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On very rare occaisions I am noticing the smell of antifreeze when I start my car. It happens after I have driven it for a while, stopped somewhere for about 45 minutes and then gone out and started the car again. It only last for about 2 or 3 minutes. I have looked for leaks but do not see anything obvious. The last time I looked, I checked the coolant level and the the resevoir tank for about 3/4s empty. If the radiator cap is bad, would I see the leak right by the cap or could the leak be caused somewhere else?

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Check the following:

1) Radiator

2) Hoses (upper and lower)

3) Coolant Reservoir tank

4) Thermostat area

5) Cap

Have someone start the car when cold while you try to locate where the smell is coming from.

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The plastic Coolant Reserve Tanks were notorious for cracking and leaking. Check all around this tank.

Another thing is, are you smelling the coolant through the ventilation system? If so, it may be in your heater core.

Good Luck!

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The plastic Coolant Reserve Tanks were notorious for cracking and leaking. Check all around this tank.

Another thing is, are you smelling the coolant through the ventilation system? If so, it may be in your heater core.

Good Luck!

I believe I am smelling it through the ventilation system. If it is coming from the heating core, what does that possibly imply?

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coolant leaked somewhere in your car and spilled onto a hot surface and evaporated, that's why you smell it in the car. you didnt mention meileage and age of your car, but radiator hoses in general should be replaced around 70k or so to prevent leakage. in fact any rubber hoses in the system could easily leak. you need someone to do a pressure test for you or if you are so inclined, change all rubber hoses yourself to see if that solves the problem.

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