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View Poll Results: where is your car usually parked at first startup
outside, fully exposed to weather elements 8 61.54%
outside partially sheltererd from weather elements 0 0%
inside, fully sheltered and heated/cooled 1 7.69%
inside, fully sheltered: no heating or cooling 4 30.77%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 13. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 01-22-2009, 11:11 AM   #1
Darryl
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Default poll: raw fuel smell and where your car is parked

Hi all,
I'm one of many who've had the TSB performed on my car, an 02 REX. Since the TSB I've had to have the car returned several times due to a return of the smell, and leaking/pooling fuel. I've been thinking the problem relates to the different expansion/contraction properties where metal fuel line meets rubber hose. Additionally I wonder if that interaction tends to force the clamps to loosen up? Anyway, I'm curious as to whether or not the fuel smell is more prevalent on cars that are usually parked outside, and subject to wider swings versus cars enclosed in garages. So please take a moment and take the poll if you've had the fuel smell issue, and indicate where your car is usually parked outside, or inside when you encounter the smell, usually noticed at startup.
thanks,
darryl
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Last edited by Darryl; 01-22-2009 at 11:29 AM.
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Old 01-22-2009, 11:30 AM   #2
Hondaslayer
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That is exactly what causes it.

/Thread
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Old 01-22-2009, 12:05 PM   #3
blackfang
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Originally Posted by hondaslayer View Post
That is exactly what causes it.

/Thread
+1 on that.
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Old 01-22-2009, 12:32 PM   #4
rexspeedworthy
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Outside fully exposed, but I don't have the problem.
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Old 01-22-2009, 12:38 PM   #5
Hondaslayer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rexspeedworthy View Post
Outside fully exposed, but I don't have the problem.
You also do not have an 02 rex........
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Old 01-22-2009, 12:53 PM   #6
rexspeedworthy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hondaslayer View Post
You also do not have an 02 rex........
I used to. I never had the issue with it either. It was always parked outside. I had it till about 60k miles.

Maybe any mods should be part of the investigation.
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Old 01-22-2009, 01:04 PM   #7
Darryl
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I did not consider the prospect of mods. It might be more easily explained if, for instance, someone had installed a Walbro fuel pump that supplied more fuel line pressure. Also, unless a mod installation required removal of the fuel line in that area, I can't think of how mods might lead to a fuel leak. rexspeedworthy, can you think of any mods that might cause an irregular leak like the fuel smell?
Additionally, from reading the posts here, the problem is not restricted to the '02 model REX.
darryl
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Old 01-22-2009, 01:26 PM   #8
rexspeedworthy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darryl View Post
I did not consider the prospect of mods. It might be more easily explained if, for instance, someone had installed a Walbro fuel pump that supplied more fuel line pressure. Also, unless a mod installation required removal of the fuel line in that area, I can't think of how mods might lead to a fuel leak. rexspeedworthy, can you think of any mods that might cause an irregular leak like the fuel smell?
Additionally, from reading the posts here, the problem is not restricted to the '02 model REX.
darryl
I never took to modding much, that's why I just bought the STi

Folks that mod, knock stuff around under the engine bay (inadverntently), and may have to remove, pull yank in those areas. Anything specific, I cannot say. But knowing about mods, may make a difference, or may not.
It sounds like a problem no matter modded or not, but maybe mods increase the odds of the failure.

My 08 STi may or may not have this problem eventually, that's why I participated in the poll.
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Old 01-22-2009, 01:52 PM   #9
Darryl
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thanks for participating, rex. I've noticed the strong fuel smell after the TSB was done and no mods occurred since. Check my last post in the raw fuel smell log and see if that speculation seems plausible to you.
darryl
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Old 01-22-2009, 02:15 PM   #10
BlueWRXRex
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I had the fuel smell in my car when i was up in the mounains boarding. Also parked overnight exposed to the elements. I have 05 wrx. I was doing donuts for a good 20 minutes the day before though. dont know if that had anything to do with it.
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Old 01-22-2009, 02:24 PM   #11
98imprezaWagon
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i smell it usually when its less than 20 outside. my car is also exposed to the elements
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Old 01-22-2009, 04:35 PM   #12
Darryl
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 98imprezaWagon View Post
i smell it usually when its less than 20 outside. my car is also exposed to the elements
I guess it's a no-brainer poll, eh? The results are all evident enough. Makes me wonder if Subaru let bean counters do the cold weather testing.
darryl
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Old 01-23-2009, 01:48 PM   #13
rkramer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rexspeedworthy View Post
I used to. I never had the issue with it either. It was always parked outside. I had it till about 60k miles.

Maybe any mods should be part of the investigation.
and at least by your profile, you aren't far enough north to find this problem. Mine only surfaces when it drops below zero.

It really isn't a mystery. There is a design flaw that is made much worse with temperature changes, as well as general aging of the rubber hose. EITHER of those could cause the fuel leak, but temp seems to be the prevailing force.
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Old 01-23-2009, 03:13 PM   #14
Lorry
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What more is there to understand?

The fuel lines leak when the temperature falls because the metal shrinks more than the rubber hose connecting to it allowing fuel to seep out.

The colder it is, the greater the chance of a leak.

Older hoses are more likely to leak because they are less flexible - hence the problem is more prevalent on older vehicles, and the leak gets worse with age. Mine now leaks if the outdoor temperature drops below 45F

Installing a higher pressure fuel pump could agravate the problem, but that seems kinda obvious.
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Old 01-23-2009, 03:51 PM   #15
Darryl
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lorry View Post
What more is there to understand?

The fuel lines leak when the temperature falls because the metal shrinks more than the rubber hose connecting to it allowing fuel to seep out.

The colder it is, the greater the chance of a leak.

Older hoses are more likely to leak because they are less flexible - hence the problem is more prevalent on older vehicles, and the leak gets worse with age. Mine now leaks if the outdoor temperature drops below 45F

Installing a higher pressure fuel pump could agravate the problem, but that seems kinda obvious.
How old would those hoses have to be? In my car, they were less than 2 years old when the smell was first detected and serviced. (New as of May 14th, 2001)
Yes, a design flaw it is.
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Old 01-23-2009, 04:25 PM   #16
wrbluebaru
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It used to just happen to me when it was maybe 20F or below, but over the years it's gotten worse to where it happens at maybe 40F or below. I'm unwilling to fork over the money so a dealer can break something else fixing it (I've got 140K miles), I've learned to just not turn on the front defroster while I scrape the ice off in the winter - getting into a rolling gas can isn't my idea of fun.

Other manufacturers have fixed much lesser things for free, Subaru (and the local dealer) just don't have customer satisfaction as a priority in my opinion, and I'm being kind. If only it had hit the news and given them a black eye, then they maybe would have done the right thing and just fix it.

Seemed like a nice day for a rant...
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Old 01-23-2009, 07:47 PM   #17
Darryl
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Hi wrbluebaru,
If you're smelling raw fuel with the temperature near 40,I suspect the smell will be overpowering when the temperature really drops. That's how it became for me; smelling fuel at ever warmer temperatures. It seems that the longer it goes, the worse it will get as the rubber hose conforms less and less to the metal fuel line in very cold temperatures. You'll probably see pooling of fuel somewhere. My car is an 02 WRX too. I've contacted Subaru. I was told to make an appointment with my dealer, then call Subaru back and inform it of the appointment time. I hope I don't have pay for this service. I Haven't paid for it the past three times I've had work done on that fuel smell.

I agree with you about the poor customer service. From what I've read in this thread, if it's to be believed, there is a great deal of inconsistency from one dealer to the next about how the fuel smell is approached. That's too bad. It does not help Subaru's image, nor inspire brand loyalty. I wish Subaru could bring it's dealerships in line with this issue so that no matter where you went, the service process would be the same - whatever that might be. As long as it was consistent. I guess I have to count myself among the more fortunate ones in that regard. Still, I'd like a permanent fix. I guess I could always just trade the car. It's only got 55100 mile on it (all with synthetic oil too).
darryl
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