: Sweet exhaust smell?



auroradude
10-31-05, 12:12 AM
Hey everyone,

been reading this forum for a long time, just never got around to posting at all. I am a 17 yr old kid who has sunk a small fortune into a 1995 Aurora, that i absolutely love, minus engine & other bs problems that occur from time to time.

Anyway, I have a kinda "sweet" smelling exhaust in the morning on a first start on a chilly day (about 50*). Its not seriously strong, as far as i can sniff. It smells the same in the summer too. And i remember a similar smell in my dads 97 aurora when he had that 6 years ago if im not mistaken.

The engine does not lose any coolant. Not since I changed the water pump in May anyway. It seems to be running pretty decent, strong etc. The green antifreeze is fresh (about a month old, and i change every major season). Look below for a complete list of new parts over a 1 year period I have had the vehicle.

Also, the exhaust seems to linger around a little while when chilly out. Its white, steamy..not really anything too suspicious i suppose. Then again, im not a master technician so i dont know anything. I can hardly do anytinhg myself on the engine. Everything looks pretty damn complicated. I will have to start my moms exploder and the Jag to compare. The exploder was beat up pretty good so I guess i can compare pretty well.

The reason i even bring this up is because the head gaskets are a very common failure in the 1995 Aurora V8's. Just look on ebay once in a while to see most of them with around 100-120k have seized engines. Although they probalby didnt take very good care of the cooling system. And im pretty sure my previous owner did NOT. I pity these people for going cheap on an $8k engine.

Here is the current condition/rundown of my car and mods. I wont include any cosmetic body kits or my major stereo upgrades cause its unrelated.

1995 Oldsmobile Aurora, 88k miles.
Bordeax Red/mushroom interior

Repairs (engine & body)

Water Pump
Master Cylinder
Serpentine & water pump belts
EGR Valve
GM Steering Rack & complete power steering pump unit
Rear Shocks
New Radiator & hoses
ACdelco Plugs & Wires
Fuel Rail Recall
Blower Motor
AC Compressor


A few other 3 and 400 dollar items, cant think at the moment.

Anyway any help is greatly appreciated. Thank you!

Ranger
10-31-05, 01:53 AM
Sweet smelling exhaust is usually indicitave of a blown head gasket. That said, if you have a blown head gasket, you will also either over heat, loose coolant or both. Keep an eye on it.

turbojimmy
10-31-05, 05:43 AM
I think you may be a little paranoid. What you're describing is normal unless you're losing coolant or overheating. This time of year exhaust is going to be white and steamy (depending on temp and humidity). Water is a byproduct of combustion and is always present in the exhaust. You can't see it unless there is a big difference between the exhaust gas temperature and the ambient temperature, like you have on a cold morning. Unless it's billowing white smoke all the time I wouldn't worry about it.

The exhaust is going to smell 'sweet' at start up because when the engine is cold the fuel mixture is very rich (an electronic 'choke' function). A cold engine needs more fuel to fire. As the engine temperature rises less and less fuel is needed for combustsion. As the car warms up and goes into closed loop the fuel is cut back to as close to 14.7:1 as the PCM can maintain. At that ratio the fuel is tough to smell.

Jim

auroradude
10-31-05, 11:36 PM
Ok thanks anyway. I will just get it compression checked for my own comfort and call it a wrap. Whatever..

brad3378
11-01-05, 08:54 PM
I may be wrong, but I thought all Northstar engines used the special DexCool coolant instead of the green stuff

auroradude
11-01-05, 08:55 PM
Nope. Not in 1995 they didnt.

mcowden
11-01-05, 09:55 PM
I may be wrong, but I thought all Northstar engines used the special DexCool coolant instead of the green stuff

From 1996 on, they are DexCool. Prior to that is the green silicated stuff. :)

auroradude
11-01-05, 09:56 PM
Dexcool is probably worse anyway from what i have heard/seen. I certainly wouldnt go 5 years with it. Maybe 2 tops. However I cant hold off more than a year changing every fluid in my car.

mcowden
11-01-05, 10:06 PM
Dexcool is probably worse anyway from what i have heard/seen. I certainly wouldnt go 5 years with it. Maybe 2 tops. However I cant hold off more than a year changing every fluid in my car.
Do you have any idea what you're talking about? What evidence do you have that says there is any problem with DexCool? Some lawyer's ad on Google? It is GUARANTEED for 5 years or 100k miles. Not suggested, it's not marketing hype, it is guaranteed for 5 years or 100k miles, whichever comes first. The stuff you're reading is B.S. It works fine if you change it when it's supposed to be changed and maintain the cooling system properly. If you "can't hold off more than a year changing every fluid in your car," I think you need to find something better to spend your time and money on. What benefits have you gained from all this excessive fluid changing to justify the time and money investments?

auroradude
11-01-05, 10:10 PM
First off I have green coolant, not dexcool. 2nd I will change what I want, when i want, if i want. I may not be gaining anything but it gives me great peace of mind. I can flush coolant and add GM pellets myself too, thats not big deal at all.

Even if i had dexcool i still wouldnt do it every 5 years man. Thats just way too long, especially if you put 100k or more on it..I remember seeing some posts in other forum where dexcool supposedly ate up the whole inside of a GM Vortec engine and a northstar caddy. I will have to look for that again. Its not just 1 guy either, thousands of people complained about it..

mcowden
11-01-05, 10:24 PM
First off I have green coolant, not dexcool. 2nd I will change what I want, when i want, if i want. I may not be gaining anything but it gives me great peace of mind. I can flush coolant and add GM pellets myself too, thats not big deal at all.

Even if i had dexcool i still wouldnt do it every 5 years man. Thats just way too long, especially if you put 100k or more on it..I remember seeing some posts in other forum where dexcool supposedly ate up the whole inside of a GM Vortec engine and a northstar caddy. I will have to look for that again. Its not just 1 guy either, thousands of people complained about it..

Thanks for buying a membership to the site. You can help further by not starting a panic about DexCool. The people who have problems with DexCool probably didn't change it at 5 years or 100k miles, other chemicals were introduced into the system at some point which threw off the balance of protective factors in the coolant, or they had other engine problems. If you can show me where properly maintained systems were damaged by DexCool, I'll consider believing that, but most of these people who had problems are blaming DexCool because they want a piece of the class action lawsuit pie. The lawyers are making millions on these suits, that's why they keep popping up. People forget about coolant, and that was probably OK for a while with the green stuff. DexCool can be more corrosive, and it's important to change it when it's due to be changed. Change it at 4 years or 80k miles if you want, but every year is just a waste of time, money, and energy. At 17 years old, your car is probably the most important thing in your life, so I understand over-maintaining it. I did the same thing. I just don't want people to start thinking they have to go to all this expense and trouble to change fluids when there is realistically no benefit to it at all.

Norman93Eldorado
02-12-06, 02:29 AM
We have a 93 Eldorado Northstar with 47,000 miles.
The VERY sweet exhaust smell happened before the dealer recently changed the head gaskets and is still happening. It is almost as if there is pure gas running out of the tailpipes. There is a normal amount of white "smoke" when the car is cold, and the car runs fine. Is it possible that the "electronic choke function" is set for the car to run too rich when starting?
Thanks.

mcowden
02-13-06, 11:55 AM
We have a 93 Eldorado Northstar with 47,000 miles.
The VERY sweet exhaust smell happened before the dealer recently changed the head gaskets and is still happening. It is almost as if there is pure gas running out of the tailpipes. There is a normal amount of white "smoke" when the car is cold, and the car runs fine. Is it possible that the "electronic choke function" is set for the car to run too rich when starting?
Thanks.

Maybe there's something wrong with my nose, but gas doesn't smell sweet to me. Consider clarifying the issue by starting a new thread with better details of what the smell is. If anything, it sounds like you may have a leaking fuel pressure regulator. Do you have any problems starting it when it's hot?

Aaron J Williams
02-14-06, 12:59 PM
Not to pick a nit here,but aren't we supposed to change coolant every 2 years on northstar engines? If that's true then the benefit of dex-cool would not be realized other than it's less toxic for children and animals to drink.

Ranger
02-14-06, 05:07 PM
Northstars (pre '96 - green coolant) get changed every 2 years. '96 and later got Dex and their change schedule is every 5 years.

Aaron J Williams
02-15-06, 07:31 PM
So my 93 Eldo should have green coolant and be changed every 2 years?

Ranger
02-15-06, 08:29 PM
So my 93 Eldo should have green coolant and be changed every 2 years?
Correct.

96-deville-man
02-15-06, 08:49 PM
and my 96 has dex-cool? wich is what color? and every 5yrs?

davesdeville
02-16-06, 12:43 AM
Dexcool is orange, and you should be able to change your 96s fluid every 5 years. Unless it's been changed previously with green fluid, then you should do the changed every 2 years.

mtflight
02-16-06, 11:25 AM
Dexcool is sometimes pinkish/orange. It varies....it is certainly NOT green. And dont go for that "universal" coolant, that can be used to top off green or orange.

mcowden
02-16-06, 01:12 PM
DexCool (orange coolant) is NOT any less toxic. It will kill your pets and your kids equally as well as green stuff. It's still ethylene glycol, it's just the additive package that is different, and ethylene glycol is toxic stuff. DO NOT LEAVE ANY KIND OF COOLANT WHERE KIDS OR PETS CAN GET TO IT OR YOU ARE PUTTING THEIR LIVES AT RISK! The stuff is Kool-Aid-colored and it tastes sweet, so animals and children could try to drink it. If a child or animal does drink any kind of coolant, get them to the emergency room or emergency vet immediately.

ELDOminator
02-16-06, 02:55 PM
Well I bought my ETC with the green stuff in it all ready.... I want to change it back to Dex, but you fellas say I'd need to change it every 2 years anyway... Is this because the green stuff contaminates it and nulls the protective features of Dexcool? If so, is there anyway to completely rid your system of it and beable to use Dex for 5 years between changes?

mtflight
02-16-06, 03:27 PM
Well I bought my ETC with the green stuff in it all ready.... I want to change it back to Dex, but you fellas say I'd need to change it every 2 years anyway... Is this because the green stuff contaminates it and nulls the protective features of Dexcool? If so, is there anyway to completely rid your system of it and beable to use Dex for 5 years between changes?

Here goes my understanding--once a Dexcool system has been "contaminated" with the green stuff, the multiple year protection is not an option because the interior is coated with ?

The only way to clean out the stuff would be to flush it multiple times. CAUTION: flushing is not recommended, due to harsh chemicals that may remain in the cooling system and do ? to the system. You would need to introduce tap water to get rid of the chemicals in the flush--and get unwanted minerals in.

Having green is not so bad--the problem are the folks that neglected their cooling system and never replaced the coolant. You obviously are not that way or you would not belong to this forum.

Just change it every couple of years and that's that. No pros and cons other than "I'm too lazy to change it every two years."

To change, simply drain and refill with 50/50 distilled water/green coolant.

Ranger
02-16-06, 07:36 PM
Mtflight is correct. The word he is looking for is silicates. The cooling system gets plated with silicates from the green coolant and there is no way to remove it. You are stuck with 2 year coolant changes. Not the end of the world.

Norman93Eldorado
03-08-06, 01:15 PM
Mike, thanks for the reply. I do not have problems starting the Eldorado when the engine is warmed up.
I am less concerned now with the sweet smell of the exhaust as it seems to be the smell of the condensation when I start the car on a cold morning.
-- Norman

highonchai
03-11-06, 11:39 AM
This post strangely enough reminds me of the movie Dr. Strangelove (or how i learned to stop worrying and love the bomb) when Gen. Jack D. Ripper sais: "I can no longer sit back and allow Communist infiltration, Communist indoctrination, Communist subversion and the international Communist conspiracy to sap and impurify all of our precious bodily fluids. Sorry for being so off topic.

Zorb750
03-11-06, 05:22 PM
I'm not one for Dexcool either, but from experience, not reading. When it evaporates, Dexcool leaves a hard white chalk crap all over. It (unintentionally) makes it very easy to find a vapor leak, but it also tends to be hard to remove, leading to hose clamps having trouble sealing (especially the spring clamps GM uses), also sometimes plugging things up by forming like this INSIDE of the damaged part (cracked water pump housing plate cover on my 1999 STS). It doesn't melt back into the coolant, it stays solid, floating around to plug things up. I seriously flushed the hell out of it and never got it all out. I hose-clamped my garden hose into the radiator (after draining it) and flooded it for over an hour, in both directions.

My Eldorado runs BMW coolant now (Yeah I know, not cheap) which is silicate free, and $18/Gallon at Erhard BMW.

I chose BMW coolant for 3 reasons.
1. Designed for aluminum engine.
2. It's blue, so easy to identify.
3. I turned it into a college advanced chemistry 8 week experiment and subjected various aluminum and alluminum alloys in different coolants mixed fifty percent with water and measured the ph, the electrical conductivity, the electrolytic properties. I used 3 temperature ranges, 3 circulation rates (to simulate water pump cavitation), and 3 rates of temp swings.

Out of the coolants, BMW (blue) and Zerex G-05 (gold) performed the best almost totally identical, Followed in order by Peak's Lifetime (gold), Prestone Dexcool compatible (red), Prestone Universal extended life (green), GM's dealer Dexcool (red), Peak extended life (red), last place Meijer store brand swill (green). The Meijer is the only non extended life I could find.

Zerex's is used by Mercedes Benz as well as some Chryslers and Ford's. I don't think Peak's products are factory fill in anything. Meijer's is plain green garbage.

All I can say is that I've never seen another coolant create that chalk crap, and to me that is very bad. I also like BMW's standpoint on coolant. As my manual says... 4 years. Coolant is good for four years regardless of mileage.