Burning Wire Smell - GM Forum - Buick, Cadillac, Chev, Olds, GMC & Pontiac chat


1992-1999 Series I L27 (1992-1994 SE,SLE, SSE) & Series II L36 (1995-1999 SE, SSE, SLE) and common problems for the Series I and II L67 (all supercharged models 92-99) Including Olds 88's, Olds LSS's and Buick Lesabres Please use General Chat for non-mechanical issues, and Performance and Brainstorming for improvements.

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Old 01-08-2007, 11:15 AM   #1
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Default Burning Wire Smell

This might need to go in electronics, but...

I started my car this morning and tuned on the heater(dash vents), and the rear defogger/deicer. I then popped my trunk to get my ice scraper and squeedgy. When I got to the front to clear my driver side window, I smelt what I first thought was strong exhaust. I continued to claer the windows. By the time I got in my car the smell had strengthened, but I couldn't tell what it was. By the time I got to work and opened my door to get out, I was greeted with the a strong smell of burning rubber, the same smell you get when a wire overheat.

I have a new blower motor that has been working beautifully for 2.5 months.

I could not smell the smell inside the passenger compartment.

The car was running perfect otherwise, so it wasn't affecting performance.

I did a couple quick searches to find some answers, but couldn't find anything relivant.
Is there any common culprites (heater elemen, blower motor, anything).

Need help!!!
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Old 01-08-2007, 11:20 AM   #2
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Did you pop the hood and look for smoke?
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Old 01-08-2007, 11:32 AM   #3
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The first thing I'd inspect carefully would be your belt(*) and tires for any rubbing/chafing.
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Old 01-08-2007, 11:34 AM   #4
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Also...look at the wiring to the blower motor in the engine bay. We have seen one that had burnt wires.
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Old 01-08-2007, 11:36 AM   #5
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As soon as I got out and smelled it I popped the hood...

No smoke, and the smell dispursed rather quickly with the wind blowing and all.

None of the wiring that I could see in the engine compartment was damaged, and I could barely detect the smell.

I am not a professional really, but I do work on computers and small electronics alot and have come to know that particular smell rather well. But I am not used to it coming from my car...and mixed with the exhaust and other smells outside made it hard to identify.

I smelled it well before I put it into gear, so it can't be tires or brakes.
I will check the belt during my lunch. The belt is pretty new, I got it replaced back in May.

As I write this I just realized that my alt might be it. I had it replaced in May (w/ the belt). And have been having weird voltage issues with it. The voltage will spike at random times for random lengths of time. I will check that too.
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Old 01-08-2007, 03:36 PM   #6
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It is OIL.

I looked at it at lunch...I cranked it up to move it to a better location to work on.
I left it running an opened the hood. And to my horror ther WAS smoke puffing from behind the rear header (as far as I could tell). I am going to run it down to my mechanic and have him work his magic.

(frustrated sigh...)
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Old 01-08-2007, 03:50 PM   #7
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Valve cover gasket is my guess. Should be a cheap fix if so.
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Old 01-09-2007, 01:37 PM   #8
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That is what I was thinking once I saw where it was coming from...
I was able to drive it down the road to my mechanic. Luckily I have free use of my aunt'* truck, so I have transportation. Thanks for the help...I love that I get feedback within minutes of posting.
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Old 01-03-2011, 11:25 PM   #9
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Was it the V/cover?
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Old 01-03-2011, 11:27 PM   #10
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While i Advise against pulling up 3 year old threads you can start a new one with your issue and put this threads link in it for veiwing of other ideas..possible solutions
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