smell you get from DC motors because of the arcs in their commutators. The Insight has a synchronous AC motor, so there is no commutator, no sparks and hence no smell.
 

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Well, yes, but a smell suggests that something is wrong - and if something was wrong with the IMA, like perhaps some insulation had been damaged, there might be some arcing.
 

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As I said, I got the same smell in my civic, so it's got nothing to do with the IMA. I sometimes share a ride with a co-worker who drives a Ford Ranger, and I have occasionally notice a similar odor. This occurs in my Insight going uphill, flooring it , usually in 3rd gear, around 60 to 70MPH, sometimes strong odor, sometimes barely noticeable.
 

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This "smell" has been discussed numerous times. In my opinion it is the CAT CONVERTER simply "cleaning" itself.

The LITTLE RED ROCKET even does the same thing, and I don't have a number one CAT, but I do still retain the number 2 CAT in my modifications.

Simply stated "it is a chemical reaction of the built up gases in the CAT".

A chemical engineer woud have the correct answer............
 

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My "guess" is through the "vent" that is next to the gas tank under the car. Aerodynamics takes care of what route it goes.

See the picture Ives took. (on page one)
 
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