1987 Honda Accord white smoke from exhaust

Tiny
FLORIN
  • MEMBER
  • 1987 HONDA ACCORD
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • MANUAL
  • 25,000 MILES
My Honda starts emitting white smoke from the exhaust pipe after 2 to 3 minutes of idling. I held a white paper shop towel against the exhaust and collected what appears to be fresh (unburned) oil. Is it possible for oil to be getting into the exhaust manifold without going through the combustion chamber? My thinking is that the 2-3 minute delay is because it takes the exhaust system that long to heat up enough to start burning the oil that has collected inside. This is only a guess and I'm not even sure it is a possibility. Any thoughts or suggestions are appreciated.
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Tuesday, September 14th, 2010 AT 11:17 AM

9 Replies

Tiny
RACEFAN966
  • EXPERT
Ok to answer your question yes through the PCV system but then you would see blue smoke if there was oil getting into the exhaust. So with that and it being white smoke you need to check your antifreeze level as white smoke is a sign of coolant getting into the exhause which could be either a head gasket or cracked head or intake gasket.
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Tuesday, September 14th, 2010 AT 12:04 PM
Tiny
FLORIN
  • MEMBER
OK, But what about the oil I was able to collect at the exhaust. And it doesn't really look or smell like antifreeze comming from the exhaust (I've seen that before) Thanks
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Tuesday, September 14th, 2010 AT 3:14 PM
Tiny
RACEFAN966
  • EXPERT
If there is oil then it must be blueish smoke anyway I would pull the spark plugs and see what they look like. If you are able to actually collect oil from the exhaust then you should be burning oil and having to add oil a lot. Let me know what the plugs look like and if needed include a pic of them. Lets start there and see where we need to go from that point.
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Wednesday, September 15th, 2010 AT 10:11 AM
Tiny
FLORIN
  • MEMBER
The plugs are pretty carboned up. Here is a little more background info on this car. When I parked it a couple of years ago I was having a flooding issue with the carb. I couldn't figure it out at the time and I ended up with a lot of gas in the oilpan. So much that it kept running even after I disconnected the fuel line from the carb. At this point it was burning oil as well. I still don't understand how it was able to run like this. And yes, the bowl was empty. It was getting no fuel from the carb. So I shut it off and gave up until now. I have figured out the flooding problem an changed the oil twice to purge all of the gas out of the lubrication system. Now it starts up fine but starts emitting the smoke after 2 or 3 minutes. It is possibly bluish and certainly smells much more like burning oil than antifreeze. After you mentioned the PCV valve, I did a little research on symptoms and it seems like it kind of fits, but I'm not the expert. Hope this info helps, this is a weird one for me. Thanks
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Thursday, September 16th, 2010 AT 8:00 AM
Tiny
RACEFAN966
  • EXPERT
Ok check the pcv system make sure it isn't plugged but I would be likely to say the fuel in the oil as you had that the rings have been harmed and the block may have been scored just enough that it will allow blow by and therefore burn oil. You try putting some seafoam in the oil (don't over fill) and see if it will help to reseat the rings. Hope this helps. But you really should do a compression test so we can figure out what shape the engine is in internally.
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Thursday, September 16th, 2010 AT 11:27 AM
Tiny
FLORIN
  • MEMBER
I checked the PCV valve and it seems OK. I put the Seafoam in the oil and ran it for a while and it seems to be smoking a little less. I will continue this for a couple more days and see what happens. I don't have a compression tester. Thanks
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Thursday, September 16th, 2010 AT 8:10 PM
Tiny
RACEFAN966
  • EXPERT
Ok lets see what the seafoam does and take it from there. Give it a few days ok.
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Friday, September 17th, 2010 AT 9:28 AM
Tiny
FLORIN
  • MEMBER
OK, I ran the engine for 10 to 15 minutes at a time for a few days and it smokes less and less each time. I have put it back on the road and have been driving short distances and still it seems OK. I'm going to say that the Seafoam did the trick. Thanks for the help!
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Thursday, September 23rd, 2010 AT 7:45 AM
Tiny
RACEFAN966
  • EXPERT
That is great glad to hear, saves you a few bucks too.
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Friday, September 24th, 2010 AT 8:29 AM

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