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Discussion Starter #1
Started the car after lunch and a large stream of smoke poured out from under the hood near the windshield on the passenger side. Smelled awful too. I shut the car off and looked under the hood. I see two lines that look like a/c lines maybe?? Maybe a freon leak??? Each line had a black thing that look like fitting of some sort.

Turned off the climate control and drove it home. No visible smoke but the cabin still smelled most of the way.

I searched for "freon" in all forums and not one result. Can anyone help me?

Any input would be greatly appreciated!!!

Thanks,
Todd

2001.5 V6 GLX
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The smoke was white in color. It did smell electrical.
 

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Freon leak would not stop when turned off...it would all leak out (closed, pressurized system). Sounds electrical to me too. You could have a buddy turn your system on while you are looking under the hood (or run around it, reach in window, etc) if you cannot locate the place of origin by inspecting wires, hoses, or try a vag-com for any codes.
 

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Are the lines/hoses going into the firewall? If so, maybe its coolant that is squirting out on the hot engine?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Just checked it again. I'm still a little stumped. Everything looks fine, even with engine running and heat heat or air on.

When it happened, the smoke dissipated quickly, although it was in a windy parking lot. I didn't notice much residue around anything.

I had CEL code checked a few days ago - had one code of bad Temp Sensor. I replaced that just now.

I unscrewed one of the caps on the freon lines. Looks like a fill valve similar to an innertube valve. I used a screw driver to press down the plunger and freon came out. It looked like white steam, that could be what I saw earlier. Could have leaked out of one of these valves. Odd, though, that it would only leak for a brief few seconds right after I started the car.

All electrical connections, components etc. look fine under the hood near the area. Maybe something electrical in the venting system fried and then smoke came out the filter???

I haven't found much from searching the forum so far, which makes me think this isn't real common.

Thanks for any help,
Todd
 

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That "white steam" that you saw just now is probably condensation in the air from the rapidly expanding gasses in the refrigeration system (gas laws, PV=NrT means that as gas is decompressed, it cools, as it cools it condenses water vapor to create the white "steam").

This has me stumped...
The only thing I can think of is that maybe a seal in the refrigeration system is marginal and can hold some pressue, but not normal pressure. So, the cooling system vented some freon until the pressure lowered to the point that the seal could contain it.

Just a wild guess, but you can confirm it by getting the refrigeration system pressure checked (or by getting your own gauge to check with).

Good luck!
 

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It could be some oil dripping on the turbo/exhaust side. You may have a very small leak thru the valve cover gasket. If it is electrical, the smell is different and I doubt it is refrigerant leak. If so, run the A/C and see if it gets cold.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
NEW TWIST...

I just noticed last night that my passenger headlight is out. I believe its HID. I'm thinking now that maybe the ballast burned up???

Does anyone know where is the ballast located, is it part of the headlight assembly???

Any input is appreciated...
Thanks,
Todd
 

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When I had my 69 Camaro, my entire electrical fried. It was caused by a charge sent by the battery when I hit heavy coming out of a drive way. The battery must caused a surge beyond the wires capacity which caused a electrical fire.
It was crazy. The wires burned like a fuse. You can watch every single wire burn as it went along. I was screaming for a fire estinguisher.

As how this relates, it is possible something similar from the Ballast caused a spike perhaps. And the wiring has been fried. I don't know. However, it sounds like some wires were fried by an increase in voltage. However, this is man talking with limited car electronics experience. :???:
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Temp sensor was replaced AFTER the smoke bomb. I'm quite sure its not due to any coolant or oil leaks, since it only happened in one instant, and everything is quite clean and no leaks. Also I have the V6 so not turbo related. I'm pretty confident it was electrical or freon. Electrical makes more sense at this point, but I don't see any signs of anything that fried. By the time I opened the hood 20 seconds after it happened, there was no evidence of anything. The only thing I had to go on was the location of where the smoke came out of the hood, which led me to the freon pipes/fittings. Everything electrical appears to be working (including starter) except for passenger HID which I didn't notice till now, a few days after the smoke incident. I will look at headlight assembly tonight to look for evidence. Either way I need to get the light working again. Any tips on how to troubleshoot what needs to be replaced?? (assuming everything "looks" ok)??

Thanks for helping!!!!!

Todd

Where is Zeeland? If you are near Troy, I can take a peek for you. Otherwise, MIVE has a ton of people willing to help out other Michiganders.
I live on west side of state near Grand Rapids. I will check out the MIVE group, Thanks!!!
 

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I'll be the dissenter here. Every time I'll recharged an AC system and vented refrigerant I usually see a very brief cloud, but not a lot of smell.

Since you have the V6, I going to guess water pump.

Have you every had the water pump replaced? Common failure on the V6 very early (<40K).

A bad waterpump shaft seal can be very, very intermittant. Leak one second and not the next. My guess is the waterpump leaked very briefly and the coolant hit something hot and then evaporated.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Since you have the V6, I going to guess water pump.

Have you every had the water pump replaced? Common failure on the V6 very early (<40K).

A bad waterpump shaft seal can be very, very intermittant. Leak one second and not the next. My guess is the waterpump leaked very briefly and the coolant hit something hot and then evaporated.


Hmmm, could very well be. I'll look into that, thanks for the tip!!!!

Todd


Edit: I just remembered, it happened when I started the car after sitting for quite a while in 30 degree weather. The car was ice cold.

Todd
 
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