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VBdenny

Smoke Out The Back

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Yesterday I was heading from the beach up to Virginia Tech on I-64. I had just passed Richmond and was running about 85 or so. I wound up behind a CTS running about 80 in the left lane. Apparently he had the cruise on because he hung side by side with another car for some distance. I finnaly had an opportunity to pass and I got right down on it up to maybe a buck or so. Suddenly I saw smoke streaming from behind my 400 (kind of like what the show on NASCAR). I whipped into a rest area which happened to be just up ahead. I opened the hood and smoke was drifting up from behind the engine. I looked around and determined it wasn't being burned internally, rather from what looked to be power steering fluid burning on the exhaust manifold. The car had oil spots on the back.

I parked the thing at the Richmond airport and rented a car. Tomorrow, I'll pick it up and drive back, not sure what will happend. I have extre fluid with me. I guess I'll be replacing the PS unit so I would appreciate and information on what I have to do for this job. I may also replace the rack, althought that is a job I have never done.

Suggestions and comments welcomed. I won't be back on line until Monday night.

Thanks everyone

Denny

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hmm this is strange, i had this smokin trail couple of times when i was flooring it, but it turned out to be just vapors and some soot from exaust

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I nver had any smoke before and to have it happen while passing a Cadillac was.... well embarring. I drove it about 30 miles back to the Richmond airport and it didn't smoke anymore, but having it come out bad enough to have the oil show up on the back of the car rather concerns me. I think I'd like to just replace the PS pump, or at least find out where it is leaking. I remember a thread on a certain place these leak.

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Got to log off, talk to you all tomorrow evening. I'd really, really appreciate any suggestions how ever far fetched.

Denny out

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It could be any number of things really, the fact that it smoked like that only when you floored it makes me doubt the PS Pump. Usually these leak on the alternator and foul it. Could be a piston ring or something of that nature...

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i had this problem and i still do and as it turned out to be just a vapor. the thing is that when u floor it ur cats and exasut system heat up immediately all the condesation evaporizes takin some soot from the system and concerning its big size that can hold a lot of condensation. i noticed it a while ago and i had a thread here b4 regarding this issue and it turned out that a lot of people noticed this and investigated this problem. if ur liquid levels are ok then u have nothing to worry about. i cant tell u the same about those oil stains :( never had this problem

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Be sure to check you PS fluid level first thing....

If it's losing fluid you should notice it on the "dipstick".

Since you keep a clean engine, reach down along the PS lines (if possible) and see/feel if any fluid it on the hoses, etc......

99

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I'm kinda wondering if it might be rear axle fluid that's leaking and burning on the hot rear muffler. Inspect your rear axle for signs of fluid all over the place.

You should be able to tell from the smell of the oil that was deposited on the back of the car whether its engine oil, rear axle oil (strong pungent odor) or power steering fluids (typical auto trans fluid smell).

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why would it leak only when he floors it?

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i think the best thing for you to do denny would be to put the car up on some ramps, get you a flash light and look at every possible hose, pump, ect.... anything that has fluid in it and check for wetness, and leakage. :)

i mean it really could be anything at this point from a simple old cracked hose thats leaking on the exhaust, to a valve gasket leak or a rearend gear leak, or even a cracked head (lets hope thats not it) :blushing:

i don't think it would by PS fluid as it would have nothing hot to burn on when leaking really, unless its just spewing out and getting sprayed back on the exhaust

did the car stall or perform any different, or did any idiot lights come on?? or did it just smoke??

was the smoke white, black, dark grey, or ?????

keep us posted, and good luck :D

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why would it leak only when he floors it?

Good point. What I have found in the past is that it is not so much the leak, but that when pushing the engine hard, the manifold or exhaust heats up more and burns away the accumulated oil deposit, which only smolders a bit when the engine is not working hard.

Last week a customer complained that the front of her pickup truck box smoked a lot, especially when going up hills. I suggested and found, that the transmission rear seal had blown.

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why would it leak only when he floors it?

The muffler and exhaust pipes can get hot enough during a high speed passing manuver to burn off any rear axle oil that has accumulated on the metal.

I live in a hilly area with long 7% freeway grades and once in awhile I see cars smokin from under the rear axle area when the cars crest the grades. In the 70's I owned a Chevy Vega that had this problem.

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The smoke wasn't caused by internal burning, it was definietly from ps fluid on the manifold.

I'll explore more today

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We drove the car home from Richmond yesterday without any problem. I looked and I definitely have some ps fluid leakage. I may have caused the problem by overfilling the reserviour because it was low before I left and perhaps overfilled it a bit. Now I just have to figure out what to do to correct it. I had been running pretty fast when it happened and then had just gotten on it a little more. I stopped right away and knew it wasn't coming from the exhuast pipes (which was a relief). The car runs and drives perfectly, in fact we got about 26 mpg.

I could understand a little bit of stuff burning off the manifolds, but this was fresh and when I wiped the oil that spotted on the back of the car, it was not motor oil. It was the purple colored PS fluid. I checked the tansmission and that was exactly at the proper level so I'm relatively sure that is not it

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Whew! I hope that there was no serious problem after all ! :rolleyes:

Sometimes, our 'babies' are so well behaved that we think that there must be something wrong with them :lol:

VH

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So.... is the leak more around the reservoir/ pump area (passenger side) or under car - around the PS Gear/rack assembly?

I also don't understand what you mean by "spotting in the back of the car"?

99

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hey 99

What I meant was that there were spots of oil deposits on the back bumper and trunk deck where the back draft made it stick to the car. By looking down where the PS pump is I can see that it is leaking somewhere. The rack also leaks, but not very much. I just don't understand why I would get such an amount that it would get all over the manifold and exhuast for a brief time. When I thought about it, I probably had overfilled the reservior a little and thought maybe there is a bypass or something that blew out the overfill? Freaked me out though seeing all that smoke. At first I thought I might have blown the engine or something, but since it still ran perfectly and when I stopped I realized it was oil burning off the exhaust pipes and manifold and not being emitted from the exhaust pipes. It seems fine now.

Didn't someone mention some gasket between the reserviour and the PS pump? It seems to be leaking in that area. Of course it has absolutely poured down rain here for the last 4 days so running it up on ramps is temporarilly unavailable.

As VH said, we like our babies to work perfectly and oil leaks are unacceptable especially when the make smoke.

Thanks for the input guys and let me know if anyone has replaced a PS pump and/or rack as that id the route I will probably take. I'd just like a heads up on mistakes I will make.

Denny

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VB, the next thing that might go wrong is that you will start the car and find a bunch of dashboard lights lit up indicating your alternator is not charging because the PS fluid has leaked down onto the alternator and shorted it out.

The other day LEXIE gave some outstanding advice about dealing with a leaking PS pump. Read all these threads:

http://us.lexusownersclub.com/forums/index...wtopic=8446&hl=

http://us.lexusownersclub.com/forums/index...topic=6583&st=0

http://www.clublexus.com/forums/showthread...r+steering+pump

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Well, your baby is 13 yrs old, maybe those hoses just ruptured or have created small, pinhole leaks that are blowing PS fluid under higher rpms?

99

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Den--suggest you gunk your engine and go to a car wash to clean it up; then make sure the ps fluid level is correct ;then I would wind it up close to your house in a low gear to try to duplicate the smoking---then I would go back to your house and try to find out what is happening and where it is coming from !!

do this on an afternoon--not at night.

anyway--you have to remove the ps pump to replace the gasket between the pump and resesvoir.----I would replace the pump (autozone) if I had to do this--it is complete w/resev. I am running an autozone one-and am extremely happy--knock on wood.

Note that everyone has an opinion on what to do and this is just mine. :D

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Denny,

Here's the part diagram for Gen III vane pump, Just FYI so you can see similar features on your ride and know where to look for leaks.... ;)

99

comp.pdf

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Tried to send the PS Gear / Rack components but just over 100k limit :angry:

pm me with email address if you want the whole enchilada :D

Here are ALL the TORQUE SPECS..................

99

torspe.pdf

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Well, well, well you can't seem to trust anybody to do your car repairs correctly. Since it finally stopped raining, I pulled the LS up onto the ramps and removed the engine sheld to see what was going on. Apprently when the idiots who replaced my power steering pump a year and a half ago did the work, they neglected to put all of the power steering pump mounting bolts in. One is missing, the other was loose. The fluid was leaking from the high pressure connection (the through pipe) which was also loose. I wiped it all off (what a mess) and tightened everything and ran the car for quite a while and it doesn't appear to be leaking. My neighbor Steve who happened by said that by having one bolt missing, vibration probably caused the others to gradually loosen up.

Naturally, I didn't have an extra bolt around that fit. If anyone has a way to find the specs on the fine thread metric bolt that attaches the pump to the engine I would be very grateful. I'll have to get one.

I took lots of pictures but my hands and me are rather greasy at the moment.

Luckily, since it was the connection, the fluid wasn't getting on the alternator.

Denny

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yes, i saw the cover. i don't think i need it at this point since the pump itself wasn't leaking. i'll probably do a flush on the system this summer, don't have time right now as I'm going to Jersey tomorrow and really didn't want to drive my truck.

I'll have to go back in and put the bolt on when I get it so I'll probably do it then. I'm taking the car up to Williamsburg in the morning and if it does alright, I' ll take it to Jersey as well. If it looks like it's still leaking, I'll take my truck or the Corolla. Seems I have plenty of vehicles to choose from, but the Lexus IS the ultimate road car, so I certainly prefer driving it.

Wish me luck, and if anyone has the bolt size I'd sure appreciate knowing.

Thanks

Denny

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