Troubleshooting Turbo Problems

If you think your vehicle might have a turbo-related problem, stop and diagnose before you replace. Turbo damage can often be a symptom of an underlying problem rather than the cause of the problem itself. You don't want to let that underlying issue go untreated so that it can destroy your new or rebuilt turbocharger next!

A lack of power, noisy performance or excessive smoke or oil consumption could result from a faulty fuel injection system, restricted or blocked air filters, a damaged exhaust system or a problem with the lubrication system.
Before you replace your turbo, perform the complete diagnostic check list below – and then if there is no obvious cause, make sure your turbo specialist completes an extensive troubleshooting program.

Check List if You Experience

Lack of Power:

  • Check that filter, hoses and pipes are clean and in good condition
  • Check that the fuel injection system is in good condition and correctly adjusted
  • Check that the exhaust system, including catalyst and DPF, is not blocked or damaged

Noisy Performance:

  • Check that the pipework and support brackets are not loose or damaged and that the connections are good
  • Check for any leakages or cracks in the intercooler

Excessive Smoke or Oil Consumption:

  • Check that air filters are not restricted or blocked
  • Check that engine oil specifications strictly correspond to car manufacturer's recommendations
  • Check that the oil drain pipe is clean and not restricted
  • Check for excessive pressure in engine crankcase and correct function of engine breather system
  • Check that hoses and joints are in good condition
  • Check for lubrication problems in engine block if oil or carbon deposits are found on exhaust manifolds or in the turbine


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