white smoke on starting (fiat 2.3) (1 Viewer)

Oct 29, 2012
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Had a few days away last week and, having been parked up for 3 days, when i started up, clouds of white smoke and engine running lumpy. after a few minutes as it warmed up it all settled down and was fine on the drive home. A friend suggested fuel filter as apparently all diesel now contains a percentage of bio diesel which tends to block the filter much quicker than before. It is going in for service/mot anyway but has anyone had similiar experience?
 

Snowbird

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What did the white smoke smell of. Was it a diesel smell ?.
 
OP
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cranky
Oct 29, 2012
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What did the white smoke smell of. Was it a diesel smell ?.
I didn't notice much of a smell at all. ( not from the smoke anyway as thoughts of huge garage bills flashed through my mind:D)

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MikeD

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Dec 21, 2011
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White smoke is usually something to do with water. If it ran ok when you parked it up I would agree with the other posts. (y)
 

scotjimland

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White smoke is caused by raw, unburnt fuel passing into the exhaust stream. Common causes include ..

  • Incorrect fuel injection timing
  • Defective fuel injectors
  • Low cylinder compression
Low cylinder compression may be caused by leaking valves, sticking piston rings, ring wear, cylinder wear, or cylinder glaze.

When white smoke occurs at cold start and then disappears as the engine warms up, the most common causes are fouling deposits around piston rings and/or cylinder glazing.

Continuous evidence of white smoke indicates a mechanical defect, or incorrect fuel timing.

Water entering combustion spaces will also create white smoke. Faulty head gaskets and cracked cylinder heads or blocks are a common cause of water entry .. unfortunately, expensive mechanical repair is the only proper solution here
 
Oct 5, 2009
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I would go with the cracked head or block/head gasket theory, black smoke is usually sign of overfueling
Check the water level in the radiator, not the plastic header tank this can be full but no water in the radiator, what you really need is block test where a container filled with chemical is connected to the water filler neck, when the engine is run from cold the chemical will change colour if it detects exhaust gases in the water I have one here but it's no good 300 miles away is is, hope it turns out to be somthing simple though
 
Dec 12, 2010
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With the cold temperatures, it might just be a dodgy heater plug for a particular cylinder letting unburned fuel through till the cylinder warms up. Head gasket problems would still be putting out white smoke once the engine was warm. What's it like when you start it from warm ?

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OP
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cranky
Oct 29, 2012
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With the cold temperatures, it might just be a dodgy heater plug for a particular cylinder letting unburned fuel through till the cylinder warms up. Head gasket problems would still be putting out white smoke once the engine was warm. What's it like when you start it from warm ?
glo plug was my first thought. It was fine once warm and re started fine when warm.
 

Enword

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With the cold temperatures, it might just be a dodgy heater plug for a particular cylinder letting unburned fuel through till the cylinder warms up. Head gasket problems would still be putting out white smoke once the engine was warm. What's it like when you start it from warm ?
Agree with jockaneezer, If it ran lumpy then clean & starts fine when warm Id check glow plugs first, sometimes at first they don't break down enough to register on the warning light but don't heat up enough. which would cause on burnt fuel to smoke white. Always look at the simple stuff first. Also dirty injector will dribble & not spray (y)
 

PeteH

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Star with the cheap things like test and replace? glo plugs? (I used a Jump lead across the battery to test once removed and a pair of leather gloves!! Bloody hot!!) I had similar on a 6.4 GM TD with just a broken wire! The "Tags" on certain glo plugs corrode off. (Spade type terminals). Any "nasty" rumblings?. Overfueling COLD can produce white smoke, Unburnt, Hot tends to produce black Part burnt. IF your not losing water then it is unlikely to be the cylinder head. I once ran an old Peugeot 205 for 2 years just topping up a couple of times a week though!!!
 
Nov 18, 2011
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as petterH but it could just be it was very cold waxing in the disale if it dose not do it after five or six HR lay up its nothing to worry abut
BILL
 
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cranky
Oct 29, 2012
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Thanks for all your suggestions. Will keep you posted when I find out what it is.

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joncris

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Check your coolant and it it has a milky greyish residue around the filler cap it could be a failed head gasket
 
Jun 17, 2012
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My son has a garage in Sible Hedingham. I can arrange a coolant system pressure test, a chemical "sniff" test all for free for a Funster. Not sure where you are in Essex.
Are you using coolant?
 
Dec 30, 2008
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Cant believe the scaremongering, mine sometimes does the exact same thing on start up if all cylinders dont fire up there will be unburnt fuel hence the white smoke.

Eric

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Badknee

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Turn the ignition on and hold it just before the starter kicks in, this is where the heater plugs are working. I was told by a diesel mechanic to keep the key in that position for twenty seconds after the curly wire light goes out as the plugs are still working, then start it.
In very cold weather my truck used to start every time when I did this and I know some of the eight glow plugs weren't working.
 

Techno

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Modern glow plugs heat up very very fast but they do get slower with age so good advice above.
 

Sundowners

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It sounds like you only have the 'white smoke' on a COLD start------there may be a big clue there:)------don't spend any money on it until you have checked out the cold-start system---and drained the water trap on the fuel line.
Good luck
Nigel & Pamala
 

mjltigger

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we are all guessing really.. I've known exhausts to steam for ages after they've had a good soak from rain in the wrong direction which can billow out the back like white smoke. I've also known people drive around for weeks with a cracked head making up every excuse under the sun as to why there's steam coming out the eggsauce

If it's a non issue it will be a one off. A slightly bad issue will carry in like this until dealt with and a really bad issue will get worse and worse until it fails...

The cold start is a clue, as is the running lumpy. My bet is on glo plugs as already said...

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OP
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cranky
Oct 29, 2012
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update.
Started her up yesteday and no smoke, ran perfectly. will get it all checked on service but seems fine. Thanks for all your input.
 

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