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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,

We just bought a 08 Tribeca few weeks ago and really enjoy the vehicle, especially when we drove through 2 feet of snow last weekend...;)

One thing I find weird is I smell burning rubber from time to time...:mad: I can smell it when in the cabin and by vehicle side, but not so much in the engine bay...

Is this something I should be worry about? What can this smell be?...:confused:

Any help will be much appreciated...thanks..
 

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Driven over any plastic lately? Possible that some of the cladding is stuck under something hot under, and burning off.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Update:

The weather has been warmer in the past few days and we weren't using the heated seat as much. It seems the smell is gone, looks like it is heated seat related....:(
 

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baboo said:
Update:

The weather has been warmer in the past few days and we weren't using the heated seat as much. It seems the smell is gone, looks like it is heated seat related....:(
Weird. Better get that checked out. You don't need your leather burning up.
 

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Burning Rubber Smell

I have a 2008 Tribeca as well and have experienced the same thing sense new. Kind of a hot radiator rubber hose or slipping rubber belt smell on the driver side in the cabin. I suspect that whatever the cause the ordor is emitted through the ventilation system in the car. It is intermitment. It seems to go away when I close the window and/or the air vent on the driver side of dash. I am still investigating. I have not smelled it sense rain and cooler air here in California...windows have been up. Also I now have 5,000 miles on the vehicle and it may have been some facotry protectorant that burns off during break-in period. After sun come out and conditions return to normal I will see if the ordor returns. will let you know if I find out what causes this ordor. No need for alarm.

:confused:
 

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I had an 03 Legacy and have an 07 Legacy that does the same thing. When it is driven through precip it will have a hot rubber smell by the front passenger door. Had the 03 for 4 years and never found it or had an issue from it. Never noticed it on my 07 Tribeca, though.
 

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Magic Marker said:
Weird. Better get that checked out. You don't need your leather burning up.
I'd be more worried about geting my ass burned if I were you! :eek:

Talk about being in the hot seat! :lol:
 

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same thing on a 2008 tribeca. I'm assuming the vehicle is so new its just burning off any overspray/grease etc from the factory. i'm at 1300miles. Smell is intermittent and seems to be more pronounced after driving it a little harder than normal. Getting the engine and components up to a higher operating temperature.
 

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I have the same smell occassionally on my 2 wk old '08 beca. It's kinda hard to lock down why its happening because i've been using the heated seats and the heating system whenever I use the car. I'll pay more attention next time and see if I can isolate when it happens. Keep you guys posted.
 

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i have the same problem... bought the 08 limited tribeca few weeks ago and broken in the car about 2000k miles before we took it to vermont Jay's Peak which is about 6 - 7 hours drive.. next day drove back to Stowe vermont which is about 1 1/2 hour drive and as we were driving up the mountain with some steepness, we smelled burning rubber as soon as we parked by the check-in guest services.. then same the next day... it looked like it was coming from the rear driver side tire... i really dont know what it is but i hope it shouldnt be something serious.. drove the car from vermont back to NJ with no problem and no smell.. car has about 2500k miles now... it was a fun drive when I floored the gas pedal and RPM reached about 6300k RPM....
 

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Well, this is certainly interesting. I started getting burning rubber smell early this week on my 07, with 8300 miles. It was fairly strong through the vents, but after getting out of the car, and smelling it in the air, we (wife and I) figured it might have been the air outside.

No smell on the way home.

2 days later, smell is back. Today, smell is back. Its fairly intermittent so far, with no definitive causes. Happens when using the heat, in auto, 70-72 degrees. Only new thing done to the car recently is the remote start by the dealer. Is the install for the 07 as intrusive (not that it is all that intrusive) than the 06 since its already prewired for it?

I'll have to keep an eye (nose) on this.
 

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We notice a hot plastic smell when we visit Vermont in the summer (quite hilly). I wonder whether it's the transmission. I don't pay any attention to whether it pops out of lock-up a lot. Thinking about installing a transmission cooler and not risking one more summer since we're going off the extended warranty. The temperature gauge doesn't rise above normal, but something plasticky or rubbery is definitely cooking underneath the car when driving in hilly conditions.
 

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Not sure if the smell is what I had - my CV boot split and grease splattered on the exhaust/catalytic converter. It smelled pretty bad. Had my mechanic replace the boot and clean up as much as he could. Smell went away shortly afterward.
 

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I agree, check for boot issues, it's very common. Don't replace, have them reboot. Trust me, you will have a shaking issue if you use aftermarket. If you don't want to reboot, then either get a low mileage used axle (I got mine for $35 because the previous owner put in aftermarket and it shook at 50+mph) or a A1 Cardone remaned (although mixed reviews on this).
 

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Also, your car should not have a plastic smell when hot ever. You should figure it out.

If you are towing, go with the transmission cooler. Otherwise no need. There is already a cooler between the transmission and the engine fluid up by the radiator. We drive the big uphills in Colorado without any issues. If you really want to know, get an inexpensive OBDII scanner and some software for your phone and display transmission temp. That will tell all.

Watch out with the transmission cooler in general. You can over-cool the fluid unless it is actively adjusted. But you can trust the OEM subaru cooler since they designed that to work. Anything aftermarket and you need to either verify it is active or engineer the solution to ensure proper cooling, but not overcooling.
 

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I had that smell too at 56k miles .and it was the CV boot on the top of the catalitic converter that cracked and leaked grease on the converter .I had all 4 front CV boots replaced and the old grease removed and repacked with new grease that came with the new OEM rubber boots .running Silky smooth now at 95k ..I agree with TD is better to keep the original axle and replace the grease and rubber boots "provided you caught on time and no damage occurred" instead of using remanufactured axles
Had many issues of shaking and Vibrating on the past with those
 

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That's normal for repair shops. However, they will put in a cheap aftermarket that may or may not cause vibration issues. It did for me (previous owner had it swapped) and it took me a bit to figure out what it was.

There is a suggested part number over on legacygt.com for the duralast axle that some very reputable folks over there say will work.

Tom
 

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I am just going to replace the CV inner boot myself. I need to get under the car and see if it is just the one boot.

Out of curiosity I called the dealer....Dealer wants $1000-$3000 depending on axle replacement or front vs. rear replacement.

It has 147,000 miles.

I may be trading it in soon. I don't want to throw a bunch of money at it.

Local repair shop would not quote me a price and would not replace the CV boots by themselves.
 
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