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The odor's dissipated now so I'll pop panels off next time it occurs and see if I can locate the source. I took a quick look at replacement rear outer tubs and they cost $200+ so I'd want to be sure that's the problem before proceeding.
That's good to know. If the problem were definitely electrical I'd take immediate corrective action because of fire risk. A mechanical problem is more wait and see, or wait and smell.