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Foul Smell in Cabin From Vents / AC

splurph16

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I just bought a 2013 Ford Explorer last week and I am having an issue with a strong odor coming through the vents. It happens when the recirculator is off and the vents are open. It almost smells like exhaust. When the recirculator is on the smell is not present. I currently have 600 miles on the car. The dealer checked it out and said it's the stickers burning off of the engine and/or the coating they use underneath the car...which I do not believe. I took it to my local mechanic and he thinks that the A/C discharge tube is clogged because it's not producing any condensation on the ground when turned on and stagnant water is causing the smell. The smell is strongest after the car is warmed up and and not moving, while the vents are open. The smell is overwhelming in the cabin and the dealer/Ford Motor Company is unwilling to help, which is very frustrating, since I just bought the car. They keep telling me that the smell should go away after the car is broken in. I'm not real excited about breathing this in for another couple months. Has anyone else encountered this?
 


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phareous

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I just bought a 2013 Ford Explorer last week and I am having an issue with a strong odor coming through the vents. It happens when the recirculator is off and the vents are open. It almost smells like exhaust. When the recirculator is on the smell is not present. I currently have 600 miles on the car. The dealer checked it out and said it's the stickers burning off of the engine and/or the coating they use underneath the car...which I do not believe. I took it to my local mechanic and he thinks that the A/C discharge tube is clogged because it's not producing any condensation on the ground when turned on and stagnant water is causing the smell. The smell is strongest after the car is warmed up and and not moving, while the vents are open. The smell is overwhelming in the cabin and the dealer/Ford Motor Company is unwilling to help, which is very frustrating, since I just bought the car. They keep telling me that the smell should go away after the car is broken in. I'm not real excited about breathing this in for another couple months. Has anyone else encountered this?

I have no idea what it might be, but I'd suggest trying a 2nd dealer... a second opinion might be good
 




peterk9

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I just bought a 2013 Ford Explorer last week and I am having an issue with a strong odor coming through the vents. It happens when the recirculator is off and the vents are open. It almost smells like exhaust. When the recirculator is on the smell is not present. I currently have 600 miles on the car. The dealer checked it out and said it's the stickers burning off of the engine and/or the coating they use underneath the car...which I do not believe. I took it to my local mechanic and he thinks that the A/C discharge tube is clogged because it's not producing any condensation on the ground when turned on and stagnant water is causing the smell. The smell is strongest after the car is warmed up and and not moving, while the vents are open. The smell is overwhelming in the cabin and the dealer/Ford Motor Company is unwilling to help, which is very frustrating, since I just bought the car. They keep telling me that the smell should go away after the car is broken in. I'm not real excited about breathing this in for another couple months. Has anyone else encountered this?
Welcome to the Forum splurph16.:wavey: Congratulations on your new vehicle.
I never had a problem and neither did the majority of members regarding 'stickers' burning off. Haven't heard that one before. Some members have had and some still have a problem with a smell that may be related to oil. Some have also noticed what may be exhaust fumes. Perhaps you can try doing a search for that.
If your dealer is refusing to help you, a Private Message to Cory (FordCustSrvc) may help to get things moving. Cory is a Ford rep who along with Rebecca (FordIVTteam) monitors this Forum. Both have been very helpful to the members here.:thumbsup:

Peter
 




Kjeffery

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When my mother bought her 93 dakota new it had the same problem.

Dealer gave the same story but the smell did not go away. I found the drain hose had a 90 degree rubber hose attached to redirect the run off was not right. The hose end had not been cut off to open the drain.

I cut off an eighth of an inch. The condensation drained and smell went away.

Go to a different dealer and have them check the drain, it is proubly clogged or blocked. Another thing to check is the carpet under the dash for moisture. If it damp then the ac drain is blocked and the water is getting around the seals in the system.
 




FordService

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...They keep telling me that the smell should go away after the car is broken in...
Welcome to the boards, splurph16! I can help by setting up a call from the Customer Service Manager in your area. For me to lend a hand, please send a PM with your VIN, contact information, dealer name/state, and mileage.

...If your dealer is refusing to help you, a Private Message to Cory (FordCustSrvc) may help to get things moving. Cory is a Ford rep who along with Rebecca (FordIVTteam) monitors this Forum. Both have been very helpful to the members here.:thumbsup:...
Thanks a lot for the kind words, Peter! :)

Cory
 




splurph16

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Thank you to everyone for the assistance! I'm going to schedule another appointment with the dealer this week and tell them what my mechanic found. Hopefully, this will solve the issue and I can start enjoying my new X. I would have thought the dealer would put forth a little more effort to figure this out...my mechanic was able to find 24 complaints about this issue via service bulletins. I'll keep you posted.
 




explorinitup

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I have come accrost this. I work a dealership here in virginia. Ford is awair of this issue but no cure has been found. I pulled the entire front clip off the one i did trying to find a dead animal. I smelt it the strongest around the hood latch when it was warm under the hood. I have been checking daily for ford to comeback with a answer. And its only on the 2013 modles
 




explorinitup

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got it!!! i dont know if the dealer has contacted you or not but here is the fix.
TSB 12-8-8
basicaly is a cooling system overhaul. replace all hoses and coolent. there is a chemical reaction between the hoses and the coolent it self. hope this helps
 




splurph16

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Wow, I didn't know that was the root cause. Thanks for the info Explorinitup, I appreciate the follow up. Luckily, we were the first or one of the first people to get this fix. I've been odor free since. 8)
 




peterk9

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Wow, I didn't know that was the root cause. Thanks for the info Explorinitup, I appreciate the follow up. Luckily, we were the first or one of the first people to get this fix. I've been odor free since. 8)
And the Explorer too, I hope. :D

Peter
 




swetrid

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Ford just came out with tsb for foul smells.

Printable View (51 KB)
TSB
12-8-8 3.5L TI-VCT - FOUL ODOR FROM COOLING SYSTEM - BUILT ON OR BEFORE 7/9/2012

Publication Date: August 14, 2012

FORD: 2012-2013 Explorer


ISSUE:
Some 2012-2013 Explorer vehicles equipped with a 3.5L TI-VCT engine and built on or before 7/9/2012 may exhibit a foul, rotten-egg type odor coming from the cooling system or components, typically after coming to a stop with the climate control recirculation door in the fresh air mode.

ACTION:
Follow the Service Procedure to correct the condition.

SERVICE PROCEDURE

Flush the cooling system. Refer to Workshop Manual (WSM), Section 303-03.
Replace the upper and lower radiator hoses.
Remove degas bottle cap and inspect the top sealing surface on the bottle for defects. Use your fingertip to feel for nicks/gouges that are hard to see. If you feel a nick, replace the degas bottle. Refer to WSM, Section 303-03.
Replace the hoses at the coolant degas bottle.
Replace the heater hoses.
Refill the system with new Motorcraft® Orange Antifreeze/Coolant to the appropriate level, refer to WSM, Section 303-03.

PART NUMBER PART NAME
BB5Z-8260-E Radiator Hose - Upper
BB5Z-8286-G Radiator Hose - Lower without Oil Cooler
BB5Z-8286-H Radiator Hose - Lower with Oil Cooler
DB5Z-8C289-C Degas Bottle-To-Coolant Inlet Pipe Hose
BB5Z-8276-C Thermostat Housing-To-Degas Bottle Hose
BB5Z-18472-E Heater Hoses
VC-1 Motorcraft® Premium Cooling System Flush
VC-3-B Motorcraft® Orange Antifreeze/Coolant Concentrated
F1VY-8255-A O-ring
AG1Z-8A080-S Degas Bottle


WARRANTY STATUS:
Eligible Under Provisions Of New Vehicle Limited Warranty Coverage
IMPORTANT: Warranty/ESP coverage limits/policies/prior approvals are not altered by a TSB. Warranty/ESP coverage limits are determined by the identified causal part and verified using the OASIS part coverage tool.

OPERATION DESCRIPTION TIME
120808A 2012-2013 Explorer: Flush The Cooling System And Replace Hoses Following The Service Procedure Includes Time To Remove And Install The Radiator (Do Not Use With Any Other Labor Operations) 3.7 Hrs.
120808B 2012-2013 Explorer: Flush The Cooling System And Replace Degas Bottle And Hoses Following The Service Procedure Includes Time To Remove And Install The Radiator (Do Not Use With Any Other Labor Operations) 3.9 Hrs.

DEALER CODING
BASIC PART NO. CONDITION CODE
8260 d4

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

NOTE: The information in Technical Service Bulletins is intended for use by trained, professional technicians with the knowledge, tools, and equipment to do the job properly and safely. It informs these technicians of conditions that may occur on some vehicles, or provides information that could assist in proper vehicle service. The procedures should not be performed by "do-it-yourselfers". Do not assume that a condition described affects your car or truck. Contact a Ford or Lincoln dealership to determine whether the Bulletin applies to your vehicle. Warranty Policy and Extended Service Plan documentation determine Warranty and/or Extended Service Plan coverage unless stated otherwise in the TSB article. The information in this Technical Service Bulletin (TSB) was current at the time of printing. Ford Motor Company reserves the right to supercede this information with updates. The most recent information is available through Ford Motor Company's on-line technical resources.

Copyright © 2012 Ford Motor Company
 




gpzrider

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Unfortunately this is not the tsb for the problem associated with the original post. Exhaust being drawn into cabin under hard acceleration. Your tsb is something entirely different.
 




FordService

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...Thanks for the info Explorinitup, I appreciate the follow up. Luckily, we were the first or one of the first people to get this fix. I've been odor free since. 8)
Thanks a bunch for checking in, splurph16; I’m glad you’re “odor free”! :D

got it!!! i dont know if the dealer has contacted you or not but here is the fix...
Ford just came out with tsb for foul smells...
explorinitup & swetrid,

I appreciate you guys taking the time to help! :thumbsup:

Cory
 








rickz07

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Smell from A/C

Hello! 3 weeks ago, under pouring rain, I jumped into my explorer all wet, and drove home. The day after when I started up the vehicle, I noticed that a mildew smell came out of the A/C for about 10 seconds.. Ever since then, every time the vehicle rests for about 4 or more hours, a mildew smell comes from the A/C when I start it up. It doesn't matter whether the air recirculation is on or not.

Seats are non-perforated leather, and the vehicle has been through 2 ozone treatments. It does not otherwise smell bad at all. Only when I turn it on, and for about 10 seconds.

I read somewhere that older epxlorers had collector boxes behind the dash, and leftover water could accumulate there. Maybe that's where I should look?

Any advice?
 




cnsheets

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I believe there is a cabin airfilter behind the glove box, perhaps it needs to be changed. Could have gotten moisture in it and now you have stuff growing :)
 




rickz07

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Thanks cnsheets! Is this something I can do, or do I need to get it serviced? It's under warrantee, but they will need a few days, which is annoying.
 




foxtemple

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Thanks cnsheets! Is this something I can do, or do I need to get it serviced? It's under warrantee, but they will need a few days, which is annoying.

I got a replacement filter from Napa AutoParts for around 10 bucks I think. You can get a motorcraft one on Amazon.com for cheap too. The only finicky part about replacing the filter yourself is taking the glove compartment door on and off. The two pins you have to release and put back on are pretty tight. Also it is sometimes hard to clip in the door correctly. Also, don't forget to remove this bungee chord thing too! Here's the video I followed. It's a great video and it's honestly not hard at all to do.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qlxI5N0ghnE
 




peterk9

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I got a replacement filter from Napa AutoParts for around 10 bucks I think. You can get a motorcraft one on Amazon.com for cheap too. The only finicky part about replacing the filter yourself is taking the glove compartment door on and off. The two pins you have to release and put back on are pretty tight. Also it is sometimes hard to clip in the door correctly. Also, don't forget to remove this bungee chord thing too! Here's the video I followed. It's a great video and it's honestly not hard at all to do.
I believe the correct terminology is "bungee cord thingy":D

Peter
 


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Hidef

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Mine also has this smell for a short bit after it sits when the A/C comes on and it is worse after a rain. It is not the cabin air filter. I replaced the filter and still had the smell. The A/C drain from the evaporator is clear and appears to be draining.
 




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