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1997 LX450 Fuel Smell

Discussion in '80-Series Tech' started by LRIwater, Feb 28, 2004.

  1. LRIwater

    LRIwater

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    I just bought a 1997 LX450 for the wife (hopefully she won't like it and I can get it!). It has 86k miles. There is a fuel smell when shutoff. It might be during driving, also, but it's tough to tell when moving. There are no visible leaks, and she has not forgotten to put the gas cap on. Are there any usual culprits for this? Thanks in advance,
    Chuck
     
  2. Beowulf

    Beowulf

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    Chuck,

    The usual culprits are the fuel cap and the charcoal canister. Try the cap first as the canister is big bucks.

    -B-
     
  3. Ben6

    Ben6

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    I have the same fuel smell with my LS400. When I took it to the Lexus dealership they wanted about $500 to change some fuel filter (is that the charcoal canister?). They told me I had been overfilling the gas tank. I told the service tech that someonelse might have overfilled the tank but that I had only put about 1000 miles on it since buying it from them (the Lexus dealership). I asked him what would happen if I didn't replace it and he said I would continue to have the fuel smell. I asked if that was all, if it would hurt the vehicle in any way other way, and he said no. That was two years ago and I still haven't changed it. Did I make a mistake?
     
  4. Beowulf

    Beowulf

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    Ben,

    The charcoal canister is part of the emissions system and is designed to absorb fuel vapors from the gas tank. That's basically it's only job. For whatever reason, if it becomes saturated with fuel it is ineffective and must be replaced (i.e. you can't "fix" it.) The canister can become saturated by overfilling the fuel tank but I believe that it can become saturated in other ways. (Too complex of a discussion for now...)

    The bottom line is that if you can live with the smell and if you don't think the fuel vapors pose a health risk or a risk of fire and if you can live with knowing that you are contributing to polluting the environment then, no, you didn't make a mistake.

    I replaced mine because my wife raised a ruckus over the fuel smell and the potential dangers of parking the truck in an enclosed garage with a gas furnace 2' in front of the Cruiser.

    -B-
     
  5. Riley

    Riley

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    B,

    I assume that you were able to resolve the problem by replacing the canister?

    I assume so or you would have mentioned it. I can imagine that these guys would like a high degree of confidence before spending $500 on it.

    Riley
     
  6. lx450landcruiser

    lx450landcruiser Moderator

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    change the fuel cap. my 96 lx450 had the same exact problem i would go out side start her up and pull her into the garage to work on her and right after shut off id get a huge wiff of gas. kinda freaked me out at first not knowing where it was comming from. i bought a new cap from cruiser dan and put it on and i havent smelled it since. i would try a cap and if it was the prob then at least u didnt pay $500 for a canister and and if its not then you have an extra gas cap :D :D
     
  7. Beowulf

    Beowulf

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    >> ... that these guys would like a high degree of confidence
    >> before spending $500 on it.

    Yes, a new canister fixed the problem and the smart shopper price from C-Dan was a LOT cheaper than $500.

    -B-
     
  8. Beowulf

    Beowulf

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    BTW, 5 clicks on the fuel cap.

    -B-
     
  9. Draken

    Draken

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    A new gas cap solved a similar problem on my old 4Runner. :cheers:
     
  10. IdahoDoug

    IdahoDoug

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    Another vote for the gas cap. There's a little valve in it that goes bad. Fixed mine instantly - same symptoms as all above.
     
  11. jeffb

    jeffb

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    idaho,
    if the little valve goes bad, would the tank still hold pressure as evidenced by the whushing sound when the cap is unscrewed? i get a fuel smell as well. thanks.
    jeffb
    96 fzj80
     
  12. IdahoDoug

    IdahoDoug

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    Yes, it holds tank pressure properly and I've never quite understood the function of the cap valve. My bad cap would also produce the whoosh and there was no change with the new one other than the lack of smell.
     
  13. jeffb

    jeffb

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    thanks doug. very helpful!! did you use an OEM cap or an aftermarket?
     
  14. IdahoDoug

    IdahoDoug

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    Nothing non factory touches Bessie....
     
  15. cruiserdan

    cruiserdan SupportingVendor Emeritus Moderator

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    77310-35080, list $13.76
     
  16. LRIwater

    LRIwater

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    Thanks everybody. I will definitely try the cap first!
     
  17. DanKunz

    DanKunz SILVER Star

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    Might as well ask...

    Hey C-dan...how much for that canister? :D