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Smoking Vanagon
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Gorgy69
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 24, 2019 6:17 am    Post subject: Smoking Vanagon Reply with quote

Hi folks, I,ve been lurking for a while and wow what a mine of info, great. I have a 90 Vanagon. Its a 1.9 injection. I bought it some months ago, had a recon gearbox and stainless steel exhaust fitted. It did have a cat on the old exhaust bur has been removed. (legal in the uk before a certain date). I also had a service. A new co2 (bosch) fitted. There is now a very frustrating problem that is making my van unusable. It starts and runs fine, pulls well thru the gears. Then on tickover after a few minutes starts bellowing blue smoke. Switch off all good then a min or two starts smoking. I've 2 garages (one specialist for these vans and loads of work done and diagnosis but nothing helps. I have followed some similar threads on here but never seem to get a final answer as to what the problem may be. Any ideas folks. I'm going crazy with this and its starting to cost loads of $$$$$$. Thanks in advance to all you clever guys.
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DanHoug
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 24, 2019 6:29 am    Post subject: Re: smoking vanagon Reply with quote

you losing any brake fluid? if so, sometimes the master cylinder/brake booster can leak brake fluid into the vacuum hose and cause that issue, tho it is rare and is white smoke, not blue.

otherwise, make sure you have a very fresh oil change as diluted oil will sometimes do that once warmed up.
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Team WorldTour Premium Member
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 24, 2019 7:08 am    Post subject: Re: smoking vanagon Reply with quote

I'm going to assume by 'billowing', you mean out of the exhaust?
Blue smoke is oil. You have an oil issue.
Or your valve covers are leaking all over your exhaust.
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dobryan
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 24, 2019 7:18 am    Post subject: Re: smoking vanagon Reply with quote

Does it blow blue smoke out of the exhaust after it has been driven enough to fully warm up? Maybe 15 minutes or more.

Is this a sudden issue or something that has gradually been getting worse?
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Dave O
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Join the Vanagon Rescue Squad on the VanAlert app.
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https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=620646

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Ahwahnee
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 24, 2019 7:52 am    Post subject: Re: smoking vanagon Reply with quote

Colour of smoke is critical yet possibly subjective.

Though 'blue' suggests oil the rest of your description suggests a rich mixture.

Has your gas mileage (whatever you call it when it is petrol & kilometers) dropped dramatically?

Gorgy69 wrote:
...It starts and runs fine, pulls well thru the gears. Then on tickover after a few minutes starts bellowing blue smoke. Switch off all good then a min or two starts smoking...


That timing sounds like the issue occurs once the ECU is using the signal from the O2 sensor (it ignores it for a short time after each start-up).

The most common cause of that problem is a short between the coax and the center lead in this (green) wire:

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Another reason I suspect this is that you say:

Gorgy69 wrote:
...A new co2 (bosch) fitted...


By which I think you mean a new O2 sensor was installed. Could be when the short was introduced.

Several threads on this in the archives but the basic test is an ohmmeter to check for continuity between the conductor and the coax shield (should be zero).
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E1
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 24, 2019 8:43 am    Post subject: Re: smoking vanagon Reply with quote

A little birdie that looks like a relative in the mirror said it will do this if the oil breather is clogged.
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smd333
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 28, 2019 3:10 pm    Post subject: Re: Smoking Vanagon Reply with quote

If the oil level is a little on the high side apparently that can cause a ton of smoke. When I test drove the van by myself everything was fine. When I had my mechanic check it out and test drive it like a week or 2 later it was a ton of smoke. The owner had topped off the oil just a day or 2 prior. My mechanic drained a few ounces of oil and the problem was solved. He said to keep it maybe like 7/8 full idk maybe others can tell me if this is correct
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AZ Landshaper
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 28, 2019 3:54 pm    Post subject: Re: Smoking Vanagon Reply with quote

head gasket.
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Ahwahnee
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 28, 2019 5:23 pm    Post subject: Re: Smoking Vanagon Reply with quote

smd333 wrote:
... My mechanic ... said to keep it maybe like 7/8 full idk maybe others can tell me if this is correct


I like mine about midway between the marks -- it is (or I am) so particular that I made a third mark at the exact point where all is well:

You can see my mark in this photo (arrows are original marks):

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.
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dobryan
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 28, 2019 6:16 pm    Post subject: Re: Smoking Vanagon Reply with quote

Half way is the happy spot on many. YMMV.
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Dave O
'87 Westy w/ 2002 Subaru EJ25 and Peloquin TBD

"To travel hopefully is a better thing than to arrive." Robert Louis Stevenson

Join the Vanagon Rescue Squad on the VanAlert app.
http://vanalert.com/

MD>Canada>AK>WA>OR>CA>AZ>UT>WY>SD
https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=620646

Building a bus for travel in Europe
https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=695371
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outcaststudios
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2019 12:59 pm    Post subject: Re: Smoking Vanagon Reply with quote

smoking vanagon:an expensive high that leaves you wanting more...vanagons.
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SyncroButter
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2019 2:10 pm    Post subject: Re: Smoking Vanagon Reply with quote

Some very good guesses above (I like the brake booster one!), but what would really help us nail it down to a small number of possible causes is confirming the following (in addition to questions others have already asked):

Question already asked by Team WorldTour but re-stating it here: the smoke is coming out of the exhaust (and not just coming out from the general engine area), correct?

Smoke appears to have a blueish tint correct? (would usually indicate oil as others have said)? A picture would be helpful here.

What does the smoke smell like? Oil smoke and coolant smoke have very different smells, so this is helpful info.

A pic of all four of your spark plugs will also go a long way, lots of "hints" to be found there.
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djkeev Premium Member
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2019 2:31 pm    Post subject: Re: Smoking Vanagon Reply with quote

OP can't be too concerned. it's pushing a week, no response at all.

Oh, he has visited the forum, most recently today, he just hasn't added any new information or answered any questions.

Dave
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Ahwahnee
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2019 2:54 pm    Post subject: Re: Smoking Vanagon Reply with quote

Well, he did say...

Gorgy69 wrote:
...I'm going crazy with this...


Perhaps he arrived at his destination.
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E1
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2019 9:09 pm    Post subject: Re: Smoking Vanagon Reply with quote

Bro, that is soooo Freudian.

Or was it Wayne's World? Laughing
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