In most cases, car exhaust is normal and nothing to worry about. In others, it’s a cause for concern, sometimes causing car breakdowns that require roadside assistance Vancouver. It’s easy to forget that it’s another important component of your car that requires attention and continuous maintenance.

Different colours of smoke mean different things. While not every smokey exhaust is a cause for concern, it’s certainly enough reason to take a deeper look.

Diagnosing your smokey exhaust – when it happens

First, we need to find out where the exhaust is coming from. Is it coming out when the car is accelerating? Can you see it in your rearview mirror? Or is the smoke coming out when your car isn’t moving?

Diagnosing your smokey exhaust – what it looks like

Now, take note of the colour. Is the exhaust white? Is it grey with a little bit of blue? Is the smoke thick and black?

Once the smoke is in the air, does it evaporate and quickly disappear or does it linger in the air? If it lingers and is thick and black, does it also smell particularly strong? Does it leave behind residue on the ground or the exhaust pipe?

Black Smoke

Black smoke isn’t as dangerous as it looks and can mean a variety of different things. In a lot of cases, black smoke is the cause of over-fuelling a heavy-duty diesel engine, as well as a faulty fuel injection system, both causes for concern that should be remedied immediately. In other cases, it’s a blocked up air filter or manifold.

If you’re ever stuck on the side of the road with a car smoking with black exhaust, please get in touch with us right away.

Blue Smoke

Blue-tinted smoke usually means an oil leak because the oil leaks past engine seals and mixes and burns with the fuel in the cylinders.

Blue exhaust smoke when the car is starting up or accelerating could mean worn piston seals or damaged valve guides (you’ll know because you’ll hear a rattling noise).

In addition, a dirty oil filter or malfunctioning PCV valve could also cause oil loss and blue exhaust smoke. Either way, it’s critical to have your vehicle towed to a nearby mechanic with emergency roadside assistance Vancouver.

Grey Smoke

While all types of exhaust shouldn’t be ignored, grey exhaust is the most dangerous and should be towed to a repair shop immediately. Usually, grey exhaust indicates a head gasket leak, engine block damage or a crack in the vehicle’s cylinder head.

This leaky gasket causes the engine coolant to mix with the fuel. When coolant leaks, it’s not doing a good job of cooling the engine and vehicle down, risking the car overheating.

If you run into exhaust problems while on the road, give us a call. Save our number into your contacts for our 24/7 emergency roadside assistance Vancouver.