What’s that burning smell?

July 11, 2008 23:24 – 23:24

This evening, whilst riding from Waltham to Lexington to pick up our dinner order from Lexington House of Pizza, I noticed a burning plastic smell. We couldn’t tell if it was coming from inside or outside the car. Windows open… the smell got worse. Windows closed… the smell got worse. When we got to LHOP, I popped the hood, but found nothing. Outside of the car, there was no smell. Definitely coming from inside.

After picking up our dinner order, I decided to do a quick check in the back seat area, and quickly found the culprit. My cell phone charger had decided to short out, apparently. It had actually melted into the console add-on jack where it plugged in. The cord running from the add-in console to the utility plug had heated up, as well, and was stuck to the car’s carpeting!

Why the Sienna’s fuse didn’t pop before all that happened is a mystery. Why three separate in-line fuses also didn’t pop is a mystery as well. Why the Sienna’s fuse finally did decide to pop—long after the plastic melted—is an even bigger mystery.

In any case, my mobile phone charger is history, as is the thing it plugged into. Maybe I’ll spring for the original equipment version from Verizon next time rather than ordering online. I sure hope that the car’s utility plug can be fixed with a simple fuse.

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