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Aug 19 2019

5 Causes of Car Blowing White Smoke from Exhaust

If you start a car and notice white smoke coming out of the exhaust pipe, there are many reasons why this could be happening. Every time it does not need your attention. But, there are times when white smoke is coming out of the exhaust pipe and you need to pay attention to it. It can be a sign of a major problem.

Here are some of the reasons why white smoke comes out of the exhaust.

  • Condensation

It is a common reason why white smoke comes out of car exhaust. Commonly, it happens in colder climates. Do not worry about it if you are experiencing white smoke while there is cold outside.

The condensation process is widely responsible for this. When the warm or hot exhaust gases meet cold outside air, condensation and stream are the result. You should notice white smoke lessening after a short amount of driving. If you have lived in a warm region and then moved to a cold region, it should be normal for you. So, don’t worry about it.

  • Coolant Leak

If the white smoke keeps coming out of the pipe after the engine has had a chance to warm up or while accelerating, then it could be internal leaking in the coolant. It can be recognized when the internal white smoke is billowing out of the exhaust pipe and leaves a sweet odor in the air. If sweet odor is present, it is a problem with your coolant leaking.

The reasons behind the coolant leak could be a crack in the cylinder head or even engine block. Even a small crack can cause coolant to leak out and contaminate the engine oil. It is how the exhaust smoke ends up turning white. All it takes is for just a little bit of coolant to venture into the combustion chamber and white smoke is the result.

If you have a low coolant level or a cooling system is not maintained properly, your engine will begin to overheat. This overheating will make your head gasket to fail. It may lead to faster engine wear out and the internal components will get damaged.

  • Piston Ring or Valve Seal Leak

Other possible causes of the white smoke could be leaking valves or piston rings. Due to bad seals or piston rings, the oil leaks into the combustion chamber which then mixes with fuel and burns. The result is a white or light blue smoke that comes out from the exhaust manifold.

It is recommended to take your car to the nearest auto shop if you want an easy solution. Be careful, if you are trying to do it yourself.

  • Bad Fuel Injector

A bad fuel injector, usually one that is stuck open or is leaking from the o-ring, will provide too much fuel to the combustion chamber. Due to improper burning, this excess fuel comes out as white or grey smoke out of your tailpipe. It can be solved by replacing the bad injector.

The hard part is determining which fuel injector is in bad condition. Depending on the mileage it is recommended to replace all the injectors since they are inexpensive in most cars.

  • Incorrect Injector Pump Timing

It is related to diesel engines. Precision timing and fuel pressure of the injector pump is required for a diesel engine. When timing is not what it is supposed to be, your engine will essentially be running rich which will cause fuel to not completely burn. Instead, it will exit out of the exhaust as white or grey smoke.




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