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Unread 09-16-2010   #1 (permalink)
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Default need help white smoke out of tail pipe but oil looks fine

I have a 87 with a 302 in it I just got it at the beging of summer it ran fine all summer it just would over heat a little thats because the rad has a leak in it but I just keep my eye on it and filled when needed but now im getting white smoke out the back when the car worms up but it still drives fine the over heating only hapens when the rad is low the oil looks fine what could this be?
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Unread 09-16-2010   #2 (permalink)
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Could be a blown head gasket...Seems to be a rash of them as of late..

White smoke is water, blue-ish smoke is oil, black smoke is fuel....Are you sure its white and not blue?

If its blue-ish, you could have bad valve stem seals and/or worn guides.

How many miles are on the car?
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Unread 09-16-2010   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scottyohh!! View Post
Could be a blown head gasket...Seems to be a rash of them as of late..

White smoke is water, blue-ish smoke is oil, black smoke is fuel....Are you sure its white and not blue?

If its blue-ish, you could have bad valve stem seals and/or worn guides.

How many miles are on the car?
Agreed.

White smoke is generally burning coolant. A bluish, thicker smoke is oil burning.

You said it does it after it's warmed up. That would make me look at maybe a blown head gasket. The thermostat opens up when the engine is warm, then the coolant starts flowing through the engine. A blown head gasket will allow water/coolant into the cylinders causing the white smoke...
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Unread 09-16-2010   #4 (permalink)
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Just because there's nothing in the oil doesn't mean it can't be a head gasket, it just depends on where the breach is and it might be just between a water jacket and the cylinder.

Do a compression check on all cylinders, that would be a start on tracking it down.
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Unread 09-16-2010   #5 (permalink)
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the smell is a dead give away too. smell like sugar? it's burning coolant. oil smells like oil and gas smells like gas obviously.

if you run the car with the belt off, is their bubbles in the coolant?
you have to do it with the belt off so that the coolant isn't cycling and you can be sure of the bubbles. (the compression in the cylinder will push air into the coolant if the head gasket is shot)
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Unread 01-27-2012   #6 (permalink)
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But usually and I've had this happen to me is when it blows from cylinder to water jacket doesn't it over head after bout 1 min 3 tops. When it happened in my car before not mustang it would start building pressure and bubble in the resevor. Push out coolant then overheat. But also no white smoke. May be leaking in egress spacer in into intake? Again in a 3.8 cougar.arty for the answer in a revived post. Still would like to know what it was
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Unread 01-27-2012   #7 (permalink)
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Usually if a car blows smoke on startup and goes away its usually a worn out valve guide/seal. If it continues to blow bluish grey smoke all the time,then it could be a bunch of things.Guides,rings,head gasket,cracked head etc. Easy thing to do is a compression test and a cooling system pressure check. Start with those and one of them will lead you in the right direction.
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Unread 01-27-2012   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EagleAutosports View Post
Just because there's nothing in the oil doesn't mean it can't be a head gasket, it just depends on where the breach is and it might be just between a water jacket and the cylinder.

Do a compression check on all cylinders, that would be a start on tracking it down.
What he said but you can also pull the spark plugs and inspect them. If coolant is entering a cylinder past a blown head gasket, the plug from that cylinder will look different from the others and might even be wet.
If the white smoke is only coming from one tailpipe, the affected cylinder will be on the same side.
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