Odor steaming from ac vents, fogs windows, smells like fish. looked under hood for dead animal, instead odor appears to be coming from the reserve plastic tank for radiator. the tank has a brownish film inside it that also smells of fish.
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Re: fishy, steam odor coming from AC vents
Forget the radiator tank. Your AC 'Condensate drain' hose is plugged up. This is a common problem. If you know where the hose comes out under the car you can ( carefully ) push a wire up it. If you're lucky it's plugged near the end by a mud-dauber wasp. If not, take it to your dealer and see if you can persuade the write-up guy to show you where the drain outlet is as a gesture of good faith. If they insist on charging you money, consider that when you buy your next car...
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Check coolant level, if it's losing coolant, you may have a heater core leak. Does it smell like antifreeze in vehicle when defroster on? If by chance your ducting drain is plugged, it may just be water or condensation build up inside where core is. Antifreeze leak will also put a sticky film on inside of windshield, so if you wipe it with finger and it feels sticky, it may be a core leak. Be sure to double check heater hose connections in to firewall/heater core, just to be sure your leak isn't a bad hose connection before going to far if core appears to be leaking. A pressure test on system may give you a better idea what's going on. If all checks out and no leak apparent, be sure your AC compressor is engaging when in defrost mode, as that is what helps remove the moisture in the air during defrost. If compressor is not engaging, it will take much longer to remove moisture in the cabin.
I'm guessing you have a minor anti-freeze leak.The condensation on the air conditioner piping is normal,as your AC works a lot,every time you select defosteror some other positions on your heater. Check for a teeny leak coming from a hose on top of the engine. don-ohio
Sounds like the heater core is leaking coolant. If it is leaking it will blow steam out of defrost vents and fog the windshield. Symptoms: low coolant level in radiator, steam coming out vents when engine is warmed up, odor of anti-freeze coming out of vents, wet carpet in floorboard near heater blower motor. If so, replace heater core.