1998 F150 4.6L V8 gray/blue smoke on ...

1998 F150 4.6L V8 gray/blue smoke on start up

Posted in the Ford F-150 Forum

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Michael in Houston Texas

Houston, TX

#1 May 12, 2006
I own a 1998 F-150 4.6L V8 50th Anniversary Edition since the day it was driven off the lot. Ok, I know what you're thinking, this guy doesn't change the oil, but I do!!! Every 3k miles, and ALL preventative maintenance has been done, I mean everything, including the 100,000 mile tune up which was actually done around 74,000 miles due to a heater core tube leaking coolant onto my spark plugs. Now around 100,000 miles I had the engine pressure checked for a potential gasket leak because I noticed gray/blue smoke and rough idling, which tends to be coolant moisture burning off on start up due to a slow gasket leak, but Ford says it was a PCV valve and that this was causing the spark plugs to build up a carbon coating, even if they were replaced 30,000 miles prior. The pressure test checked out to be just fine. They also said this would solve the gray/blue smoke problem and rough idling. Well its a year later and 120,000 miles now and the smoke is back with the occasional rough idling and sometimes when I come to a stop, the truck almost stalls. Now the alternator was just replaced as well as the battery, and the belt and belt tensioner are about to be replaced, but there has to be some answers. Ok, so I know the typical answer would be to get rid of it, but come on now, someone must know something. Oh, and I haven't thrown a spark plug yet (knock on wood).
Brandi

Wetumka, OK

#2 May 19, 2006
what about the o2 sensor?
tybud

San Juan, Puerto Rico

#3 May 19, 2006
Michael in Houston Texas wrote:
I own a 1998 F-150 4.6L V8 50th Anniversary Edition since the day it was driven off the lot. Ok, I know what you're thinking, this guy doesn't change the oil, but I do!!! Every 3k miles, and ALL preventative maintenance has been done, I mean everything, including the 100,000 mile tune up which was actually done around 74,000 miles due to a heater core tube leaking coolant onto my spark plugs. Now around 100,000 miles I had the engine pressure checked for a potential gasket leak because I noticed gray/blue smoke and rough idling, which tends to be coolant moisture burning off on start up due to a slow gasket leak, but Ford says it was a PCV valve and that this was causing the spark plugs to build up a carbon coating, even if they were replaced 30,000 miles prior. The pressure test checked out to be just fine. They also said this would solve the gray/blue smoke problem and rough idling. Well its a year later and 120,000 miles now and the smoke is back with the occasional rough idling and sometimes when I come to a stop, the truck almost stalls. Now the alternator was just replaced as well as the battery, and the belt and belt tensioner are about to be replaced, but there has to be some answers. Ok, so I know the typical answer would be to get rid of it, but come on now, someone must know something. Oh, and I haven't thrown a spark plug yet (knock on wood).
blue smoke comes from burning oil,if it does it at start up it could very well be your piston rings, have a friend drive the car in front of you,follow him and have him gun it a few times,if you see smoke check valve guides,valves and rings good luck
Frank

United States

#4 May 25, 2006
Check the MAF sensor it may be very dirty and causing your motor to run rich. Spend $5 at the auto parts store and buy MAF Sensor cleaner spray. Clean the MAF sensor and disconnect the battery cables for both terminals and wait 30 mins. then reattach cables and start vehicle. Also run Chevron/ Techron Fuel Injection cleaner in a tank of new fuel. Also change the oil to a thicker viscosity like 10-30 Wt. This should fix the problem.
Ralph

Washington, DC

#5 Jun 25, 2006
Thats funny My 2002 f150 4.6liter had the same blue smoke issue when it sat a few days and was started. It only did it for a few minutes and would idle rough. Pushing on the accelerator would clear it up until the next time. I never had mine looked at it only happened on occasion. I was told it's probably a bad valve seat. and the smoke is oil burning. My truck started doing this around 20k miles and off and on sense. I had to replace the spark plugs at 47k because they where bad. I replaced the pcv valve at that time. It never helped with the smoke/rough idle.It's not the MAF sensor injector cleaner won't help, and if you listen to Frank and run thicker oil you could cause engine damage. Take it to a good local shop before you try changing oil to anything thicker. I certain they will say its in the valves/seats.
Frank

AOL

#6 Jul 1, 2006
Well Michael & Ralph, It looks like some folks insist on having problems with their cars... Some things are easily cleared up by doing the least expensive repair. But it sounds as if some folks like to spend lots of money on problems that should'nt show up for at least 200k. Ford makes a quality motor and if you drive like a 16 year old kid racing everywhere, yes you will most probably have some problems. But as a daily driver you should not have problems with rings or valve seats. Spend $5 first and see if that helps your problem out. The MAF is a very important part of your engine, it tells your computer how to run your peramiter settings by metering the air that runs across it's sensor. If it's dirty. the motor will run rich, like crap and mimic other problems or issues. 10-30 is not a drastic change in viscosity and is well tollerated by todays motors. Listen to Ralph he's been a mechanic fo 30 years like me... Good Luck!
Jeff

United States

#7 Sep 4, 2006
Frank, thank you for the info on the MAF my 1998 150 has had a rough idle for about 40,000 miles has 80,000 now, I have replaced 3 coils 1 under warr. 2 at my expense 300 per at the dealer, truck had gotten so bad it would die at a stop sign, disconnected MAF sprayed it with CRC it has never ran better! Again thank you
Frank

AOL

#8 Sep 16, 2006
Jeff, Glad to hear that it worked. Cheaper is always better and sometimes that is all it takes to get you back on the road and happy with your vehicle. Just do the MAF about once a year and you should be good to go! CRC is a well spent $5 ;o)
Eric

Atlanta, GA

#9 Sep 27, 2006
This sounds like the same problem I am having with my 93 Crown Victoria. I have read several sites in which people claim to have replaced the valve seals and the blue smoke disappears. According to some accounts, ford doesn't use the greatest quality valve seals and that causes them to leak around 70-80K.
Michael in Houston Texas

Houston, TX

#10 Jan 2, 2007
Well I'm back! Happy New Year everyone! Thanks for all the great comments / advice. I actually haven't checked this forum in a bit, so I haven't actually tried any of these things. Something I have noticed is that everytime I have the oil changed at a Ford dealership, they insist on putting in 5w 30 instead of 10w 30. They claim that Ford changed their standards as far as the spacing between the cylinder wall and cylinder head is concerned. Since I'm naive, where exactly is the MAF sensor? Is it at the base of the air intake hose before it enters the air intake valve? Like I said, I'm being naive here.:) Thanks!
Frank

AOL

#11 Jan 2, 2007
Michael,

The MAF sensor is located inline usually in your air intake snorkle area. If you can't find it as your locale auto parts store. The sensor, when you locate it will resemble a small light bulb filiment. It may look like it has fuzz or crude on it, that's because it does! Get a can of CRC brand MAF sensor cleaner at the auto store for about $5. Disconnect the battery cables and spray the sensor until it is clean and the part looks new.{DO NOT TOUCH) the sensor with anything but the cleaner spray. Let the cleaner air dry. Attach battery cables and start your truck and let idle for a few minutes. Then drive normally for a few miles, hopefully this will help your problems. This sensor when dirty will cause numerous problems with your computer and fool it into thinking there are other problems,but these problems can be easily fixed! Good luck and let me know if this works for you...
Bobby Paris

Philadelphia, PA

#12 Jan 13, 2007
I am trying to find out how much more money an 1998 Anniversary Edition costs over the plain F150 package. My truck was totaled by a lady who ran a stop sign. The insurance said they can find nothing on the Anniversary Edition. This was my Dad's truck that I bought from him right before he died. Can anyone point me in the right direction? Thanks! Bob
kim

Pharr, TX

#13 Jan 16, 2007
1998 F150 V6 White smoke or steam comes from exhaust on start up and the truck misses until warmed up. I took it to the shop thinking i might have a blown head gasket but the mechanic felt it might be a cracked (or leaking) heater core but he didn't have the equipment to test it. Also losing small amount of anti-freeze weekly. Is this something a cleaned MAF sensor might be correct or what else might be causing the exhaust smoke
Jim

Madison, AL

#14 Jan 19, 2007
I have a Ford F150 Triton XLT which has developed a hesitation when I apply the gas. I took it to a mechanic when the engine light came on and I was tod I have a misfire in cylinder 6. They repladced all of my plugs and wires. They told me the coil packs were good. That seemed to fix the problem for a few weeks but the problem returned. It has been doing it for three weeks now and everyone tells me I have to wait for the light to come back on. I took it upon myself to replace the coil pak on the passenger side and that didn't fix the problem. I then took the coil pack I removed and replaced the right side. Still no luck. Does anyone have any suggestions before I pay a ton of money to a mechanic to troubleshoot.
Jim

Madison, AL

#15 Jan 19, 2007
oh, it is a 4.6 liter by the way
David Sacramento

Sacramento, CA

#16 Jan 23, 2007
I have a 2006 F150 with a 4.6L V8 that emits a blue puff of smoke every morning and appears to have used 1 quart of oil in the last 5000 miles. The motor has 7000 miles on it now. I first noticed the blue smoke the second day that I owned the truck. At 2000 miles, I changed the original oil and put in 5W20 full synthetic oil. Is it normal for Ford engines to use some oil? I know that 1-QT in 5000 miles is not terrible---but the engine is brand new. Did I make a mistake by switching to synthetic oil so early? Any ideas Frank------or anyone?
phil

United States

#17 Jan 23, 2007
Ralph wrote:
Thats funny My 2002 f150 4.6liter had the same blue smoke issue when it sat a few days and was started. It only did it for a few minutes and would idle rough. Pushing on the accelerator would clear it up until the next time. I never had mine looked at it only happened on occasion. I was told it's probably a bad valve seat. and the smoke is oil burning. My truck started doing this around 20k miles and off and on sense. I had to replace the spark plugs at 47k because they where bad. I replaced the pcv valve at that time. It never helped with the smoke/rough idle.It's not the MAF sensor injector cleaner won't help, and if you listen to Frank and run thicker oil you could cause engine damage. Take it to a good local shop before you try changing oil to anything thicker. I certain they will say its in the valves/seats.
I have owned 8 (yes 8) F150;s 1997 through 2007. Until the 2005 model year nearly every truck I had w/4.6 burned some oil every 3500 to 5000 miles. It is a quirk in the design of that engine. OBTW I still have my 98 it has 203k on her...and yes she still burns .6 quarts per oil change. It is what it is.
Ralph

Detroit, MI

#18 Jan 23, 2007
phil wrote:
<quoted text>
I have owned 8 (yes 8) F150;s 1997 through 2007. Until the 2005 model year nearly every truck I had w/4.6 burned some oil every 3500 to 5000 miles. It is a quirk in the design of that engine. OBTW I still have my 98 it has 203k on her...and yes she still burns .6 quarts per oil change. It is what it is.
No doubt the 4.6l is a great engine. I also have a 05 w/5.4L now to. No problems with that on the new one.
David Sacramento

Sacramento, CA

#19 Jan 25, 2007
Thanks for all of the comments!! Trucks in the shop---I will let you know what they say, although, I am pretty sure that I already know.
David Sacramento

Sacramento, CA

#20 Jan 25, 2007
Ford said that nothing is wrong with the motor and the oil consumption that I have had is normal. No surprises!! No big deal

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