Burning smell, weird fluid, help needed

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Care, Maintenance and Troubleshooting' started by oneofmanysons27, Feb 10, 2016.

  1. oneofmanysons27

    oneofmanysons27 New Member

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    Hey guys,


    I've got an 08 Gen II with 173k miles on it. The last few days of coming up the huge hill in front of our house I've noticed a burning smell, link burnt coolant.

    So today I actually popped the hood to investigate and found a small tuff of smoke coming from the back of the engine.

    After climbing underneatg I found a leak of some sort of brown/cream fluid.. Kinda scary color. Anyways it seems when put a significant load on the car going up a hill it sprays this fluid on the exhaust, thus the burning smell..

    Any help diagnosing the leak would be much appreciated.. Oil is clean on the stick and under the cap.

    Attached pics

    Shared album - Bryce Leggett - Google Photos
     
    #1 oneofmanysons27, Feb 10, 2016
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 11, 2016
  2. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    are any of your reservoirs low? oil? coolant? for coolant, don't check the reservoir, pull the shield and check under the cap.
     
  3. sfv41901

    sfv41901 Masta S

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    Based off the pics u took, my guess is it's a broken inner axle boot. It seems to be focused only around the boot. I would go back under & inspect the boots.


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  4. oneofmanysons27

    oneofmanysons27 New Member

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    Doesn't seem so, I'll check again. Coolant resv might be low. I checked the reservoir, it's bright red, but might be low. I'll check on the morning.
     
  5. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    inverter, brakes, what else?
     
  6. sfv41901

    sfv41901 Masta S

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    Only liquid that's red is the CVT oil


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  7. fotomoto

    fotomoto Senior Member

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    You've got an oil leak (dark fluid) but the creamy colored fluid usually indicates a mix of oil and water. The latter can be a combination of oil and coolant (bad) or oil and rain or car wash water (not as bad). I think it's rain since you're in Oregon (ha,ha) and darker fluid is towards the upper part of the engine and creamy fluid is towards the bottom but a closer look by a mechanic is in order.

    Edit: A tip from the motorcycle world is to clean the area really well, douse it with a good dose of baby powder, warmup and run, and inspect soon after.
     
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  8. sfv41901

    sfv41901 Masta S

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    I was also thinking coolant/oil mixture indicating a bad head gasket. This can easily be checked by checking the oil dip stick.
    I do like the baby powder tip


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  9. FroggyTaco

    FroggyTaco Member

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    Unless something from above is dripping onto the CV boot & the centrifugal force from the spinning driveshaft is slinging that fluid onto the surrounding areas.
     
  10. sfv41901

    sfv41901 Masta S

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    The only thing above the axles is the exhaust manifold. Not to mention it looks like bearing grease

    [​IMG]


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  11. CR94

    CR94 Senior Member

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    Check for broken CV joint boot?
     
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  12. xliderider

    xliderider Senior Member

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    Maybe coolant and transaxle fluid mix? I'd check the inverter coolant, and if it looks like anything is mixed in there, I'd also dump the transaxle oil and inspect that as well.
     
  13. FroggyTaco

    FroggyTaco Member

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    Well nvm then.
     
  14. Former Member 68813

    Former Member 68813 Senior Member

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  15. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

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    CV boot leakage tends to be very directional, flung by centrifugal force.
     
  16. oneofmanysons27

    oneofmanysons27 New Member

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    Hey guys, thanks for all the replies.
    Oil seems clean on the stick. I'll put it back up on jack stands later today and try to poke around under there some more, more pics to follow.
     
  17. xliderider

    xliderider Senior Member

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    NVM, post deleted.
     
  18. Patrick Wong

    Patrick Wong DIY Enthusiast

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    I think that you need to raise up the car on jack stands, so that you can get fully under the car and look up on the side of the engine facing the firewall. Then you can hopefully find the origin point of that nasty fluid which is leaking onto the exhaust manifold.

    Alternatively, you might remove the sheet metal tray that the windshield wiper motor sits in, to look down the back side of the engine from the top of the engine compartment.
     
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  19. oneofmanysons27

    oneofmanysons27 New Member

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    Hey guys, thanks again for all the help. I finally got free to check again today. After putting it on stands, and seeing the trouble spot from different angles, I'm pretty sure this is a inner axle boot issue.. The spray looks completely directional, like a perfect line on the exhaust. And I think the color and consistency of the fluid would match what's in that boot.

    Inspecting the boot I couldn't find any punctures, but I still think there could be an issue.

    Here's some more pics. I can't see any evidence of a drip that could be falling onto the boot, which makes me really believe there's an issue on the boot. Could be only noticing it when going uphill because the engine is going full bore and really heating up the exhaust pipe, and burning the boot grease on it.

    Shared album - Bryce Leggett - Google Photos
     
  20. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    would it take more than a pinhole?
     
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