“Water dropping engine” is a common phrase you come across when you are looking to buy a used vehicle. It is generally believed that the water coming out of the silence is a verifiable sign of a healthy engine, perhaps rightly so. But it’s better to understand why exactly water comes out of the silencer/exhaust pipe, and is it always good to see a car throwing water out of its exhaust, or is it something you should be concerned of?
There are a number of harmless reasons why you could be noticing this in addition to some more serious causes. Here’s what you need to know about water coming out from silencer and when exactly you should be worrying.
Engine Combustion Water Condensation
As combustion takes place in your car’s engine, a mixture of water and carbon dioxide is created. You are more likely to notice this condensation when the engine has cooled and exhaust gases exit the combustion chamber, mostly in the morning. This is when you’re likely to see water dripping from your car’s exhaust pipe.
Catalytic Converter Byproduct
The purpose of your car’s catalytic converter is to convert otherwise harmful emissions into things that are less harmful before they exit the exhaust. One of the many byproducts that this vehicle component produces is a small amount of water vapor.
Hot Engine Condensation
You may also notice water in your exhaust when the car’s engine first heats up, because in the heating process condensation can also take place inside the exhaust system and ends up in your silencer. But if water is continuously running from your exhaust after your car has been running for a while, you should be concerned. This is bad sign and there is a problem.
Smoke and Water Emissions
You should take particular notice if you see both smoke and water emitting from your exhaust and smelling like burning oil. This could be a sign of bad rings or a cracked piston in your car or coolant is leaking into your engine. Also, liquid coming from your tailpipe and having a particular sweet smell could be a sign of a more serious engine problem.
Related: What To Do If Your Car Overheats
Water leaking from the exhaust pipe is usually nothing to worry unless it’s coupled with other stranger malfunctions, and the brief instances when you see water dripping from the exhaust are likely negligible and does indicate that your engine is doing its job perfectly.
A 3d animation professional with over 20 years of industry experience having served in leading organizations & production facilities of Pakistan, an avid car enthusiast and petrolhead with an affection to deliver writings to help shape opinions. Formerly written for PakWheels as well as major publications including Dawn. Founder of CarSpiritPK.com