White smoke from hood on Passenger side - JeepForum.com
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Unread 07-23-2013, 02:02 PM   #1
Registered User
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: San Mateo, CA
Posts: 2
White smoke from hood on Passenger side

Hi all,
I've been having white smoke and a bit of a "burning coolant" smell for several weeks on my 2003 Liberty with 63k miles. Yesterday, I was driving on the highway and had sudden overheating, loss of power steering and the battery check light came on - all indicators of a broken drive belt. Sure enough, I took it in and it was found that the serpentine belt had broken as a result of a a locked up water pump. So, after replacing the belt and the pump, the steering and temp returned to normal and the battery light was not longer illuminating since it was once again being charged by the alternator.

Here's the problem... when driving to work today, the white smoke appeared once again! It usually shows up on deceleration - either when parking or at a stop light. I have placed cardboard under the Jeep for several nights to see if it's a coolant leak that is spraying onto the hot engine, but the cardboard is bone dry every morning! Any ideas what could be causing this white smoke?

Other stats:
- A/C and heater function normally
- Vehicle runs smoothly
- All fluid levels check out
- Temperature gauge is always right in the middle

Thanks for any help!

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Unread 07-23-2013, 07:31 PM   #2
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2003 KJ Liberty 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Attleboro, MA
Posts: 158
Check your radiator cap for any cracks in the seal.

Could this be steam from running the ac and having it condense around the engine?

- just some things to check
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Unread 07-23-2013, 08:17 PM   #3
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TwoBobsKJ's Avatar
2003 KJ Liberty 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Northern, OH
Posts: 735
Can almost guarantee the valve cover gasket on that side is leaking slightly. Oil drips down on the exhaust manifold and the catalytic converter, burns and it is sucked into the fresh air intake at the base of the windshield. It will also tail up around the hood.

The repair is not terribly difficult though the passenger side is harder due to the heater hoses. And it's likely the driver's side gasket will go soon too so best to have both gaskets replaced.

Like I said, not a hard repair but a dealership quoted me $220 to replace the passenger side gasket on my '03 - made it easy to decide to do the repair on both sides myself.


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Unread 07-24-2013, 11:02 AM   #4
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Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: San Mateo, CA
Posts: 2
Thanks, TwoBobsKJ... I've had that same hunch myself, and a couple of others that have looked at it have come to a similar conclusion. I think it's a pretty safe bet that it is a gasket leak - looking in there, there really nothing else that it could be.
neoleo is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

smell , smoke

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