Built for specific tolerances and rotating at speeds of 360,000RPM, turbochargers are impressive components. However, foreign objects can cause catastrophic failure for them. So what happens if a foreign object enters your turbocharger? Let’s find out and figure out ways to preserve the quality of your turbocharger.
What Is Foreign Object Damage?
Simply put, a foreign object is any object that doesn’t belong and doesn’t meet the specifications of the item. As for turbochargers, foreign object damage can occur at any time.
So what happens if a foreign object enters your turbocharger? It usually enters through an air inlet or an exhaust inlet, affecting the turbocharger's performance. It can happen quickly, and you need to act fast to stop irreversible damage.
Foreign Object Damage Causes
Foreign object damage can occur in a multitude of ways. It can come from small particles entering through damaged or cracked hoses, damaged or fault filters, loose debris from previous turbocharger failure, and broken engine components.
Additionally, it can come from other outside sources. Examples include loose bolts, nuts, washers, rags, or other items that enter the intake pipe during servicing. Lastly, loose particles can come from exhaust gas or even ice in low-temperature conditions.
Signs of Foreign Object Damage
It’s vital to know when you start to experience foreign object damage. Some common signs include noise from the turbocharger during operation, chipping of the compressor or turbine blade, loss of performance, putting around the compressor inlet, and pitting on the compressor blades. So make sure to look out for any odd sounds coming from your turbocharger and investigate the issue.
A big tip to preventing foreign object damage is ensuring that the entire air system is immaculate and free of debris. Any splits or gaps in the pipework can quickly let in damaging debris, so check your hoses and connectors thoroughly for wear.
Additionally, use new gaskets to prevent the risk of breakups and maintain a perfect seal. Lastly, you should flush, change, and inspect the engine oil, supply, and pipes. Adopt a systematic approach after turbo failure. When in doubt, check the system one more time.
Experiencing foreign object damage in your turbocharger is no laughing matter. Therefore, before the issue becomes permanent, ensure you care for your turbo efficiently. At TurboTurbos, we provide high-quality turbochargers and parts for your vehicle. Whether you wish to purchase a toolkit or Holset turbo parts, we’ll gladly help you. Before you know it, you’ll be back on the road.