Hello! I found this forum looking for questions about smoke from my "new" 1987 300D. You've been helpfiul, and I got some tips just by reading, but maybe further info is available?
I bought the car earlier this week. It runs great, seems to have good mileage, performs well, all the bells and whistles still work (surprisingly) -- even the air condition, which I had the opportunity to use the other day. Since the, it's gotten cold, with overnight lows at or below freezing. Yesterday when I went to start it, the temp was 35F, and while the car started just fine, it blew smoke for quite a while (I thought). Billows of white smoke. They cleared after the engine warmed up, and when my friend left anddrove off, a puff of black smoke blew out as she hit the accelarator. Just a burp. She got to where she was going, let it sit for a few hours, and reported a small puff of white smoke when started up -- no more.
This morning the temp was again 35F, and I let the glow plug cycle longer after the indicator light went out, for about 25 seconds. The car started as nice as before, and actually seemed to idle smoother. Plus, there was much less white smoke coming from the exhaust, not billowing, but still there. (So there's a partial solution -- or a clue?) I let it idle as it reached operating temperature, and the smoke lessened considerably when it reached about 70C. I also noticed when it was running at lower temperature, some tiny droplets of back fluid on the stone driveway beneath the exhaust, like a sprtiz from an atomizer. But when I put a pice of paper below it after it reached temperature, there were no droplets.
The relative humidity outside was mid40s. The car has 167,000 miles on it. I have service records going back to 1998, and it looks like it was serviced regularly. I marked the level on the coolant reservoir, and see no drop yet.
Is there cause for concern? We have a "project car," a 1983 240D, that we converted to run on veggie oil. When run on diesel, it will leave stains on the driveway, but I haven't noticed the smoke. But then again, this is a much nicer car, and I'm paying much more attention to it, too.
Any comments, suggestions, assurances anyone can give? I'd be very appreciative.