When you turn on your internal combustion engine in the morning, it is normal to see white smoke come out of the tailpipe. These are exhaust gases which form after the mixture of fuel and air is ignited in the internal combustion chamber. There are several pipes which carry the flow of the exhaust gases from the engine to the tailpipe. All this happens within a matter of seconds.
Normally, only exhaust smoke should be seen coming out of the tailpipe. It is not common for water to come out of there as well. If you happen to see water leaking out of the tailpipe, then it is a sign that water exists inside your exhaust system. There is really nothing to worry about if it’s just a little bit of water. But if you notice a frequent flow of water leaking out, then you should investigate the situation immediately.
You may not like the idea of paying a mechanic to examine the problem, but it is better than risking thousands of dollars in damage to your exhaust system. More than likely, you’ll only need to spend a few hundred dollars to replace a simple component which is causing the leakage to occur.
4 Common Causes Water Coming Out from Car Exhaust
There are several possible causes of water coming from the exhaust system and tailpipe. Some of the causes are not serious, while others are much more serious. Once you understand the different causes, you’ll know whether it’ll end up costing you some money or not to resolve.
Below are the top 4 causes of water coming out of the car exhaust system in the morning.
1) Condensation (Normal Condition)
The least severe cause is condensation. After the internal combustion process takes place, most of the exhaust gases which form will make their way out of the exhaust system through the tailpipe. However, there are always some exhaust gases which stay behind in the chamber. As they start to cool off, the gases go through a condensation phase where they turn into water. By the time these gases make their way out of the tailpipe, they have already been condensed into water.
2) Catalytic Converter
The job of the catalytic converter is to reduce the toxicity of the exhaust gases before they’re released. During this process, water vapor forms as the toxic emissions are reduced. The water vapor comes out of the tailpipe in the form of tiny water droplets. This is actually a positive thing, so do not always be alarmed when you see water droplets leaking from your tailpipe. It could just mean your catalytic converter is functioning normally.
3) Hot Engine
During the wintertime or anywhere which is cold, you will often witness water leaking out of your tailpipe in the morning. When you first turn on your car engine, the oil inside the engine needs a couple of minutes to circulate completely and cool down the engine components. Meanwhile, the components stay hot for those few minutes until they’re cooled down. Since it is cold outside, the heat from the engine makes contact with the cold air and forms water droplets as a result.
4) Bad Piston
In the worst situation, you could have bad pistons that are causing this problem. You’ll recognize if the pistons are bad because not only will water come out of the tailpipe, but you’ll notice a burning odor in the passenger cabin as well. Sometimes this may even be a sweet odor, which is actually a worse sign. Do not take any chances when it comes to strange odors in conjunction with water leaks. Get your vehicle to a mechanic immediately before expensive damage is done to your car.