Your exhaust smoke is telling you what’s wrong!

Engine Health: What color is your exhaust?

If your vehicle is producing a significant amount of smoke, you should be concerned. We’re all used to the normal amount of condensation on a cold morning. Still, anything that doesn’t dissipate after a few minutes deserves the attention of a factory-trained technician. At Auburn Foreign & Domestic in Auburn, WA, over the years, we have noticed a pattern between the color of the exhaust an engine is producing and the root of the problem.

Black Exhaust: Probably the most alarming to look at, black smoke coming from your vehicle could most likely mean you have a rich running car. Your vehicle uses too much gasoline to make the engine function. This happens more often than not when your air filter is clogged. During combustion, your engine combines fuel and air in a delicate ratio to create a small explosion that moves the pistons creating motion. If there isn’t enough air making it through a clogged air filter, that delicate ratio of fuel to air will be off, and there will be too much gasoline. Over time, your engine will burn more gas to compensate for the lack of air.

White Exhaust: If you see white exhaust from your vehicle, think of having a look at your cooling system. You may have a leak that is causing coolant to burn up in the engine rather than circulate and cool it. The burning coolant will create white smoke. Your vehicle will need immediate attention because a significant loss in coolant could mean your vehicle will likely overheat.

Blue Exhaust: Your oil system could also develop a leak, and this would lead to blue smoke coming out of your exhaust. The burning oil creates blue smoke, but that is far less concerning than potentially low oil levels in your engine. Again, low fluid levels could lead to your engine overheating and vital parts being damaged. Not only do you need new, clean oil in your vehicle, but you also need enough oil pressure so that it can be pumped effectively throughout your engine.

Identifying what’s causing the smoke in your engine is just the first part of the process. Your vehicle is a finely tuned machine, and it should not have cause to smoke. Identifying and repairing the issue early is important to prevent further issues down the road. Preventative maintenance services like oil changes, air filter checks, and fluid flushes all allow your technician to look over your vehicle and identify any issues currently or developing.

Written by Auburn Foreign & Domestic