Burning Smell In New Car – Possible Issues

Burning Smell In New Car – Possible Issues

If you perceive a burning smell from your new car, chances are something bad happens.

You should always treat such situations with concern and urgency.

Causes Of Burning Smell In New Car

So, how do you trace this burning smell? What are the causes and solutions?

In this article, we will identify the causes and the best practices to solve the burning smell issue. Have an excellent read!

Type Of Burning Smell In New Cars And Best Practices To Solve It!

Damaged Drive Belt

The burning smell you perceive in your new car could result from a damaged drive belt.

A car engine belt is a single belt connected to the motor engine and used to drive separate peripheral devices in the car. They include an air condition compressor, pump, and others.


Where any of these components are jammed, it will result in the displacement of the drive belt.

The dragged belt results in friction, creating heat and the burning smell you perceive in your car.

Incorrect belt placement on the motor or a failed automatic tension sensor could result in friction and heat created by the belt.


The best solution is to fix the belt tightly to the car rotor to eliminate the friction and the heat from the friction.

Also, check all pulley and devices to ensure that they are not jammed to result in the displacement of the car belt.

Finally, replacing the belt with a new one where the belt is damaged is better. It prevents future displacement and allows the engine to work correctly.

Electrical Issues

In addition, electrical issues may cause a burning smell. Usually, the electrical cables in your car are coated with a plastic cover.

A damaged wire could produce a spark that results in the burning plastic smell you perceive in your vehicle.

The burning plastic smell is easy to trace. It usually has a strong odor that is easy to follow to identify where the leak wire is coming from.


As mentioned above, the burning smell results from electrical leakage in your car circuit or other electrical components. Car owners can easily trace the smell.


The best solution is to identify the burning wires and fix them on time. This smell is particularly hazardous to humans, and your car, so they should be treated with utmost urgency.

In addition, the heat from the electrical short can damage other car components.

New Brakes

New brakes can produce a burning plastic smell. It is because they are usually coated in resin curing.

This resin covers the brake pad to prevent quick wear and tear.

When friction occurs, the resin may result in a burning rubber smell that you perceive in your new car.

If this is the case, then there is no cause for alarm. The scent will fade away with time.

You may need to take your car to an expert where you perceive the burning smell, and your brake isn’t performing well.


Please wait through! The smell will fade away.

If not, check your car with an expert mechanic to ensure no genuine fault with the brakes.

Engine Oil Leak

This occurrence is alarming and dangerous to your car and your life. You will usually perceive a burning smell where the engine oil leaks and enters your vehicle’s exhaust pipe.

It is dangerous and can lead to a fire or an explosion. Usually, the burning smell is noticeable from outside the car.

Burning Smell In New Car


The primary cause of the engine oil leak is a result of a damaged gasket or a leaking gasket. The gasket helps seal the engine oil from leakage out of the engine.

Damages to the gasket may result from wear and tear, heat, break-in seal, and many others.


We rate this event as seriously dangerous. If you notice a burning oil smell coming from your car, make sure to call a car expert to take a look at it and fix it.

We recommend you park the car and wait for 30-45 mins for the oil to cool down. Better still, call a towing service to take your vehicle to the nearest service center.

Overheating Smell

You may perceive a burning smell coming from your car heater.

The scent could be because of the inactive use of the heater. If this is the case, then the smell will soon fade away.

Also, it may result from dust or stuck debris in the heater system where plastic nylon materials are stuck in the heater.

The heat may cause the fabric to melt and produce the burning smell you perceive.

Another cause is the damage to the car heater. You may perceive the burning smell when the heater is broken due to an electrical fault, damaged wire, or other causes.


If the smell results from debris found in the heater, I recommend regular cleaning the heater to remove stuck debris, nylon, etc., from the device.

In addition, if the smell results from damages to the internal part of the heater, its wires, and other components, I recommend that you take the car for inspection by a professional and fix it.

Clutch Issue

The smell associated with the clutch is burning paper or rubber. The clutch allows you to change the gear of a motor that changes the car’s speed.

Where there is an issue with the clutch, you can expect that the gear will not switch on time, which causes friction and heat, and later, the burning smell you perceive.


The burning smell you perceive results from friction in the clutch system: the clutch delays to drop, and the disc rubs against the flywheel.

The heat drive from the burn-off is what you perceive.


If you trace the burning smell to this cause, you should take your new car to a mechanic to look at it. You may be required to change the clutch system, including the gear.

Burning Coolant

You would typically trace this smell to your air conditioning system. It is most likely caused by leaking coolant getting burnt.

Where there is a leak in the core of the air condition system, and it comes in contact with heat, the result is the burning smell you perceive.

Strangely enough, this smell is oddly satisfying. Don’t get carried away, as Ethylene glycol is present, harmful to your health.


As we have stated, the cause of this smell is the burning of coolant that occurs from leakage in the conditioning system.


We recommend that you identify where the leak is coming from and seal it with an adhesive. Otherwise, visit an expert to help you with it.

Burning Smell In New Car – Conclusion

We have been able to identify the various causes of the burning smell in your new car.

Some of these causes are hazardous to your health and your vehicle. In contrast, some are mild and can be easily fixed.

We recommend that the tips given above are followed to ensure the smell stops and your new car performs at maximum capacity.