: Burning Coolant

03-09-05, 12:12 AM
I have a 98 STS and when i start it it blows out white smoke and smells like coolant but once it warms up it stops blowing smoke. The car runs fine but i do need to add coolant. Since this problem I have gone through two starters in teo weeks which i assume it related to this. On the first starter the housing around the shaft the hits the flywheel was broken off and the second the wire (solenoid?) on the starter was burnt out. When installing the starters i put in new intake gaskts too.

Any help on this matter would be great.

03-09-05, 12:25 AM
It sounds like head gaskets but you need to do some diagnostics to be sure. There are threads that explain that.

If the cylinders get full of coolant the starter can't crank the engine properly. That could be the cause of the starter breaking, or overloading.

03-09-05, 12:30 AM
But is there a reason that once it the car warms up it stops blowing out smoke. I know on my last car coolant would run through the throttle body to warm up the air for caold days, does my car have that and could that be the problem

03-09-05, 08:33 PM
Yes, I believe the TB does have coolant running through it but I am not sure if that could be the cause of your problem.

03-09-05, 11:10 PM
You didn't tell us where you are! Is it -10F or +80F???

The temperature makes a difference. My feelings on the head gaskets is they seal somewhat when the engine warms up but not 100%.

03-10-05, 10:44 AM
I'm in Minnesota and it has been about 20 average degrees this past week

03-10-05, 09:28 PM
Like I said, as the block heats and expands it probably seals somewhat. A common story is inconsistent coolant loss, esp when the head gaskets first start to leak. That's probably what's happening.

03-16-05, 08:20 PM
I could'nt find any threads to diagnose if it is a head gasket or not... Could someone give me some ideas

03-16-05, 10:09 PM
Don't know what to tell you because it sounds like a similar problem that I'm having. I just started a thread, changed crossover and now burning coolant? The garage changed the crossover, water pump and, etc. etc. and the car ran fine for about 6-8 miles. I stopped, filled up with gas and about 1/2 mile from the station it started to run rough and when I felt the light, it left a bit of smoke. I went home about 2 miles and it smokes pretty bad if you rev it. Smells lieka lot of gas also so I'm wondering if I have that coolant passage your talking aboutt hat goes throught the throttle ?? Wondering if they could have not secured something that lasted a few miles and now I'm stuck.

03-16-05, 11:14 PM
therodman, Where's it smoking from? If it's leaking can you see where from? Take it back...sometimes it's really simple, something not tightened enough.

98, The water pump belt and pulleys, the waterpump itself, heater core, all the hoses need to be checked. Thermostat should be changed if your not sure how old (I'd only recommend GM). Bbob explains checking the vent line in this current post: http://www.cadillacforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=34314

Compression test and/or cylinder leakdown tests on the cylinders should verify if the head gaskets are leaking. You may want to do that first before all the other stuff.

03-17-05, 06:58 PM
I already changed the water pump about 500 miles ago because that was leaking and that solved that problem but then this problem developed. But ill look into that stuff thanks

03-20-05, 10:50 PM
not to drag this on but i thougth i went through my third stater because there was a gringing sound when i tried statring my car. So i took out the starter and it looked fine, i got it tested and everything was good (it engaged and everything). So i put ti back in my car and the car still makes the sound and won't turn over. I'm thinking its the flywheel. But i'm not sure.

03-21-05, 12:45 AM
When you pulled the starter did you check the flywheel teeth?

03-21-05, 04:40 PM
i looked at the teeth that were showing which isnt many and they looked fine.

03-21-05, 04:56 PM
If you have to pull the starter again make sure you rotate the engine and check all the teeth. Usually it's only 1 spot that gets damaged.

03-22-05, 03:52 PM
If they are only missing in one place it would cause that noise and the car wouldnt start? Is it hard to take out the flywheel on these cars?

03-22-05, 04:00 PM
For blown head gasket you can do a number of things,
Check coolant for signs of oil,
Check oil for signs of coolant,
Pull the plugs and check their condition, sometimes you will see evidence of moisture, ie really clean plug?
I think I remember Bbobynski suggest attaching shop air to the cylinder? Try a search on that.

Isn't there a fairly common problem of leaking intake manifold gaskets on some models of N*? Thought I remembered seeing a post or two on that.

03-22-05, 08:59 PM
If they are damaged in one spot then it will only grind in that spot. The problem is that engines tend to stop in certain spots. If you crank it with a wrench you will feel it build compression, then coast when that cyl goes past TDC. So each revolution you get 4 spots where it is more likely to stop.

Yes, you have to seperate the trans from the engine and it is a lot of work. Make sure the drive is working properly and extends fully when energized. You will wind up taking it apart and checking for wear on the arm that moves the drive. Make sure it is pushed toward the flywheel when you tighten it. These things will only get you a little extra engagement but it may be enough.

What is it doing? Is it grinding or dead?

03-26-05, 01:48 PM
all it does is grinds when i turn it over

03-28-05, 08:58 PM
98 I am having trouble with my head gaskets as well. I found a local wrench who is replacing my engine for $1.5 K total. If you are in the St. Paul area you may want to contact him.

04-02-05, 02:41 PM
yeah im in the st paul area, are u just swapping out a motor or are they doin the head gaskets on ur current one

04-02-05, 03:05 PM
Just doing the motor swap. The guy really does not sound comfortable doing the headbolts. I told him about timeserts, but he still was not comfortable. Anyway he is charging me only $300 over the price of the motor to do the swap, so I am not going to complain.