Mysterious white smoke from tailpipe - help? - Alfa Romeo Forum
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Hmmm Mysterious white smoke from tailpipe - help?

My 156 2.5V6 sportwagon has a slightly leaky pressure cap in it's cooling system. I found this while stuck in traffic and the temp went sky-high. The warning light on the gauge didn;t come on and I managed to get the car home by taking a detour through back roads that kept the speed above about 60kph so the temp came down to prerrt much normal by the time I got home.

I let the engine cool down, and refilled it with about 4liters of water, started the engine to burp the cooling system and a bunch of white smoke filled my garage. It doesn't smell oily, and there is no water in the oil or vise versa - I'm a tad worried that I have a leaky head gasket now tho allowing water to get into a combustion chamber. It smokes BIGtime.

Any ideas?

2000 156 SportWagon
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Won't pretend to know any answers here but.... My mates missus's beetle (I know should have been burnt out long ago) has a lot of white smoke coming from the tailpipe. Turns out its a valve stem oil seal(diagnosed by vw not me). When you say white smoke is it smoke or steam?? Because if its water wetting into a cylinder surely it would be steam not smoke?? Also would this not mix the water with the oil which you say is not the case??
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Oil smoke generally has a blue tint to it - water being burnt (if you like) is white and can smell of anti freeze. Head gasket failure dosn't always mean that water gets into the oil or vice verca.
I'd say that you've done the head gasket given whats happened.
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White is water, its steam.

Given the overheat, then travel at speed, them too up with cold. Head gasket failure from waterway to combustion chambers.

You MAY get away with using a cooling system stop leak, but proper answer is a new gasket.

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