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5 reasons why water comes out of your car exhaust


The internal combustion engine of a vehicle emits exhaust gases during its combustion process. It would be bad for these gases to remain in the engine, which is why cars are built with an exhaust system.

It is basically a pipe that allows exhaust gases to flow from the engine. The exhaust gases are sent through the exhaust pipe into the atmosphere.

Sometimes you will notice water coming out of the exhaust pipe. This means that, for some reason, water is coming out of the exhaust system. There is no need to panic when this happens, as it does not always mean there is a problem.

You just need to understand all the possible reasons why water would come out of the leak. This way, you can recognize the signs for what they are. If it turns out to be serious, you can tell yourself before taking it to a mechanic.

Read also: 6 reasons why oil is coming out of your exhaust

Top 5 Reasons Why Water Comes Out of Your Leaking Pipe

#1 – Engine water condensation

white smoke comes out of the exhaust

As your engine goes through the internal combustion process, various pollutants are created. The three main pollutants are water vapor, nitrogen, and carbon dioxide.

When exhaust gases leave the room, a mixture of carbon dioxide and water forms. The colder the engine cools, the more water condensation in the exhaust outsiders can see.

Small drops of water will come out of the exhaust pipe. When this happens, you have nothing to worry about. The bleeding should stop within a few minutes of warming up the vehicle.

#2 – Warm engine

the car shakes while stopped

Your engine will generate the most heat when you first start your car. The engine oil still needs time to drain and lubricate the components to cool them. But while the engine is hot, the exhaust system will also be hot.

This will create water vapor in the exhaust if the outside temperature is cold. As a result, drops of water will come out of the exhaust pipe for a few minutes, and then it will clear up. If they don’t go away, it could mean big trouble.

#3 – Catalytic converter


Every car has a component called a catalytic converter. This component reduces the amount of toxic gas emissions emitted by the exhaust system. In this way, the emissions are less harmful to the environment or people.

During the conversion process, traces of water vapor are produced. This will cause water droplets to fall from the exhaust pipe and they should disappear again on their own and completely normally.

#4 – Head gasket failure

bad head gasket

The first three reasons listed here are usually not a cause for concern. The time you should worry is if the water coming out of your exhaust is due to a blown head gasket.

Blown head gaskets are often seen as white smoke coming from the exhaust. You may also notice air bubbles in the coolant reservoir and overheating problems. This problem must be resolved as soon as possible. An overheated engine can cause all kinds of problems and even kill you.

#5 – Defective pistons or rings

signs of bad piston rings and valve seals

A bad piston or worn piston rings will generally not force water out of the exhaust unless the head gaskets are also blown or there is residual condensation in the exhaust system. However, bad pistons or rings will cause over-exhaust, which can cause a sooty exhaust, blue smoke, or an oily residue around the tailpipe.

Just like blown head gaskets, you don’t want to let it go too long without getting it repaired.


Most of these causes are due to the effects of water vapor. If it’s cold outside in your environment, your exhaust and other components of your vehicle will be cold. This means that the heat generated by your engine during operation will cause water to condense wherever water vapor is present.

Since water vapor is usually found in the exhaust system, that is why much of the water condensation come from the exhaust pipe.


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