Oil-cooled turbochargers are circulated with the engine's oil to keep the bearings lubricated. Since naturally aspirated engines lack a stock oil-lining system for the turbocharger, feeding your custom turbo with oil requires modification to the stock oil-pressure sensor, as well as a tap into the oil pan for the turbo's oil-return line. To avoid complicated modifications to the stock components, a vehicle-specific aftermarket oil-line kit can be used. This will hook up to your stock engine with minimal modification, allowing you to properly feed your turbo with oil.
Things You'll Need
- Turbo oil-line kit
- Engine oil
- Thread-locking adhesive
- Socket wrench
- Socket set
- Screwdriver set
- Floor jack
- Jack stands
Raise the front of your vehicle with a floor jack and support the chassis on jack stands. Remove the drain plug located on the oil pan and allow the engine oil to fully drain.
Locate the stock component to be tapped for the turbo's oil-feed line. This will vary depending on the model of your engine. Most custom oil-line kits utilize the stock oil-pressure sensor, located on the side of the engine block. This allows for an easy tapping of the stock oil-circulation system.
Remove the stock oil-system component by unthreading it from the engine block. If utilizing a stock sensor location, the sensor must be replaced with the custom oil line. In this case, your aftermarket kit will come with a T-fitting connector to allow for reinstallation of the stock sensor. To avoid oil leaks, coat your custom oil line threads with thread-locking adhesive before installing it into the engine block.
Route the oil-feed line from the engine block to the turbocharger and thread it into its designated connection. Connect the kit's oil-return line to its designated fitting on the other side of the turbocharger. Route this line down to the oil pan. Replace the oil drain plug with the oil-return bolt, which incorporates a banjo connection to hook the oil-return line directly onto the drain bolt. Tighten down the bolt and secure the oil-return line on the banjo connection.
Refill the engine with oil. Remove the jack stands and lower the vehicle off the floor jack. Start the engine and closely examine all oil-line connections for signs of leaks. Secure any leaking connections immediately to avoid turbocharger oil starvation, which can lead to turbo failure.
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