Why Is My Diesel Exhaust An Odd Color?

If you have a vehicle that runs on diesel fuel, then you probably understand that there are a variety of engine and fuel difficulties that can pop up. While many problems can be addressed by changing filters, other issues need to be investigated further. You can learn a lot about the potential issues facing your diesel truck by looking at the exhaust smoke. Keep reading to learn about a few smoke colors and what they may mean.

Black Smoke

You will typically notice black smoke coming from your exhaust when you start your vehicle from a cold start. However, the black smoke should dissipate relatively quickly. If it does not, then this can signal a variety of issues. Typically, the smoke tells you that there is an incorrect ratio of fuel to air within the engine itself and this is creating a large amount of pollution. This is often due to a surge in fuel or an over-fueling issue. A faulty turbocharger, dirty air filter, poor air cleaner, and worn pistons are just a few things that can contribute to the black smoke.

In some situations, dirty components within the engine and general performance issues can cause the black smoke to form. A thorough engine cleaning as well as a tune-up can reduce the problem. Also, your mechanic should take a look at the exhaust pipes. If carbon compounds build up within the exhaust itself, this can lead to an increase in pollutants released from the vehicle. 

Blue Smoke

Blue smoke is a also fairly common and is caused by the release of burned oil coming out of the exhaust. Typically, the smoke will appear when the vehicle starts and the engine first warms up. The initial warm-up forces leaking oil to burn off and release out the exhaust.

Blue smoke issues are often caused by leaking oil inside the engine. So, the wear of piston rings, seals, and valves can all contribute to this issue. Sometimes oil can accumulate and burn off if piston rings are stinking too. 

If oil is too thick or if it is congested with debris, then you may also see some of the blue smoke. An easy fix for this is to simply have your oil changed on time and with the correct grade of oil. Of course, a new oil filter can help too.

If you want to know more about the different colored smoke that may be releasing from your diesel truck's exhaust, speak with a diesel engine repair professional like South Houston Engine