The vapor canister is an important part of your vehicle which allows unfiltered air as well as fuel vapors to go through and be filtered before heading towards the engine to be burned up during the combustion cycle. Without one, the excess fuel vapor would begin to collect underneath the vehicle causing a strong fuel smell as well as allowing unfiltered air to head into the engine. While air is not usually a problem on paved roads, if a vehicle was being operated without the use of a vapor canister on an unpaved road, particles of dust and debris would make its way to the engine which could be abrasive, causing unwanted damage and costly repairs for the vehicle owner. There are plenty of ways that a vapor canister can go missing in a vehicle and when it does, a replacement is really recommended, even if the vehicle seems to be running properly.
Vehicles have vapor canisters available to collect the strong fuel fumes and reduce them to manageable fuel to be used by an intake manifold while the vehicle is running. This is possible through the vapor canister because it is really a useful filter that consists of carbon which filters out impurities in both fuel fumes and air that is drawn in to the vapor canister through a special opening that allows air to come in. Operating a vehicle without the vapor canister carries increased risks of having intolerable fumes within the cab of the vehicle as well as the increased risk of a fire starting when the vehicle is started up due to the fumes being under the hood during the combustion cycle. Although this is a very rare occurrence, it is possible with the right mixture of fumes and oxygen when the vehicle goes through the ignition cycle.
Vapor canisters do have the ability to clog up due to large amounts of dust as well as major amounts of impurities in the air over time making the vapor canister not work as well. Used up carbon will not filter anymore after a certain point as well and the vapor canister must be replaced. The procedure can be done by anyone with an understanding of the risks involved when the process is done incorrectly and should really only be performed by a qualified individual such as a professional at an automobile shop. Other possible reasons why you may need a replacement vapor canister include losing a canister due to large shocks to the vehicle by hitting a curb or even simply by the part not being secured within the vehicle. Benefits of having a vapor canister are, slight increase in fuel efficiency as well as better engine performance!
The best thing to do is find a new vapor canister in the event that a replacement is required. There are plenty of high end manufacturers of these parts that you could count on to have the exact part needed for use in your vehicle. Ensure that the vapor canister is compatible with your vehicle and replace it yourself or have a professional do the installation for you. There are hoses and several other parts that must fit the vapor canister securely to ensure that it functions correctly while the vehicle is in use. An alternative is to go to a salvage yard to find the part you need but this is not recommended because if it comes from an older vehicle, the carbon within the vapor canister may already be used up and a new replacement will certainly be the best option.