Anti freeze smell in truck - PowerStrokeNation : Ford Powerstroke Diesel Forum
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-19-2013, 11:26 AM Thread Starter
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Anti freeze smell in truck

Hey yall when I turn on the heat in my truck I always smell antifreeze, but after a while if I leave it on (have to roll the window down or at least open the wing window) the smell goes away. Annoying, but the worst is on defrost it leaves that antifreeze haze on the wind shield.
My buddy that knows about diesels and such told me that its not a heater core cause if it was it would be leaking in the floor. Anybody have any ideas?
I am most concerned for my lil girl, I dont know what breathing antifreeze does to you but it stings my eyes a little if its on vent. If she is going to be riding with me on cold mornings I have to fire the truck up early and blast the heat with the windows down to get all that smell out before we get in, then its ok.
Thanks!
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-19-2013, 12:51 PM
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Re: Anti freeze smell in truck

The only way I know of to get the antifreeze smell inside is a leak either a hose leak n running down the metal tube and dripping off into the housing or a heatercore. Is It for sure antifreeze and not just the musty smell that also fogs up the windows n stinks? The heater cores in these trucks are known to get alot of mold and crap on and in the heatercore and housing due to the moist climate in there and this stuff will fog the front window bad on defroster just like antifreeze and give off a foul odor. My truck did this and I removed the heater motor and sprayed an a/c evap cleaner on it and rinsed it off now its great. There was tons of mold and mildew on my heatercore.
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-20-2013, 11:36 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Anti freeze smell in truck

Thanks! I will give this a shot, I was told the heater core is against the firewall behind the glove compartment. Is that where I need to spray the a/c evap cleaner?
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-20-2013, 01:02 PM
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Re: Anti freeze smell in truck

The heater core is in there behind the glove box as I checked mine (for any leaks or blockage) but the a/c part you can get at by taking the heater motor out in the engine compartment on the pass side firewall (easy to get out 4 screws I believe) and when you get it out look down in there with a flashlight and youll see the a/c evap or whatever its called and this is usually what all the black mold and crap will be on. Thats prob where your smell is coming from too. I sprayed mine down with a/c evap cleaner and hose it off it works good.
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-20-2013, 03:06 PM
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Re: Anti freeze smell in truck

If you are smelling antifreeze you have a leak somewhere and spraying and cleaning it isn't going to make it go away. That is unless you spilled some antifreeze around the heater core or onto the carpet.

96 F250 XLT 4x4, 4:10 gears, 5 speed, Tymar intake and HX hose, downpipe, pyro and boost guages, coolant filter, Luc clutch
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-20-2013, 05:36 PM
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Re: Anti freeze smell in truck

Thats why I said to check the heater core then pull the blower motor n check the a/c core as my windows used to fog up on defrost all the time and smelt like a bit of antifreeze but I never had a leak or ever had to add coolant and it turned out to be mold on the a/c core. Cleaned it all up n has been good for 3 years.
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-20-2013, 07:00 PM
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Re: Anti freeze smell in truck

I had a water pump failing for over 3 years where I could smell antifreeze but couldn't find a leak until one day I went out and saw a puddle under my truck.

As for the heater core or smelling antifreeze it has to be coming from somewhere, I don't know of anything else that smells like it. Sometimes if the leak is small enough it may corrode over and quit leaking and when you cleaned up what was left you don't smell it anymore which may be your case. But heater cores are cheap and not that hard to replace for a little peace of mind.

96 F250 XLT 4x4, 4:10 gears, 5 speed, Tymar intake and HX hose, downpipe, pyro and boost guages, coolant filter, Luc clutch
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-21-2013, 02:11 AM
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Re: Anti freeze smell in truck

I think there like 35 bucks or something and like bugman said there easy to change on our trucks.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-21-2013, 01:32 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Anti freeze smell in truck

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bugman View Post
I had a water pump failing for over 3 years where I could smell antifreeze but couldn't find a leak until one day I went out and saw a puddle under my truck.

As for the heater core or smelling antifreeze it has to be coming from somewhere, I don't know of anything else that smells like it. Sometimes if the leak is small enough it may corrode over and quit leaking and when you cleaned up what was left you don't smell it anymore which may be your case. But heater cores are cheap and not that hard to replace for a little peace of mind.
I am going to try the spray first, but a friend of mine did change his heater core recently because of the smell & haze even though he didnt have a noticeable leak. You mentioned the water pump though, could that be causing the smell? When I bought the truck the man said he had changed the water pump. I wonder if he maybe didnt put the gaskets on right.
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-21-2013, 02:03 PM
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Re: Anti freeze smell in truck

When the weather cools, you'll be able to know pretty quickly if there is an anti freeze leak in the heater core. If your windows fog up and take forever to clear, you are definitely getting extra moisture in the inside core. Only fix is to pull the core and replace it. Not a large cost for the part, but tons of work in some vehicles.
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