Common VGT Turbo Problems: Could It Be a Symptom Of Other Engine Failures?

Has your VGT Turbo failed? Are you looking at a very expensive repair? We know how frustrating it can be when this happens, especially when you feel like you're having the same problem over and over.

We hear it all the time--VGT turbos break too easily, or they're too expensive to fix. But what people might not know, is that often it's not the fault of the turbo. What you're seeing is a result of a bigger problem in your engine.

Today we're talking about some of the issues you might see in your VGT, and what you can do to extend the life of your turbo.

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VGT Turbo Problems Might Be a Symptom Of Other Engine Failures

With VGT issues, you're often seeing a symptom of a different problem in your engine and your turbo is just taking the brunt of the damage. That's why it's important to identify the root cause of failure to help prevent it from happening again, saving you time and money.

Check for Sector Gear Problems

One of the easiest ways to check for internal damage is to look at the sector gear. You have to remove the actuator to do this. Then you'll be able to move the sector gear by hand. If everything is working as it should, it should have a pretty large range of motion about 12 millimeters.

You can put a template on to check it, and the gear should run from mark to mark.

VGT Turbo Checking Sector Gear With Template

If it doesn't move mark to mark, there's likely a problem with the turbo, and it'll need to be taken apart to see what's going on.

If you can easily move the sector gear, then it's more likely that you have a problem with your actuator, not the turbo itself.

Damaged Shroud Plate

The shroud plate is what the fins run through on your turbo. It's located in the exhaust housing. If the shroud plate is damaged, or if you have bent fins, the fins won't be able to travel through the plate properly.

This can be caused by carbon debris or coolant contamination from your EGR system. As we mentioned, it's often symptoms of a larger problem in your engine, which will need to be solved to prevent future turbo damage.

Higher Oil Consumption

You might notice that you're having higher oil consumption than normal. This can be caused by issues with your VGT. An engine bearing might have failed, you could have hot shutdowns or your oil could be contaminated by carbon. You can also have a blocked crankcase filter that's causing excessive pressure, which pushes oil out of the turbo.

Carbon Buildup

You might notice that we mention carbon buildup a lot. Carbon can buildup in your engine, and once it hits your VGT system, you'll begin to see the expensive problems.

 

How To Prevent Diesel VGT Problems

Something you can do to help prevent the buildup of carbon and debris and other problems that can spell trouble for your VGT is to follow the proper install techniques.

When you order a VGT from Highway and heavy parts you'll notice several cautionary stickers:

  1. Use correct oils

  2. Change your DPF filters

  3. Refer to the service parts topic when putting your turbo on

This will help ensure that you're not accidentally creating larger problems for yourself down the road. Those same topics can be found on the bag of the turbo and the tag itself. If you don't follow the recommendations and just put the turbo on, you're likely to have serious problems later on.

These service topics can help you troubleshoot problems you might have experienced with your VGT. If you need copies of the service parts topics, we can email them to you! This way you always have one on hand, or you can give us a call. We can talk you through the service parts topics, and the benefits of following those recommendations.

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Why Buy From HHP? 

  • At HHP, we don’t sell inferior VGT turbos from discount suppliers. We only sell you the best quality turbochargers for your needs, at fair, affordable prices. We are so confident in what we sell, that we offer an industry-leading warranties.

  • Our ASE Certified Techs can diagnose your engine problem, offer you a fast and accurate estimate, and provide expert repair and installation advice, so you can make a confident purchasing decision. That’s why we’re America’s trusted diesel engine parts supplier.

  • We know that you need to get parts fast to service your customers. That's why we at HHP make sure that we have readily available turbos for your specific diesel engine and can typically ship your parts the same day.

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VGT Turbochargers Resources

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