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I have a 2003 Honda Accord EX automatic and it has 154K miles on it. Yesterday while we were driving up the hill, we stopped to take pictures and we smelled something burning coming from the engine. When we opened the hood we noticed smoke coming out of the engine. I left the hood open for a minute and the smoke was growing thicker hence we closed it for like 10-15 minutes. After we let it cool and started the engine, everything was back to normal. My wife kept saying while she sat in the passenger side that she could smell something burning. I never did while driving. But yesterday's incident has given me shivers. Can you tell us what needs to be checked and what needs to be done to get that fixed? We are planning on a cross country trip on that vehicle. I do not want to mess it up.

Answers from the Automotive Experts

Amanda J. Pierce, MBA Ronnie, You may need to have your valve cover gaskets replaced, over time the seal will fail and can leak oil down the back side. Going up hill the incline may have caused oil to leak on the headers or exhaust making the smoking burning smell.

Amy Mattinat, Owner and Author at Auto Craftsmen Ltd Ronnie, I recommend you tow your Accord to your mechanic and have him check out your problem. It could be that you had a massive fluid leak and it was sprayed on your exhaust - hence the burning... and now that there is no more fluid to leak out - there is no burning... but if you continue driving the vehicle you could has catastrophic breakdown. NO Cross country Trip until you get this checked out!

Gelina Aquilina, Service Advisor / Mechanic at Absolutely have an inspection prior to your road test. Have the cooling system & charging system checked specifically.

Maryann Croce, Owner at Croce’s Transmission Specialists Ronnie, Burning smell can come from a number of different things. From minor to something that can leave you stranded. I would suggest getting your vehicle checked by a reputable shop before you make a cross country trip. Good tip here is to keep your maintenance and repair records so you know what's been done and when. Follow your owner's manual for recommended service. Any shop you choose should treat you and your wife with respect and answer all questions clearly. Make note when (conditions) you are noticing the smell and let the shop know this. Good luck

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