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99 Cummins Turbo Rebuild

Discussion in 'Ram Trucks' started by AiRhed, Jan 23, 2010.

  1. AiRhed

    AiRhed Senior Member
    Messages: 401

    There's a good many of us runnin CTD powered rams on here. With our turbo's comes added responsibility and maintenance. I made a major no no and shut my truck down hot after towing a skid steer 100 miles. Result: Heat soaked turbo/Fried Compressor Oil Seal. With 270,000 miles on the turbo, I'm sure it was time for a rebuild anyway.

    I was skeptical about attempting this in my garage. But when I was quoted 350 bucks for a professional rebuild, I decided to give it a go. All in all, It is a very simple task for anyone who's done some basic engine repair work. The biggest thing to remember is that turbos are precision balanced. Shafts and compressor wheels need to be carefully marked in relation to each other or the balance will be lost. If the turbo is assembled out of balance, you can do some major damage. If you think you lost the balance don't chance it, a qualified turbo shop will usually charge only $75-85 for a re-balance. Well worth it. Good shops are G-pop shop and High Tech Turbo. They both also sell the rebuild kits and any hard parts you may need. Be careful with what you find on ebay for $50 bucks. Most good kits are $70 or more.

    Here's the oil I found behind the silencer ring after pulling the intake tube.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Turbo off the truck
    [​IMG]

    Oil spray inside the compressor housing.
    [​IMG]
     
  2. AiRhed

    AiRhed Senior Member
    Messages: 401

    Removing the 13mm turbine housing bolts. These clamp the turbine hosing to the center rotating assembly.
    [​IMG]

    Time to mark the housings in relation to each other so everything will line up after reassembly. I used a paint marker at first and then backed everything up with a carbide scriber.
    [​IMG]

    Remove the E-clip that holds the wastegate actuating rod and then remove the wastegate from the compressor housing by unscrewing the elbow.
    [​IMG]

    After removing the wastegate it's time to separate the turbine housing from the center rotating assembly. These two parts are pretty much cold welded from combustion material and oxidation. Here's a trick I came up with. I used the turbine housing clamping bolts to press the housing off. I did this by placing torx-bits between the housings resting on the head of the bolts. As I carefully unthreaded the bots the housing began to slowly separate. PB BLASTER IS YOUR FRIEND HERE! Apply healthy amounts days before you have to do this.
    [​IMG]

    The careful application of heat and a 2-5lb maul was also used. As well as a plastic deadblow. Be careful though, if the housing slips off rapidly and contacts the fins on the turbine, your out of luck.
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2010
  3. AiRhed

    AiRhed Senior Member
    Messages: 401

    Here's another pic of my trick.
    [​IMG]

    Success!
    [​IMG]

    Time to remove the Largest snap ring probably ever made. I used a channel locks. Be careful of the Turbine fins as they are now exposed and vulnerable
    [​IMG]
     
  4. AiRhed

    AiRhed Senior Member
    Messages: 401

    Housing off, Hows this for oil spray!!!!
    Here's the compressor housing backing plate and compressor wheel.
    [​IMG]

    Here's the inside/backside of the compressor housing. Thick, greasy, nasty oil.
    [​IMG]

    Balancing grinds made by Holset. A lot of people see these grinds and thing their turbo has chunked off a piece or is damaged.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  5. AiRhed

    AiRhed Senior Member
    Messages: 401

    My method for removing the Shaft nut was to use two wrenches and a foam pad under the housing to protect the fins. Pad is not in place for this picture. IMPORTANT REMINDER The shaft nut is LEFT HAND THREAD. So it is continuously tightening as the turbo spins. The nut should not be on there "hulk is angry" tight. Mine came off pretty easily, just a small grunt. If you forget the left hand thread, you WILL snap the shaft.
    [​IMG]
     
  6. AiRhed

    AiRhed Senior Member
    Messages: 401

    That's all for now, the shaft is off to High Tech Turbo to be balanced and possibly a grind done. Currently the compressor housings and turbine housing are soaking in buckets of cleaner and I'll start on rebuilding the center rotating assembly tomorrow.
     
  7. quigleysiding

    quigleysiding PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,098

    subscribed
     
  8. sno commander

    sno commander PlowSite.com Addict
    from ct
    Messages: 1,061

    good write up, always cool to do stuff yourself to see how it all works. :drinkup:
     
  9. NICHOLS LANDSCA

    NICHOLS LANDSCA PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 4,310

    Why did you think the seal blew? Was it pouring smoke out the tailpipe? Because that doesn't look like much oil. Doesn't the truck have a PCV/crankcase vent going into the intake?
     
  10. AiRhed

    AiRhed Senior Member
    Messages: 401

    What doesn't look like much oil?

    That?
    [​IMG]

    Or This?
    [​IMG]

    I admit, it doesn't look like a lot of oil in the second picture, but it is definitely an early sign of a big problem. When the oil is leaking on the compressor side, you wont find it in the exhaust until enough oil leaks to make it all the way through the intecooler and into the combustion chamber. Initially you will notice some surging and much more smoke at idle. Possibly your truck will not want to shut off immediately after you remove the key. When you've reached that point and oil is entering the combustion chamber you can get what is called a runaway. Basically, the leaking diesel oil becomes the combustion fuel and if enough is present, the engine will rev until it overspeeds and destroys itself. It's actually quite common since you have to know what your looking for and be ontop of your maintenance if you want to avoid it.

    If I had oil leaking on the turbine/hot side of the turbo. I would see a lot of smoke and there is usually a small oil drip from the exhaust fittings. Oil on this side is not as big of a deal but should be addressed quickly to prevent any damage.

    There is no PCV valve (on dodges) that vents crankcase gasses back into the intake. You will see that on Fords Powerstrokes however. My crankcase vents out the front of my engine block, down a hose and sprays whatever blowby etc onto the pavement, my oil pan, and my axle.
     
  11. AiRhed

    AiRhed Senior Member
    Messages: 401

    Alright, good progress tonight. I've got the center rotating assembly disassembled and in the cleaner.

    Here's the pics and how I did it.

    First thing is to remove the circlip that holds the oil seal plate in place.
    [​IMG]

    After the Circlip is out you have to use a vise grips to remove the oil seal plate. A channel locks will not work. A vise grips set to clamp gently on the center ridge is the only thing that will work. Give it a clamp and wiggle it loose.
    [​IMG]

    Now it's time to remove the thrust bearing(copper color) and thrust collar(tophat looking washer)
    These parts should be replaced by new parts from the rebuild kit. Inspect them for unusual wear and damage as this will tell you more about what has happened to the turbo. I found my thrust collar had a blued section to it. Hinting at my hot shut down and heat soaking of the turbo.
    Here are the parts in order of removal from right to left.
    [​IMG]
    Here's the backsite of the thrust collar showing the bluing
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2010
  12. AiRhed

    AiRhed Senior Member
    Messages: 401

    Now its on to the journal bearings with the tiny hard to reach circlips. Switch to the smallest needle point circlip tips in your tool box for these. You'll also need to set them as far out as they'll go to reach the innermost clips.
    [​IMG]

    I used an allen wrench to get the journal bearings out. A dentists pic works great too.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  13. AiRhed

    AiRhed Senior Member
    Messages: 401

    Here's the turbo shaft with both wheels on its way into a usps flat rate box.
    [​IMG]

    Printing on back of compressor wheel showing date of manufacturing. Kinda cool. It's definitely a 99.
    [​IMG]

    Backside of Turbine wheel showing factory balancing grind.
    [​IMG]

    The wonderful, Ice laiden, no snowing world outside my garage. Yea, I've got a custom mount on the Grand Prix
    [​IMG]
     
  14. DAFFMOBILEWASH

    DAFFMOBILEWASH PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,597

    While you are working on the turbo have you given any thought to upgrades??? Or what about other turbos from different years?? Is 99 the best for this truck or is it a cost factor??

    Sure is nice to see the inner workings and simplicity of the turbo. You will have it spooling again before you know it!!! Love the sound of the newer trucks with the silencer ring removed!!
     
  15. AiRhed

    AiRhed Senior Member
    Messages: 401

    I did consider a few upgrades, including a completely new upgraded turbo from High Tech Turbo. However, it is not in the budget. The ones I'm interested in fall between $1200 and $3000. So I stuck with my turbo. Total cost will be $150 dollars out the door. Without balancing total cost would be $85. The rebalancing is optional if you carefully mark the turibine/compressor wheels in relation to each other.

    Why I chose to go with a 99 HX35? There are two different factory turbos for these trucks. The HY35 and the HX35. It is generally accepted that the HX35 is better at flowing air than the HY35. The HY's were for the automatics and flow less air but are able to spool faster. The rapid spool is very important for driveability with the auto transmission. A lot of guys with the auto will swap in an HX35, loose maybe a little driveability, but gain better boost and considerably lower EGT's. Both those benefits far outweigh the cost.

    I chose to stick with my factory turbo, the HX35. For the most part this was a cost factor. There are many more turbos that will fit the truck with relatively simple modifications. Including some older and some newer turbos from dodge cummins powered trucks. The one I was considering the most is an s300g. Which is a BorgWarner turbo. A lot of guys are reporting good things about these and they are very affordable. Between 250-500 bucks.

    Here's an s300g from BD performance sitting next to an HY35. These are some of their top sellers for 24V's.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]


    Here's my conversation with Anthony from High Tech Turbo.


     
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2010