leaking gas from wheel well edge

Brett Dikeman brett at cloud9.net
Sat Jan 31 16:08:07 EST 2004

So I clean out the car today, take it up for full tank of gas, run an 
errand or two, and return intent on an oil change- pull it into the 

I come back down maybe 45 minutes later, to the smell of gas.  Huh?

Look around, floor's dry except for some puddles of melting ice.

Except...that's a fast drip.  I grab a little, give a sniff-yup, that's gas.

It's coming from the front passenger side, right at the very edge of 
the wheel well, where slush usually accumulates in the winter.  The 
top edge of the liner inside the well is wet with gas.  So this looks 
like one of the lines to the charcoal canister, or the canister 
itself, because the undercarriage is completely dry, and all the 
metal lines and fittings are dry as a bone+intact(and the lines were 
replaced 4-5 years ago).

I've relieved the pressure in the tank- but to me, the question is 
"how did the gas get into there?"  The canister is supposed to only 
catch vapors.  About 2-3 weeks ago, I was on my way to the winter 
driving school and the auto-stop on the pump I was filling up at 
stuck and overflowed(shooting about a half gallon all over the 
ground, luckily none over me).  When I asked listers if that could 
cause problems with the vapor recovery system, the answer was "nope".

The coincidence that I just filled up the car, and then brought it 
into the warm garage(it's usually outside), is too great to ignore; 
something's fishy here.  I think my recent problems with stumbling at 
very light throttle might also be related, since it started recently.

Then of course there's the "how do I get into there" and "what the 
hell is leaking" questions.

Any ideas?

"They that give up essential liberty to obtain temporary
safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." - Ben Franklin

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