Category Archives: Turbo Engines

Can a Diesel Particulate Filter Cause Turbo Failure?

There are many articles and technical documents relating to how a faulty turbo can lead to DPF damage, however, the DPF is actually responsible for more turbo related failures than you might think. Here we explore what effect a blocked DPF can have on a turbocharger.

DPF’s (Diesel Particulate Filters) were first introduced in January 2005 with the Euro 4 emission standard, where diesel particulate levels were reduced to extremely low levels to reduce the allowable amount of particulate matter (PM) released into the atmosphere. Reducing the size of PM from the combustion process to this level was not technically possible, so this meant all diesel vehicles after September 2009 were fitted with a filter to capture soot and other harmful particles, preventing them entering the atmosphere. A DPF can remove around 85% of the particulates from the exhaust gas.

A blocked DPF will not work correctly, and in order to clear this blockage there are two types of regeneration that are commonly used to remove the build-up of soot. Newer vehicles engage active regeneration, which is the process of removing accumulated soot from the filter by adding fuel post-combustion to increase exhaust gas temperatures and burn off the soot, providing a temporary solution. Passive regeneration takes place automatically on motorway-type runs when the exhaust temperature is high. Many manufacturers have moved to using active regeneration, as many motorists do not often drive prolonged distances at motorway speeds to clear the DPF and constant short distances are not good for the turbo or exhaust system.

So, what happens to the turbo when a DPF is blocked?
A blocked DPF prevents exhaust gas passing through the exhaust system at the required rate. As a result, back pressure and exhaust gas temperatures increase within the turbine housing.

Increased exhaust gas temperature and back pressure can affect the turbocharger in a number of ways, including problems with efficiencies, oil leaks, carbonisation of oil within the turbo and exhaust gas leaks from the turbo.

How to spot a turbocharger that has suffered from DPF problems:

  • Discolouration of parts within the core assembly (CHRA) usually with evidence that the heat is transferring through the CHRA from the turbine side. This excessive temperature within the CHRA is caused by back pressure forcing the exhaust gas through the piston ring seals and into the CHRA. The high temperature exhaust gas can prevent efficient oil cooling within the CHRA and even carbonise the oil, restricting oil feeds and causing wear to the bearing systems. This type of failure can often be mistaken as a lack of lubrication or contaminated oil.
  • Carbon build-up in the turbine side piston ring groove caused by the increased exhaust gas temperatures.
  • Oil leaks into the compressor housing can be seen as a consequence of exhaust gas forcing its way into the CHRA from the turbine side and forcing oil through the oil seal on the compressor side.
  • A blocked DPF can force exhaust gas through the smallest of gaps, including the clearances in the bearing housing VNT lever arm and turbine housing waste gate mechanisms. If this occurs, carbon build up in these mechanisms can restrict movement of the levers affecting performance of the turbo. In some cases soot build up can be seen on the back face of the seal plate where the exhaust gas has been forced through.
  • Turbine wheel failure through high cycle fatigue (HCF) caused by temperature increase.

How can you prevent these failures from occurring?

As a starting point, it is essential to identify the failure mode and determine whether a DPF related issue is the root cause. If the entire rotor assembly is ok, and there are some signs of overheating towards the turbine side of the core assembly then the failure is likely to be caused by excessive exhaust gas temperatures. High amounts of carbon build-up within the VNT mechanism and lever arms indicate a blocked DPF, and the driver may experience turbo lag or over boost of the turbo.

To help prevent turbo failure caused by DPFs:

  • Determine whether the DPF is blocked.
  • Contact a DPF specialist for advice.
  • Replace the DPF with a high quality replacement – lower cost DPF’s will often not operate as efficiently as the original. This can replicate the environment of a blocked DPF.
  • If the DPF is blocked, always replace the turbocharger core assembly to prevent possible oil leaks.
  • Check the actuator achieves its full range of movement, particularly if electronic, as internal components could be worn.

One final consideration, it takes time for a DPF to block, sometimes years. Once blocked though, turbo failure can occur very quickly. If you don’t check for a DPF issue when installing a replacement turbo, there is a very high chance the replacement turbo will suffer the same failure, as it will be subject to the same operating environment as the previous unit.

2016 Nissan Titan® with 5.0L V8 Cummins Turbo Diesel

Representing the first complete redesign of the Titan since its 2005 inception, the 2016 Nissan Titan® XD Crew Cab is the first in the lineup to feature a 5.0L V8 Cummins® Turbo Diesel engine, providing massive torque, impressive efficiency, and legendary Cummins® reliability.

Canadian market research conducted by Nissan revealed that 7,000 owners of half-ton pickup trucks feel they need a slightly bigger truck for towing, while 7,000 owners of ¾-ton trucks believe they have too much truck for their average load. The redesigned Titan falls in between these two main categories in terms of payload, towing capacities and price.

The Titan® XD has sufficient weight and power, plus heavy duty brakes, to make pulling a heavier trailer almost effortless. It also boasts a removable gooseneck hitch, hydraulic cab mounts, a fully boxed ladder frame with military-grade steel, and an Aisin® 6-speed transmission.

All of these features combine to offer heavy towing capacity with better fuel economy and a more comfortable ride than the average ¾-ton.

Click here to download specifications and build your own Nissan Titan®.

Winnipeg’s premiere diesel centre is Western Turbo and the Diesel Service Centre at IamDIESEL. Whether you need parts, service, or regular maintenance to your diesel vehicle, or just want advice about a new truck, visit us today!

Why Did Your Turbocharger Die?

A turbocharger is simple in concept, but complex in operation.

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).

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.

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 will likely reoccur in a relatively short time.

IAmDIESEL is the Diesel Service Centre at Western Turbo and Fuel Injection in Winnipeg. We’re the area’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.

Diagnosing Problems with your Diesel Turbocharger

An engine is designed to burn a fuel-air mixture to produce mechanical energy. A significant difference between a turbocharged diesel engine and a traditional naturally aspirated gasoline engine is that the air entering a diesel engine is compressed before the fuel is injected.

Turbochargers are a type of forced induction system. They compress the air flowing into the engine, which lets the engine squeeze more air into each cylinder, resulting in the ability to allow more fuel into the cylinder. More fuel equals more power in each cylinder.

Conceptually, turbocharging is rather simple. However, the turbocharger is critical to optimum performance and overall operation of the diesel engine, so if something goes wrong, it could lead to engine failure or component damage. Click here for tips on troubleshooting common problems that you may be experiencing with your diesel turbocharger.

If you don’t see your problem described, contact us and we’ll help you.

Turbo Trivia Part 1 – Common Turbocharger Problems

While modern turbochargers are highly evolved systems that provide relatively trouble-free service for the lifetime of your engine, it’s good to be able to recognize the symptoms of turbocharger troubles and their causes, to simplify repair of one of your vehicle’s key performance improvement systems.  Very often, a turbocharger problem is the result of an issue elsewhere in the system, and will recur unless the underlying issue is addressed.

Exhaust Smoke – Black

There are a lot of issues that can cause excessive black particulate in your vehicles exhaust.  Look to the air filter system and the supply of oil to the turbocharger, as well as damage to the unit itself.  Often the turbine housing, flap, or turbocharger bearing will have failed, or the boost pressure control swing valve isn’t closing properly.  This problem can also be caused by problems elsewhere in the engine – worn valve guides, piston rings, or cylinder walls can cause blow by that manifests itself as black smoke.

Exhaust Smoke – Blue

Blue smoke can be caused by a number of factors, including overall engine wear.  Turbocharger related causes of this symptom include dirty compressors, excessive exhaust flow resistance, or bearing damage.  Look out for dirty air filter systems, or a buildup of coke and sludge buildup in the turbocharger housing.

Excessive Boost Pressure

If your boost pressure is too high, the likely cause is in the swing or poppet valve or the associated pipe assembly to it.  It could also be caused by a fuel injection problem.

Defective Compressor or Turbine Wheels

The high-speed spinning parts of the turbo unit can be damaged by excessive heat and friction caused by improper lubrication.  If these parts are worn or broken, they’ll need to be replaced.

Oil Consumption

High oil consumption can be caused by a number of factors, including worn out engine components like piston rings, valve guides, and cylinder walls.  It could also be a symptom of something as simple as a dirty air filter system, or an improperly vented crankcase.

For expert diagnosis of your diesel engine in Winnipeg, visit Western Turbo.  In addition to maintenance and repair of turbo systems, we provide new equipment for the leading brands in the business – Holset, BorgWarner, and Garrett.

Western Turbo is located at 325 Eagle Drive in Winnipeg.

Turbocharger Care and Maintenance

One of the most efficient ways to increase the power output of any engine, gasoline or diesel, without increasing the size and weight of the engine, is to add a turbocharger.

Turbochargers are used on all kinds of vehicles – racecars and big diesel truck engines both commonly employ them, because they’re often asked to provide maximum horsepower to get their jobs done.

Turbochargers improve engine performance by using the engine’s exhaust to power a compressor, which will force air into the cylinders of the engine, so that more fuel can be added while still maintaining the optimum ratio for efficient combustion.  Because more air and fuel are in the cylinder, the explosion produced on the power stroke provides more energy.  The performance improvement provided by a turbocharger far outweigh the increased load the system puts on the engine’s exhaust.

Turbochargers have been in use for a long time, and the systems are quite evolved.  You can generally expect your turbo system to last as long as your engine does.  There are, however, some considerations you need to make surrounding maintenance of a turbocharged engine.

The main problems that confront turbochargers are heat and lubrication related. Because of the extremely high speed that the turbo is required to spin at, conventional bearings would fail very quickly.  Turbochargers use a fluid bearing – a thin layer of oil that separates the mechanical parts to prevent wear and keep the moving parts in the compressor or the turbine cool.  Most turbocharger failures are caused by inadequate lubrication, or foreign particles in the oil.  This means that the key maintenance requirements for a turbocharged engine are oil changes at prescribed intervals, oil and air filter system maintenance, and oil pressure control.

Western Turbo is your Winnipeg area turbocharger expert.  In addition to maintenance and repair of turbo systems, we provide new equipment for the leading brands in the business – Holset, BorgWarner, and Garrett.

Your turbocharged engine is safe in the hands of our trained technicians.  Conveniently located at 325 Eagle Drive in Winnipeg, we are standing by to keep your diesel powered in tip-top shape.

Come See Us at AgDays

Every year at this time, we look forward to attending Manitoba AgDays held in Brandon – and this year is no exception.  We will once again be attending Manitoba AgDays, an exposition of agricultural production expertise, technology and related equipment that attracts exhibitors from all across Canada and the North Central United States.

We will be there to showcase our AgDiesel agricultural diesel modules. If you are looking for more power – talk to us to see which module is for you.  We now have modules to fit Agco, Buhler, Challenger, Case, CAT, JCB, John Deere, Massey-Ferguson, New Holland, Versatile and more!

If you are planning on attending AgDays or wanting to meet us in person – come visit us at AgDays.

Event: Manitoba AgDays
Date: January 21, 22 and 23, 2014
Venue: Brandon Keystone Centre
Address: 1 – 1175 – 18th Street, Brandon, Manitoba

Admission is free so be sure to drop by. Enter through the east or west side of the building by the Westoba Credit Union Concourse entrance and also on the east side by the Curling Club or the ramp entrances.

See you there!

Western Turbo is Winnipeg’s Diesel Expert

At Western Turbo, we are diesel engine specialists.

No matter what type of vehicle (or vehicles, we take care of fleets, too) you have that needs attention, we have the facilities, the personnel, the parts, and the experience you need to keep rolling.

We handle passenger cars, light trucks, medium-duty trucks, tractor trailers, and agricultural equipment. In short, if it burns diesel oil for power, we take care of it.
New parts, remanufactured engines, and performance enhancement components are available in short order, and we can install then faster than anyone else at our state-of-the art facility.

We sell and service a wide array of diesel injection components, turbochargers, superchargers, electronic control modules, governors, sensors, and more, for all makes of diesel vehicles. We are exclusive distributors for many brands of parts, including Bosch and Delphi.

Our technicians are trained by the manufacturers of the equipment they service, and remain current with regular updates to their training… All participate in the Association of Diesel specialists “TechCert” program.

We’re proud of the facility we’ve established at 325 Eagle Drive in Winnipeg. When you come in, you’ll feel confident that we’re going to do a professional job. Unlike many other shops, ours is well lit, clean, and organized. You’ll know that your vehicle is in good hands with us.

No matter what type or brand of vehicle you need service for, you can be sure that Western Turbo can take care of your needs. Diesel is what we do.

Keeping Construction Vehicles Moving

While it might not look like it, we know that a construction site operates like a carefully choreographed dance routine.

Everybody has a part to play, and timing is everything. One trade moves out and another moves in. One piece of equipment moves from job to job, often multiple times in one day.

If one of the pieces of the puzzle is out of place, it can cause a chain reaction that can bring the whole operation to a frustrating, expensive halt.

Your diesel powered construction vehicles are mission critical tools. The rigors of the industry require them to be reliable and ready. When you need preventive maintenance or emergency repairs, the place to turn is Western Turbo.

We are Winnipeg’s diesel specialists. No matter what type of diesel powered vehicle you have, you can be sure that our experienced technicians know how to care for your needs, and that our state-of-the art facility and extensive relationships with vendors backs up their knowledge.

Passenger vehicles, light trucks and heavy equipment are all within our scope. And though we’re diesel engine specialists, we aren’t limited to engine work only – if you need brakes, suspension, electrical, or other repairs, we’re willing and able.

All of our technicians carry up to date certifications, and participate in the Association of Diesel specialists “TechCert” program.

When you visit the Western Turbo facility, the clean environment and friendly, knowledgeable staff will let you know you’ve come to the right place.

Protect the Heart of your Diesel Engine with Stanadyne Diesel Fuel Additives

Stanadyne makes injector systems for diesel engines, so it’s fair to say that the company knows a thing or two about fuel injection.

The fuel injector system is the most crucial part of your diesel equipment, and it’s the most prone to failure. Hard use, temperature extremes, and low quality diesel fuel can all contribute to its early demise. Simply put, if your fuel injection system stops working, your diesel engine does, too.

There are many diesel fuel additives on the market, but Stanadyne’s are the only ones made by an injection system manufacturer. Stanadyne’s diesel fuel additives are engineered to protect the critical components of your engine, in normal use and under adverse conditions, so you can continue to use your machines and vehicles when others may have failed prematurely.

Independent testing has shown that Stanadyne Diesel Fuel Additives increase efficiency – fuel consumption will go down by up to 4%, while performance will improve by up to 9.6%. This translates to more mileage for less money, a magic combination for anyone who uses a diesel engine for transportation or in their work. Additives protect the engine by lubricating fuel injection components, and reducing contaminants like water in the fuel. They contain no alcohol, and reduce corrosion, which is a primary factor in injection system damage.

Stanadyne offers several different fuel additives, to suit every application. There’s one specially formulated for low temperature use, which is very useful in Manitoba’s harsh climate, a Lubricity formula for aging injectors, and performance formulas for engines that need an extra boost in power output.

Western Turbo is proud to supply Stanadyne Diesel Fuel Additives to the Winnipeg area. Come talk to us today about ways to increase power, reduce fuel consumption, and contribute to the longevity of your diesel engines.