What Is Your Car’s Exhaust Telling You About The Health Of Your Car?

Car Maintenance, Service, Tips

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car exhaust system

Car maintenance and upkeep can be difficult if you’re not a mechanic. Sometimes, it can be hard to understand when you’re experiencing serious mechanical issues that require professional help.

Well, Ride Time is here to help! Did you know that your car’s exhaust can tell you quite a bit about the condition of your vehicle? If you’re noticing strange smells and exhaust coloration, your car may need repairs.

In this article, we’ll go over common exhaust discoloration and issues, and help you recognize the mechanical causes of each type. So keep reading – and keep your car in great condition!

White Smoke

Many people panic if their car starts to produce quite a bit of white smoke – but this isn’t always a sign of mechanical failure.

Your exhaust, generally, should be white in color. If it seems that your car is producing more exhaust than usual, you may have some normal condensation in your exhaust system. If this is the case, the smoke will dissipate fairly quickly.

However, thick and heavy white smoke can be an indicator of serious damage to your car. This can be an indicator of coolant leaks, your engine overheating, a blown head gasket, or even a cracked engine block. Heavy and constant white smoke should be inspected right away.

Blue Smoke

Blue smoke is almost always related to an oil-based issue. When oil escapes due to a faulty gasket or another issue, it may end up in the internal combustion chamber – which usually causes a thick, bluish smoke to vent from the exhaust.

Burning oil is very bad for your car. Unchecked, all of your oil may burn off – and this can cause irreversible damage to your engine block and combustion chambers. Get your car inspected professionally ASAP.

Gray Smoke

Gray smoke can be a bit difficult to diagnose. Like blue smoke, gray smoke can also be a sign of oil burning due to a leak. However, it may also be an indicator of a failing turbocharger, especially if you experience high levels of turbocharger “whine”.

Gray smoke can also indicate that your transmission fluid is being sucked into your engine by a faulty transmission vacuum modulator, and being burned up by the engine.

Finally, gray smoke can be caused by a stuck PCV (Positive Crankcase Ventilation) system. This system reduces emissions by recycling them into the combustion chamber. If it fails, excessive gray exhaust is a common indicator.

Black Smoke

Black smoke is almost always caused by a fuel issue. Black smoke is a sign that, for one reason or another, your car is burning too much fuel.

Possible reasons for black smoke could be a severely clogged air filter, faulty fuel sensors, or failing direct-fuel injectors and fuel-pressure regulators, or even low-quality fuel lines.

Luckily, black smoke issues are usually quite easy to fix. However, if you don’t take your car to a shop when experiencing black exhaust smoke, your fuel economy will suffer – and you could do serious damage to your car’s internal components.

Got A Smoky Exhaust? Let Ride Time Take A Look!

If you’re experiencing any of the above issues with your vehicle, don’t risk driving without repairs! At Ride Time’s new Winnipeg facility, we have 8 service bays – and technicians who are experienced ind the diagnosis and repair of all common mechanical issues.

If your car is venting excessive, discolored exhaust, there’s something wrong with it – and if you don’t get it fixed now, you could end up with a hefty repair bill in the future.

So don’t wait. Come to Ride Time now for professional vehicle servicing, and let us take great care of your car!


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