There is definitely no good that can come from a smoking car. The cause of the problem depends on which part of the car the smoke is coming from.
Steam from the tailpipe
Steam-like vapors coming from the tailpipe is nothing to be concerned about, especially in colder weather. The steam is simply a result of condensation building within the combustion process of the exhaust system.
Once the exhaust system is warmed up, the water vapor will no longer condense into steam. Instead, the water vapor will leave the tailpipe through a small drip – this is also completely normal and nothing to be worried about.
White smoke coming from under the hood
Drivers can tell the difference between steam and white smoke based on three main properties: color, odor, and how quickly they dissipate into the air. Steam is essentially colorless and odorless, dissipating quickly and leaving no trace. White smoke, on the other hand, contains gasses that smell and dissipates into ash and soot.
The other main difference is that white smoke coming from underneath the hood is a sign of engine trouble. The smoke indicates problems within the combustion chamber, a cracked engine block, a broken cylinder head, or a leaking gasket.
Normally white smoke brings along a sort of sweet smell, but if you also notice the smell of gas, the fuel system might be faulty.
Black smoke coming from the exhaust pipe
Black smoke is a clear indicator that your vehicle is burning too much fuel. This could be a result of a problem with the fuel injector, fuel pressure regulator, or carburetor.
Luckily, there are a few signs to look out for before your vehicle begins to produce black smoke. Some vehicles have a check engine light to indicate a faulty fuel system, but if not, pay close attention to your fuel economy.
It can be extremely dangerous to drive a vehicle that has smoke coming from it. If you notice smoke, bring your vehicle to a trusted professional at any of our Trick Tricks locations as soon as possible.
Continuing to drive a vehicle that is smoking can prove deadly for both the car and passengers. Overheating a vehicle can cause irreversible damage to the engine, but it could also cause the vehicle to catch on fire.
The best, and only, way to avoid a smoking car is with proper preventative car maintenance. This includes routine oil changes and fluid flushes.
Trick Trucks Has the Answers to All Your Vehicle Care Questions
If you want to upgrade your vehicle, or learn about spring car maintenance, then come to see us at Trick Trucks. We are happy to make sure your truck is in great condition and is looking fresh all year round.
We have over forty years of experience, so there is nothing we haven’t seen.