Used a smoke machine for the first time


$100 Site Donor 2024
Nov 28, 2014
Steilacoom, WA
Used a smoke machine for the first time, with hopes of finding the cause of a P0171 error.

A few things, the cheap machine I purchased requires a air compressor to deliver the smoke. The other think is a good flashlight is required to see the smoke. I actually did the smoke in the dark, so I could best see the smoke, which wasn't easy.

Unfortunately- I think I found the leak. Around the egr area of the 5.4l 4v Intech engine. This requires the removal of the intake plenum to inspect. Not happy, as when the engine was replaced the EGR valave was supposed to be replaced. I speculate the installer did not use a gasket between the EGR valve and the intake manifold.

The vacuum leak is causing high fuel trim on bank 1.

PXL_20221123_040024865 (2).jpg
PXL_20221123_040037758 (2).jpg
shift 2.jpg
Looks like the same smoke machine I have.

It's nice to also get the expand-o balloon with hand pump bulb to plug (or feed smoke into) intake tubes. I'm using the technical product description of course...
  • Like
Reactions: GON
I made my own smoke machine. Seems to do okay. Not the coolest looking thing but does work.

Used an old Salsa jar, drilled a hole in the top and put in a tire valve. Drilled a 2nd hole and epoxied in a cheap soldering iron. Then dropped an old sock in with some mineral oil . 3rd hole goes to a tube.

3 PSI in creates enough airflow that it smokes.
I used to blow a puff of cigar smoke into the vacuum line back before they had smoke machines. South Main Auto got a new one and he listed it on his Amazon affiliation page and those nice ones are not cheap. He listed that Redline inflatable bladder also. It was $170 which means the rubber gloves work just fine for the occasional use.

I'm going to look into that one you (the OP) bought. It seems like a nice addition to my already overflowing tool box. Maybe if I throw out the old timing light and dwell meter I can free up some space. The only thing is that an empty tool drawer is bad for my psyche.

Nice pics btw. Thanks for sharing!
I once tried making a smoke machine with some fireworks, put them into a gatorade style bottle and hooked up some plastic tubing to it. Also forced air in from a cheapo tire air pump. The entire bottle caught on fire within seconds - wife wanted to know what was burning when she came out 10 minutes later - told her dunno but I smell it also! :ROFLMAO:
Looks like the Autoline Pro smoke machine.

I have this one. Mine originally had to be used with an air compressor like yours but now they offer a model that has a built in pump so you don't have to use a compressor. I bought the parts to upgrade mine for $40 from the company. I also have a pump up bladder for air intakes. You can't beat this machine for the price.
  • Helpful
Reactions: GON