The section of pipe was once part of the gas line that blew up in 2010, but has been inactive since the mid-1950s when the line was relocated.
PG&E crews say the smell is not a safety concern, but the utility company halted work on the pipeline until they can inform all residents that there is no need to be concerned.
"We were uncertain this odorant would be coming out today," said Andrew Souvall with PG&E, "so that's why we want to go back and communicate that to them, that smelling the odorant might be a possibility when we do this work."
PG&E is excavating the pipeline at the request of the California Public Utilities Commission.
Crews were planning to insert a camera into the pipeline on Saturday to examine the decommissioned line.