One time spewing oil episode - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 06-05-2009, 07:18 AM Thread Starter
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One time spewing oil episode


1999 ML430 89000 miles. We were traveling in hundred degree weather towing a small trailer going up a large long hill. As we were going up all of a sudden smoke started bellowing out the back. Actually thought that we may of had a bad tire. No lights come on vehicle ran smooth and beautiful. So we pulled over, and oil was dripping near the passenger side. Crawled under cannot find any oil leak site. Start vehicle up no oil leak drove it 300 more miles no oil leak. The smoke was caused from the oil spewing out onto the exhaust. Any ideas where it may have come from? Any ideas as to maybe why?

Thanks to all in advance.
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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 06-05-2009, 08:22 AM
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Date registered: May 2005
Vehicle: '07 GL320CDI
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This is more likely antifreeze than oil. The coolant can wash over an oily spot and then look like oil. To check whether this is the case, just understand the difference in smell between antifreeze and oil.

Antifreeze escaping coincides with overheating, which is possible in the high-stress situation you've described. Of course antifreeze on the exhaust makes steam while oil without question makes smoke. Smoke is a prelude to fire, so it's more serious. Oil smoke is likely to have a blue tint, antifreeze steam will be just white. Smoke hangs around and settles, steam dissipates.

By design, antifreeze can indeed escape when cooling system pressures get too high. Also by design, motor oil is never supposed to escape, so that means without question an equipment malfunction if it does, and that should be investigated by professional mechanic with Mercedes experience.

Kent Christensen
'07 GL320CDI
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