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Mike, Renault Technician
Category: Renault
Satisfied Customers: 39198
Experience:  Tech Expert
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Help, please!! My 1998 Laguna has recently started to emit

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Help, please!! My 1998 Laguna has recently started to emit the smell of neat petrol from somewhere in the vicinity under the offside door sill (approx mid-way between the tank filling point and the engine bay) when the engine is running and the car stationary. I have put the car on ramps and had a good look around the underbody with the engine stopped but can find no obvious sign of a leak. There is absolutely no smell of fuel in the engine bay so I've concluded it is somwhere in the fuel feed line between the tank and engine compartment. Have you experienced this before as I'm wondering: 1. To my knowledge the fuel filter (wherever it is?) has never been changed and I wonder if the fuel pressure delivered by the pump forces any fuel that may not get past any partial blockage of the filter to find its way through any of the fuel line joints and then evaporate into the air where I can smell it. Against this, I have not noticed any indication of fuel starvation when accelerating or moving at speed. very grateful for any help you can offer. Kind regards, XXXXX XXXXX

Hello Mark,

I'm Shantal and I'm a moderator for this topic.

We have been working with the Experts to try to help you with your question. Sometimes it may take a bit of time to find the right fit.

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Thank you,

Hello and Welcome..

My name is XXXXX XXXXX Im happy to help / advise you -

Before we progress - can you tell me if you have renewed the fuel filter at all - ?

Too - what mileage do you have - and what is the cars service / recent repair history?

Also - please give me the cars Full reg number -

Rgds - MIKE.......................................
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Hi Mike,
Many thanks for picking up my question. My replies to your questions are:
1. No, I've never replaced the fuel filter as I've never found it, but as I said in my explanation, there don't seem to be any starvation symptoms under hard acceleration or high speed, so I tended to discount the fuel filter - unless it is positioned exactly where I get the strongest smell of petrol
2. The car has done 110,000 miles (85,000 in my ownership) and I have done all the routine servicing. The car has never let us down and to my knowledge has never failed a MOT. It has picked up a few 'advisories' which have either been down by the MOT Test Station or by me.
3. The Reg No is S669AJK
Very grateful for your help
Kind regards
Hello again Mark -

Thank you for your reply and further info..

First, my sincere apologies that I could only just get back to you - due to system issues over the weekend Im afraid - Im sorry about that.

I can tell you re this model Mark, that there were three known issues - areas where you would / can get fuel leaks - and then you will get fuel smells - not fumes - such as from the exhaust gases - definite petrol smells. If it is that - then the places to look are - first, in the engine bay - where the fuel in line connects to the fuel injection rail - you get leaks there - on the rail and also where the injectors attach. Usually this happens when moving so you cant tell when you are stopped. What I suggest you do is have the engine running - and then grasp the pipe and the fuel rail and wiggle it about - enough to get movement... be careful of fuel emitting from anywhere there as it will if it does, squirt. Then you will find your leak then that way.

If its not found to be there , then the other two areas are at the tank - the tank itself -on the top where the fuel sender unit is - that seal fails there - as too- the pipes fail - they rot over time - so you get fuel collecting on the dip in the top of the tank - and that will create a real reek of fuel smells.. The other area is the pipewwork - to the tank from the filler - and the breather piping. Leaking fuel comes from any one of those - and gives you what you have. The trouble is, you wont see it - because unless its a terrible leak, it doesn't actually get down to the road - it evaporates first ..especially on the top of the tank by the sender / seal -

So it will be one or the other as above Mark - the easiest to check is the fuel pipe / rail in the engine bay - if you find it there, then I would assume that's the culprit - no need then to check elsewhere - but if not - it will be at the back / tank area as above for sure Mark - again - these areas were known in the garage trade for such problems on this model.

Let me know if you need anything else -

.>> >> > ..Meantime..............Please do click on the "OK/ Excellent ratings" for me as that's how Im credited for helping you - Thank you in advance for that...

You can and are most welcome to get back to me anytime you might need - clicking the OK ratings does not close you out at all..

Rgds, MIKE.

Mike, Renault Technician
Category: Renault
Satisfied Customers: 39198
Experience: Tech Expert
Mike and other Renault Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Hi Mike,

Many thanks for your very helpful reply. I am unable to implement your suggestions for a day or so as I am currently absorbed with correcting a rainwater ingress problem with our house and the builders are working through a number of likely causes and I'm keen to track their findings.

However, the fuel smell should be relatively straight-forward to resolve (or so I thought a few weeks ago!!) and I will work systematically through your suggestions, especially where this has been the reported problem on my make/model of car. Perhaps it is nearing time to replace this wonderfully reliable and capable car!! Thanks again for your excellent help.

Kind regards, Mark

You are very welcome Mark -

I hope all goes ok for you ..and you are welcome back anytime.

Very best Rgds - MIKE.