Turbocharger provides additional power to the engine and improves the drive quality. Adding a turbocharger to the engine requires detailed research. You will need to decide the size of the turbocharger and other ancillary components to be used.
The other important considerations while installing turbochargers include the place of installation, lubrication, cooling, etc. Some of the key factors to consider for the same are discussed below:
Where to Install
The first consideration in setting up a turbocharger is to decide where to install it.
Generally, it is plumbed into the exhaust system and placed as near to the engine as possible. In most cases, turbochargers are bolted to the exhaust pipe. Turbochargers can become very hot and it is important to place them in a manner that the heat-sensitive parts of the vehicle are shielded.
Lubrication and Cooling
Turbines in the turbocharger spin at very high speeds that can go up to 200,000 RPM. Such high speeds can create issues relating to lubrication and cooling. In some of the hottest parts, the turbocharger can reach temperatures of up to 900-degrees Celsius.
The lubrication system of a turbocharger is specially designed to deal with high temperatures.
The bearings of a turbocharger are lubricated using the filtered oil-feed system of the engine. Some turbochargers come with a water-cooled center bearing to provide additional cooling. This helps to take the heat away from the bearings and ensure their longevity.
Boost pressure is created by the exhaust pressure and a spinning compressor wheel. Sometimes it is possible to feed the engine a boost that is higher than its octane rating.
The engine may be unable to handle the high boost and it could lead to mechanical failures. Such a condition is known as overboost and can be controlled by a wastegate that is a valve for bypassing the gases around the turbocharger into the exhaust flow.
Depending upon the type of vehicle and turbocharger, you should decide the correct location, type, and size of the wastegate.
Turbochargers have improved drastically over time. Most turbo systems use some form of engine management that takes care of the electronic ignition and fuel injection system.
This also prevents the problem of knocking that was common with earlier turbochargers. Some turbochargers come with a performance control system which controls boost pressure at safe levels. It also allows the vehicle to run efficiently on any grade of fuel through its compensation feature.