Question about Harley Davidson FLSTS Heritage Springer Motorcycles

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White smoke coming from exhaust

I have white smoke coming out of the exhaust ,,,is it the carb needs adjusting or something worse,,i have a harley davidson 1998 heritage springer anniversary edition,,

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  • p_morett Jan 12, 2009

    i forgot to say it does white smoke at only a idle



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White smoke could indicate coolant in the combustion chamber. Not likely if you have an air-cooled bike. It could also mean that you are running in a cold climate, if the temp is around 20 or less I would call this normal.

If your bike is water cooled I would keep a close eye on your coolant level and oil level. A blown head gasket could allow water to get into the combustion chamber (causing the smoke) or mix with the oil (even worse). If you notice it using coolant I would have it checked out by a mechanic. If you want to check it yourself, do a compression check on both cylinders. If one is rather low, there is your problem.

Posted on Jan 12, 2009

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I have a honda atc 200 and its stopped i tried to re-start it but it wont go , i then put a new plug in but no joy , when i crank it over it blows fuel out of the back of the carb ,if i cover the air intake with my hand only allowing a tiny amount of air in it fires up and revs up fine but it smokes whiteish grey and alot when i remove my hand it just dies , i replaced the carb but its still the same any ideas ????

Posted on Jan 20, 2010


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White smoke means water so there is an internal water leak into your combustion chambers causing the smoke. Possible head gasket starting to leak.... Blue smoke is oil and black is gas as far as the smoke emitting from the exhaust. Have you needed to fill the radiator lately? Good luck.

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Automatic carb may require adjustment.
Also have you checked any oil levels.
Too much oil is worse than not enough oil.

Is any extra smoke coming from the exhaust ?

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Is it condensation or actual smoke? White smoke is associated with diesel mixed in petrol and with quite strong smells. I suspect that it is condensation as water vapor is a by product of combustion and the motor/exhaust will have to warm up to clear it. Check for water droplets at the end of the exhaust to confirm condensation. Burning oil will cause a blueish smoke to emit from exhausts.

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White smoke coming from my suzuki intruder lc 1500

First check carb gasket. White smoke usually mean cooler leeks (for liquid cooled engines)- suspect head gasket. But this is just if smoke coming from exhaust not engine.

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White smoke coming out of my yamaha 2008 r6 whenever i start the bike. why is the white smoke coming out ?

Hi, Anonymous your instrument gauges and lights can alert you to most electrical and engine issues they can not warn you about failed engine gaskets or seals so your engine has to resort to old fashion alert methods of colored "SMOKE SIGNALS" here is a breakdown of their meaning:
1. WHITE SMOKE on start-up can is usually caused by a blown head gasket allowing coolant to enter the combustion chamber and may start dripping out of the exhaust pipes or mufflers.
2. BLUE SMOKE on start-up is usually caused by failed valve seals. Smoke that is constant while riding is usually caused by valve to guide and piston ring clearances that have exceeded service wear limits.
3. BLACK SMOKE on start-up is usually caused by too much fuel in the combustion chamber this can be due to air/fuel mixture adjustment too rich, accelerator pump improperly adjusted, faulty choke/enrichner or not in the off position, faulty carburetor float needle and seat, pilot jet too large, fuel injectors leaking, smoke while riding is usually caused by the main jet being too large.
It should be noted that aggressive or abnormal throttle operation will cause these conditions to manifest themselves exponentially.
For more information about your issue and valuable "FREE" downloads that you will need please click on the links below. Good luck and have a nice day.
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Carburetor adjustment SS,I played with the 3 adjustment screws the bike runs but its missing and bogging out. Can you help me?????????????

I assume that you're working on an S&S Super E. This carb is a bit much for an old Ironhead but I've seen plenty of them on these old machines. I think the Ironhead engine is the prettiest engine Harley ever built. They are also one of the most aggrevating as well.

On your S&S, the best jetting I've found for them is a #26.5 slow jet with a #68 or 70 main jet.

You must tune a Super E model the same way you tune a Super B model. The only difference between the two models is the "B" model does not have the accelerator pump. When you tune an "E" model, disable the accelerator pump by backing out on the screw that controls it. With the accelerator disabled, procede to tune your carb by turning the idle mixture control screw unwards until it stops and back out on complete turn. Now rev the engine, does it rev clean or does it bog? If it bogs, come out another half turn and rev the engine. It is better or worse. If you still can't tell, come out half turns at a time until you can tell it's either better or worse. By turning the screw out, you're adding more fuel. So if it revs better with the screw three turns out, you need a richer slow jet. If it gets worse, reset it to one turn out and start inward. If it gets better going inward, go to a leaner slow jet. Once you change the jet, go back to one turn off the bottom on your idle mixture screw and try it all over again. Eventually, you will get the slow jet right where you need it to be.

Now, tuning the high or main jet will have to be done on the road. Find you a long uphill run somewhere. With the bike in high gear, roll the throttle on wide open going up the hill. If the bike spits or sputter back through the carb, you're way lean. If it starts to pull back off on the throttle about an eigth of a turn and see if it pulls better. If so, you're just a little lean. If it feels sluggish or black smoke is coming out of the exhaust, you're too rich.

Once you get these areas worked out, go back and add your accelerator pump back in. Take it on the road and roll the throttle on. Does it bog or blow black smoke. Turn the screw one half turn at a time. If it gets worse, go the other way half turn at a time. Be careful not to get it too rich on the pump shot. Most riders do get the accelerator pump too rich. Have someone ride behind you watching for the puff of black smoke.

You can download the installation instructions at the S&S website. Go to the "technical" section and then to "installation instructions". These instructions tell you everything you need to know adjust your carb and then some.

One word of advice on your Ironhead. If you are running open drag pipes, you can tune your carb till you're blue in the face and your bike will have a 'dead spot' at about 50-60 mph somewhere. This is because you have no backpressure on your exhaust. To get the backpressure you need while keeping that bad sound you like, drill a hole in the backside of your drag pipes so that you can add a 1/4" X 1 1/4" bolt about an inch or inch and a half into the pipe. Most drag pipes have a hole in this area for the bolt that holds the baffle in. Look at another set until you find one with the hole for the baffle retaining screw. Drill your pipes the same way. Put the 1/4" X 1 1/4" screw into the pipe and put three nuts on the bolt inside the pipe. Make sure you get them all tight. This will usually put just about the right amount of backpressure on your exhaust to cure the "dead zone". Hope this helps. Good Luck!

Apr 02, 2010 | Harley Davidson XLH 1000 Sportster...

1 Answer


replace plugs also on carb there will be a mixture screw the person probably adjusted this you need to turn this out and see if it improves 1/2 a turn if not screw it in 1 turn if still no difference fiddle with it also replace/clean air filter this may help good luck bud df7e911.jpg

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Turns over but will not start

carb needs to be cleaned and adjusted properly

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