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Old 08-24-2008, 09:36 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Diesel blowing White Smoke- Normal or Bad?

I have an 89 Dodge Ram 350 with the 5.9L Cummins Turbo Diesel, It is not intercooled. It starts up fine and will idle all day without over heating. If I drive easy around town it is fine too, as soon as I hit the highway and am in constant boost the temp. needle climbs all the way to HOT. If I hit boost around town it starts blowing white smoke when I come to a stop. Someone told me it's the head gasket and when the boost pressures the cylinders it opens it up and lets some coolant out the exhaust. The coolant doesn't seem to be going anywhere so I'm puzzled because the smoke doesn't smell like coolant either. Some other guy told me just change my oil, put lucas oil stayblizer in it and then flush the radiator, put new coolant in there with prestone radiator stop leak and that should seal any imperfections from both ends. And a 3rd individual told me the smoke is just unburnt fuel clearing out and the over heating is because t-stat needs to be replaced? I am new to diesels and I don't know these engines that well. I am sure these are all good possibilities, so I am just wondering if anyone has had similar problems or can shed some light on if the white smoke is normal?
So my question is: Is it normal for non inter cooled turbo diesels to run that hot or is it just a coincidence that its blowing white smoke and I am associating cooling issues with the smoke?

P.S. How hard is it to run an intercooler and would it be worth it power wise as well as cooling wise?

Thanks
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Old 08-24-2008, 09:43 PM   #2 (permalink)
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my understanding concerning diesels is that white smoke is unburnt fuel and black smoke is partially burnt fuel...

edit: running an intercooler would be totally worth it and the only way to go.

Last edited by hotrod07; 08-24-2008 at 09:45 PM.
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Old 08-25-2008, 12:44 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Old 08-25-2008, 05:02 AM   #4 (permalink)
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isnt white smoke a sign of running lean??
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Old 08-25-2008, 05:51 AM   #5 (permalink)
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You'll need the aftercooler, grille, boost tubes and intake plenum from a Gen I truck. Then just bolt it on.
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Old 08-25-2008, 07:18 AM   #6 (permalink)
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If you truck is running HOT and blowing white smoke you have a problem -- I haven't seen many, if any, older 12V's that run hot.

As for the benifits of an intercooler -- do it.
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Old 08-25-2008, 02:17 PM   #7 (permalink)
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White smoke can be caused from burning water. That might explain your engine getting hot also.
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Old 08-25-2008, 02:44 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Have you gotten fuel from a different than normal source? Maybe mixed with some #1? I've had this happen to me before.

White smoke is usually oil leaking from around an injector, past a piston ring or a sign of a lean condition. I think lean is more gray though. Does your temp gauge go hot, then come quickly down, then hot again during normal driving, or only peg when your under throttle? And do you have an EGT monitior?
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Old 08-25-2008, 03:07 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wanderer-RRORC View Post
isnt white smoke a sign of running lean??
No...



How bad is it blowing white smoke? Like on startup, or a cloud of it?
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Old 08-25-2008, 03:11 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Bad injector, change them out and youll be good
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Old 08-25-2008, 03:23 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I'll bet someone screwed with the timing on the pump, maybe a aggressive fuel plate .
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Old 08-25-2008, 03:34 PM   #12 (permalink)
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I'll bet someone screwed with the timing on the pump, maybe a aggressive fuel plate .
VE pump = no fuel plate and no fuel plate = black smoke
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Old 08-25-2008, 09:13 PM   #13 (permalink)
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No...



How bad is it blowing white smoke? Like on startup, or a cloud of it?
ditto......
if its lean, it just is slow and makes less power, it wont smoke unless theres not even enough fuel to havea half assed chance of burning.
black equals to much fuel
constant white and overheating i would be looking at somehting sucking oil through and burning the oil, or a water burning issue....

you could be dumping so much fuel to cause the overheating issue, but it would be black, and you would have probably melted a piston before it got pegged into red.
pay someone who "knows" what there doing to do a 1 hour diagnostic and you will have a much better, non "throwing parts" option of fixing then...........

also do not believe shit that anyone tells you if they are not famiar with diesels(familiar as in working on them, not just owning them) i have seen so much bad info told to my customers and told to me that it makes me sick as a diesel tech.

infa red your upper hose when its hot to make shure the T sats is opening and infa red the rad to make shure it is flowiong and cooling effeciently. quick 2 minutes to avoid what the one idiot told you.
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Old 08-25-2008, 09:24 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Post up over on www.cumminsforum.com

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Old 08-26-2008, 09:07 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I changed the oil today put a little bit of lucas stabilizer in it seemed to make it not smoke as much, but I still have an overheating problem with same situation, at idle it's fine, not sure if it's a boost related...but I'm going to put new t-stat and coolant in it anyways because it hasn't been changed in a while..the truck was sitting for a little bit.

I didn't know they had a Bulletin Board for cummins, i'm gonna post it over there if I don't resolve it tomorrow. I'll still check in here to let you know how it turns out..thanks all for the help
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Old 08-26-2008, 09:16 PM   #16 (permalink)
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3 things can cause white smoke
1: Unburnt fuel
2: Coolant leak in the combustion chamber
3: Plugged air filter

Experience= 9 years at a Dodge dealer.
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Old 09-01-2008, 06:09 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Sounds like a seal in the turbo
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