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Discussion Starter #1
Greetings from another cold canadian. Today it's a balmy -30c as opposed to 2 days ago when I started my legend at -42c. Thank God for those heated seats.
Anyway, has anyone else noticed that their legends put out a lot more smoke than other cars. I noticed this when I started my 98 Caravan and my legend at the same time (both plugged in for the same amount of time). My Caravan though has 55,000km while my 90ls 4door has 183000km. Engine purrs nicely when its warmed up but I still get lots of smoke then as well. I just replaced the O2 front sensor. Any thoughts? Oil is 5w30.

Also, in this cold weather, when I shift to s3 from park, sometimes for my entire 9 minute "commute", the light around s3 does not light up and the car acts like its in drive. It runs fine otherwise and I don't have this problem when it's warmer. I just put Forte in my tranny. Any thoughts?
 

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From balmy Alabama where it will be near 80F today.... as far as the smoke, is it just the moisture in the exhaust system - ie., does it go away after motor has warmed up? Otherwise, maybe a leaking head gasket which I understand is not a good thing. Of course if the smoke is blue, then it's burning oil.

For the light on the "S3" not lighting, the problem is the shift interlock switch (neutral start switch I believe is the same thing). It's the switch that tells the computer which gear you are in. Every winter when the outside temp is below 30F or so, my switch won't register that the car is in "P" and I can't get the key out of the ignition until I jiggle the shift lever and/or wait till the light comes on. Only during cold weather. Dealer said the switch is about $55.
 

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My Legend gives out a lot of smoke too, It looks like it is moisture and am worried that it might be a leaking head gasket like you say. There seems to be smoke coming from the engine too and I've had a look at the engine and it appears to be coming from the front engine block (just in front of the radiator) there is also a lot (lots and lots - where it appears to be coming from) of dirt and grime whilst the other side of the engine block is completely clean, do you think this could be a leaking head gasket and if it is what can i do, any suggestions would be really appreciated.
 

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Sorry bud, but you need a new head gasket. And from what you're saying, soon. There is a possiblity that it might be some other problem, but I doubt it. Any good mechanic would take a look at your car for free and tell you what it most likely is, but I bet its a h/g problem. Tough break, good luck though.

:)
 

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Fokiohero... Does the car smoke ALL the time, or only until it warms up (I'm talking tailpipe right now)??? If it only smokes until it warms up, it is most likely NOT a head gasket... Smell the exhaust after you start it... Does it smell sweet?? Coolant smells sweet... The smoke would be quite thick and white if it is coolant burning...

As to the engine smoking, it is probably and oil leak onto the exhaust manifold.... clean the engine really well and see where it is coming from.... My bet is it's from the side valve cover gasket... (Remember, our cars have top valve covers and side covers)

Pal.... Short trips of 9 minutes are very destructive to your car... try finding a little longer way to drive to work if possible... This works in 2 ways... It lets you enjoy your drive longer ( I LOVE driving my car...) and it will let the engine reach operating temperature.... The BEST way to keep your drivetrain
(and Catalytic converter) happy is to drive the car for 20 minutes AFTER it has come up to operating temperature....

At the VERY LEAST, take it for a really good long drive every weekend...

Good luck to you both !!!
 

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I drive only 2.5 miles to work - takes about 8 minutes to get to work in traffic. I know this is not good but nothing I can do. I do try and drive for longer periods whenever possible. I assume you say that short trips are bad because of oil flow? That is one reason I am considering switching to synthetic. Also, my mileage is terrible when I do a whole tank on these short trips. Thoughts?
 

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No, I wasn't worried about oil flow... Short trips don't let the water from condensation evaporate from the oil and exhaust, so engine and exhaust parts rust faster. Also because it never gets properly warmed, you will have more Carbon deposits in the engine leading to pre-ignition (Major killer of engines). Coolant never gets to temp. and thermostat may stick closed. ...

Yes, you WILL burn a lot more gas travelling only short trips as your computer never sees a temperature high enough and stays in closed loop, which is always running rich... That will also do in your cat. converter quicker.

Synthetic won't help you out much and may actually cause you more grief than it's worth in the form of oil leaks... Synthetic, when used on an older engine, quite often "cleans out" the seals and starts to seep... Mine started seeping from the side cover gaskets, but I use synthetic because I drive my car hard (shift at 6000) regularly...

Just a few things to think about...
 

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Discussion Starter #8
In addition to having to drive 20 or so minutes, I wonder what thoughts there are about warming up the car in the first place before driving. I've seen people wait 10 or so minutes (even in relatively balmy -25c) before driving and then there are people who drive after warming for a minute or so. I have heard that you only really need to wait about 2 minutes but then drive at low rpms. Any thoughts or suggestions?
 

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As long as you have oil pressure, you can drive the car... As far as driving slowly at first, I've never blown an engine from driving normally right away...

Idling is hard on the cat. as well... No air flow to help keep the temp. down and the mixture is always richer at idle... Best to warm up while driving...
 
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