79 CX fuel smell / charcoal canister?
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Thread: 79 CX fuel smell / charcoal canister?

  1. #1
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    Default 79 CX fuel smell / charcoal canister?

    Hi all,

    I have noticed a smell of fuel in the interior my car if it's sitting in an unventilated area after being run - e.g. i drive it to the shops, park underground, then come back to the car an hour later.

    I have an inkling that it's due to the charcoal canister - when i got the car, the line from the canister to the air filter housing was (presumably purposely) blocked off inside the pipe. i removed the blockage as it made me confused, and ever since, the smell has been very noticeable.

    i have since blocked the line again and it seems to have fixed the issue - but what's the deal ? it's all plumbed up properly, fuel tank ventilation into the centre hole of the canister, and the line to the air filter coming from the larger of the two outer ports. can't find anything in the haynes manual about it either.

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    unless it's something else. i dont have any fuel leaks into the ground, i know that for sure.

    your help is, as always, greatly appreciated

    regards,

    Max.
    79 cx2400 pallas c-matic

  2. #2
    Fellow Frogger! Jinandfonic's Avatar
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    Buy some filter charcoal from a Aquarium shop, pinch a stocking sock. Remove the canister, push in tabs to open it. Clean it it out. Fill the nylon sock loosely with charcoal, tie it off & put it all back together. Check the fuel cap condition is the spring within the lid too soft now? check for fuel leaks around the return breather pipe from the fuel filler neck to back of fuel tank (never get under a CX & never smoke whilst checking - Iíve seen both done) Do you keep the car always full? As fuel can escape going around left hand corners. Good luck.
    Citroen C5 II manual '05; C4 Exculsive '07; Citroen CX2200 Pallas '76; CX2400 C-matic Pallas '78

  3. #3
    Real cars have hydraulics DoubleChevron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jinandfonic View Post
    Buy some filter charcoal from a Aquarium shop, pinch a stocking sock. Remove the canister, push in tabs to open it. Clean it it out. Fill the nylon sock loosely with charcoal, tie it off & put it all back together. Check the fuel cap condition is the spring within the lid too soft now? check for fuel leaks around the return breather pipe from the fuel filler neck to back of fuel tank (never get under a CX & never smoke whilst checking - I’ve seen both done) Do you keep the car always full? As fuel can escape going around left hand corners. Good luck.
    I find its usually the fuel filler cap. Can you smell petrol whenever you corner to the left aggressively The metal ring the petrol cap clips into is usually loose. This has a small 'O'ring behind it that no longer seals as the plastic has relaxed. Often there may even be a crack in the plastic filler housing once the metal sleave is remove (from people leaning on the petrol filler while filling no doubt). You will need to find a sealer that is impervious to petrol and seal the metal slave into the plastic housing with it.

    seeya,
    Shane L.
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  4. #4
    1000+ Posts Ken W's Avatar
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    The other problem with the charcoal cannister is that the mesh holding the charcoal in degrades and fails. This lets the small pellets of carbon get sucked into the carby causing all sorts of jets blockages, bad running and so forth.

    So make sure you guard against this possibility in the longer term.

    Cheers, Ken W
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    Fellow Frogger! denxm's Avatar
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    As Ken said,one of my old cx's used to block the carby jets,became a expert in ripping out the jets on the side of the road.
    Eventually worked out it was the mesh degrading,replaced mesh and charcoal and never another problem.
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  6. #6
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    The petrol smell in our 1977 CX2400 Pallas ((carby model) turned out to be the rubber overflow pipe at the filler neck had perished. Have you checked yours?

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    Quote Originally Posted by moulton2speed View Post
    The petrol smell in our 1977 CX2400 Pallas ((carby model) turned out to be the rubber overflow pipe at the filler neck had perished. Have you checked yours?
    havent checked this - does it involve dropping the fuel tank ?
    79 cx2400 pallas c-matic

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    1000+ Posts gerrypro's Avatar
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    No! It is visible on the RHS of the tank. It is a specific shape so it may need to be ordered from OS!
    Cheers Gerry

  9. #9
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    I'm now 90% sure its the charcoal canister - i blocked off the hose from the fuel tank to the canister and the smell stopped. i'll replace the charcoal and update after then
    79 cx2400 pallas c-matic

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