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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Just a quick thread on some things that will help extend the life of your turbocharger.

Seeing how a turbocharger is so integral with the performance your diesel engine, there are a few things you can do to help extend it's useful life. Like any part, they can wear out and fail, so what can you do to prevent this from happening?
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The biggest killer of turbos' is heat. Yes, they are directly in the path of scorching heat and that's actually one of the things that make them work. Hot air has more volume than cold, so a turbocharger uses hot exhaust gasses that have expanded in volume due to the heat of the combustion process within the engine to spin the turbine wheel at extremely high speed. Since the turbine is on a common shaft with the compressor impeller, it results in increased airflow (boost pressure) to increase the volumetric efficiency of the engine and ultimately to build more horsepower.

1. Use good oil. Synthetic engine oil will maintain it's viscosity better than conventional oils and is more resistant to coking (not the kind for your nose, but the crusty carbon that is created when the oil reaches higher temperatures than it is designed for). When the bearing lubrication cavity becomes coked, it reduces the flow of life sustaining oil to the turbo bearings.
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2. Be cool- Proper cool downs are essential for long turbo life. A couple minutes of idling will go a long way in coolant and oil flow within the turbo housing. This will minimize heat soaking after engine shutdown and will allow the oil to lubricate the bearings as the turbo spools down when the engine stops (and the oil flow stops). I checked my turbo temperatures after shutdown today and found that when I shut the engine down with a turbo temperature of 300F, within 1 minute, the turbo temp increased to 371F. Imagine what would happen if you shut down when the turbo was at 800 or 900 degrees! You might see temperatures of well over 1000 degrees! Keep in mind that your turbo is also cooled by engine antifreeze. It will boil off at about 265 degrees, so once this happens, the coolant will boil off and create pressure in the cooling system, which will be vented, but the main concern is the coolant will not be there to help cool the turbo and the temps will soar.
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3. Use a cool down timer. Life is hectic, so if you can't sit in your truck for the 2 minutes it takes to allow for a proper cool down, a timer will do it for you. They are certainly cheaper than a replacement turbo.
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4. Foot to the floor- Equals high exhaust temperatures, which will, over time cause erosion (gas cutting) of the turbine wheel and inlet guide vanes. These engines can see EGT's of over 1450F, so imagine a red hot poker spinning at over 160 000 RPM. Yeah, just crazy! So keep your foot off the floor and save yourself some fuel and the turbo.
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Anyways, keep those turbos happy and enjoy your investment. Feel free to chime in with other ideas...
 

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All points make sense and to some degree are practiced by most all owners. The oil type is really not an issue as what is specified is an all-synthetic oil. Cool-down is a bit of common sense. It's just that many are not in common with reality and will argue it's not necessary. Makes sense to me that even some seconds at idle, out-of-load, would help cool the coolant for the turbo. High rpm is crazy for any street engine. Real racers race on the track where they are mostly paid to race and expect to destroy their equipment.

Good thoughts all.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
All points make sense and to some degree are practiced by most all owners. The oil type is really not an issue as what is specified is an all-synthetic oil. Cool-down is a bit of common sense. It's just that many are not in common with reality and will argue it's not necessary. Makes sense to me that even some seconds at idle, out-of-load, would help cool the coolant for the turbo. High rpm is crazy for any street engine. Real racers race on the track where they are mostly paid to race and expect to destroy their equipment.

Good thoughts all.
Hi Captainmal,
Thanks for your comments.
I was thinking of towing and not so much about racing. - I shamelessly grabbed pix from the internet to aid in describing the conditions spoken to in the post.
The post is just put out there for those who are new to turbo-diesels or who may otherwise gain insight from the post.

Cheerz!
 

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Been running turbo powered vehicles for over 15 years. Much of what you say I honestly don’t think is relevant any more. Oils have improved dramatically in that time. Oil changes remain the best insurance for a healthy power plant. Cover 40,000 mikes a year and yet to have a turbo failure, and engine failure or a transmission failure.


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Discussion Starter #5
Been running turbo powered vehicles for over 15 years. Much of what you say I honestly don’t think is relevant any more. Oils have improved dramatically in that time. Oil changes remain the best insurance for a healthy power plant. Cover 40,000 mikes a year and yet to have a turbo failure, and engine failure or a transmission failure.


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Hi Henfield,
Yes, I agree that oils have come a long way. I just created the post as an info type thing for those who may wish to be preventive maintenance minded.
Being an Aircraft Maintenance Engineer, I'll take the extra precautions. On turbine engines there are specific cool down tables and lube specs that are strictly adhered to in order to prevent failures.
I suppose that at the end of the day, it's our own decision on how to treat our trucks.
Cheerz.
 

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My prevention is halving the atf fluid change interval. I also do all maintenance at home base rather than losing time on the road. Plenty of times I’ve changed the oil early.
I have a low tolerance for breakdowns. Pilots do to.
Fwiw last breakdown was 6 years ago when a two year old radiator suffered internal failure and became blocked. We first thought head gasket but that was fine. Some things you can’t stop from happening.


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Since I installed an Edge CTS, I monitor EGT1 and shut down when it drops below 350*F. I've never timed it - just a guess prior to the Edge. I see EGT1 well above 350*F if I pull in directly off of the highway to fuel up or stop for coffee.
 

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Been running turbo powered vehicles for over 15 years. Much of what you say I honestly don’t think is relevant any more. Oils have improved dramatically in that time. Oil changes remain the best insurance for a healthy power plant. Cover 40,000 mikes a year and yet to have a turbo failure, and engine failure or a transmission failure.


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This could be true but turbo's are EXPENSIVE! Anything to help with the longevity for your turbo is a good idea. I always let mine cool down after towing for at least 5 minutes. During the daily drives not so much- but it certainly wouldn't hurt. ( if I just could remember to do it !)
 

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I believe GDE or someone had a bit about turbo cool down and I think they said other than from heavy towing/hwy to stop and turn off there wasn't really a reason to let it idle to cool off. If I'm towing ill let it idle 30 seconds or so before I shut it down, but in my every day driving I am on the highway and then have a mile or two of 30 mph streets before my house then I roll down a 100 yards of driveway and figure its cooled enough when I stop to shut it down.
 

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Yep no need to do a cool down unless you are running hard or towing and jump off the highway to fuel. If you drive more then a mile to get to the station you are as cool as the turbo will ever get.
 

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All well and good, but with these fancy new vehicles, are there really any turbo-timer solutions out there?
The alarm shop I've talked to states their alarm (Compustar) has the capability of programming a diesel shutdown delay so I can shut it down, remove the key, lock the doors and walk away, and it will keep idling for a preset time period. However, it's not tied into the ECM to read EGT and shut down dependent on temp, it's just a preset timer. So not really the right solution.

Yep no need to do a cool down unless you are running hard or towing and jump off the highway to fuel. If you drive more then a mile to get to the station you are as cool as the turbo will ever get.
Not quite. With the wise investment of a CTS2 it really opened my eyes to shutdown temps. Even light driving a mile off the highway, not towing, no load, then parking, it takes some effort to get it to drop below 400F on EGT1 (turbo), nevermind 350F.
I also have a habit of shutting off A/C as I'm arriving to my destination, and increasing fan speed to blow the cold, dense air out of the vents to prevent/reduce opportunities for mildew to grow. I typically do this when it's going to be parked for extended periods of time while I'm at work or home, not when I'm going to run into the grocery store for 10 minutes then start it back up. A short cool-down there helps, and if the AC is on, it seemingly refuses to drop below 400F. Waiting a solid minute to allow temp to stabilize at about 405-410 with the AC on, I can confidently say that shutting the AC off, it quickly reduces temp to 380-390.

I recently installed a permanent EGR cleaner solution and now notice greatly reduced EGT1 temps across the board. It regularly idles below 300F (typically 270F during typical startup, used to be 320-330). After running then pulling up to a stop and idling for <30 seconds with the AC on, it is 340-350, and will easily drop 325-330 with the AC left on, or 300F when I shut AC off.
 

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One thing I've experienced is how much hotter the engine compartment is without a tuned ECM. I recently swapped out my GDE tuned ECM for my stock ECM for an appointment with the dealer. From only driving 12 miles home from the dealer I could feel more heat radiating off of the engine then from my 38 mile trip home from work the day before when I took out my tuned ECM. I would contribute the additional heat from the exhaust gasses being pumped to the intake manifold. My thoughts are a cooler engine equals cooler exhaust going through the turbo.

Does that make sense???
 

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One item that I have considered and havn't seen in several years is an electric pre and post luber,it uses an electric motor to prelube your engine and turbo before starting
and can run after shuting down to help cool the turbo and engine.
 

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I'm not sure these quality made well oiled and liquid cooled turbos won't on average last as long as the engine.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
One thing I've experienced is how much hotter the engine compartment is without a tuned ECM. I recently swapped out my GDE tuned ECM for my stock ECM for an appointment with the dealer. From only driving 12 miles home from the dealer I could feel more heat radiating off of the engine then from my 38 mile trip home from work the day before when I took out my tuned ECM. I would contribute the additional heat from the exhaust gasses being pumped to the intake manifold. My thoughts are a cooler engine equals cooler exhaust going through the turbo.

Does that make sense???
Yes, a hotter intake charge will result in higher EGT's. ECU should recognize an out of parameter condition and make corrections to keep from exceeding those parameters.
 

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Yes, a hotter intake charge will result in higher EGT's. ECU should recognize an out of parameter condition and make corrections to keep from exceeding those parameters.
as i understand it, the oxygen content of the intake charge is the single biggest driver of EGT. The more Oxygen, the lower the EGT at a given fuel delivery rate and load. Its not the temp of the air that directly increases/decreases EGTs. Cooler air carries more oxygen. This makes the fuel burn more completely IN the cylinder and not in the exhaust manifold where it then cooks exhaust parts - turbo included.

Also, Boyle's law comes into play here where you detonate the charge in the cylinder, the pressure and temp spikes. When the exhaust valve opens the pressures drop precipitously. that causes the exhaust gas to cool massively. If there is unburned fuel in the charge, as soon as that valve opens, the hot mixture is exposed to any free oxygen in the exhaust system and it ignites. This is why an engine with a bad piston ring or generally low compression will have higher EGTs and is more likely to burn a valve.

science is fun.
 

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Here is a quotation from Honeywell Garrett, the maker of our turbos.

All Garrett turbochargers must pass a heat soak test and the introduction of water-cooling has virtually eliminated the need for a cool down procedure.
Ref. https://www.turbobygarrett.com/turbobygarrett/faq

For that reason, I shut down without idling after normal driving. If my engine were loaded for any appreciable amount of time, I would idle for a minute or so... I might point out that there have been very few, if any, turbo failures on this forum that I can remember.
 

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as i understand it, the oxygen content of the intake charge is the single biggest driver of EGT. The more Oxygen, the lower the EGT at a given fuel delivery rate and load. Its not the temp of the air that directly increases/decreases EGTs. Cooler air carries more oxygen. This makes the fuel burn more completely IN the cylinder and not in the exhaust manifold where it then cooks exhaust parts - turbo included.

Also, Boyle's law comes into play here where you detonate the charge in the cylinder, the pressure and temp spikes. When the exhaust valve opens the pressures drop precipitously. that causes the exhaust gas to cool massively. If there is unburned fuel in the charge, as soon as that valve opens, the hot mixture is exposed to any free oxygen in the exhaust system and it ignites. This is why an engine with a bad piston ring or generally low compression will have higher EGTs and is more likely to burn a valve.

science is fun.
I am not sure where you got your understanding from but I am not following your thinking. EGT's are directly related to fuel. The more fuel you inject the higher the EGT's can go. I'll explain: If I have a stock tuned Cummins in a 1996 Dodge truck I can increase the amount of fuel that is injected up to the point the turbo goes outside its map. Roughly 35psi of manifold pressure. This can be accomplished without any additional parts, just pump adjustments. Once you are at that point you will not be able to keep EGT's below 1250F. So the only way to fix this is to increase the turbos ability to move more cool air. Install a turbo from an 8.3L Cummins and you will lower your EGT's from the increase in air volume. You will also see lower manifold pressures but the increased air volume makes up that difference. Hopefully this makes sense and shows you why I say EGT's are directly related to fuel not Oxygen.

During the exhaust stroke the piston has hit BTDC and is coming back up, the gasses are cooled from the expansion that happened during the power stroke and are now moved out of the cylinder when the exhaust valve opens and the pistons pushes it out. There is no or very little pressure in the cylinder during the exhaust stroke. There should be no fuel left in the charge. The amount of oxygen in the system is negligible, if there was oxygen in the exhaust, EGR would not be such a damper on combustion temps. Also, an engine with bad rings will have lower combustion temps as the compression is lowered and its ability to ignite the fuel is lowered. These items combined will lower that cylinders EGT's and become a smoke complaint from the driver.
DS79
 
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I can see 30 seconds or something like that on a stock tuned truck. They cant expect every owner out there to pay attention to the manual. My highly tuned 2002 duramax saw egts at 2000 degrees going down the drag strip many many times and for a stock engine it all held together just fine. That was a tune that doubled the hp and torque putting 500 hp and 1000 ft lbs to the ground. Had to have the built trans too. $750 tune, $5500 trans = 13.10s @ 102 in the quarter. Miss that truck for sure...

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