Actually, back before the 1970s, plumes of thick, foul smoke pouring from a carâ€™s exhaust probably meant your ride was running just fine. But car-centric cities like Los Angeles were choking on the fumes, so automakers had to clean up their acts. Today, exhaust streams are so pristine that theyâ€™re often not even visible to the naked eye.
Unless, that is, somethingâ€™s wrong with your car.
In other words, itâ€™s often bad news whenever smoke clouds are pouring out of a modern exhaust system. But different colors mean different things, so the first troubleshooting step is to identify whether the smoke is white, black, or bluish gray.