The auto mechanics and the rest of our team at Import Auto Specialists in San Diego love to educate our customers, and that’s why we write this blog. Any way that our auto repair team can provide you useful information, that’s exactly what we want to do. That’s also why we perform digital inspections and take the time to listen to you thoroughly and what you have to say about your car. Import Auto Specialists in San Diego offers a 3 year/36,000 mile parts and labor warranty on most repairs. We also have a 3 Year/36,000 Mile NAPA AutoCare Peace of Mind Warranty on parts and labor. To make your experience with us even better, when you bring your vehicle in for any major service or repair, you’ll drive away with a vehicle that has received a complimentary full-service! When you are ready for top-quality auto care, give us a call at 858-576-7186, or schedule an appointment today. We hope you enjoy our blog!

What Your Nose Can Tell You About Your Car

Did you know that the different smells your vehicle gives off can help you recognize a problem with your car? Some scents may require urgent care, while others can signal minor problems. However, you should never ignore anything unusual that your vehicle may give off. Whenever you catch an odd odor in your car, we urge you to bring it to our shop to get a proper diagnosis. Here is a list of scents that could signal something wrong with your car.


Sweet/Maple Syrup: If your car smells sweet like pancakes or waffles, then we have bad news for you. A sweet-smelling scent usually points to a coolant leak from your radiator, cylinder head, or manifold gasket. You should have a professional check it out ASAP to prevent overheating.

Gasoline: The smell of fuel can also indicate a fuel leak within your automobile. Your tech will usually trace the leak back to the fuel injector line or the fuel tank.

Burning Carpet: An ashy carpet smell can be caused by failing brakes. This odor will emit from your brake pads or rotors when they get too hot. Whenever this happens, you should have them inspect it immediately to prevent premature wear of your brake parts.

Hot Oil: If you smell oil, your initial instinct should be to inspect your motor oil levels. If it is near empty and you just had a recent oil change, you may have a leak. A certified mechanic should inspect this job.

Burning Rubber: A burnt rubber scent could be a result of worn down or loose rubber parts. Vehicle parts that are made from rubber include the serpentine belt, timing belts, and hoses. Make sure you inspect all of these components. Additionally, a rubber smell can also signal a transmission problem.

Rotten Eggs: If you catch this nasty stench looming in your car, it is most likely due to a catalytic converter issue. The cat is malfunctioning and processing hydrogen sulfide in the exhaust system. 


If you've noticed any of these not-so-pleasant smells in or around your vehicle, please do not overlook them. If the odor lingers, please come by Import Auto Specialists to have it diagnosed. Feel free to give us a call at (858) 221-4742 if you have any questions or concerns.

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