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white smoke from exhaust?

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Old 07-09-2010, 12:19 AM   #1
1993civicDX
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Default white smoke from exhaust?

Hello, I am new here and pretty sure this is where I should post this. :)

My 93 civic has white smoke coming from the exhaust when it is warmed up. Previous owner had no antifreeze in the radiator, just water... I got the car about 2 weeks ago.

Oil does not appear to be milky
Car has a very harsh idle. (sputters and wants to die.)
Started car with the radiator cap off and bubbles came out of radiator.
Radiator appears to have small shavings of metal in it? or something metallic.
Took out sparkplugs that I replaced about 3 months back all appear to be looking good but one is a little orangish and stand out from the rest. looks like it got burnt or something. (oil was on plugs)

What I have done so far.
Drained radiator and flushed it out with water
Pulled plugs and checked them. (stated above)

Pretty sure it's my head gasket. Just started happening, hopefully its not the head. going to buy a book for my car and replace the gasket if that is the issue and replace my timing belt while I'm at it.

Thanks for any advice, Joey.

Edit, this is my first post not sure what else I should add but engine has 190,000 miles and it's the stock engine. nothing modded. automatic.
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Old 07-09-2010, 01:30 AM   #2
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Seems like the HG is on its way out but hasn't COMPLETELY failed yet. And since your changing the TB might as well change the tensioner and water pump while your at it since they are all together anyway.

Another thing. what the trim level of your civic and what engine do you have in it. Knowing the engine will allow the others here to help diagnose issues and give pointers that may be engine specific.
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Old 07-09-2010, 01:37 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by ImThaBean View Post
Seems like the HG is on its way out but hasn't COMPLETELY failed yet. And since your changing the TB might as well change the tensioner and water pump while your at it since they are all together anyway.

Another thing. what the trim level of your civic and what engine do you have in it. Knowing the engine will allow the others here to help diagnose issues and give pointers that may be engine specific.
have the stock engine. not really too smart with cars lol
this will be my first time tearing one apart besides replacing plugs, thermostat and other stuff lol.

will be doing this with the book and online instructions. Will also have a friend help me who has the same car and always messes around with his. (he knows about the fuel system and stuff) only part I think I may be confused on.

yeah, Thinking about buying new belts, tensioner, will check my TB once I take it all apart.

Also how would I go about finding out what my idle is set at? It's a automatic. Will a car tester tell me my idle? My gf's grandpa has tons of tools and car testers he said I can borrow. Just wondering for when I start putting everything back together lol
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Old 07-09-2010, 02:47 AM   #4
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1. do you know if you are burning oil
2. the previous owner could have used a liquid gasket to fix your car, thus copper or metalic flakes could appear to be in the radiator
3. how much bubblding is going on?-is it one or two small gasps every now and then or is it foaming?
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Old 07-09-2010, 07:56 AM   #5
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Quote:
2. the previous owner could have used a liquid gasket to fix your car, thus copper or metalic flakes could appear to be in the radiator
That is the source of the metal flakes.
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I did the solid poly mounts on my civic, but instead of using window weld, I used this cement crack patch stuff that takes about 6 days to cure and I used the hardest stuff they had. Now my steering wheel vibrates so bad, I can't read the Apex'i Rev/Speed Meter that's mounted to the steering column.

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Old 07-09-2010, 09:06 AM   #6
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since theres no coolant in your system and just water, your oil will is not going to be milky. drain your oil and see if theres water in it. water and oil don't mix well so you should be able to see it pretty well.
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Old 07-09-2010, 11:48 AM   #7
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not burning oil.
have metallic flakes in radiator.

Will drain oil on monday since that's payday and post back with results :) Pretty sure it's the HG since when I bought the car they said I need a new radiator cap since it burns water.

Kinda funny since I got the car from my parents brother lol.
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Old 07-09-2010, 08:42 PM   #8
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Well, oil looked pretty bad and i believe there is water in it.

going to replace HG in around 4 days. anyone know about how long it will take? going to try and get it done in about a hour and a half. Tearing it apart that is. Then paying a place near here 40.00 to check out my head. Will be having a friend with the same car & engine as me help. :) this will be fun lol
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Old 07-09-2010, 10:58 PM   #9
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btw you should have d15b7 motor
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Old 07-09-2010, 11:14 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by 1993civicDX View Post
Well, oil looked pretty bad and i believe there is water in it.

going to replace HG in around 4 days. anyone know about how long it will take? going to try and get it done in about a hour and a half. Tearing it apart that is. Then paying a place near here 40.00 to check out my head. Will be having a friend with the same car & engine as me help. :) this will be fun lol
Hello i have a 94 civic dx and it had a blown headgasket when i bought it. It can be time consuming depending on what tools you have to work with and your level of experience, but it is a great way to get to know your car. Take your time and make sure everything is right. Dont cut corners and you;ll be ok
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Old 07-10-2010, 12:02 AM   #11
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alright its a b7 I guess, found it located on the bottom of my engine :p

but I'm guessing pretty much all i'll have to remove besides the head is the timing belt, plugs, wires, and distributor? Seems like that's the only stuff in the way. Took some pictures just to show you :)

But that seems waaay to easy lol. Or do I gotta remove everything around the head? Already drained radiator and oil.

Thanks for the help so far everyone! kinda hard at first when you have no idea about cars lol.
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Old 07-10-2010, 10:17 AM   #12
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The belt has to be removed, valve cover, exhaust, and intake manifold, then the head should come right out. NOTE! be sure to remember the location of the bolts holding down the head. If i remember correctly there are four of them that are longer than the others and you want to make sure they go back in the same. Do you have a manual? Your going to need the torque specs when putting back together. Removing the stock intake may be a little tricky, as the bolts are a little hard to get to. If you have that problem and find yourself stripping out the bolts, stop. you can find behind it where it is attached and undo that bolt whick wil allow you to lift the head with the intake still attached up to about a 45 degree angle which will allow you to get at the head to clean it and replace seal.
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Old 07-10-2010, 03:50 PM   #13
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You'll have to remove the distributor first, then the valve cover, then remove the belt, then the cams, then the head bolts. Oh and the exhaust manifold. Leave your intake manifold on though, if you get under the car you will see (i think 2) bolts holding the Intake manifold down, just take those out n you can remove the head with the intake still attached. Then take the intake off once the head is off if you are having it shaved. When you put it back on make sure you tighten the head bolts in the correct pattern and torques, and just make sure when you set your timing you set the cam and the crank pulley to TDC. I always buy cheap sandwich bags and mark the bags with what bolts are in them and seperate everything. Will be a lot easier on you when you put it all together again.
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Old 07-10-2010, 06:55 PM   #14
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Thanks for all the help so far!

Just got a 195 piece tool set :) But when I take off the timing belt and put it back on will my timing be messed up? Heard I will need a timing gun to get the timing right.

going to start on removing everything so all I'll have left is the head on Monday (payday) :)

Also, I heard there are springs inside the head that will shoot out, is that true?
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Old 07-10-2010, 07:42 PM   #15
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you would do well to download the shop book for this job, its free and will make your job easier
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