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Car smoking after oil change
Hi all, I recently changed the oil on my '72 302, I read online that Valvoline Vr1 10w30 racing oil is the best oil for these older cars because of the zinc content, but I couldnt find any of that oil locally so I went ahead and used STP 5w30 instead.  I read that that would be just fine to use in my car here in san antonio.  While changing the oil, I noticed a pretty decent transmission fluid leak unfortunately.  So after finishing the oil change I checked the transmission fluid level and it was a bit low.  I added some Lucas brand transmission stop slip to top off the transmission fluid and hoped that that would slow the leak down a bit. 

After finishing the oil and topping off the transmission fluid, I did a test drive and it ran just fine, however after a few minutes of driving it started to smoke- A LOT.  blueish white smoke came from everywhere once the car heated up; it came from the exhaust pipe, the engine bay, and even from the wheel wells.  I looked under the car to see how it could be coming from the wheel wells and discovered that there was a pretty big exhaust leak which was dumping out that smoke.  This car didnt smoke pretty much at all before I changed the oil and added the stop slip.  I did spill a bit of the stop slip when topping it off, so I did expect a bit of smoke from it burning off, but there is so much and its coming from the exhaust too so I know it cant just be that.  

After the car ran for a while and still was smoking with no sign of subsiding, I noticed a clicking noise from the engine- maybe lifters.  I decided to shut it off and post on here and figure out if you guys know what the heck happened.  

I am assuming (and hoping) that I was just given misinformation about the type of oil that would be ok for my car, and that replacing the 5w30 with the VR1 10w30 will somehow fix this issue. I read somewhere that adding too much oil can cause it to smoke because the pressure builds up too high and leaks into the cylinders and causes it to burn.  However, after I changed the oil I measured the exact amount I took out and then added the exact same amount back in (5.6 quarts). The dip stick is showing adequate oil levels too, so I wouldnt expect there to be too much.  

Hopefully one of you has had a similar issue and knows how to resolve this, Thank you!

The oil is too thin. When the car was new, 10/30 was nesseccary, but now I would use sae30 or 20-50 only. I just bought 20/50 vr1 off Amazon fyi.
10-40 should be good unless way high mileage. All cars with flat tappets need the zinc. You can get the additive at parts store I use the Lucas. There is another oil company that still makes a high zinc oil and not just a racing oil. Odd name that I can never remember.
I use Havoline and have for years. I changed the oil in my Mach 1 after 37 years and started it yesterday. It smoked briefly where I had squirted WD-40 in the spark plug holes several weeks ago. It has Havoline 10-40 withe the Lucas zinc additive. Comes in a cardboard box in plastic bag now with 6 quarts.
I am not one of those that believes you need to change the oil with low miles once a year. It can be in there for 10 years it does not go bad.
I posted a video earlier of me driving the car into the Mustang museum and you can see no smoke at all.

When a man is in the woods and talks and no women are there is he still wrong??
Did your car have some good sex earlier in the day? A good reason for smoking afterwards...

I agree: 5W-30 is waaaay too thin.

Let me check your shorts!

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Your transmission vacuum modulator diaphragm may be ruptured and sending trans fluid into your intake via the vacuum signal line.Hence the smoking. In any event 5w-30 is not appropriate.
Thanks everyone for the replies!

Looks like the consensus is just that I used the wrong oil (how could I be so naive?) I will replace the oil with 20w50 VR1 when I get back from my trip next week.  Im sure that will clear up this mess, thanks again!

IIRC Total for the 302 engine with a stock pan and filter is only 5 quarts. Overfilling can lead to some of the oil being sucked through the PCV system or overwhelming the valve guides. I'd drain off a half quart and try it again before changing the oil. I agree 5W 30 isn't a good match for the older engines but I think you overfilled as well (Unless you have an aftermarket pan)

BTW it won't hurt to run an engine with a little bit less than the recommended oil capacity. Drag racers often run a quart low to reduce windage and increase power. I don't recommend it on the street, but starting it and test driving it with a slight low level won't hurt a thing (Slightly low is still showing on the dipstick at 1 quart low or less.

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"I love my Hookers!" and "Get some Strange" probably have a different connotation to non automotive enthusiasts!
Jeff is correct, the total refill capacity should be 5 quarts, this includes what is needed for the filter. If you had that much oil in your crankcase I would try to find out why. The most likely reasons:
-Wrong dip stick, verify dipstick reading by changing oil and filter, add 5 quarts, run for a few minutes and check it after it has set for 5 minutes.
-Overfilled by checking oil too soon after shutting engine off (especially when cold), not giving oil time to drain into crankcase.
-Leaking diaphragm in fuel pump, pumping gas into crankcase, verify by smelling oil for gasoline odor.
-Missing on one or more cylinders, raw gas bypassing rings into crankcase, smell oil for gasoline odor.
-Head gasket leaking allowing coolant into crankcase, oil would have milky appearance when changed and on dipstick.

“If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough.”
--Albert Einstein
I guess I did not notice the amount you put it.
They are very correct on too much oil being bad. If the crankshaft and rod ends are hitting the oil as it rotates can cause damage and also foam the oil.
I had a PCV valve actually get ice in it once and it sucked oil out looked like the engine blew. Was fine when I washed the PCV valve out. You might look at it. Shake it and see if the ball is free and wash with some brake / parts cleaner.
Don't ever do this but when we Kart raced in WKA in the box stock class which was 5 hp. Briggs engines we did some crazy things. You never put but half the amount in the crank case just like stated a full pan slows the engine down. If you needed just another tenth or two in qualifying you would drain all your oil out for the qualifying lap, lol, yes all. The engine would turn faster. You also pulled the seals out of the rear axle ball bearings and washed the thick grease out of there and sprayed WD-40 in. That also helped resistance.

When a man is in the woods and talks and no women are there is he still wrong??
I was going to suggest that maybe there was too much oil in the crankcase, but I didn't want to make any assumptions or insult anybody.

I had a friend decide to change his own oil, not knowing anything about his car, he opened up the drain plug he found under the truck and emptied it... then added 5 quarts of oil to the OIL fill in the valve cover.

He'd actually drained his manual transmission, and added another 5 quarts to his crankcase - smoked like a chimney when he fired it up.  Once we dumped all the oil, then refilled both crankcase and transmission, everything was fine.

I'd recommend checking your fluid levels in both the transmission AND the crankcase just to make sure that's not the issue.


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