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Robert, UK Qualified Car Technician
Category: Car
Satisfied Customers: 4340
Experience:  Fully qualified / self employed garage technician in the UK
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i have white smoke coming from the engine bay of my 2006 lexus

Resolved Question:

i have white smoke coming from the engine bay of my 2006 lexus is220d after replacing the radiator ?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Car
Expert:  Robert replied 2 years ago.



Hopefully i can help..


What the initial reason for replacing your radiator?


Which area does this smoke etc seem to originate from do you know?


Customer: replied 2 years ago.

the radiator had a small leak that was irreparable so i bought a new one from lexus today


fitted it after running up to temperature the fan kicked in but loads of white smoke started appearing from the engine area


Expert:  Robert replied 2 years ago.

Hi..there thanks for your reply..


Ok..well you would need to be certain the smoke you see is actually smoke and not steam from any residual coolant/water that maybe spilt or pooled on to areas of the engine itself during removal that maybe just basically boiling away as per steam..that can sometimes often happen on most cars working removing the radiator as such or parts of the coolant system - so you would need to have good check around first for that as above aswell as of course ensuring that the pipe work to your new radiator is secure...only other cause for white smoke could be an oil leak so certainly check for that..but as above the key really is to trace that source of the smoke/steam etc and see where is currently coming..ensure you are bleeding the system properly with the heater on full hot setting..sometimes its best to have the front up slightly and slowly fill the system up whilst some body else squeezes the larger hoses until the tank is filled then run it up to temp and then when cool re-check the level again..but as above there isnt really much that would cause that smoke if it a sweet sort of smelling type steam/smoke its possible residue/coolant burning off from or during the removal process..I do hope this helps ..if you need to ask anything else or include anything further then just continue before you rate

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

hi there


its definitely steam and not smoke, appears to be coming from the radiator area and coming out of the leak off hose 100% steam


with the heaters on in the car you can smell the hot water almost


any advice before I rate ?


Expert:  Robert replied 2 years ago.

Hi..there thanks for your reply..


Did this engine overheat at all before you replaced the rad ?


What does the temp guage sit at when this problem happens?


Any build up of pressure or does the coolant try to force itself out the expansion tank?


Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I don't have a history of the car as I bought it from the auctions, the tank was half full of coolant when I bought it it ran hot on the way back so I stopped and let it cool down before reaching home.

The temp gets up to half way running temp
That's when the steam starts

Fan kicks in at just over half way - steam disappears

Plenty of pressure in the tank
I think I have bled the system properly too ?

Thanks for the responses
Expert:  Robert replied 2 years ago.

Hi..there many thanks for your reply..


Ok..Id probably get check on the thermostat and see what thats like.."sometimes" its kind of best to replace the thermostat when doing a radiator change - since the system drained anyway it would be worth doing it it sort of something to maybe consider doing will mean of course redraining the system again and re-bleed it as per the suggestion before in my last post - If there is alot of pressure in that tank building up in there check for any signs of bubbles/froth on the coolant and often this could mean headgasket issues especially so if this is issue for it going through auction in the first place or possible failure of the water pump - a headgasket issue can be further verified by doing chemical block/dye test on the system and check for the pressence of exhaust gases in the coolant circuit.if there is alot of pressure released in that tank.sometimes alot of pressure in the system created can often spring leaks in weak areas on the system and usually thats either blowing a hose off or forcing the coolant out the tank or in most cases blowing the radiator at any weak spot on its certainly something to maybe have done a dye test on the system and see what throws up..maybe any good local mobile mechanic with that kit or you can find that kit in any good local motor factors - I do hope this helps further

Robert, UK Qualified Car Technician
Category: Car
Satisfied Customers: 4340
Experience: Fully qualified / self employed garage technician in the UK
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