Petrol Smell In Cabin

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Petrol Smell In Cabin

Postby Elseven » Sat 13.07.2019, 13:31

Greeting all, having been a lotus owner since high school I decided to expand my vista to the M100 I found what appears to be a very nicely maintained 91 and just got it tagged and inspected here in Virginia. However on my first real outing I noticed a fairly strong gas smell in the interior with the top up. When I got back to the shop I opened the hood and could not seem to smell anything there. So does anyone have any suggestions on where to start to diagnose this issue, I don't see any thing on the concrete floor where I parked, but haven't put it on the lift yet to investigate. I'm use to working on all the old Lotus where everything is out in the open, so this is a new one for me and any suggestions are appreciated . Barry
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Re: Petrol Smell In Cabin

Postby dapinky » Sat 13.07.2019, 14:22

Hi Barry,

Mixed news for this one - some good, some not-so-good.....

There is/was a common(ish) issue with the plastic petrol tanks splitting towards the top (near the filler neck), whereby if you overfill the tank (more than about 2/3 full), fuel will escape in small quantities, so not always visible on the floor.

The good news (maybe) is that Lotus issued a recall in USA (but not UK!) for new tanks to be fitted... not sure how you establish if yours was fixed or not, or even if they would still honour it if not.... maybe someone from the US could offer better advice.

However, there is a possibility that it could be as simple as a loose clip on a breather hose, or somewhere on the evap control system.... far more bits on a Federal car than a UK one, so again, I'm no expert on them.

Very worst case scenario, is that it will need a new tank (which are still availlable) and not a huge job to fit - as long as you can get the car high enough as it comes out the bottom.

All that said, it could be even simpler and be a split/loose connection from the tank lid (the fuel pump is internal to the tank) to the filter, or somewhere in the feed from the filter to the engine..... it is unlikely to be at the engine end if you can't smell it under the hood.
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Re: Petrol Smell In Cabin

Postby Brit-Car-Nut » Sat 13.07.2019, 18:05

Dave,

Unless you know something I don't, in the July 2019 price list, Lotus shows the tanks to be obsolete since February 2018. SJs don't show availability nor SW Lotus.

Is someone outside of Lotus making them or holding stock? I have had several requests from worried owners recently and have not found a source to help.

I know Lotus found the stash of tanks reserved for the FED recall (now defunct) and they added them back into inventory as a bare tank instead of the full assembly.
They sold off fairly quickly.

I agree it could be another cause from a bad tank cap or filter, damaged fuel line, vent hose or something similar, but split tanks still pop up.

Please let me know if you know of a source...

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Re: Petrol Smell In Cabin

Postby dapinky » Sun 14.07.2019, 09:51

John,

I have to admit that my statement about them being availlable was a mixture of assumption (regarding new parts) and seeing them come up for sale second-hand in the UK every so often.

When I needed one a few years ago there was a selection of suppliers for new ones, and a choice of S/H at the time...... I made the assumption that it would still be the same, but it appears not.

Sorry to misslead anyone over this.

So the option is reduced to a repair with plastic welding (with mixed results depending on the care, skill and use of correct filler material) - possible, but not the best choice (maybe the only one, though!)
Dave

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Re: Petrol Smell In Cabin

Postby Brit-Car-Nut » Sun 14.07.2019, 12:57

No problem Dave, I just didn't want anyone to get their hopes up only to be crushed by the reality that the M100 parts situation has become fairly dire with regards to unique and necessary parts availability.
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Re: Petrol Smell In Cabin

Postby Jon » Sun 11.08.2019, 03:16

I had a similar issue - turned out to be perished fuel lines where they connect into the filter right behind the passenger seat.

There is a small panel on the upright section of the hood storage area under the carpet - which just about let's you see the filter (it's tight).
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Re: Petrol Smell In Cabin

Postby Rambo » Sun 11.08.2019, 07:24

And it's even tighter if you have the Kuching roll hoops installed. In fact, nigh on impossible :?
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