Renault Clio 1.5 Dci smoking - Spanner
Got a 2003 Renault Clio 1.5 DCi diesel that according to owner seems to have a problem with the headgasket. On start up it idles roughly for about 3 seconds then settles down to a stable idle. When the throttle is used, huge amounts of white vapour/smoke exits the exhaust making driving look like a low level flypast of the Red Arrows!!

As soon as engine returns to idle, there is no smoke. I have noticed large amounts of wet, sooty/oily deposits in the tailpipe but as it lacks any real smell, I can't tell if it's condensed diesel vapour due to fuel not reaching correct vapourisation point on start up, or water vapour.
Incidentally, a coolant pressure test showed a loss of pressure from 15psi to zero in under 14 mins, and the level drops under pressure but returns to correct level when pressure in coolant expansion tank is removed. Coolant is correct colour and free of deposits/emulsified oil as is the rocker cover.
Have also noticed lots of air bubbles in clear fuel lines. I know that conventional diesels don't like air in the fuel but do common rail diesels tolerate air and could this cause the excessive smoking?
Not knowing much about these Dci diesels, anyone out there know if these cars suffer gasket failure

Cheers,
Andrew
 

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