Smokin' Beemer

The Puzzler

RAY: Yes, and if you were listening carefully -- the fact that he drove like a moron, and was driving a BMW -- did help it. And, he was adding brake fluid --

TOM: At every oil change.

RAY: I may have mentioned.

TOM: You did mention that.

RAY: At every oil change. So there'd be no logical reason for you to add brake fluid at every oil change, unless you were what?

TOM: Losing brake fluid.

RAY: Yes, but he didn't see any brake fluid going any -- he noticed no spots on the ground. He didn't really notice much degradation in the pedal. Otherwise it would have been in his story.

TOM: Of course.

RAY: He was losing brake fluid out the back seal of the master cylinder, and where was that brake fluid going? Into the vacuum --

TOM: Into the intake manifold.

RAY: Eventually.

TOM: Ultimately.

RAY: Ultimately, but into the power brake booster. And, it was a big puddle of fluid in there. And, when he drove like a nut, the fluid would slosh around. Some of it would get sucked into the intake manifold.

TOM: Yes!

RAY: And, get combusted, making the white cloud of smoke.

TOM: It's sort of oil.

RAY: And, of course, it wouldn't happen for a while because why? There'd be no puddle of --

TOM: He was out of brake fluid.

RAY: Brake fluid in there. And, over time, again it would leak and he'd continue to replenish it. And, the puddle would build up and then he'd go out and drive like a nutcase again and again.

TOM: Gee. That's good. I like it.

RAY: I thought you would. Do we have a winner?

TOM: YES! The winner is Jan Wolinsky from Madison, New Jersey.

[ Car Talk Puzzler ]

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