Question about 2001 Nissan Sentra

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Huge clouds of white/blue smoke.

'01 Sentra, intermittently spews Huge clouds of white/blue smoke while driving. (Normal operating temp)


Russ

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  • wydranator Feb 03, 2009

    I've been a mechanic for 25 years.

  • wydranator Feb 03, 2009

    Either one of those suggestions would cause either start-up smoke or constant smoke. This is a huge cloud of smoke that comes out of nowhere. It could run fine for 10, 30 minutes and then all of a sudden, a cloud of smoke about 3 times the size of the car.

    Russ

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You need a head gasket. pretty common problem on a QG 18 Sentra. After you drive the car, let it cool off and remove spark plugs. Look into the spark plug holes inside of the cylinders. You will most likely find coolant sitting on top of the piston/s. Perform this procedure and let me know what you found.

Posted on Feb 19, 2009

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I like Benimur's idea in Solution #2. Have seen this happen, but only on an old Volvo. It sure could be sucking past the booster and into the vac. hose. Sounds like a good be for this intermittent smoking white/blue cloudiness! Let us know if that is not the prob. Respectfully, TT

Posted on Feb 03, 2009

  • Patrick Dennehy Feb 06, 2009

    Hey Wydranator,



    Any progress on checking for a brake fluid leak? Hadn't heard back. Thought "Benimur" might be putting you on the right track. Hope he was right! Post up and tell us where you are in the diag. process. We'll be glad to jump back on this problem for you. If it's resolved: that's great! Tell what you found, we're curious.



    Thanks for your Fixya.com question. TT

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  • Master
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Hi and welcome to FixYa,

A number of probable suspects have been forwarded to which I believe you would have checked already considering being a mechanic yourself.

If I may ask, would this "intermittently spews Huge clouds of white/blue smoke while driving" be after stepping on the brake? If yes, then a remote possibility is a leaking master brake cylinder. Where the leaked brake fluid is drawn in by the vacuum and fed to the combustion chamber.

Would appreciate updates. Good luck and thank you for using FixYa.

Posted on Feb 03, 2009

  • Louie  Role
    Louie Role Feb 04, 2009

    Hi again,

    Any updates or developments so far?


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I might add....change the PCV valve if you haven't already

Posted on Feb 03, 2009

  • Gary Loney
    Gary Loney Feb 03, 2009

    you got me scratchin my head on this one...lets see white smoke is water....blue is oil...black is gas.....and you say it bluish white smoke....you can rule out a head gasket since it runs normal temp, and no miss right? oil and or water is getting in the cylinders, or one of them somehow maybe....the smoke does come out the exhaust right?

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I think you have a blown head gasket

Posted on Feb 03, 2009

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Sounds like you either have a broken oil ring on one of the pistons, or a bad valve seal on one of the valves. Pull the plugs and look them over. The broken oil ring will cause traces of stuff to be left on the plug.

Posted on Feb 03, 2009

  • Mark Egan Feb 03, 2009

    Well,

    As a mechanic for over 25 years, you know how important it is to give all the facts, and not part of them. The OP indicates blue and white smoke coming from the car while driving, not no smoke, then all the sudden a big puff of smoke. And as a mechanic of 25 years, it's surprising that you come to a forum such as this to get answers from the general population, only to tell us you know better becuase your a mechanic with a lot of experience. Those if who answer do so knowing less than you about the specific problems.

    Yes, blue smoke is oil, white smoke "can be" water, but, in a bright light, and smoke that is not steam, can look whiter, depending on how hot the fire was that made the smoke. I can take you to machine shops all over the U.S. that are full of a whiter haze, than a bluer haze, from the cutting lubes used to cool the bits.

    If the smoke is coming from the exhaust pipe, then something is going on inside the engine that can usually be read from the spark plugs. If it's not coming from the exhaust pipe, then something is going on with the outside of the engine, like oil pooling, then splashing onto a hot surface because of stopping or acceleration, or just a build up from filling the "reservoir" drip by drip, only to be splashed out during a stop or acceleration. But "while driving" precludes that.

    If it was steam from the water system, outside of the engine, you would hear it hiss, and you would also be consuming water, same as with oil blowby on the rings, which will use oil (and puff blue to white smoke.).

    Will be happy to brain storm with you on this more, but only if you want to brainstorm and find the problem.


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