White Smoke-Help!

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by pokerbrat, Sep 6, 2012.

  1. pokerbrat

    pokerbrat LawnSite Member
    Posts: 27

    I have a 2009 61" Scag Turf Tiger, 27 hp Kawasaki engine with only 140 hrs on it. Today after a few hours cutting pretty long grass, it occasionally would blow large plumes of white smoke. I shut it down and checked all levels, all levels were fine. Started it back up and ran for awhile, noticed it would only blow the smoke when headed downhill and turning left.

    Any ideas? All I can think of is the right side hydro pump.

    Thanks.
     
  2. MOW ED

    MOW ED LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,028

    Hard to say, head gasket? oil too full? is it Liquid cooled? Cracked head? do a compression test. Just suggestions, I'm not a mechanic. Thats low hours for an 09. I am pretty sure there is no warranty coverage left by time but certainly not by hours.
     
  3. Ridin' Green

    Ridin' Green LawnSite Fanatic
    Male, from Michigan
    Posts: 13,755

    I assume because you said you checked "all" levels, that it is a LQ engine.

    White smoke is an idication of either a bad head gasket, or cracked head. Water/coolant gets into the combustion chamber and you get white smoke from the exhaust. Don't keep running it like that. If you aren't sure what to check, have someone that does (or your dealer) look at it asap.
     
  4. pokerbrat

    pokerbrat LawnSite Member
    Posts: 27

    Thanks Ed. Yes, its liquid cooled and the oil and all other levels are fine. Runs great until I head down a hill, slow down and bank a left turn, that's when the smoke would blow out. Obviously I didn't want to run it too long with it doing this, so could be coincidence that it did it twice on the same hill before I shut it down.
     
  5. pokerbrat

    pokerbrat LawnSite Member
    Posts: 27

    Thanks Green, that was my fear as well. It is an LQ engine and I know just enough about engines to take them apart and never get them back together again.....so going to trailer it in to a Scag dealer.
     
  6. Ridin' Green

    Ridin' Green LawnSite Fanatic
    Male, from Michigan
    Posts: 13,755

    That's your best move then. Try not to run it anymore than you need to (if you do need) to just to get it on the trailer. If it's just the gasket, it shouldn't be too costly. Obviously a cracked head will cost more, and you don't want to add to costs by possibly damaging the further bt running it.

    Good luck!
     
  7. pokerbrat

    pokerbrat LawnSite Member
    Posts: 27

    Thanks Green.....I guess my bad luck at buying something off of CL's.....although I've put 20 hrs on it since I bought it, mowing the same 5 acres and this was the first sign of smoke.
     
  8. orangemower

    orangemower LawnSite Silver Member
    from pa
    Posts: 2,773

    I doubt it's a cracked head. I can almost guarantee the head gasket is blown. The cost isn't all that bad. If the dealer is a honest one, it can be turned around in a day and the cost shouldn't be more then a few hundred in labor and a couple 20's for parts. I'd want to "smell" the smoke to determine what is being burned. I bet it's oil being burned. If you know what burnt oil or burnt antifreeze smells like, then put it on the hill and make it smoke then smell it. Really it doesn't matter. Either way the head has to be removed. All that needs to be done is determine what side is blown.
     
  9. Ridin' Green

    Ridin' Green LawnSite Fanatic
    Male, from Michigan
    Posts: 13,755

    Don't feel bad about buying it off CL. I've bought a lot of really great stuff off there, and have yet to be burned. Not saying it can't happen, but it isn't as bad as many here make out. I've also sold some excellent condition equipment on there that the buyer got a good deal on.

    I highly doubt it's a cracked head either, but since the head needs to be taken off for the gasket to be repaired either way, they'll no doubt check it while it's apart. If the smoke was in fact white, it is for sure head related, and nothing to do with oil burning, but if it was actually more of a blue/grey than white, then it probably is not your heads or the gaskets that's cauing the smoke issue. You should be able to determine which side is having the issue by looking at the spark plugs.
     
  10. orangemower

    orangemower LawnSite Silver Member
    from pa
    Posts: 2,773

    I have to disagree. A head gasket on these engines can easily be blown on the oil side of the combustion chamber and cause the problem. That's why I'd want to smell the smoke to determine what is being burned. It's going to be the head gasket.
     

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