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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all!
First time posting on this forum, picked up a Cabriolet beetle in laser blue for my first car, Now after some driving time in it I notice she starts to emit white smoke when hot, especially if sitting for a while. I took of Oil cap and noticed the dreaded chocolate milk residue. Coolant looks pink and fine. I also noticed a lot of oil coming from the valve cover and all over the front of the engine. Just want to make sure im on the right track with Blown head gasket. I've priced up components , (Head Bolts, valve cover gasket, head gasket and manifold gaskets for about ~£50) I have some experience with mechanics, (Motorcycles) and will give it a go if it needs doing, looks rather simple on these engines, what do you think? Am i on right track? I'll keep this thread updated :) <3


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I would start with trying a combustion leak test of the cooling system and then, if the test shows there is a issue; a cylinder leak down test, could pinpoint the problem.


Here in the states, auto parts stores; will loan these types of tools out for free. They, do not cost much; if they need to be purchased.




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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Pulled the plugs and did a compression test....Not sure how useful it was as i had to use that PUSH-IN style adapter as there is no way u can reach to screw in a better one due to manifold.
From 1-4 the PSI was 175 - 150 - 125 -190 Lowest possible PSI is 110 with a 30% variation, but again, how accurate the cylinder 2 and 3 are...well who knows...lol. still waiting for the CO2 sniffer.






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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Yup! 4th cylinder was worst yet read highest compression lol. The wells have a lot of crap kn them from leaking valve cover so that won't help..
 

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Looks yucky! I guess, we still don't know; if this is caused by a head gasket issue. Is there water/coolant in the oil (check the dipstick) or drain the oil? Much depends on how bad the gasket leak is; many times, oil can mix in the oil and in the cooling system. It depends on how early you catch it and the gasket leak amount. You might be in the early stage of failure?

Here in the usa, we don't have the 1.6Lbut we do have the 2.0L. The 2.0L has a issue, where the pcv/breather system; develops a foamy, yellowish sludge under the oil filler cap, in the pcv hoses. This seems to happen, on colder climates with higher humidity and cars that make short local trips, while the engine is ok, no head gasket issue. I don't know if this is common with the 1.6L but that gunk, could be from a head gasket, the color looks like a possibility or just from a normal build up? You might thoroughly clean the cap and the hoses; see, if it comes back?

Did you see; how many miles, the engine has on it?

Hopefully, that sniffer; will be helpful, in your next test step.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
The 1.6 doest have a pcv but just a crankcase breather. The engine has 111k miles. So I have no idea why it's going. I take it someone didn't look after it. I've noticed it hasn't done many miles for quite a few years. Maybe a summer car? Timing belt and water pump was done less than 20k ago. I did wipe the cap free and it started to come back I believe. Dip stick looked okay. Dirty but ok.


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Could be an oil cooler failure. I wouldn't jump straight to head gasket as those tend to not be an issue at such low mileage unless the car was overheated.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Hello again, Did a sniffer test on coolant, came back fine, did it twice, made sure the smoke was coming out pipe both times, around 55 degrees and 65 degrees. So happy with that. I'm not loosing coolant either so even better. The pipe smells like 2-stroke so it is definatly an oil burning issue. I'm going to think valve stem seals since it only really smokes after u give it some revs after its been idling . I am loosing oil slowly but then the leaky valve cover wont help that... SO, For now i suppose i can just keep an eyeball on the oil level, take all the intake off and clean up the gunk on the engine and replace the valve cover gasket gasket, Do you think running some sea-foam and petrol cleaner through will hurt? haha, looking for your replies :D
 

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We don't have the 1.6L in the usa but feedback, from uk based forums, bring up piston ring(s) as being a common issue with this particular engine.

The Haynes manual, which i think you have; references, doing a compression test but adding a bit of fresh motor oil, to each cylinder. If the compression increases, compared to the dry cylinder compression test and with the oil, that could point to the piston rings being a issue: for blow by, low compression, fouling the plugs, white smoke, etc. Your spark plugs, definitely; showed, the indication, of oil in the combustion chamber and the oil fouling the plugs.

Beyond that, pinpointing the issue, one could use a cylinder leak down tester; which can help narrow down the problem further. This tool, does require the use of compressed air, to use it and complete the testing procedure.


Once you figure out the issue; head, rings, head gasket etc; you could decide, how to address the issue and go from there.

As to seafoam, it might clean the combustion chamber up some but may not address the primary issue, you spark plus will most likely continue to get fouled and the exhaust smoke, from burning the oil?

Is smoking exhaust, like you are experiencing; a instant MOT fail?

Here is a earlier thread with a similar white smoke issue; which seems to point to a fueling issue, maybe leaking or clogged injectors but the poster, did not document his resolution to the issue. You might message him and see if he will update his thread ir share his experience with you?


If the injectors are clogged, sea foam might help or you could have a professional injector cleaning service done or buy some new, rebuilt ones.

You could check your fuel trims and see if they are in the normal range. This would require a scan tool; that reads live data, + or - 10%, being the normal range.


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