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Discussion Starter #1
My 1970 Silver Shadow MPW coupe has a terrible, strong smell inside consisting of a combination of exhaust fumes, old leather, wood, oil and gas! It is so bad that
the smell remains on my clothes, or any other items I have in the car. The smell is even stronger in the trunk of the car. I have to leave the garage door open for a few minutes to clear out the fumes when I arrive home. It was subtle at first but seems to have gotten stronger since I have been driving it a lot. It runs very well and flies on the freeway. It starts and idles nicely but there is a black, sooty looking residue on the ground from the exhaust pipe. Over the last two days, I had a short lasting but significant headache after a 30 minute drive it to work. I drove my other car today and no headache. I know there wasn't much emissions stuff in 1970 but I can't imagine this car smelled like this when it was new. My GF calls it the "smelly little car " and refuses to ride in it! Could it be running too rich or have an exhaust/gas tank leak? Could I have been inhaling carbon monoxide fumes? I would appreciate the advice.
 

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A faulty battery can produce these horrible smells. Interesting that the smell is strongest in the trunk. I would check it first before going on to other possible causes. These cars definitely do not smell - you have a fault and should not drive the car until it is rectified, given that you are getting headaches from it.
 

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I would get the car on a lift and inspect the exhaust for leaks, especially around unions. The sealing olives hold water and rust.
Check the exhaust manifold bolts for tightness. They will loosen over time.
Exhaust leaks will be obvious by the color and residue,
 

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Exhaust you can't make go away unless you fix the exhaust leaks. For the lingering smells. I have an ozone generator that does a decent job of making those type of smells go away.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Exhaust you can't make go away unless you fix the exhaust leaks. For the lingering smells. I have an ozone generator that does a decent job of making those type of smells go away.
Awesome! Thank you for the reply. I actually used an ozone lamp and cleansed the carpets and all leather surfaces afterward.. It smelled good for a few days then the smell returned.
 

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You need to find the source of this smell as it will return after you ozone treat the car. Likely to be exhaust related but I would still check out the battery first. I had this problem in a Ford Explorer many years ago and thought it was the cat. The smell was really acrid. Turned out to be the battery. When you run the car check the ammeter to make sure it is not overcharging the battery due to faulty regulator.

 

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Discussion Starter #7
You need to find the source of this smell as it will return after you ozone treat the car. Likely to be exhaust related but I would still check out the battery first. I had this problem in a Ford Explorer many years ago and thought it was the cat. The smell was really acrid. Turned out to be the battery. When you run the car check the ammeter to make sure it is not overcharging the battery due to faulty regulator.

Thank you for the advice! I will certainly check it out and report my findings. It is going to my mechanic (Ronnie Shaver) on 4/5/21 to get my door locking mechanism fixed and new front/rear shocks/springs. I will have him check it out and fix what needs repairing.
 

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Al....elaborate on this ozone generator...I've seen a few online with different capacities, wondering what size to get or what type to get...I'd love to have one.

Jon
 

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Al....elaborate on this ozone generator...I've seen a few online with different capacities, wondering what size to get or what type to get...I'd love to have one.

Jon
Here's the one I got. I use it around the house as it's good for 2000sq/ft.


They're about the size of a shoe box. You can use it in the house as the car.
 

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Hi!
If you're getting headaches, I'd bet that you're suffering from mild carbon monoxide poisoning!
And that can only really come from the exhaust. I'm not familiar with Shadows - is there a connection between the trunk and the interior? If so, also check the the trunk gasket. But first of all, get the mixture looked at. If it's very rich, you'll have high CO levels.

Es
 

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Also, make sure the large plug over the spare tire is in place.
 

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I'm not sure carbon monoxide fumes stick around long enough to make your clothes smell. Petrol fumes definitely do.

I'd check all the fuel tank vent lines in the boot area. I had some that were cracked that led to something similar.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thank everyone for all the advice. I will let you know what I find and how things went after it comes back from my mechanic!
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I wonder if your valve cover gasket is leaking oil on to the exhaust.
Sounds like it's running very rich too.
Mike
The valve cover actually does have a leak. I think it has started leaking because I have been driving it quite a bit on city streets and on the freeway up to speeds of about 70 mph . I will look under it to see if it is actually leaking on the exhaust manifolds.
 

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And if your valve cover gaskets are leaking, make sure to check the condition of your flame trap.

Once it's clogged even brand new "rubber" gaskets can have oil forced out. Ask me how I know.

See on the RROC Australia Forums: Flame Trap on Oil Filler - The Need to Clean It
 

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Al,
So I ordered one (ozone generator)and can't wait to see the results, so what did you do? Place it inside the car all closed up and let it run? Or is there some method.

Jon
 

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Exactly that.

Place it on the transmission tunnel hump and set the timer for about 15 minutes
Close the windows and shut the doors
Plug the extension cord into the power and let it do its thing

When done, open the doors and let the interior air out. It's going to smell like a thunderstorm in there for a while.

Try not to get in the car and shut the doors on yourself while it smells like that as you can't really breath that stuff.
 
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