Diesel Turbochargers

Repairing Diesel Turbochargers

August 8, 2022 5:32 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Turbochargers on diesel engines give folks the impression that special tooling, experience, and training are needed to work on these engines and their boost components. In reality, they are diesel engines like any other. These ones are just designed to produce a greater output of energy faster. In fact, with a bit of know-how, turbochargers can be repaired and maintained very easily with very little cost involved. The key factor is knowing how to identify a problem and what is needed to fix it instead of poking around guessing.

Use Some Elbow Grease

The simplest and most obvious maintenance anyone can do, which really does contribute to overall repair, is keeping the turbocharger’s external components clean. That means, as engine grit starts to build, wipe the turbocharger down regularly with a solvent, using the dry-cleaning approach. Wipe away any and all solvent moisture created if you spray it on. Secondly, examine and clean out the air intake via the same wiping process if needed. Regularly replace the filter as well. A clean filter does wonders for making sure all sorts of contaminants don’t get inside, but it’s only as good as the filter’s condition. Remember, it’s far cheaper to replace an air filter than to replace a turbocharger.

How to Repair a Turbocharger on Simple Issues

Make a point to examine and check the duct connections for the air passage. If anything has come loose over time due to engine vibrations, make sure it’s tightened down again. Particularly, the compressor-to-intake passages should be focused on. When doing so, keep an eye out for contaminants. Because of the amount of air that can be sucked in, all sorts of unwelcome stuff can be pulled in and trapped. It will be small, but the grit builds up over time.

The hoses leading in as well as out of the turbocharger tend to be the assembly’s Achilles heel. These are consumable over time and should be monitored for replacement if needed. All clamps should be checked for being secure, and the hose itself should be solid without any bubbles, bulging or cracks. Sometimes, hoses can move and get stuck in the wrong places or pinched. Look out for this as it will lead to a critical hose failure over time, either from friction or temperature.

Oil levels and drainage tend to be symptoms of turbocharger problems starting to develop, which is most often signaled by noisy operation. Normally, the crankcase oil change should be sufficiently filled to the manufacturer’s suggested fill level. If not, insufficient crankcase oil will also affect the turbocharge, among other bad things that start to happen with the engine itself. At the same time, the oil drain line should be flowing smoothly. A plugged-up line is going to contribute to poor turbo performance, especially if the oil is contaminated with a lot of sludge and running thick. A blockage or solid matter in the drain line will contribute to this problem as well. The usual fix is to replace the oil drain line entirely with a full replacement.

An additional consumable tends to be the boost controller-connected spring. The spring is a small but useful part that helps with the turbocharger’s power delivery. When it wears out, the power delivery goes down. Fortunately, the spring is an easy replacement again found with the boost controller.

Turbocharger Repair Costs

A key rule of thumb is that prevention costs a lot less than full replacement. Most turbochargers last for years with proper maintenance, not needing big repairs at all. That said, a full rebuild could run in the thousands of dollars due to labor costs, especially if there’s been significant damage from not paying attention to the simple things noted above.

A Turbocharger Repair Shop Near Me

For serious turbocharger repairs on a diesel engine, or upgrades, its best to work with a competent professional team who have all the right tools, training, and expertise to do the job right the first time. Thompson Diesel Services have been handling diesel turbocharger systems for years, with multiple brands and set-ups. Again, the science behind the assembly is not hard, but tinkering around with serious repairs without the right know-how can quickly turn into a bit of a costly mistake. Rather than go down that road, why not entrust the work to a specialist resource who knows how to take care of your engine right every time? It just makes common sense when considering the cost of skillful repair is a lot less than trying to deal with damage control after the fact. Not to mention, having repairs done right the first time means your truck spends more time on the road versus being delayed and stuck in the shop. And downtime means no earning income as well. Don’t be a statistic; let Thompson take care of your turbocharger repairs.

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