There are certain cars like the Chevrolet Cruze (the American version of a Japanese compact car) that smell like antifreeze because of their design flaws. If you smell the stench of antifreeze from under the hood or the driver's side of your vehicle, then you should be aware that it's not normal. This isn't like new car smell that disappears on its own. You should go to your dealer to discuss this issue for the sake of resolution, in fact.
If you're suffering from this issue, then here's what you need to know.
Do You Have Antifreeze Smell on Your Car? What Can You Do About It?
- Coolant Surge Tank Replacements and Some Such: There are times when going to the dealer can get you to have your coolant surge tank changed. This can fix the problem sometimes, but in the case of the Chevrolet Cruze in particular, it's usually not enough. The smell might still remain. What's worse is that you might not be able to duplicate the problem. It just comes and goes.
- Cycling the Engine and Other Standard Operating Procedures: There are dealerships that might cycle the engine of your Cruze. However, this mess has been outlined in Technical Service Bulletins that have roots other than your engine. You should also fix this problem post-haste because it has a real impact on your vehicle's cooling performance when push comes to shove.
- Coolant Dripping Off of the Car? Your car smells of antifreeze because your coolant might be dripping all over the place, thusly compromising your car's ability to cool itself with its A/C. This might be due to a faulty cast piece timing chain cover, requiring replacement. The Cruze is used as an example in this article because it's the model that suffers from this type of trouble the most.
- Is It a Manufacturing Defect? The bulletin about the Cruze and its antifreeze stench issues is a red flag in regards to it being a manufacturing defect. Not enough for a recall but enough of a warning to all Cruze owners to watch out for their antifreeze or coolant supply. When fixing the problem, it typically requires precisely installing a timing chain cover.
- Watch Carefully on How the Timing Chain Cover Is Installed: Make sure the timing chain is installed perfectly. Even if it's just a notch or millimeter off, it could be trouble. Expensive trouble, at that. You might need to order new gaskets due to a misaligned timing chain. There are also other potential reasons behind the antifreeze leakage and stench. Just keep in mind that this isn't a DIY job for the average motorist.