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Engine Smoking PLEASE HELP

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Old 02-16-2011, 04:59 PM
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Ok, so here's the story. The truck ran fine until I put new plugs and wires on. I forgot to note where the #1 location on the distributor was, so I guessed a couple times and tried to start it, but the truck never started with the wires in the wrong locations, it just cranked. So today I got the wires back in the correct locations and the truck fired right up, but after maybe ten seconds, white smoke starts coming from the driver's side, somewhere around or underneath the headers.

Some more info on everything I touched: I removed the headers to get to the plugs. I did notice yesterday that the pcv valve was just sitting in the valve cover without the rubber grommet, so I removed it and the line from the truck. Oil and coolant are full. I'm afraid to start the truck again until I figure out what's going on, please help me out.

A little more info: Truck is a 73 with 350.

Checked the transmission modulator vacuum line and it was dry. Oil is not milky. No oil leaks. Smoke doesn't really have a smell and lingers for awhile. Engine sounds normal and idles strong. Would the PCV valve be responsible for this? Excess fuel in the cylinders from trying to crank it previously? Any help is appreciated, I'm new to this as I'm sure you can tell.
 

Last edited by rriddle3; 02-16-2011 at 07:32 PM. Reason: COMBINING CONSECUTIVE POSTS
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Old 02-16-2011, 09:03 PM
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could it be a plug wire touching the header, I had a wire that was close and burned a little.
 
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Old 02-16-2011, 09:14 PM
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was there new exhaust gaskets installed or did you reuse the old ones? I know sometimes they fall and when you tighten them down they will not seal properly.
Can you hear any hissing or popping? Just a thought I had!!
 
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Old 02-16-2011, 09:33 PM
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you mentioned the white smoke appearing around the driver's header, but never said if it was coming off the headers or from (inside?) the engine. have you checked all of your new wires for any burns, like Z71 suggested?

have you pulled the plugs on that side to see what the engine is running like?

considering it seemed to run fine, i'm thinking it just might be the new header gaskets that were "cooking". while i haven't had to mess with headers in a bit, i know the last set i put on my Dart did just that. FYI, they were Fel-Pro gaskets.
 
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Old 02-16-2011, 09:39 PM
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Originally Posted by HiRidinChevy93 View Post
was there new exhaust gaskets installed or did you reuse the old ones? I know sometimes they fall and when you tighten them down they will not seal properly.
Can you hear any hissing or popping? Just a thought I had!!
No hiss or pop. I re-used the same gaskets, but it's not exhaust, this is definitely a white smoke. Exhaust is normally clean out the tailpipes.

One thing I just remembered, I did spray some PB blaster on the header bolts for good measure the day before taking them off. I remember spraying a little more on the driver's side (where the smoke is coming from) and hitting the headers due to the brake booster impeding my aim. Would PB blaster burn off like this after a day and result in this much smoke? It's not a ton of smoke, but enough to shut off the truck and grab a fire extinguisher just in case. I haven't let it run long enough to worsen (or reduce).

Originally Posted by Z71_Guy View Post
could it be a plug wire touching the header, I had a wire that was close and burned a little.
No wires touching. First thought I had.
 

Last edited by swartlkk; 02-17-2011 at 07:03 AM. Reason: *Combining Consecutive Posts* - Please use the EDIT feature to add additional information to your post and use the multi-quote feature to reply to more than one person.
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Old 02-16-2011, 10:05 PM
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Oil is Oil. It doesn't evaporate, you either wipe it off or it burns off. Most likely what your seeing is PB burn off! You could try spraying some on another cars exhaust manifold to see if thats the smoke your seeing just to be on the safe side!
 
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Old 02-16-2011, 10:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Useful Idiot View Post
One thing I just remembered, I did spray some PB blaster on the header bolts for good measure the day before taking them off. I remember spraying a little more on the driver's side (where the smoke is coming from) and hitting the headers due to the brake booster impeding my aim. Would PB blaster burn off like this after a day and result in this much smoke? It's not a ton of smoke, but enough to shut off the truck and grab a fire extinguisher just in case. I haven't let it run long enough to worsen (or reduce).

useful info right there.

i guess you've never heated up a stuck bolt with a torch, and then hit it with WD40 (or PB in your case)? you ain't seen nothing if you haven't!

that's what it's from, the lubricant. and it can smoke for 10 minutes, or even 30+! it all depends on how much you sprayed it, and the material it's been sprayed on. ie, exhaust manifolds will soak up more of the lubricant due to the open structure of cast iron, but steel headers won't.

run your engine, let it burn off. keep your extinguisher handy if it makes you feel better.

 
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Old 02-16-2011, 11:32 PM
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Originally Posted by old skool luvr View Post
useful info right there.

i guess you've never heated up a stuck bolt with a torch, and then hit it with WD40 (or PB in your case)? you ain't seen nothing if you haven't!

that's what it's from, the lubricant. and it can smoke for 10 minutes, or even 30+! it all depends on how much you sprayed it, and the material it's been sprayed on. ie, exhaust manifolds will soak up more of the lubricant due to the open structure of cast iron, but steel headers won't.

run your engine, let it burn off. keep your extinguisher handy if it makes you feel better.
PHEW!!! Forgot I'd sprayed that stuff on there. I like this better than a blown head gasket

Thanks guys. I haven't been very useful, but I lived up to part of my name.
 
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Old 02-16-2011, 11:45 PM
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Ya Ol Skool is right. Working as an alignment and frame tech I always freaked everyone out when I heated bolts up and sprayed them down lol. If you're worried bout it you can take some brake keen and spray on your header and use an air blower to speed the dryoff just make sure it's dry before you start it
 
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Old 02-17-2011, 12:10 AM
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a blown head gasket would show out the tail pipe. unless you had damaged header gaskets, then you'd see it @ the leak.

i was leaving your screen name all alone.....................
 

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