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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I have a 2014 LTZ RS 1.4T with 28,000. Starting last month I get a random burnt coolant smell inside the car for several minutes and then it goes away. I dont know if the smell is under the hood as well since I am usually driving it and cant get out to check. I had car in service a few weeks ago for something unrelated and asked them to look into it, and they stated could not duplicate smell and just said to keep an eye on it. Its winter time so the heat is obviously on, When it happens it gets really bad I have to roll windows down for a few moments to clear the air and then its gone. Sometimes I don't smell anything for days, its just so random. It did have the coolant recall checked last year, but didn't have this smell up until a month or so ago. I just contacted my dealer today to get the car back in to recheck it. What can it be and what can I do if they state they cant "duplicate" the issue again?? HELP
 

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Get it documented on a service receipt. Hold onto that documentation. Is your coolant level dropping and do you smell coolant under the hood?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
It was documented on last repair order, and I am dropping it off to dealer on Thursday. Told them I don't want it back until they figure it out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Chevy called me back, said they found the water pump was leaking and replaced it and car is done. Would a leaky water pump cause random coolant smell in the car that lasts for several seconds and then go away??
 

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Chevy called me back, said they found the water pump was leaking and replaced it and car is done. Would a leaky water pump cause random coolant smell in the car that lasts for several seconds and then go away??
Sure could.

Rob
 

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Chevy called me back, said they found the water pump was leaking and replaced it and car is done. Would a leaky water pump cause random coolant smell in the car that lasts for several seconds and then go away??
Agreed, that sounds extremely plausible.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
DIDNT FIX MY ISSUE... I have had the car back for almost a week and last night driving home and smell filled the car again on the highway. I had to roll windows down halfway for a few minutes and the smell went away. Not an ideal situation when its 15 degrees outside snowing and you have your young children in the backseat.. I emailed my dealer to let them know the leaky water pump was not the cause of this smell. What do you guys think? Starting to get annoyed with this.
 

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Do you smell coolant under the hood as well?
 

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Are you loosing any coolant? I'm not sure if it affects the 2014 MY, but on some older models there was a problem with glycol based grease in the heater box. It smells like coolant when it gets hot. Only fix is to replace it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
NOT LOW ON COOLANT. as far as the heater box goes, would it just randomly start smelling and then go away a few minutes later?? it has 29,000 miles on it so still under warranty for another 7,000 miles..just want it fixed. tired of my kids gagging on the smell
 

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NOT LOW ON COOLANT. as far as the heater box goes, would it just randomly start smelling and then go away a few minutes later?? it has 29,000 miles on it so still under warranty for another 7,000 miles..just want it fixed. tired of my kids gagging on the smell
You have another leak that hasn't been identified. Take it back in and insist the florescent coolant dye be put in the system if they can't find the leak. It's a diagnostic procedure and your dealership should NOT charge you for this - you're under the B2B warranty still.
 

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Not a very good situation for you and especially your kids, coolant fumes will cause major kidney damage, even short bursts of it.

And how random is random? On cold days, coolant pressure is zero pounds per square inch, as the engine heats, gets up to 25 psi. Is this when you can detect that burnt odor? If driving in the city, the engine temperature will vary, consequently so will the pressure. You man not have any leaks at all, say at 10 psi pressure, but may occur, say even at 11 psi.

The only correct test, and I am going back over 60 years on this subject is a pressure leak down test, Charging the system to 35 PSI pressure, locking it off with a pressure gauge directly into the recovery tank, should hold for literally hours. Don't need a dye or a UV light.

The service repair for replacing the heater core is only one hour, but no need to even do this, just have to remove the shroud so you can see the heater core that is suspect, and if the pressure is dipping over time, can see the drips.

Very concerned about your children, I know how precious they are and the consequences if they become ill. And have no idea why your dealer is not conducting this most important simple to do test. Can find leaks as little as an 1/8th a cup per month.

Posting the service manual procedure for examining the heater core, really not replacing it, Maybe those hoses were not properly pushed all the way up, and to me, using those little clamps is kind of like a crime.

No excuse for not conducting this pressure test, and the consequences to you and your children can be devastating.

Heater Core Replacement

Removal Procedure



  1. Drain the cooling system. Refer to Cooling System Draining and Filling (Static Fill) See: Engine, Cooling and Exhaust\Cooling System\Service and Repair\Cooling System Draining and Filling (Static Fill)Cooling System Draining and Filling (GE-47716 Fill) See: Engine, Cooling and Exhaust\Cooling System\Service and Repair\Cooling System Draining and Filling (GE-47716 Fill).
  2. Remove the inflatable restraint instrument panel lower module - driver side. Refer to Inflatable Restraint Instrument Panel Lower Module Replacement - Driver Side See: Restraints and Safety Systems\Air Bag Systems\Air Bag\Service and Repair\Removal and Replacement\Inflatable Restraint Instrument Panel Lower Module Replacement - Driver Side.
  3. Remove the instrument panel lower trim panel. Refer to Instrument Panel Lower Trim Panel Replacement - Left Side See: Body and Frame\Interior Moulding / Trim\Dashboard / Instrument Panel\Service and Repair\Instrument Panel Lower Trim Panel Replacement - Left Side.





  1. Remove instrument panel bolt (1).





  1. Remove heater core cover bolt (1) and heater core cover (2).





  1. Remove the 2 heater core clamps (2).
  2. Remove the 2 heater core tubes (3).
  3. Remove the heater core (1).
  4. Change the 2 heater core tube sealing rings.
Installation Procedure






  1. Install the heater core (1).
  2. Install the 2 heater core tubes (3).
  3. Tighten the 2 heater core clamps (2).





  1. Install the heater core cover bolt (1) and heater core cover (2).





  1. Install instrument panel bolt (1).
  2. Install the instrument panel lower trim panel. Refer to Instrument Panel Lower Trim Panel Replacement - Left Side See: Body and Frame\Interior Moulding / Trim\Dashboard / Instrument Panel\Service and Repair\Instrument Panel Lower Trim Panel Replacement - Left Side.
  3. Install the inflatable restraint instrument panel lower module - driver side. Refer to Inflatable Restraint Instrument Panel Lower Module Replacement - Driver Side See: Restraints and Safety Systems\Air Bag Systems\Air Bag\Service and Repair\Removal and Replacement\Inflatable Restraint Instrument Panel Lower Module Replacement - Driver Side.
  4. Bleed the cooling system. Refer to Cooling System Draining and Filling (Static Fill) See: Engine, Cooling and Exhaust\Cooling System\Service and Repair\Cooling System Draining and Filling (Static Fill)Cooling System Draining and Filling (GE-47716 Fill) See: Engine, Cooling and Exhaust\Cooling System\Service and Repair\Cooling System Draining and Filling (GE-47716 Fill).
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
issue with smell not resolved.... 1st time in found no issues.2nd time in replaced leaky water pump, 3rd time in resealed valve cover that had small leak. I was told the engine bay is completely dry no sign of any other leaks of any fluid. Getting it back today but not confident the issue has been fixed.. At a loss right now with this issue.
 

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Insist the coolant dye be poured into the tank. This dye will leave a visible residue where the leak is located. This is how I isolated my intermittent coolant whifs to the tank cap's o-rings.
 

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Bump for elykoj.

Moved to Service Issues.
 
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