Q: I drove thru very high water on the way towork I noticed steam or smoke, coming from under the hood.

asked by on February 22, 2018

Drove thru high water on the way to work and when I arrived at work I noticed smoke or steam, I believe it was steam, coming from under the front of the hood. Unsure how concerned I should be. I did not have any warning lights on the dash. I am waiting for the car to cool down before trying to restart or check under the hood. I would appreciate your thoughts and suggestions. Thank you.

My car has 48000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

The steam that you noticed is due to the water splashing onto the hot exhaust system. The exhaust system components and piping are so hot that any water hitting them will instantly vaporize and create a noticeable cloud of water vapor. If the vehicle operates normally now, in all probability nothing is amiss. A concern in driving through high water is moisture intrusion in electrical connectors and water intrusion in wheel bearings and the transmission output seals. Those parts are water resistant but not water proof. The water would have to be pretty high though for water intrusion into those parts to be an issue. Basically, if the vehicle operates as before, the likelihood is nothing was damaged. If you desire an inspection to be sure, please request service and the responding certified mechanic will carefully check your vehicle for any of the tell tale signs of water intrusion. If you have further questions or concerns, do not hesitate to re-contact YourMechanic because we want you to make the most of your repair dollars and help you to get the best possible results.

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