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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi guys,
I have a red top beams swapped '91 and it has had a fuel smell in the cabin and in the engine bay after driving about 10 minutes or so. It smells of course after driven, it doesn't smell idling. I've been trying to fix it myself for over a year and well, now that it is hot I can really smell the fuel. I figured I would try again but reach out here for help/suggestions. Looking at page FI-129 of the BGB nothing is out of the ordinary. Using the page FI-129 for reference; I have the line coming off of the "fuel evaporative separator" going to the "router tube" and then I ran a hose out the side vent because I don't have a charcoal canister. MOST strange thing of all, is that I get no smell for that line! Clogged? I live in the SW so there is a light coating of dust everywhere, which, if it was leaking fuel it would be clean so no visible leaks just vapor. Vapor smell is strongest below the air filter which is aftermarket cone and when driving I get fairly strong whiffs particularly while cornering. What do you guys think? am I venting it properly? Is that line the right line to vent that would ordinarily go to the charcoal canister? If there is a quick fix let me know, I thought of just drilling a small hole in the gas cap but I am not sure if that would fix my problem. I do get that "swoosh" sound when I unscrew the gas cap but that could be vacuum, don't know, it does have a strong odor when I do that either way.

Well...that is all I can think to provide, thanks for reading and any ideas please let me know.
 

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Does the gas cap work properly? There is a valve in it and they are known to fail sometimes.

Image 5 in this link shows the vacuum hose from the throttle body to the charcoal canister.

Image 1 and 2 shows the fuel system and ventilation. It varies between years so do check which one you are looking at. Image 2 has 2 charcoal canisters in boxes. This is not the BEAMS setup, the main diagram is.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Thanks for the quick reply. Mine is just a redtop beams swap into NA. The throttle body top nipple is just capped off. I think I am going to try driving with the gas cap half open and see if that changes anything...if it does change where it smells I will try drilling a hole. Not sure if gas cap is faulty or not.
 

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Yeah swaps seem to lose some parts when doing them. Those diagrams show the JDM cars from 89-99 and the specific images are for the BEAMS version from end of 97 to 99.

I'd check all the ventilation hoses aren't disconnected or broken but also, the JDM engines were less about emissions than the USDM engines but I wouldn't expect to smell fuel all the time like how you describe.
You should be able to find another fuel cap from another Toyota that will fit.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
UPDATE
I did a drive with a cracked gas cap and a drive with a hole in gas cap. Results; I now notice after driving intermittent fuel vapor smell in the cabin as before but maybe not as bad as it once was, seems less fumey. It is not like an odor that will make you dizzy from the fumes but more like an odor of how your clothes smell after mowing the lawn, like a moderate odor and it isn't at all the times just under accel and cornering. Once accel or cornering I will get a whafting of it and it lessens once I straighten out. When I pulled the car back in the garage after my runs, I could hardly smell a thing in the engine bay, I could only detect just a hint of vapor, but that was coming from the gas cap. I drilled a hole in the gas cap for now. Before, when I smelled the engine bay, it was a strong odor.

GDII, I agree with you and I already found something odd as mentioned before. My vent line which goes to where a charcoal canister inlet WOULD plug into has zero fuel odor. I would have cabin smell and I would have engine bay smell, but no smells at all of vapor out where I should be getting those smells. I think, since now that I have depressurized the tank and the smell went away, we can only deduce that that vent is in fact clogged. Now, since this car has been driven like that for a while by not just me but previous, I am sure that has worn out all of the fuel sender seals and fuel pump seals would you agree?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
OK, so both diagrams have two separate vent hoses coming out of the tank. I think another possibility could be that the line isn't clogged but just not hooked up! Maybe they put in a new fuel pump for the BEAMS swap and forgot to hook those lines back up and they are just open air. I take a turn, fuel sloshes around in tank and whaps up.
What do you think? I want to check with others before I drop my fuel tank, that is a job.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Sorry for another post but my next step is to get under the car and see...without dropping the tank, if I can find where those 77380 line and 77420 line from the diagram you linked to are visible or exist.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
UPDATE again. I got under the car and yes those lines do appear to be there, the rubber hoses looked fine too. Now, I won't know if they got hooked back up before they put the tank back in or not without dropping the tank so this is a tough call.
 

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77277A is the return fuel hose and 77028D is the vent tube from the separator tube behind the heat shield.

I'd check behind the exhaust heat shield on the firewall to see if all the hoses are hooked up and not split.
It's obviously very hard to diagnose something over the internet when you can't view the car and smell things.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
77277A is the return fuel hose and 77028D is the vent tube from the separator tube behind the heat shield.

I'd check behind the exhaust heat shield on the firewall to see if all the hoses are hooked up and not split.
It's obviously very hard to diagnose something over the internet when you can't view the car and smell things.
Yep, everything behind the heatshield looks just fine
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I guess I'm just going to have to drop the tank. I can still buy OEM gaskets and hoses on the internet correct? I want to replace everything...I'm also curious to see what fuel pump they used in the swap.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
The problem was a bent tank-to-filter line, wasn't me who did it. line was bent 90 degrees. I believe the part #2309174170
 

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That's your main feed line! This one right? The steel or the rubber section? Hard to make it not keep it's shape otherwise it won't join to the other parts it needs to.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I know, very scary. I even had an OEM toyota fuel filter kit and it is in my shop i just didn't put it on! If I would have I would have noticed right away. It is the steel tank to filter line with two brackets, p/n: 2309174170. I have a friend checking when he gets off work to see if his friend has an extra one. I found a new one and it is $125 shipped which I will buy if I can't find a clean used one. Would you happen to have one laying around? I'm sure there are many because people go AN lines so I'm sure a nice clean rust free one is just sitting in a shop somewhere.
 

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So how does this kinked pipe make it smell of fuel under certain driving conditions? It is leaking or do you think it was causing other issues with pressure or ventilation?
 

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Discussion Starter #18
It was more that I traced the source to be the fuel filter. It just reeks of vapor just sitting there not even being started and where there is a light coating of dust throughout under the engine, the bottom of the fuel filter area was shiney black and other things in the area, like the vapor was so strong it sort of cleaned that area off. I think something was just happening with the pressure. Also, whoever damaged the line putting in the fuel filter also used an off-brand aftermarket filter and it seems they used these huge copper washers and i don't think it is sealing right. The OEM kit uses smaller silver colored washers but it is just a hacky job. Whatever the case is, the source really seems to be the fuel filter, which would make sense when i get those whiffs while cornering, wind would come through the bay different and wrap it around to the inside of the car.
 

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I know your problem is fixed, but I'll comment here in case anyone else stumbles upon this in the future.

Another possibility could have been a saturated charcoal canister. I was having almost the exact same symptoms you were. Fuel smell while driving, and immediately after driving the car. It was worse with hot weather or a low gas level in the tank. I traced the smell to the vent on the charcoal canister.

I figured the charcoal canister is 30 years old and has had 215k miles of gas vapor go through it. Maybe the charcoal is saturated. Turns out the canister isn't sold anymore by Toyota and I didn't want to put a used one on the car because who knows how saturated the charcoal is in another used one.

So I cut the top off of it with a rotary cutoff tool - there's no other way to get it open. The cover with the fitting on the top looks removable, but it isn't. Inside there are two loose fitting baffles. One in the top of the can and one in the bottom. The baffles hold a few sheets of filter paper in place. In between the filter paper there are charcoal pellets - maybe about 16oz worth, maybe more.

Took out some of the charcoal and set fire to it - it was extremely flamable; completely saturated with gas vapor. So I went to the pet supply store and bought some activated charcoal pellets used in fish tank filters. Tested these pellets by trying to set them on fire - they would not burn no matter what. I filled the canister with the new pellets, replaced the baffles, and spot welded the cover back on to the canister. Then went over the seam with JB weld to make it airtight.

No more gas smell after reinstalling it on the car.
 
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