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Old 30-09-2007, 18:33   #1
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white smoke or steam

my diesel started showing white smoke from the exhaust I think i have determined that it is steam (salt water) and not unburned diesel I put a metal bowl in front of the exhaust smelled and tatsed what condenced why would this start? i have been told that there is not enough raw water entering the exhaust but all lines are clear, so i think any sugestions and is this something to be worried about?
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Old 30-09-2007, 18:45   #2
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replace the impeller
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Old 30-09-2007, 18:56   #3
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impeller is brand new and pump rebuilt a week ago and there is plenty of water flowing
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Old 30-09-2007, 18:59   #4
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Check Thermostat!
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Old 30-09-2007, 19:11   #5
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Check the outlet of the water In the mixing elbow. Where the water and exhaust gasses collide. This can get clogged with salt build up.
What engine?
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Old 01-10-2007, 00:29   #6
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And one other question, do you also have water blowing out the exhaust?? If yes, that is your cooling water traveling through, which is a good sign. If you don't, then cooling water is not flowing enough and the exhaust system is over heating.
Other wise, cool days can create the view of seemingly more steam than normal. You can sometimes have some steam. Not huge white clouds like a steam engine however.
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Old 01-10-2007, 04:12   #7
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It could also be salt water IN your fuel. Guess you've checked your water traps etc?
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Old 01-10-2007, 05:53   #8
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I don't think that steam is much of a problem. I have light steam coming from both of my yanmars and it does not go away as the engine warms up. It's just 'there'.

The engines run fine and I ignore it.
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Old 01-10-2007, 08:43   #9
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I will try removing the thermostat and running the engine which is a westerbeke and that should eliminate any flow restriction but i have been watching the temp very closely. there is quite a bit of steam at the higher rpms and very little at low rpm which pretty much tells me that when the exhaust gasses heat up there is more steam I guess it is just a matter of finding the restriction. heat exchangers?
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Old 01-10-2007, 10:04   #10
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I will try removing the thermostat and running the engine
I would only do this if I wanted to guarantee an overheating condition.

The freshwater cooling system has absolutely nothing to do with the water coming out of the exhaust.
If your raw water is steaming your flow is compromised. Follow the water from the thru-hull all the way to the exhaust. My guess, now knowing it's a Westerbeke. There are old bits of impeller on the end of the heat exchanger. Check it out it only takes 5 min.
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Old 01-10-2007, 12:31   #11
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It could also be salt water IN your fuel. Guess you've checked your water traps etc?
Sorry John.
Without taking this too far off subject, but that is impossible. One drop of water will stop a diesel dead. Enough water in the fuel to create visible steam would never allow the engine to start let alone run.
I would follow Pats advice and if everything checks out OK, I would suggest it is just normal steam, based on "atmospheric disturbances" :-)
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Old 01-10-2007, 13:43   #12
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Depending on the air temp and humidity of the ambient air, you can see more or less steam precipitating. I would guess... Alan help... that the steam is created when the exhaust water comes in contact with a real hot exhaust elbo and not created inside the engine.

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Old 01-10-2007, 14:00   #13
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so now i know that the raw water flow is being restricted somewhere and i did find old impellor bits in the heat exchanger which were removed but i cant find anything else and i am not over heating is this something that should stop me from running the engine? untill i have bad weather and the time to further investigate
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Old 01-10-2007, 14:29   #14
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Is the fuel filter ok. slight fuel starvation will cause white smoke so Im told.
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Old 01-10-2007, 19:33   #15
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I don't think so.

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Originally Posted by kenpatt View Post
Is the fuel filter ok. slight fuel starvation will cause white smoke so Im told.
Peopel should read up on the basics of smoke from a diesel. It tells you a lot.
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