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Hi all,

While changing my oil today I checked up on my turbo health. It has had a slight internal oil leak since I got it as you can see. So I decided to check for play in the shaft and it has a little bit. Nothing major, no metal shavings in there, but it has some play. How long can I keep running this thing? Truck is mainly just a DD right now. Also can it be rebuilt or does it have to be replaced? Can anyone recommend a rebuild kit or good a replacement turbo? I don't plan to make crazy power so I don't necessarily want to upgrade unless someone has a really compelling reason. It is for the truck in my sig.

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I am also curious about this.

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Clearly that is some very fine metal wear and it was caught on my magnetic drain plug from Geno's. Is it anything to be concerned about?

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Up & Down shaft play is expected and perfectly normal.  Put a slight about of pressure on the shaft in every direction while spinning the wheel.  If there is no rubbing, you're fine.  There has to be some play due to the bearing design.

It's in and out play that is the big no no.  Maximum of .0064" (.16mm)

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Your oil leak could be contributed to large amounts of idle time?

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Ok thanks, I'll check the in and out play next time I have it apart, didn't think of that today. I did push on the shaft like you said and it didn't seem to rub. I don't idle that much. I do let it warm up for 10 mins sometimes before driving but not a lot I don't think. What do you think of the metal wear on the magnet of the drain plug?Normal or something to panic about? 

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If I were you I would do a few early oil changes to try and flush out that metal.

7 hours ago, Cowboy said:

 

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How early? This oil change was just under 3000 miles because I wanted to switch to synth before the cold hits. I was planning to go 5000 on this one....

Edited by leathermaneod

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Just now, leathermaneod said:

How early?

Few hundred miles. Swap oil filters also. Do that a few times. Also flush the pan out. With the plug out dump about 1/2 a gallon of oil through the crankcase and let it drain.

I'd bet that's iron from the block. What air filter are you using? 

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I am using a Donaldson bhaf, but the po had a k&n :-( but do you think there is metal floating around in there that needs to be flushed out? Or is that just wear metal that got pulled to the magnet on the drain plug and so removed from the oil? I mean it's not like I saw pieces of metal in the oil....if I didn't have that aftermarket drain plug from Geno's I would never have found this....that stuff was very fine....

Edited by leathermaneod

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58 minutes ago, leathermaneod said:

I am using a Donaldson bhaf, but the po had a k&n :-( but do you think there is metal floating around in there that needs to be flushed out? Or is that just wear metal that got pulled to the magnet on the drain plug and so removed from the oil? I mean it's not like I saw pieces of metal in the oil....if I didn't have that aftermarket drain plug from Geno's I would never have found this....that stuff was very fine....

The K&N probably let dirt in. I'd flush it.

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In the pan, I'm not worried about it as much. You've got the magnetic plug capturing the debris. Then the oil has to be pumped into the oil filter. Again going to be captured by a full flow filter before going out to the engine bearings and such.

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Thanks! That makes me feel a lot better. I know a decent amount about how to fix vehicles, but I don't have the experience to know what this kind of stuff indicates or how best to handle it. Greatly appreciate everyones advice as always! Merry Christmas to all BTW.

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Metal is still disturbing. The problem is finding out what metal is from. Blackstone will tell you what kind of metal but that's about it. It will give clues on what it might be. Also don't discount the turbo it might be the source of the metal being you already seeing oil in the turbo.

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So if the metal is from the turbo, is it from the turbo housing or the compressor wheel? Also, is it possible that the amount of metal I'm seeing is normal wear? Just that most don't see it because the stock drain plug doesnt have a magnet?

Is it possible to rebuild a holset turbo or should I buy a new one? The po did have a K&N, but I have cleaned the turbo up a little bit where I can reach and the oil always comes back so I'm thinking it probably does leak...

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If it was me I would pull the turbo and rebuild it yourself. The bearing kits are about $100 or so. Look for Holset Bearings no cheap china stuff here.
While the turbo is off, look and see how far that oil went into the system if it reached the intercooler you going to have to pull the radiator and the intercooler to wash the intercooler out with solvent. As for the metal, it could be piston wear to from the ingested dust from the crappy K&N filter. This you can do a compression test to verify the health of each cylinder.

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What do you think about the possibility of it being normal wear? 

Is a turbo rebuild something I can tackle pretty easily with the kit? Any special tools I need or big problems I may encounter? Any special tips or instructions for me? I saw some kits on eBay, anything else specific to look for in a rebuild kit? other that what you already mentioned? what all should be included in the kit?

I don't really have the money for a compression test right now, so ill just have to start with the turbo rebuild and oil analysis. 

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You can download Cummins turbo rebuild manual and I believe at least one of the vendors on the site here have a Cummins rebuild kit. When I did mine I needed to replace waste gate housing gasket as it was leaking. I also replaced turbo to manifold gasket. Not too tough. You can do it. 

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Thanks for the encouragement! now I'm just a little hung up on if i actually need to rebuild it or not...Im pretty sure it leaks oil, but I'm not totally sure. But i guess it would be a good place to start looking for the cause of the metal wear?

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Kinda sounds like your just a little apprehensive about diving into this. I was too. You can probably find a video on turbo rebuild. In fact you could probably do a video for this site. Don't know about that for sure, gotta ask someone smarter than me!

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I am definitely a little apprehensive, but I just got off the phone with Fred at DAP. I ordered their rebuild kit and exhaust housing gasket and oil drain gasket. He said based on what I told him about the turbo the metal in the oil is probably from the turbo bearings. Hopefully he is right. Anyway he was very helpful and helped me get everything I need. All total with 2nd day shipping was $99.51. Anyone that has tips on rebuilding a turbo please post them!

Thanks!

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