Have Your Car's Turbocharger And Vacuum Line System Serviced Before You Crank Up The Boost

Posted on: 31 July 2019

It's relatively easy to get some huge horsepower gains out of modern turbocharged engines with electronic boost and fuel control.

Unlike classic cars, which required getting down and dirty with actual physical modifications, amping up the power in modern turbo cars is a plug-and-play affair. Simply plug in a tuning device, upload a modified boost and fuel map to your ECU, and suddenly, your car is putting out a ton more torque.

However, modifying a modern car's turbo system via ECU tuning can create some issues as well. Most importantly, your turbocharger will be cramming a lot more pressurized air into your engine, so the likelihood of reliability issues increases. That's why you should have your entire turbo system professionally serviced to ensure it is in tip-top shape before you turn up the boost.

Turbocharger Inspection and Restoration

First and foremost, you need a professional mechanic to check out the turbocharge unit itself. It's responsible for generating all the boost that gives your engine its extra oomph, and it's subjected to some pretty intense stress in the process. Hot exhaust gasses are routed through one side of the unit, the opposite side sucks in air and compresses it, and both of them spin at incredibly high speeds in the process.

Extra boost means extra stress, so your mechanic needs to make sure all of the seals that keep your turbo airtight are perfectly healthy. Otherwise, you may find yourself with a bad boost leak, and your engine will run poorly as a result.

Secondly, your mechanic needs to inspect the physical condition of the turbine wheels, propeller shaft, and turbocharger housing. Debris and constant friction can create a lot of wear and tear on those components, so they need to be properly reconditioned if you want your turbo to keep on spinning reliably once you crank the boost up.

Vacuum Line Inspection and Repair

Another common culprit for boost leaks is your engine's system of vacuum lines. They're generally made out of relatively flimsy rubber, so they're prone to heat damage and dry rot on high-mileage engines. The clamps and connectors can also work their way loose over time, especially with increased boost pressure. Your mechanic needs to inspect all of the lines to ensure they are free from damage. They also need to check all of the fittings to ensure that all of the lines are secure and air tight.

A little preventative maintenance goes a long way when it comes to keeping modified turbo engine running smoothly. After all, all of that extra power potential will be lost if you have a damaged turbocharger or an air leak somewhere in the system. For more information, reach out to an auto service shop in your area.