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Discussion Starter #1
This has happened once before but went away after a short drive. I recently noticed smoke coming from under the heat shield between my turbo and my downpipe. White smoke. Not heavy but it's enough to notice it coming out of the hood scoop from a stop. Does anybody have any idea what this could be or how to fix it? Thanks:screwy:
 

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It's either oil or water. Find out which and why.
 

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Remove the heatsheild and look.............
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Ok I guess I could try an remove the shield. I have never had to do it before; is it a simple process?
 

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If you're leaking oil close to your turbo/exhaust. There's a high probability of the leaking oil catching fire. Like Kronos said don't put it of and try to get it fixed as soon as possible.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I'm making a B line for my mechanic after work. Hopefully get it diagnosed today at least.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
After researching this issue more people believe the problem to be the gaskets and seals near the turbo. I'm having those replaced. Any other ideas? I mean someone else even said it may be the oil return line with a crack in it spaying stuff on the downpipe / turbo area.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Update: I just paid a pretty penny to have to have all my gaskets and seals redone. However, the smoke is still there; seems to be protruding from the portion of the power steering fluid line where the metal sheath covers the rubber portion. This is coincidentally near the downpipe / turbo area still.
 

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So what is the fluid that is leaking? Since you said white smoke, I don't think it is oil.

By the way, if you just had all the gaskets re-done, there is a possibility the mechanic spilled (or there was risidual fluid) while fixing it - which means it should go away after you run the engine for a bit to cook it off.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I'm not sure exactly. Other people have said the same thing about the residual fluid. Thing that keeps bugging me is that it comes and goes. I want to believe it's residual but at the same time I don't want to ignore it if it is to really be a problem. I guess I can just keep an eye on it and then get back you guys if something else happens. I appreciate all the help so far guys, thanks. I'll keep updating. Until then I welcome all advice.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Update: Had a pressure check on the coolant system today; passed with flying colors: held 25psi for 30 min. I also discovered that the previous owner has cut down the turbo heatshield; where the smoke is coming from. I guess the heatshield normally has seven bolts holding it in place whereas mine only seems to have two holding it on. The back half that goes down over the downpipe seems to be missing. Could this have anything to do with the smoke? I'm looking at it as an excuse to get a nice SPT shield or something.
 

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This is normally (almost always) a sign that the previous owner had changed the exhaust and gone at least stage 2. The stock heat shield doesn't fit on an aftermarket downpipe, so many people cut it to fit.

How long have you had the car?

Pressure checks are misleading. They generally will not show a leak if you have a small head gasket crack. You really need to wait for the smoke to come back and find where it is coming from. White means water or coolant. I believe you can put a die in the coolant that lights up under a black light - many mechanics do this. If you do that, you might be able to see where the leak is.

Again - how long have you had the car before this came about?
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I have owned the car for about a year and a half. This happened once last summer then went away until just last week and it's been doing it every day for the past week.

The downpipe is stock, I can tell you that much. The previous owner had installed a Perrin catless uppipe, whcih i would have done anyway and they also had an axle back exhaust; which I had redone into a cat back exhaust due to the piping around the muffler rotting out.

After getting to work yesterday i popped the hood again due to the smoke. It's coming right from under the manifold where the turbo is and makes it's way up to the open air through the heat shield.
 

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This really sounds like a coolant overflow - you are holding pressure while the car is not on, and the smoke is white.

I can't remember for your engine- where is your coolant reserve tank? Is the overflow hose for that in a place that could blow out under the turbo? I believe you have also have a small coolant resivoir (with a radiator-like cap) right in front of your turbo. If your thermostat is stuck, you would pass cooling-system pressure checks - but you would be blowing coolant out the reserve tanks (or weak connections) whenever it got too hot.

Your turbo has an inlet and outlet for coolant - they are the metal hoses that are clamped (poorly) to rubber ones on the side of the turbo closest to the passenger wheel. Do they look white and powdery?
 

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Discussion Starter #16
My reserve tank is right next to the radiator. I'm not sure where the hose for coolant leads but I suppose I could trace it tomorrow after work when I have some time. I can check these clamps tomorrow as well, provided I can find all these things. Are the clamps and hoses near the turbo area (where you specified) or are they down lower in the engine bay?

I took the car back today to have them put er on the lift and they found normal spots where grease or small oil deposits would be. But nothing outta the ordinary. They even brought me back to show me what "normal" looks like. Plus I had no smoke today; perhaps something finally burned off. My mechanic said a single drop of oil could take up to fifteen minutes to burn off; and this was probably residual like others said from when I had my seals redone just last week (but the car still smoked before this).

I will still check into the things you have pointed out. Thanks for all the help as well mjboudreaux77! I'll post back up with the findings soon.
 

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Sounds like a modified car that was returned to stock. This is almost always done quickly and poorly. I would go over that turbo with a mirror and flashlight. Look for leaks either oil or coolant. Also inspect the turbo coolant reservoir for cracks. Maybe also check the radiator cap.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Sounds like a modified car that was returned to stock. This is almost always done quickly and poorly. I would go over that turbo with a mirror and flashlight. Look for leaks either oil or coolant. Also inspect the turbo coolant reservoir for cracks. Maybe also check the radiator cap.
Where would I find the turbo coolant reservoir and turbo coolant lines? I have taken the heat shield off and inspected all of the top side and found nothing, so has the mechanic, nothing. And BTW this is the only other problem I have with the car besides replacing the radiator when I first got the car because it cracked and got coolant everywhere, and that was awhile ago. :sadwave:
 

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The turbo coolant reservoir is the small box in front of the turbo that has what looks like a radiator cap on it.
 

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I'm with mjboudreaux that it's coolant and not a petroleum-based fluid. Any of those produce smoke with a definite blue tinge to it, while coolant smokes white.
 
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