View Full Version : Smoke from port engine

01-08-2015, 12:59 PM
Since my boat has Honda outboards on it, I don't need to winterize them. Because of this, I like to try to start them every 2 to 3 weeks and let them idle for a bit to keep things internally lubed. Well, as typical, there's a problem - my port motor was blowing what looked like white smoke the entire 45 minutes the engine was running. There was no oil or anything else coming out the exhaust and the exhaust didn't smell like anything was burning abnormally. It was probably 45 degrees out during this event. I was thinking it was just the hot exhaust hitting the cool air, but the other motor wasn't doing it at all.

Could this just be a fluke due to the cold weather or do I have a bigger problem on my hands come the spring?

01-08-2015, 04:25 PM
Was it the male engine or the female? If it was the female she is probably unhappy about the really cold weather you have been having in your area.

When it warms up she will probably get over her snit.

Or not.

01-09-2015, 11:21 AM
Just curious why them being Honda they don't require winterization?

01-09-2015, 02:00 PM
It's not because they're Hondas. It's because they're outboard motors. Outboards, by design, allow all water to drain off the blocks upon shutdown. This is why you still see fisherman on their bass boats on the lakes year-round. When we stay at the HB on the weekends in the winter, there's always several in the cove behind our marina, regardless of temperatures.

01-10-2015, 06:50 AM
I didn't know that. I ha e zero experience with outboards. Thanks for the tip.

Frantically Relaxing
01-14-2015, 11:53 AM
Oil burnt during combustion results in blue smoke--

Oil brunt on hot exhaust pipes (for example) results in white smoke.

You should smell oil if either is happening.

Water getting into a cylinder during combustion will produce white steam, but may not dissipate like steam due to carbon deposits mixing with the steam.

If you didn't smell oil, I'd be a tad worried about water in the cylinders...

01-14-2015, 02:05 PM
If both engines were smoking, it might just be vapor from the right combination of temperature and humidity. But if just one engine is smoking, I'm less optimistic.

01-14-2015, 09:40 PM
Pull the plugs and see if one looks different.

01-15-2015, 07:17 AM
Thanks for the advice. I won't get back out to the boat for a couple more weeks. If the carbs need cleaning and are gunked up, could that be a cause as well?

I'll report back. Got to keep my fingers crossed.

01-15-2015, 07:37 AM
If it's running smooth LEAVE THE CARBS ALONE!!!

01-16-2015, 05:27 AM
I was probably steam. It is not unusual for one of my engines to blow more steam than the other. However, they do even out as they warm up. It could be a lot of things. I would do like OHB said and look at the plugs. If they look OK, then I would leave it alone. You are selling this boat - right? If the engines are running smooth, then leave them alone.

01-16-2015, 06:13 AM
I use Johnson 2+4 fuel conditioner in everything that's stored for lond periods of time. our snowmobiles sit for 49 weeks a year and they never have a varnish problems in the throttle bodies,also the power washer and all mowers. its kinda pricey but it does work.

01-20-2015, 07:52 AM
Well, I made it out to the boat yesterday and checked the oil before I fired up the port motor again. Thankfully the oil looked normal and wasn't milky, which would indicate water mixed with the oil. I fired up the motor, with no problem and idled it for 40 minutes, all-the-while the motor never smoked! :D I continued to check the oil during this time and it still looked good. I shut it down and went about fixing the guest head toilet AGAIN because some apparently put wet wipes in it, which clogged up the joker valve. After that, I started and idled the motor 2 more times and monitored it while idling, during which it never smoked.

So, I'm hoping this was a simple fluke. :cool: Engine still idles the way it always did. There's no new odd smells coming from it. There's no mysterious oil around the motor in the water or the engine itself. I guess time will tell.

Yes, I'm considering selling it. If the right person comes with the money I'm asking, I'm afraid it'll be gone. Time will tell on that one as well.

Thanks for the advice guys!

01-20-2015, 11:04 AM
OK: now get it out of your mind an don't try it again.

02-16-2015, 04:36 AM
Is alright now?