The Autopsy of a Dead Turbocharger

Why did my turbocharger die?

First, we have to understand how a turbocharger works…

In a nutshell, a turbocharger uses exhaust gases produced by the engine, which are pushed out of the engine at a velocity that corresponds with the speed of the engine’s rotation to push fresh air into the engine. The faster the engine “revs” the higher the volume and speed of the exhaust that escapes it is. Exhaust consists of air and the by products of fuel combustion (carbon monoxide, and a lot of other chemicals).

Turbocharger Western Turbo

In a normally aspirated engine, air is taken in at atmospheric pressure. In a turbocharged engine, air is pushed in to the combustion chamber under pressure. Because the air is compressed, more fuel can be introduced into the engine while still maintaining the ideal mixture ratio between air and fuel. Simply put, being able to put more fuel into the engine results in more power.

Because the exhaust gases would be emitted anyway, harnessing them to increase performance also increases efficiency. The turbocharger plays a big role in making diesel engines the powerhouses that they are.

Here’s where we get into why your turbocharger died…

Unfortunately, the high temperatures and speeds involved in a turbocharger can be hard on it. The turbine is the component that hot exhaust gases push against to drive the unit. It’s subject to extremely high temperatures, and speeds up to 150,000 rpm. The compressor wheel “squeezes” air into the compression chamber. When air is compressed, it gets hot. Even at the “cool” end of the turbocharger temperatures can exceed 200 degrees Celsius.

The turbocharger needs a healthy supply of engine oil to lubricate its moving parts, and to help cool it. Often, an impediment to oil circulation and/or dirty oil, can cause the turbocharger to fail. In fact, short of component failure in the turbocharger, nearly every turbocharger failure is caused by something else in the engine not working correctly. Air and gas leaks, worn piston rings, clogged exhaust, carbon build-up and a hundred other things can cause turbocharger failure. When this is the case, simply replacing your turbocharger may appear to solve the problem, but it won’t be a long term fix.

We’re Manitoba’s premiere diesel service centre. If you’ve experienced a turbocharger problem, bring it to us. Because we understand diesel engines better than anyone else, we will diagnose and repair the root cause of your problem, not just the symptom.

When it’s time for the best diesel service in Winnipeg, the biggest parts selection or turbocharger diagnostics, give us a call at 1 800 665 7556 or send us an email to info@westernturbo.com

Why Do I Get Worse Diesel Mileage in the Winter?

Why does your diesel gas mileage go down in the winter? One reason is the composition of winter diesel makes it more volatile to burn properly in cold weather conditions.  Just like with gasoline, refiners have to change the composition of diesel fuel in the winter to help it function better in the cold weather.  But this change has much less to do with “volatility” and more to do with both cold gelling performance and sulfur reduction.

Typically, winter diesel will have about 3% less energy value. That’s because some of the Sulphur is removed. Lower energy value means less miles per gallon.

During the winter months, refiners mix in additional additives in order to change the properties of the winter diesel so that its gelling temperatures are reduced. With Canadian extreme winters, refiners want to give a little more temperature margin when it comes to how quickly the diesel fuel will gel in cold weather.

To minimize the effect of reduced mileage in the winter, keep your diesel in tip top condition with regular maintenance at Western Turbo.  When it’s time for the best diesel service in Winnipeg, the biggest parts selection or turbocharger diagnostics, give us a call at 1 800 665 7556 or send us an email to info@westernturbo.com

Is Synthetic Oil Right for Your Diesel?

There are many advantages to using synthetic engine oil in your diesel engine. Synthetics have a much better flow rate in cold weather than conventional engine oils, allowing critical moving parts to be better lubricated on start up. Synthetic oils also lose less viscosity at high temperatures, providing critical lubrication under high engine loads. They are less prone to coking, and have superior additive stability allowing a longer service life, meaning that under most operating conditions the oil change interval can be significantly extended.

What is the right oil for your diesel

On engines utilizing HEUI injectors, such as most Powerstroke engines, the engine oil is subjected to more stress than usual, as it is used as a pressure medium to operate the injectors, so synthetic oil offers even more advantages. It is more resistant to oxidization, thermal breakdown, and sludging. With new production techniques and the advantage of mass production the price difference between conventional and synthetic oil has decreased a great deal over the last decade, making it an even more attractive proposition.

Western Turbo – the diesel specialist and more.  Keep your diesel running great this winter with a synthetic oil change from Western Turbo.  While you’re getting the oil done, we’ll mount your winter tires (on rims) FREE!  When it’s time for the best diesel service in Winnipeg, the biggest parts selection or turbocharger diagnostics, give us a call at 1 800 665 7556 or send us an email to info@westernturbo.com

Winter’s coming – Here’s Some Tips to Make Sure Your Truck is Ready

Winnipeg winters are especially tough on trucks!

From overnight cold soaks as low as -40, to icy roads, spray from slush, to blowing snow and snowdrifts, we see it all. To see you and your truck through the season with minimal downtime, there are a some basic checks and tests that can save you time and money by identifying issues before they become a problem.

  • First inspect the tires for tread depth and proper inflation, remember tire pressure is affected by ambient temperature. Be sure to inspect the sidewall condition, and verify all lug nuts are correctly torqued.
  • Verify proper oil levels on front axle, transmission, transfer case, rear axle, and power steering as required.
  • Check windshield washer fluid is rated for winter use, and replace if not.
  • Perform a walk around inspection, checking all lights.
  • Test block heater and cord, and inspect air filter condition.
  • This is the right time to service the engine with a proper winter grade oil, and lubricate the chassis.
  • Top up DEF as required.
  • Carefully inspect the belts and coolant hoses for cracks and overall condition.
  • Check batteries are properly secured, and inspect cables and connections. If in doubt about battery condition, perform a load test.
  • Test coolant strength and verify adequate additive protection levels with a test strip. In the cab, inspect the cabin air filter, if more than a year old, you should replace it.
  • Check that all defrost/ vent/ heat settings operate correctly, and check that fan operates at all speeds. Make sure heater control valve opens properly.
  • Consider a box of emergency supplies suitable for our climate, particularly if you travel on the highway, or infrequently traveled roads.

Western Turbo – the diesel specialist and more.  Keep your truck running great this winter with a tune up from Western Turbo.  When it’s time for service, parts or diagnostics, give us a call at 1 800 665 7556 or send us an email to info@westernturbo.com

When Do You Need a Certificate of Inspection (COI)?

You require a valid safety Certificate of Inspection (COI) to register a newly acquired vehicle in Manitoba. A COI confirms that, at the time of inspection, a vehicle met basic standards for operation in Manitoba, which are set out in the Vehicle Inspection Handbook.

A COI doesn’t include a detailed inspection of the engine or transmission and is not a guarantee of the overall quality of the vehicle. A COI provides a snapshot of the vehicle condition at the time of inspection. This condition can change over time and it is a good idea to have your vehicle fully inspected by a trusted mechanic before purchase.

When do you need a COI

A COI is required:

  • When ownership of a vehicle is transferred.
  • When bringing any vehicle into Manitoba. This includes vehicles owned by people moving to Manitoba.

The COI inspection

An inspector at one of Manitoba’s registered vehicle inspection stations signs a COI after a vehicle passes an inspection of components and systems, including:

  • Brakes
  • Suspension
  • Tires
  • Lights
  • Exhaust system
  • Seat belts
  • Steering
  • Other components and systems

There are three possible outcomes to the COI inspection:

Pass: The vehicle passes the inspection and receives a COI.

Advisement: The vehicle currently meets all minimum safety standards and receives a COI. However, the advisement notes that specified components will soon require servicing or repair.

Fail: The vehicle does not meet certain standards. The vehicle must undergo specified repairs and pass a re inspection before a COI can be issued.

In Winnipeg, Western Turbo is a certified inspection station for automobiles, light duty trucks, heavy duty trucks, RVs, buses up to 24 passenger and also ambulances and handicap vehicles. We can also perform safety inspections on modified and lifted vehicles.To learn more about the inspection process, please contact us.

Think Diesel is Going Away? Think Again!

Consumers in Winnipeg and across Manitoba continue to display confidence in Diesel technology as a choice for powering their new cars, SUVs, trucks and vans.

Diesel accounts for 3% of the consumer market and indications are this number could grow. Diesel is a proven performer that delivers real benefits: high fuel efficiency, great driving range, and no sacrifices in vehicle size, fueling access, utility or towing capabilities, or performance. With the capability to use advanced renewable low-carbon biodiesel fuels, consumers can choose to do even more for the environment.

New generation diesel engines are more efficient and powerful, adding to the growth of diesel. New Diesel options are being introduced in full-size pickup trucks, including the GMC Silverado 1500, the Ford F-150 pickup and Ram 1500 pickup.

It reinforces a strong commitment to Diesel technology as a fuel-efficient choice that continues to meet the world’s most stringent clean air and fuel economy targets.

Western Turbo is the diesel specialist.  When it’s time for service, parts or diagnostics, give us a call at 1 800 665 7556 or send us an email to info@westernturbo.com

Diesel Engine Coolant – Not Just Green Anymore!

Coolant isn’t just green anymore! As engines have developed, taking more horsepower and torque out of increasingly smaller displacements, the load carried by you trucks cooling system has increased significantly.  Coolant now comes in various hues including red, yellow, orange  and purple. It’s important to use the correct coolant for your application, as the wrong coolant can actually be detrimental to your engine!

Always consult the engine manufacturer’s technical data if you are unsure which coolant is right for you. Also be aware that mixing different coolants can also lead to expensive diesel engine repairs, and will almost certainly necessitate a complete cooling system flush.

For the best expert information on diesel parts, service and diagnostics in Winnipeg, give us a call at 1 800 665 7556 or send us an email to info@westernturbo.com

2 Tips to Keep Your Diesel Fresh This Summer

Whether you are using your diesel for fun or for work, there is nothing more frustrating than a breakdown.  In the summer, many issues are related to your engine overheating.  Here are two tips that can keep you motoring during the hot summer months.

Get a Coolant Flush

As temperatures rise during our Manitoba summer, your diesel’s cooling system has to work hard to keep the engine temperature down. The temperature control occurs by the water pump pushing a mixture of antifreeze and water through small channels in and around the engine block and cylinder head.

The mixture soaks up some of the heat as it runs by the different components on its way to the radiator. Then the fan and the outside air cool the mixture. Any interruption to the cooling process could be cause for overheating and engine failure. Now is a great time to bring your diesel to Western Turbo to have your coolant system inspected, flushed, and filled with new coolant. The flush will eliminate any corrosion that develops in the system.

Diesel Oil Change

Oil is an important and often overlooked component to reduce engine heat.  Your diesel has many moving parts, and the metal to metal friction adds to the engine temperature.  A scheduled diesel oil change at Western Turbo will ensure that your engine is well lubricated and will run cooler.

For the best expert information on diesel parts, service and diagnostics in Winnipeg, give us a call at 1 800 665 7556 or send us an email to info@westernturbo.com

Western Turbo Active in the Community

At Western Turbo, we recognize our success as being the best diesel service centre in Manitoba is due to you, our valued customers. On behalf of you, we support a number of charitable causes every year.

We are proud to support Siloam Mission, Habitat for Humanity, Ride for Dad, the Gimli ModelFest as well as many other worthy causes in Winnipeg and around the province.

Our goal is be the best at what we do. We want to carry that through in our community involvement.

Biodiesel Will Shorten Your Filter Life. What’s the Best Filter Option?

Did you know Manitoba has mandated a minimum average 2% biodiesel for all diesel fuel sales by volume?  Due to potential gelling issues in our cold winters, winter fuel has very little biodiesel added, so to meet regulations summer fuel typically has up to 5% or more by volume. This can have an effect on your diesel vehicles performance, and it’s fuel filter life expectancy.

Razor Fuel Filters from Western Turbo

Biodiesel reduces filter life

Racor has participated in several biodiesel filtration field tests with major OEMs. Racor is actively participating in industry-wide research and development on biodiesel fuel filtration and water separation challenges. Development of technology to support the use of all biofuels is ongoing at Racor Division.

Biodiesel tends to shorten filter life and most biodiesels have a low “interfacial tension” – meaning water easily disperses and dissolves in the fuel, greatly reducing efficiency for all types of water separators and coalescers. Racor makes fuel filters capable of handling biodiesel for almost all domectic diesel applications.

Racor’s ultra high quality synthetic rubber compounds perform equally well in biodiesel and standard diesel. Seals subject to biodiesel exposure are generally replaced at the same time as the replacement filter. Racor uses all materials compatible with up to 20% biodiesel blend. Above 20% may require material changes to dynamic seals that are not normally replaced at element change-outs.

For expert information on fuel filters, diesel parts, service and diagnostics, give us a call at 1 800 665 7556 or send us an email to info@westernturbo.com