Smell of Natural Gas/Propane

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New member
Sep 2, 2023
Was driving my 2015 Nissan Leaf (50k miles, 10/12 battery bars) today and got a pretty intense smell very similar to natural gas/propane in the cockpit. I turned off the defrost and it seemed to dissipate a bit, but so strange. No warning lights, and it was heating fine. I looked through the forums and couldn't find anyone who has had same problem. Could it be the heat pump going out? There was a lot of snow/slush on road and on hood of car. Maybe air intake blocked? I'm at a loss.
To me, NG and Propane smell different and I can't think of what would smell that way on your car. There is coolant, like a conventional car uses and of course R134a refrigerant for the heat pump, but those don't smell like a flammable gas to me. Hard to describe smells, I know.
Now that the snow has all melted off, I have not gotten the odor again in subsequent drives. Replacing the cabin air filter seems like a good first start. Ordered one and will go that route.

I was thinking dead animal as well, but have had that happen in other vehicles and that is definitely a smell I am familiar with!

Thank you all for the suggestions. Was just worried that it was a bad cell off-gassing or something.