WHITE SMOKE

Lottie Davies’x

Active Member
Oct 7, 2020
20
7
29
West Midlands
Hey... Need advice pleaseeee! 💨 💨

The last 2 days, after driving around town my FR has started to blow out white smoke from the exhaust during my journey while the car is hot. Not a lot and not constantly, but enough to make me worry and know something isn’t right! 🥺

Car is a Seat Leon FR DIESEL 2010, only done 65,500 miles.. Any advice or anyone had this issue?

Thank you
 

CalJames

Active Member
Jun 25, 2019
180
86
Current weather has been pretty cold so it could be steam from condensation.
However I'd advise you to check your coolant level, if it looks very low have a look in the oil filler for any "mayonnaise" and also try to smell the smoke, if it's got a sweet scent it's coolant.
 
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black_sheep

Active Member
Mar 10, 2013
834
387
In addition to the above, it could also be the turbo starting to fail as it starts to burn oil - oil passing the oil seals and into the hot exhaust side of the turbo causes white smoke.

Keep an eye on the oil level, and get it plugged into a diagnostic device as soon as possible to see if there are any fault codes that could indicate anything else. If you leave it there is a chance it could also damage the DPF too.
 
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Dr.Dash

Active Member
Aug 30, 2015
338
71
Midlands
Give it a sniff. Is it really smoke ie, oil being burnt, or coolant (smells a bit like stale coffee) or just condensation?

Just because the engine is up to temp doesn't exclude the last option in this weather when driving around town.
 
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Big Vinny

Active Member
Oct 14, 2012
176
20
Just remember that for every litre of diesel you burn you produce 1.3 litres of H2O water as vapour (steam/gas). When the vapour leaves the exhaust the vapour will condense to a cloud of water droplets if it's a cold day (the ambient temperature is below the dew point). This is also the reason why you don't get a water droplet cloud on a hot day when above the dew point.

This can't be right you might say ?! You can't get more fluid out than you put in ?! Well actually you can because you are also pumping in a lot of O2 in the form of air thanks to the fuel system turbo (or fuel injection/carburetors).

A long technical reply here to describe what is just probably a normal water droplet cloud on a cold day !
 

Lottie Davies’x

Active Member
Oct 7, 2020
20
7
29
West Midlands
Thanks for all the replies.
It’s been rather warm weather the last 3 days and it’s happened every day around 30mins after driving the car around. It has never done this before and I’ve had the car all over winter with no smoke. The last 3 days it will start to puff a little white smoke then stop as fast as it started. The only way I can explain the smell of the smoke is really strong chemicals.
The power of the car is no different.. Still pulls me into my seat 😍
I was worried it may be the head gasket but the coolant level hasn’t changed.

Wouldn’t my engine management light come on if there was a issue with the engine?
 
Last edited:

jackbarraclough5196

Active Member
May 23, 2019
37
3
Lancashire
[mention]Lottie Davies’x [/mention] unfortunately not all issues cause a fault code to be registered. A serious issue may be present but not trigger a fault code, this is why diagnostics isn’t quite as simple as plugging a code scanner in and fixing said fault.

Hopefully in your case it’s just water vapour as mentioned above


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
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Lottie Davies’x

Active Member
Oct 7, 2020
20
7
29
West Midlands
Would water vapour smell like strong chemicals though? 🥺 If this is happening now, wouldn’t it of happened previously and happened over winter if it was the water vapour?
I have a code checker but without the management light coming on I’m knackered 🙇🏼‍♀️
 

Jay5959

FR 184
Apr 26, 2020
271
128
Diesels smell, try not to huff too much of it! Get a picture next time it’s smoking
 

Lottie Davies’x

Active Member
Oct 7, 2020
20
7
29
West Midlands
Diesels smell, try not to huff too much of it! Get a picture next time it’s smoking

I must be luckily then because mine hasn’t smelt before and has never smoked when revving or thrashing it with any colour smoke. I’ve owned it for just over a year, and my family member owned it from new and never had any smoke or smell from it. I will try and get a picture but it only smokes for a short period of time and it’s always when I’m driving and I can’t just jump out and take a picture 😅 But I’ll try!
 
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Jay5959

FR 184
Apr 26, 2020
271
128
I must be luckily then because mine hasn’t smelt before and has never smoked when revving or thrashing it with any colour smoke. I’ve owned it for just over a year, and my family member owned it from new and never had any smoke or smell from it. I will try and get a picture but it only smokes for a short period of time and it’s always when I’m driving and I can’t just jump out and take a picture 😅 But I’ll try!
I made the mistake of leaving my diesel fr on a sheltered drive to warm up and defrost, the exhaust gases smelt terrible :LOL:. Hopefully it’s nothing and just that’s the weathers cold so the exhaust gases and vapour are more noticeable(y). Yeah probably not the best idea to jump out in traffic to get a picture haha
 
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Lottie Davies’x

Active Member
Oct 7, 2020
20
7
29
West Midlands
What colour would you say it is because it looks white then blue 🥺🥺🥺
 

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Big Vinny

Active Member
Oct 14, 2012
176
20
From what I can see you have an older diesel unit probably a PD engine. The classic way a diesel engine emits GREY smoke that smells strongly of unburnt diesel fumes all year round is if engine is running rich (not enough air to fuel in the mixture which from memory should be about 19 air: 1 fuel).

The problem here is usually caused by a clogged air filter reducing the air flow into the engine leaving the engine starved of oxygen. The engine then runs rich with not enough air to burn all the fuel. The excess unburnt fuel is then pumped out of the exhaust. It is this unburnt fuel that gives the grey cloud of smelly fuel droplets.

If this is the case the cure is usually fairly simple. Change the air filter and give the full fuel tank a shot of Redex diesel injector cleaner. I would suggest you inspect the air filter and replace if necessary and look at your service record.
 

300bhpdaily

Active Member
May 26, 2020
562
242
get it checked out by someone who’s familiar with that engine before spending any money on it. Have a search on google at local vag specialists near you. Don’t start spending money on it just coz someone says it could be someone just Incase they are wrong. Do you have any friends or m Facebook who work with cars near you?
 

Lottie Davies’x

Active Member
Oct 7, 2020
20
7
29
West Midlands
In addition to the above, it could also be the turbo starting to fail as it starts to burn oil - oil passing the oil seals and into the hot exhaust side of the turbo causes white smoke.

Keep an eye on the oil level, and get it plugged into a diagnostic device as soon as possible to see if there are any fault codes that could indicate anything else. If you leave it there is a chance it could also damage the DPF too.
My turbo has gone BOOM, you were right 💨💨💨
 
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