Engine Cooling problem
1997 Mercury Sable Two Wheel Drive Automatic 112000 miles
I just bought a 1997 Mercury Sable Wagon. I test drove it for an hour or more today and it ran fine. I paid for the car and took a 60 minute drive home. After about 45 minutes the check engine light started blinking and white smoke started to come out the exhaust pipe. After about an hour I went out and started the car with no problem and no smoke. Could you tell me what the problem might be?
the first thing to do is get the fault code read, this will be held in the memory and can be retrieved. See what set the fault and have it rectified. As for the white smoke, check that the engine id not loosing coolant, as this is the most common cause of white exhaust smoke, coolent leaking into a combustion chamber.
April, 19, 2008 AT 3:35 PM
Definitely check that engine code. You may want to return the car, to the person who you bought it from as in some states there is a 30-day Lemon Law.
As per the white smoke, I agree that coolant is likely entering your manifold/engine from either a blown head gasket, or because of the first problem, there may be a boil-over situation that is allowing hot steam to enter the exhaust. But I'd be cautious on keeping that car, as a head gasket change is not the best thing to have to deal with, especially if the engine block has become cracked or warped. I've had this problem before and it's very time consuming.