I was driving to work and noticed white smoke coming from under the hood. I noticed my low coolant light came on and I drove to my destination, then shut off the car. I have not done anything as of yet.

  • Please no yelling.
    – raydowe
    Nov 7, 2017 at 14:24
  • It sounds you have a coolant leak/burning coolant. You'll need to figure out where the coolant is leaving the engine. Don't drive the car until you get this sorted. You can do a lot of damage to your engine if the car is allowed to overheat.
    – raydowe
    Nov 7, 2017 at 14:25
  • don't forget to throw some more coolant in immediately as soon as the engine has cooled off. Nov 7, 2017 at 18:35
  • I drive a Saab 93 Aero convertible and my card is doing the same exactly the same and nobody can figure out what's going on so my answer is oh my god you're in the same boat as me sorry I can't help I haven't 60 yet I just keep on driving it because I have to and topping it up with water I've changed the thermo I've changed the cap I've changed the bottle mind you I've got two mechanics boggled what the hell is going on they can't find out what the hell am I going to do if nobody can help that's so weird the guys said you have credits in the motor I said I might think so cos nobody knows of th Jul 21, 2019 at 14:51

1 Answer 1


As raydowe says in their comment the white "smoke" you saw is almost certainly coolant burning/boiling off.

This could be from a leak in the system causing coolant to hit hot parts of the engine bay (such as the exhaust manifold) or it could be that the engine has overheated and the coolant has boiled over and escaped via the expansion tank. From the details we have it's impossible to know which. If I recall correctly the 2.8 V6 9-3's of that era had quite a common problem with the coolant tank itself cracking which would certainly fit with the symptoms you describe but I'm just speculating.

Either way I would not be driving the car any further - driving with an overheating engine can result in significant (and expensive) damage to the engine and even if this morning's drama were just it losing the coolant and not quite reaching overheating stages yet it's almost inevitable if you try and drive it without a suitable amount of coolant in the system.

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