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Old 01-14-2005, 11:21 AM   #1
drkwtsn
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Default Car sputtering / gas smell / smoke,, goes away and repeats any ideas??

Well, to start off I got my oil changed today at one of those valvoline quick oil change places just because it was convinient and saved me some time today... Drove the car around and didn't notice and problems so I doubt that this really has anything to do with the following set of problems that happpened.

Mods: TXS TBE Exhaust
UTEC w/ stage 2 map running


Me and a few friends were driving to go out tonight and notice a flashing CEL so we decide to pull over and check things out... as we pull over the car starts sputtering, smelling like gas, and about dies out. We turn the car off and I decide to shut off the UTEC (turn it to the stock map) and turn down the ABC. Start the car back up and the CEL is now solid on, BUT is idling fine and all... So we begin to drive off and blam, it all starts happening again same stuff, losing power and all... so we roll into another parking lot and decide to try to clear out this CEL... I disconnect the negative battery cable and let it sit for a few mins... reconnect the cable and start the car back up, great no CEL and its idling fine... I drive it around the parking lot once and no problems what-so-ever... We decide to drive off and chalk this one up to weird things happening... as we drive off it does it all AGAIN... sputtering and bogging etc.. but this time its real bad.. so I'm like ok no more driving around, we are gonna call AAA and get towed home and figure this out there.... So I drive to the nearest well lit place so we can park and wait for AAA.. on the way there I notice smoke coming out the exhaust but was unable to see the color... the smell of gas is REAL strong and smells like someone poured some right inside the cabin... get to the well lit spot and park the monster of a car and call AAA... as we are waiting my friend is like, lets disconnect the negative battery cable one more time just to check things out... we do this and let it sit for 5+ mins while we wait... we reconnnect the battery and hes like start it up... so i do and bam back to running perfect again... I decide to take it for a few spins around the parking lot again and see how it goes.. it runs great,.. then i start getting into it a little more and no problems what so ever, running like the day i bought it... we sit there and debate, and finally decide to test our luck and drive home (we were about 30 miles away from home) as things seem to be fine.... call AAA and cancel the tow and drive home.. on the way home no problems AT ALL no smoke, no hesitations, no gas smell (except when we passed this gas station, and yes, i was paranoid about it) no nothing.


Does anyone have ANY idea what this might of been?? All I can think is that somehow the UTEC was causing problems, and it just took awhile for the ECU to "unlearn" these things, even when it was off?
I kinda wish I would of gotten that CEL code while it was on.


Cliff notes: Notice CEL, pull over, smell gas.. car sputters.. turn utec off, car runs fine for a few.. happens again, try to clear CEL by disconnecting negative battery.. car runs fine, then begins sputtering / gas smell / smoking,, go to call AAA, disconnect battery again, drive around, everythings fine.. end up driving home 30+ miles with no problems.
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Old 01-14-2005, 11:26 AM   #2
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I don't get why people reset the computer expecting it to solve the problem? The CEL is there to tell you something is wrong - when you disconnect the battery you are removing the computers memory of said problem and forcing it to relearn itself. My guess is the problem will come back once it has relearned.

Sorry I know this is no help...
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Old 01-14-2005, 12:04 PM   #3
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Doubtful that it neeeded to "relearn" for the problem to come back... Like I said i cleared it twice, and it came back... i definatly drove it a lot farther home the 2nd time after clearing it...

the first time after clearing it, it happened again after about 1/4 mile... the 2nd time after clearing it, it never happened again on a 30+ mile drive home... if relearning were the issue, it would of happened the 2nd time i think, dont you?
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Old 01-14-2005, 12:09 PM   #4
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yeah... 30 miles is a long drive so I guess the relearning thing is out. Maybe an injector got stuck open?? I'm thinking if the problem didn't come back again maybe it's more likely to be mechanical than electrical/computer related? dunno man could be a million things - good luck.
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Old 01-14-2005, 12:12 PM   #5
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Well, being as the car drove home perfectly fine.. im hoping its something stupid... maybe a sparkplug was dirty? and only running off 3 cylinders causing the car to run rich? that or an injector is what I was thinking... possibly fuel pump, but that doesnt really make any sense... hoping someone can chime in with some info.... i MIGHT turn the UTEC back on today to try to replicate the problem and get that CEL read.
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Old 01-14-2005, 12:21 PM   #6
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well, flashing CEL usually means a misfire in progress. With utec, it means detonation. If I were you, I would check the coil packs to ensure that they are bolted down properly. If one came off, you would not only get misfires taking place (since the connection to the spark plug is compromised, but you would also see the flashing CEL i believe. You would also get the gas stench I beileve since unburned fuel is passing through a combustion chamber.

Check the coil packs to see that they are in properly. Another tip would be to invest in an obd2 scanner to pull CEl codes. If you don't want to do that, just have someone pull it for you, or purchase one from a store, check the code, then go return it at a later date:P
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Old 01-14-2005, 01:51 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jigga
well, flashing CEL usually means a misfire in progress. With utec, it means detonation. If I were you, I would check the coil packs to ensure that they are bolted down properly. If one came off, you would not only get misfires taking place (since the connection to the spark plug is compromised, but you would also see the flashing CEL i believe. You would also get the gas stench I beileve since unburned fuel is passing through a combustion chamber.

Check the coil packs to see that they are in properly. Another tip would be to invest in an obd2 scanner to pull CEl codes. If you don't want to do that, just have someone pull it for you, or purchase one from a store, check the code, then go return it at a later date:P
coilpack / spark plugs make the most sense to me... I'm going to go out and buy an OBDII scanner (been wanting one, this is just an excuse to have one) and possibly some spark plugs later on this week... Although it is a 2005 I do have VERY high mileage (23,000... yes I commute a very long ways to work, yes I just put my other car back on the road so my suby wont be my daily anymore) so sparkplugs could need a change....
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Old 01-16-2005, 08:44 AM   #8
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Welp, it happened again last night.... I pulled the CEL and it was P0301 (misfire in cyl 1).... I'm thinking its a spark plug or coil pack.... I am going to change out the spark plugs on Monday and hope for the best...
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Old 01-20-2005, 12:27 AM   #9
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----update----
ended up replacing the spark plugs tonight.... took the car out, and bam same thing... misfire misfire, gas ignites in exhaust (i think?)... smoke comes pouring out...
pulled the CEL, Still Cyl 1...so i am guessing it HAS to be a coil pack???? i drove th car home and you could feel the cylinder just DIE out while driving... car all of sudden became sluggish and kinda sputterd... CEL would come on and then finally clear out and the car would pick back up...

SO my question is, can i switch coil packs with a different cylinder (one behind cyl 1 preferably) without any problems? I want to see if this problem follows the coil pack around before i go replacing it and spending more $$$
thanks!
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Old 01-20-2005, 08:53 AM   #10
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try moving the coil packs around and see if the problem follows the cylinder you moved it to. If it does, then you know it is a coilpack issue.

You CAN move the coilpacks around with no issues. Just takes time.
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Old 01-20-2005, 10:38 AM   #11
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otherwise it would have to be the injector wouldn't it?
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Old 01-20-2005, 06:28 PM   #12
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--update--
Switched coil pack around to cylinder 2 (one behind cyl 1, i think its 2)... drove around.. everythings running fine... go to an intersection about to take off... same crap happens car dies out practically and i drive into walmart and the CEL pops on... i grab my handy obd2 scanner and pull the code... this time i have a slew of them... p0301, p0302, p0303, p0304, AND p0172 (system too rich)....
what the hell?!?!


maybe i didnt notice those codes when they first got thrown??? its possible.... anyone have any ideas??
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Old 01-21-2005, 12:13 PM   #13
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anyone?
could it be bad spark plugs / wrong kind??
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Old 01-22-2005, 10:17 AM   #14
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changed plugs, car ran fine for ~120 miles.... then it happened again... back to misfire in just cylinder 1, and p0172 (rich)
heres how it happened.... went out tonight... drove ~60 miles up to the club or so car ran perfect, no problems AT ALL... get in to go home like 6 hours later or so.... begin driving home.. STILL no problems.... stop to get something to drink at 7-11, get in the car, start it and BAM.... idling bad, smoke, many curse words... turn the car off... and then back on and it runs fine till we get near home.... then it acts REAL bad.. doing the same stuff as before...

So now we know the spark plugs / coil packs have NOTHING to do with it (iridiums were just plane bad,car didnt like them... put NEW coppers in)..

now im thinking injectors or maybe fuel filter??
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Old 01-22-2005, 10:52 AM   #15
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Have you actually gotten the codes pulled?
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Old 01-22-2005, 11:53 AM   #16
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Doesn't sound like fuel filter if it's running rich. And now seeing that your in a 2k5 I'd be surprised if you had injector problems (not ruling it out but...). I'd pull the utec off first to eliminate that as a cause. If that's not it then perhaps you have a fouled up sensor somehwere (maybe the MAF?). re-reading your 1st post sounds like this started happening after you got your oil changed - wonder if that place f'd something up??? I can't see what they could possible f up though... dunno tough one man. Good luck!
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Old 01-22-2005, 01:51 PM   #17
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edit: just realized derek already posted an update
here's my thoughts, bear in mind I come from a DSM+240sx background so....
o2 sensor bad, but I doubt it
fuel filter clogged and #1 cylinder is the last injector on the "fuel path" but why would it run rich
injector sticking open
wiring to injector or coil

its obviously not a instrumentational problem as we can actually feel and see the car doing. I'm really liking injector sticking open because its smoking like a bat out of hell right now when it does it. injector sticking open = rich like high hefner = lotta smoke
anyways any other ideas you all might have is greatly appreciatted.
KEvin

Last edited by nismo2491; 01-22-2005 at 02:37 PM.
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Old 01-22-2005, 02:45 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thesmokingman
Have you actually gotten the codes pulled?
yes... i have a pocket obd2 scanner.. i am the one pulling the codes
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Old 01-22-2005, 04:10 PM   #19
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Same thing happened to me today..CEL went off, friend scanned it and it was a misfire on the 2 & 4 cylinder???
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Old 01-22-2005, 10:06 PM   #20
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edit..
this sounds like my problem here...
does anyone think the o2 sensor could be the problem?
http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/show...ighlight=p0172

which one would it be?
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Old 01-30-2005, 10:24 AM   #21
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Took the car to alexandria subaru after making a service appointment.. they then told me (note after driving there along ways) that they could not service the car because the CEL was not on... keep in mine, the car drove there perfectly fine... this makes no sense at all.... but then... tonight.. the crap hits the fan..

this officially sucks... driving the car last night.... and everyonce in awhile it feels like my foot slipped off the gas.... and the cel flashes.... i dont really HEAR any knock... but from what ive read.. this is NOT good



i plan on getting it towed back to alexandria subaru and telling them of this... i hope this gets fixed

Last edited by drkwtsn; 01-30-2005 at 10:30 AM.
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Old 01-30-2005, 10:35 AM   #22
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It doesn't sound like an actual mechanical engine issue... sounds like a fuel delivery issue. O2 sensor is a possibility. Injector sticking open is still a possibility but I doubt it if the car is that new. I think O2 sensors don't like oil in the exhaust - perhaps the place you took it for oil overfilled it a little causing oil to get into the exhaust which fouled the O2 sensor. Even if this was the case I'd think you'd have the problem consistently instead of sporatically like that. I'm just throwing ideas out there. Another possibility is the TPS I think right? Is there any similarity between all the times this happened? Like regarding stuff you did - stop and go etc..
don't worry you'll get it squared away but I'd try not to drive it too much in that condition.
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Old 01-30-2005, 10:43 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leadfoot77
It doesn't sound like an actual mechanical engine issue... sounds like a fuel delivery issue. O2 sensor is a possibility. Injector sticking open is still a possibility but I doubt it if the car is that new. I think O2 sensors don't like oil in the exhaust - perhaps the place you took it for oil overfilled it a little causing oil to get into the exhaust which fouled the O2 sensor. Even if this was the case I'd think you'd have the problem consistently instead of sporatically like that. I'm just throwing ideas out there. Another possibility is the TPS I think right? Is there any similarity between all the times this happened? Like regarding stuff you did - stop and go etc..
don't worry you'll get it squared away but I'd try not to drive it too much in that condition.
dont worry, the only place its driving is onto the tow truck, then off into the service garage... im going to call them monday, and tell them about the flashing CEL and such, and how there is a CEL now, it just doesnt stay on! hopefully they will fix it....
im just tired of playing cat and mouse with this problem...

oh, and no theres no real similarity.... only thing i can remotely say is similar is when it REALLY messes up bad... it seems to be at night, when im about to go out on the town for some fun... i honestly think she doesnt like going out...
lol
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Old 02-07-2005, 01:22 PM   #24
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water in the line freezing could be a culprit if it's only happening at night. causing all sorts of bad ish to happen. give a bottle of heat a try in the tank.
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Old 02-07-2005, 01:43 PM   #25
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a bottle of heat??
its being put onto the tow truck as we speak
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