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Discussion Starter #1
ok i have a 1990 325is, it has 218k on it and runs very strong, i have had it now for 2 weeks, i changed the fuel filter and the car is even stronger then it was, i didnt realize how much power i was losing but it took me a while to get to all the care stuff when you buy a used car....i have changed the normal stuff now, plugs, oil/filter, fuel filter, air filter and like i said this car is running strong and fast, i have put on about 1500 miles since i got it and have not had one problem......

now the problem........the car is running rich, which is not the real problem, the real problem is i am blowing a very small amount of smoke, it looks white in color but its really hard to tell because it is not a cloud of smoke coming out, its just a very fine amount but its bugging me,

what i can tell you........

the coolant color is fine there does not appear to be oil in it, and i am not loosing any coolant fluid at all......the oil in the engine is not milky, and i just changed it the other day and when it drained it was normal...the plugs are all burning clean.....
there are no leaks in this car so its not a cracked block......

the question is where is this smoke coming from?????????is it because i am running rich? or is it the start of a head gasket repair?

one more thing i can think of is that when i checked the plugs today to make sure they were burning clean, i did notice there was a little bit of oil around the threads of the plugs, but plugs are burning clean.
thanks for reading
 

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white smoke would normally indicate coolant leak, but since you ruled that out, i don't know what to tell you.

as far as the oil around the threads of the plugs, it may be time to change the valve cover gasket. 218000 miles is amazingly long and i'm surprised the valve cover gasket even survived half that time.
 

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if your valve cover gasket is leaking slightly then it could be the moisture from the oil thats making the white smoke...and sometimes if there is steam coming from your exhaust it can mean your engine is healthy
 

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here is a very easy way to tell if its harmful (oil) or maybe doesnt matter (water or whatever). Turn the car on, let it idle for about 20 minutes ( or if it only does it when the car is just warming up, do it then) and hold some pure white printer paper up close ( 1/2 inch) from the exhaust for about a minute or so. If its clean, then theres no oil leaks and what i would assume is water that has gotten inside the muffler can. This will evaporate eventually. Btw what brand fuel filter did you buy and how much did it run you. Just curious
 

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Discussion Starter #5
well i work at napa so that should tell you what brand it is, and well my cost was like 16 bucks but that was my cost :)
 

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cool, i asked cause i just bought one today (which i thought was deja vue when i read it) i got a puroline and it was 15, only reason i chose it was it was the cheapest. Havnt had time to change it yet, but i was looking at it and i saw that the hose is to stiff to clamp unlike on the other cars ive changed it on, so how do i stop the flow of gas? Just grin and bear it and clean the mess up?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
yes fuel will leak out of the lines and fuel filter, you really should have a container ready to catch the fuel out of the lines, but more importantly is when you pull the filter get ready to turn it upside down into a container, you wont beleive how much fuel is inside that thing, yeah cost on these things are crazy we charge like 65 bucks retail for the filter and it costs us 16 bucks, i would say you did pretty good on your price, all filters should be made to oem spec but that doesnt mean that it was, you will see if your filter is up to snuff or not in a short amount of time, good luck , the other thing is i get the top line stuff at cost so i could have gotten a cheaper one but i buy our top stuff and the price i get it at is worth it, until it fails me on this car i wont think about going else where, napa products have been very reliable on my 91 saab 9000.
 
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