How do I figure out what is causing the smoke from my cars radiator? 97 Plymouth Breeze 2.0 v4

Asked by Mar 19, 2014 at 03:37 AM about the 1997 Plymouth Breeze 4 Dr STD Sedan

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

I just replaced my serpentine belt, replaced exhaust gasket, and today the coolant hose burst open so I replaced it. My car is still emitting smoke. I think it is coming from the radiator. I want to know what it could be..? I will be taking it to the mechanics tomorrow, but I don't want it to cost an arm and a leg, so it would be nice to know what the problem could be. I know I need to replace my timing belt. About how much should that cost? Would flushing the coolant system be helpful? How should I do that? Should I take it in/how much is that? Can I do it myself?

8 Answers


The smoke might be the spilled coolant on the exhaust? Timing belt repalcement will be around $300-$400 depending on the garage. If you haven't flushed the coolant within 50K, I'd do it now. Will be around $100 for the garage to do it. You can do it yourself if you want, search online for more info. It would involve draining the radiator and there are many ways to flush the rest the out of the lines and block. Make sure you dispose of the coolant in a proper manner.

I asked about the timing belt, and at the time, the garage said they would charge me $240 to replace both the serpentine and the timing belts, but I only had enough money for the serpentine belt.

And I need to keep driving it, if I needed to drive 5 miles, do you think this will devastate the car?

I just looked and all the coolant was gone. If I keep putting water in it, how far will I be able to drive it? I'm from out of town and I need to drive 2 1/2 hours...


If your coolant is draining out that fast, I'd advise not to drive it at all. You'll overheat the engine doing further damage. Best to rent a car.


That price I quoted was for the timing belt, so your shop is doing it for cheaper. So I'd have the timng belt replaced and the coolant leak fixed at the same time to save on headaches.

It was sitting overnight. Do you know an estimate of how much a coolant leak would take to fix?

It doesn't seem to be leaking very fast now. White smoke is coming out of my exhaust. I'm going to the mechanic soon.

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