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      06-16-2014, 09:19 AM   #1
rcleno
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Unhappy White Smoke From Right Hand Exhaust.

I know similar threads have been posted but to me they seemed inconclusive. I have a 2007 335xi that I bought 9 days ago, this is my first BMW as well as my first turbo'd car so I am fairly ignorant. Anyway when I start it cold it smokes white out of the right side exhaust. It doesn't smell like burning oil but neither does it smell like coolant but it does have an odor. I bought the car from a Honda Dealership and when they serviced it they only filled in 4 liters of oil, so i drove the car like that for maybe 100 kilometers or so. I'm wondering if running the car with low oil damaged the turbos or turbo seals? The car is bone stock. It has 100,000 kms (62,000 miles) on it. It smoked white when i picked it up at the dealer but I thought I had just revved it too much too soon after start up but now it smokes every cold start.

Last edited by rcleno; 06-16-2014 at 09:21 AM. Reason: video didn't work
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      06-16-2014, 09:33 AM   #2
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Engine is definitely burning oil. The question here is where? Back in the old days, this was usually caused by bad oil rings on the pistons or oil seeping past the valves and into the combustion chamber.

I would definitely take it back to the dealer and have them take a look at it.

You did mention the white smoke to them when you picked it up at the dealer, right?
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      06-16-2014, 10:20 AM   #3
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I did not tell them that day, I did later in an email but I said that I thought it was not a problem anymore because It didn't smoke for a while, so I thought it was fine. But now its smoking again. The oil level hasn't gone down and the coolant is fine, there is no sludge in the oil so I'm thinking it's not the head gasket. The exhaust tips are quite sooty and there is black splatters on the rear bumper. I put Seafoam in for one tank of gas and it didn't smoke then but i dunno if that is related or just coincidence.
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      06-16-2014, 10:38 AM   #4
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Definitely burning the oil, quite possibly turbo seals but idunno
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      06-16-2014, 11:37 AM   #5
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Would running the car with low oil have caused the seals to fail? If I can prove the dealer is at fault they would have to pay for repair.
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      06-16-2014, 12:12 PM   #6
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Ok, I don't have any experience with anything but bmw diesel, but what is the recommended oil amount for oil change?? When I was buying my bmw, before deciding on diesel I discussed the service and I have been told that bmw puts more oil which allows for longer spams between oil changes. Four liters does not seam like more
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      06-16-2014, 12:39 PM   #7
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The N54 engine requires 7 liters. the dealer only filled 4 after they did oil change so the car ran 3 liters low for about 100 kms. likely enough to damge the turbos but I wouldn't know for sure. Anyone know for sure?

Last edited by rcleno; 06-18-2014 at 01:13 PM.
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      06-16-2014, 01:59 PM   #8
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Could be anything really, check for the valve seals along with your head gasket... that's where I would look first.
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      06-16-2014, 02:05 PM   #9
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oh, so they filled 4 liters cause if they would put all 7 that is required then the second pipe would smoke as well
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      06-16-2014, 02:12 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grzes View Post
oh, so they filled 4 liters cause if they would put all 7 that is required then the second pipe would smoke as well
Haha ya well I hardly feel like bringing it back to them because they might screw up worse this time. But neither do I feel like paying big $.
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      06-16-2014, 02:14 PM   #11
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The dual exhaust system in the 335i has a flap. It doesn't open both sides at idle only higher rpms. I see you have a "d" but I imagine it's similar?

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oh, so they filled 4 liters cause if they would put all 7 that is required then the second pipe would smoke as well
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      06-16-2014, 02:16 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rcleno View Post
Haha ya well I hardly feel like bringing it back to them because they might screw up worse this time. But neither do I feel like paying big $.
I would go back, after all it was not you who screwed badly, what kind of mechanic puts half of oil in the car?? Try to arrange the fix somewhere else but with them to cover the bill, tell them that you don't have any confidence since their shop fills up 4 our of 7 liters of oil during the oil change. What else they will cut in half?? Or just get your money back and look for another deal. Engine rebuild is never cheep.
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      06-16-2014, 02:18 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by e92_enthusiast_1 View Post
The dual exhaust system in the 335i has a flap. It doesn't open both sides at idle only higher rpms. I see you have a "d" but I imagine it's similar?
I was joking here lol
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      06-16-2014, 02:20 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by e92_enthusiast_1 View Post
The dual exhaust system in the 335i has a flap. It doesn't open both sides at idle only higher rpms. I see you have a "d" but I imagine it's similar?
So you are saying the smoke would likely come out of both pipes if the flap would be open? excuse my ignorance but what is the "d" you speak of? I am thinking of giving the dealer an ultimatum either fix the car or take the car back.
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      06-16-2014, 02:29 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rcleno View Post
So you are saying the smoke would likely come out of both pipes if the flap would be open? excuse my ignorance but what is the "d" you speak of? I am thinking of giving the dealer an ultimatum either fix the car or take the car back.
D stands for Diesel which is what I drive
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      06-16-2014, 02:34 PM   #16
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I misread grzes post out of context. Sorry, just ignore me.

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Originally Posted by rcleno View Post
So you are saying the smoke would likely come out of both pipes if the flap would be open? excuse my ignorance but what is the "d" you speak of? I am thinking of giving the dealer an ultimatum either fix the car or take the car back.
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      06-16-2014, 02:40 PM   #17
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Gotcha. I unplugged the flap wire and now it smokes from both.
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      06-16-2014, 02:48 PM   #18
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My initial guess would be valve guide seals, especially if it smokes more at cold startup than when it's warmed up.
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      06-16-2014, 02:52 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Narcosis View Post
My initial guess would be valve guide seals, especially if it smokes more at cold start up than when it's warmed up.
the engine also has a ticking sound but that is likely not related or what?
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      06-16-2014, 03:06 PM   #20
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My 2010 335i has some audible injector tick, at least that's what the service writer at BMW told me. Nothing too obnoxious, almost sounds like mild lifter tick.
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      06-16-2014, 03:33 PM   #21
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how much would one expect to pay to fix this if it valve seals? i think i have a similar problem..
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      06-16-2014, 04:22 PM   #22
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rcleno,

Here's a possible alternative explanation (with a much happier ending, if it proves correct).

You've described the problem as white smoke, and in the video it looks more white than blue. Burning oil produces noticeably blue smoke, so I don't think that's what's happening.

White smoke usually indicates either burning coolant or just burning condensation. I noticed that your white smoke went away very quickly, which would be consistent with burning any condensation left in the exhaust system after the engine is shut off for a period (say overnight). I would consider that situation entirely normal. Having said that, the quantity of smoke you're getting seems like a lot. What was the temperature when you made the video? Colder temperatures produce very visible condensation smoke, which goes away as the engine warms up. With hot temperatures, you seldom see condensation smoke.

If your car is burning coolant, that's generally pretty bad news. A blown / leaking head gasket is a common culprit, although you would often find a whitish sludge in the oil at the same time--or a scummy sludge in the coolant. Also, white smoke from burning water as a result of a head gasket leak wouldn't normally go away; it would continue even after the engine is warm.

By all means have the dealer check it out, and let us know what they conclude. I'm hoping that it's only condensation.

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