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Hagerty Employee

What’s the grossest thing you’ve found in your car (aka: the dead rodent thread)

Yup, it’s that time of year! When you get to find out what decided to hibernate in your exhaust manifold. In case the title didn’t tip you off, there will be discussion of dead things in this post. If you don’t like reading about that sort of thing, you know, don’t. 

I rolled my Miata out of the garage this morning. Planned on an oil change and general inspection. When I opened the door, it smelled, um, not nice, but I soon got distracted by what seemed like a major mechanical issue — car was stalling out within seconds of starting.

After 30 mins of tinkering I determined I’d forgotten to reconnect the mass-airflow sensor (Miatas are boring like that). The engine was running smoothly, but now I heard a buzzing—flies swirling around the small cabin. I still didn’t think much of it. Been raining here and the bugs are out. I went ahead with my normal interior cleaning.

That’s when I noticed the poop.


On the armrest, head rest, dash board. Uh oh. I put gloves on and gingerly pull out every item. Finally, the kitty litter jar, which I use to keep the moisture down. Only, there’s no kitty litter. Just a small, not very fresh mouse who must not have realized he was checking into hotel California (you can check out any time you like/but you can never leave).


I handled it like the man I am, which is to say I squealed loud enough to scare the neighbors then hastily dumped the jar in the trash, where the mouse is interred this evening if anyone would like to pay respects. 

Anyone else deal with this sort of thing? I want to hear about it. Maybe. 

New Driver

New Driver

I bought a Mazda Protege for a friend of mine who needed a (really, really, super-duper cheap) car. Paid $100 for it, and it ran great, but the transmission fluid was burnt to a crisp, so I'd already sourced a transmission. When my buddy and I pulled the dolly into the barn, we noticed several smells. Notably, rodent droppings, moisture, cheap cologne, and old Taco Bell. Since the guys we were buying it from seemed like the cheap cologne and Taco Bell type, we made a snap judgement that there's no way it was the car. How would it even be possible to smell the interior from the this distance? 


My worst fears were confirmed after the car sat in the sun in the driveway for a couple of days, and the stench was obvious from 6-8 feet around the car. I decided to shop vac it out before my friend came by to not give her the wrong impression of her $100 investment. As I was sucking up cigarette butts, rodent droppings, etc., something got stuck on the shop vac under the seat. I pulled it out, and it was a cracked cheap cologne bottle, and all the nasty liquid inside was entering my vacuum, which hasn't smelled the same since. 


Then it happened. Another clog revealed the other half of the stink. A maggot-infested, half-eaten Taco Bell burrito. 


I've now learned to trust my nose, as well as my gut, which told me that I would never in a million years have purchased a Mazda Protege. Especially not one so well, ahem, lived-in. 

New Driver

Sticky control buttons starting with the Ferrari 360 and later models. Nastiest interior parts I have ever seen. The steering column surrounds will make your pants black on entry and exit. Window and HVAC controls are so sticky you cringe every time you touch them. Sticky is so bad that several companies were started to refinish these parts. Embarrassing that Ferrari allowed the situation for more than one year and several models. Sometimes you don't get what you paid for!

Hagerty Employee

The mental image of the cat in the map pocket will not leave me.
Pit Crew

I was cleaning out the glovebox of a 39 Cadillac Limo that my boss bought at an auction. Wrapped in cloth I found a rather large syringe and needle. It was thrown away quickly.

New Driver

When I was in high school, I had a Triumph Spitfire. We lived near a swamp and field. It was normal to see a snake or salamander, neither of which I liked, or would get near. One morning I went to get into the Triumph and there was a salamander inside crawling around. I never knew if it got in on its own, or someone put it in there. Since I wasn't getting close to it, I think I used a shovel with a long handle to get it out.

Advanced Driver

I think Bryan asked if you really wanted to know? I'm beginning to wonder if I did. Some pretty gross stuff, buggers, rat scat, drug paraphernalia, Grampa's piss jug, Sex toys....YUK. I do have to admit it is entertaining. I wonder what some of the Coolest things found would be? Keep up the good work guys, in these times of uncertainty a few laughs are better than a USED FACE MASK!!

New Driver

Bought a used car and as I was cleaning it up, I found a a penny & 1 unused tampon under the seat! Guess it could have been worst!