280Z Exhaust Fumes Culprit? - Nissan : Datsun ZCar forum :Nissan Z Forum: 240Z to 370Z
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post #1 of 37 (permalink) Old 05-07-2018, 03:43 PM Thread Starter
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280Z Exhaust Fumes Culprit?

Common knowledge says a major cause of gassing yourself while driving are the taillight gaskets. Here's a pic of one of mine, it's even worse in person, cracked and split. Replacements are on the way. I'm also replacing the main hatch gasket, and some plugs etc., and even sealing the inside upholstered panel on the hatch. Two questions: 1) Is it worth replacing the hinge seals for the hatch, that go under the hinges near the roof? Mine are gone, they're expensive, and I just need to know whether that really effects the fumes. 2) Do I use adhesive for the taillight gaskets? Some people say no, but from the look of this pic, someone glued them into place. Do I scrape it all clean and use no sealant, or clean it off and stick them in place with sealer? Anyway, any info is appreciated. I already get high enough just thinking about driving it, I don't need the fumes as well. Thanks!
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'78 280Z
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post #2 of 37 (permalink) Old 05-07-2018, 04:12 PM
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280Z Exhaust Fumes Culprit?

Try the smoke test. It worked for me. I saw a post over at classiczcars web. I was surprised the smoke was everywhere not just in the tail light section. You will be surprised. I then started sealing all those areas and I am now happy. No more fumes.


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post #3 of 37 (permalink) Old 05-08-2018, 12:04 AM
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Since the tail light seals are already on the way, why not install and test them before deciding on the hinge seals.

Exhaust fumes created such a noisome environment in the cabin of my `77 that my wife wouldn't even get in the car. A pair of gaskets and about 30-45 minutes of clean and easy work and, whattaya know, no more fumes.

_
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post #4 of 37 (permalink) Old 05-08-2018, 02:39 AM
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Try the smoke test. It worked for me. I saw a post over at classiczcars web. I was surprised the smoke was everywhere not just in the tail light section. You will be surprised. I then started sealing all those areas and I am now happy. No more fumes.


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Which smoke test method did you use (there are a bunch of them)?

1978 280z - stock L28 engine - Dallas, TX
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post #5 of 37 (permalink) Old 05-08-2018, 05:46 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for those ideas. And I do agree it's better to wait on the hatch seals until I replace the taillight gaskets, which are so decomposed they gotta be responsible for at least part if not all the fumes. Did you use adhesive/sealer or just place them on the lights and bolt in? If that cures it for me, well I'd be saving almost $200 by not getting those hatch seals, which I still think are more for moisture protection than exhaust, but that's for later. Plus that smoke test could reveal if the tailights are still leaking at all and whatever else is too. Yes, I've heard of a few different methods. Since I don't have a machine I could either rent, or there's a liquor store on the corner that sells $8 chunks of dry ice. I could put it in a bowl of water, stand outside around the possible leak areas and have someone inside with a vac trying to suck in "smoke"?? Will report progress when I get the gaskets.

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post #6 of 37 (permalink) Old 05-08-2018, 06:42 AM
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there's a few other little spots that the fumes can enter into as well. if I remember correctly on mine, on the rear hatch floor area (frame) and spare tire well along with the side walls. there are holes that usually are plugged with rubber grommets and if those are missing, exhaust can enter. you should go through and try to seal up any exposed areas or plug holes. I sealed mine with heavy duty plastic wrap and silicon sealant. keep up on what you're doing with tail light gaskets... we've all been there


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post #7 of 37 (permalink) Old 05-08-2018, 09:55 AM
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... Did you use adhesive/sealer or just place them on the lights and bolt in?....
The gaskets are pretty thick and compress nicely into place. I didn't apply any sort of sealant.

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post #8 of 37 (permalink) Old 05-08-2018, 08:46 PM
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Which smoke test method did you use (there are a bunch of them)?

http://www.classiczcars.com/forums/t...-cabin-solved/



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post #9 of 37 (permalink) Old 05-11-2018, 07:38 PM Thread Starter
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PROGRESS REPORT: Wow the "progress" is slow. No such thing here as just pulling out the light, popping in a new gasket and bolting it back up. The old gaskets were glued on with either epoxy or silicone, and were fused to the body and dried out like petrified charcoal. After lots and lots of scraping there is still lots of residue. So I'm wondering if a sanding wheel or grinder may be needed. Sandpaper alone is just way too slow and tedious. Here are pics of a taillight area after lots of work, and also the hatch seal, showing that it too is glued on. I expected the hatch seal to be applied with adhesive, but not the taillights. Live and learn and enjoy. Work continues, as the new fresh gaskets wait to be put on.
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File Type: jpg gas1.jpg (141.9 KB, 35 views)

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post #10 of 37 (permalink) Old 05-12-2018, 05:41 PM
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I leaned mine out a bit and no more smell. Guess in my case I was smelling excess gas vs pure exhaust.
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