SMOKE!!!

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SMOKE!!!

Postby Chevette Girl » 07 Aug 2007, 01:58

Had Little Beast in to the shop week before last to get the oilpan gasket done as she's been leaking for over a year, and in the last month or two it's gotten severe. (I know, I know, but I don't have a hoist and it's a nasty job so I paid for it) and my mechanic told me there's a leaking seal around the transmission (haven't looked at it in 150,000 km, I don't really care, I kind of hope to kill the auto tranny so I can convert the Beast to 5-speed)...

So, I get the Beast back on Friday night (the 27th) after work with the intention of driving her to Sudbury (500 km) that night... so halfway home from the mechanic's, I see white smoke coming out from under the hood... :shock: So I pop the hood with my trusty tire iron (the hood release came off in my hand sometime last year but the hole in my grille from where we hit the deer 2 years ago is in the perfect spot so when I fix the grille I'll worry about the hood pop) and not only do I see smoke coming from something dripping on my exhaust pipe, but on the little shelf on the firewall, I see coolant residue.

So I got back in, drove home making a stinky cloud, parked her at home till she was cool so I could check inside the radiator (it was a bit down from the top) and check the oil (level is fine, only dripping on the exhaust pipe, can't figure out how or where it's coming from)...

Get in, pack spare engine oil and coolant, drive 3/4 of the way to Sudbury, stop for gas (around 2 AM) and check all the levels... tranny fluid's fine, engine oil's fine, coolant overflow tank is bone dry. Brief panic, then give her a drink (about 500 mL) from my water bottle since the coolant is packed somewhere under the rabbit cage...

Get to Sudbury, drag behinds to bed, next morning, check fluids and see if we can find the coolant leak... not only is the overflow tank as full as I left it after adding water and the rad is full, but I can't find a leak ANYWHERE, my first suspicion was the heater core because of the coolant on the shelf, but when I popped the thing open to look it was dry in there, no evidence of ever having leaked...

Leave Beast parked for a week, eventually get her started (morning grumpiness X 8 days without being started), drive home with minor smoking. Oil, coolant & tranny fluid levels are fine...

Is she just trying to scare me?
:roll:
"The world is going to hell in Mircos***'s custom-built, feature-rich, user-friendly, bug-infested handbasket." - BCB, 2002
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Postby Gordo » 07 Aug 2007, 08:14

Did the temp' guage indicate it was getting warm? I would have expected you to mention it if it were, so that may rule out a sticking thermostat.
The most common problem, after a leaking hose, is a head gasket problem - when it was loosing water, was it under sustained heavy load - like a long hill?
It may be a water pump on the way out, can you see any stains indicating where the fluid was lost?
One odd possibility is the cooland cap wasn't fitted correctly and the resultant lower pressure allowed the coolant to boil over.
ttfn

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Postby CancerWagon » 07 Aug 2007, 19:48

The North american chevettes only have a temp warning light. (something like 230F+)

Keep a keen eye on all teh fluids. And next time it smokes, stop (immidiately) and sniff the smoke. and look for a leak. If the white smoke smells like auto transmission (dexron) fluid, that be it.

A friends ford aerostar (rwd van) had a intermittant auto transmission leak for over a year. Just kept the fluid in check, but when it leaked (once everyother day) it leaked plenty right onto the exhaust pipe making a distinct smell and white smokescreen from the rear. Usually while (as Gordo has mentioned) going up a long steep hill.

Keep a check for oil in the antifreeze and visaversa, as thoes are indicators of headgasket failure.
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Drifting in a 55 hp Diesel... what?
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Postby Chevette Girl » 11 Aug 2007, 04:21

It's the tranny, it's drunk two litres since Tuesday. The hoses that go to the radiator are leaking on my exhaust pipe. And I think I'm only going to add half a litre next time the tranny starts slipping, it makes an embarrassing amount of smoke if I ever have to stop at a light... :oops: I'm going to sneak underneath tomorrow and check all the hose connections, looks like one is dripping in front of the exhaust pipe, but there's something else that's leaking right on top of it...

And yeah, I'm familiar with the temp warning light, I played the game of "how fast can I go without the light coming on" on the way home from Hamilton on the 401 after my rad had lost a few too many fins...

The engine doesn't seem particularly hot (well, no worse than usual), and the coolant seems to be intermittent, the level's been constant for two weeks. A few months ago (just before the previous long trip) I saw a little puddle of coolant under the Beast mixed with the usual oil splatter after I'd stopped at the store for half an hour, and I kept an eye on it and it didn't leak again till this time. I had the water pump and timing belt done not all that long ago...
"The world is going to hell in Mircos***'s custom-built, feature-rich, user-friendly, bug-infested handbasket." - BCB, 2002
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Postby CancerWagon » 13 Aug 2007, 03:26

Aaah! That's not so bad, save the embarrasment.

Having a shop make up new steel lines should not break the bank. If the steel lines are okay and it's a piece of rubber that's rotted out... it'll cost beans to get it done up. :wink:

In other news, I've spotted another nice looking '84 with a for sale sign on it, 80,000 kms on it, perfect interior for my 78, body panels in good shape, clean and all origonal. Still need a rear axel? Despite it's good looks, the floor is 80% missing under the carpets.

The owners have moved to PEI and left the car in Here. :?
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Drifting in a 55 hp Diesel... what?
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Postby Chevette Girl » 16 Aug 2007, 03:43

Ooh, ooh, yes on the need for rear-end...

My mechanic still hasn't found a loaner for me, so I've been playing the game of how long after it gets too low to smoke can I let the level get before it starts stuttering... (not as long as I'd like)
"The world is going to hell in Mircos***'s custom-built, feature-rich, user-friendly, bug-infested handbasket." - BCB, 2002
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Postby Chevette Girl » 25 Aug 2007, 20:12

So 4 litres of tranny fluid and an embarrassing amount of smoke later, Beast is in the shop getting that fixed... And I'm driving my mechanic's brand new lease, Chev Cobalt, 6000 kms on it. It's kind of cute but I don't think I'd buy one... the fake signal clicker noise drives me and my hubby crazy...
"The world is going to hell in Mircos***'s custom-built, feature-rich, user-friendly, bug-infested handbasket." - BCB, 2002
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Postby CancerWagon » 27 Aug 2007, 17:53

I've been a colbalt a couple of times.... and I agree, so very very annoying.
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