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Old March 9th, 2011, 18:16   #1
DZL_WANTED
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Default Help!!!! Large amount of oil in intercooler!!!!

Alright heres my problem, I am in diesel truck technology and were working on my 2003 NB TDI in the shop for the heck of it. Well my instructor wants to know why in the world is my intercooler full of oil and how and why the oil is getting there. He says that in normal heavy diesel motors that are in big rigs this is a sign of a bad turbo. I read something on the forum about it being normal in a TDI.......I think..........basically what i need to know is the exact in depth reason there is oil running through my intercooler piping and through my EGR and into my intake manifold.

the link to what i read on the forum is here:
http://forums.tdiclub.com/showthread...rcooler+Piping
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Old March 10th, 2011, 04:48   #2
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Need more info. How many miles? What is the repair history? Define "large amount of oil" and "intercooler full of oil". Reading some of the other associated posts, you may want to park the car while you post more detailed info and await replies.

If you're noticing that the engine oil dipstick seems to show high oil consumption and you're finding lots of oil in the intercooler, that could be a sign that you have luckily caught a failed turbo (oil seals, dumping oil into the intake tract, as your instructor says), and possibly avoided a very expensive engine runaway or hydraulic lock condition. If that's the case, I'd recommend don't run the engine until you get this confirmed / sorted out. It is typical to find some oil in the intercooler over time, but not several cups or a quart etc.
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Old March 10th, 2011, 05:27   #3
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There is always some oilyness in the entire charge air tract. But if a cup of oil pours out when you take the lower charge air cooler hose off, you probably do have some problems.

Keep in mind, driving the car too easy for too long can also allow for more accumulation than normal.
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Old March 10th, 2011, 06:50   #4
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Your instructor is correct. "A large amount" of oil is a sign of the turbo oil seal failing. Best to investigate further before you have a runaway or hydrolock from the engine consuming it's own oil.

Like the oilhammer said, some oil in the intake tract is normal.
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Old March 10th, 2011, 18:08   #5
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I would judge the amount of oil in the intake to be related by how much is in the crankcase. In other words, if you are not adding oil all the time and it stays near full to the next oil change you're good.

As for the big trucks, those guys always have their foot in it all the time so no oil will collect in the intake system.

Last edited by joetdi; March 10th, 2011 at 18:13.
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Old March 10th, 2011, 20:26   #6
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Default Oil in inter cooler

Quote:
Originally Posted by joetdi View Post
I would judge the amount of oil in the intake to be related by how much is in the crankcase. In other words, if you are not adding oil all the time and it stays near full to the next oil change you're good.

As for the big trucks, those guys always have their foot in it all the time so no oil will collect in the intake system.
I agree!

100% of the TDIs will accumulate oil in the Intercooler....just a fact! The normal accumulation is oil mist in the blow-by from the crankcase ventilation system. And, as alluded to by others posting in this Thread, taking the RPMs up to or near 4000 occassionally will generally keep the accumulation to a minimum!........blows it on down stream to the Intake into the cylinders and burned!

But, ...........the dip stick is the way to tell the difference in Normal and something more serious ......Turbo Seals about to go kaput!
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Last edited by AndyBees; March 10th, 2011 at 20:28. Reason: Add info
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Old March 6th, 2018, 04:42   #7
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Removed the lower intercooler junction in the hose and drenched my arm in a pouring of oil and then drained another 300ml or more into catch tray... will post pics as I get to the turbo.
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Old March 6th, 2018, 05:41   #8
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Should probably start new thread regarding your situation and findings. This one was started/last active six to seven years ago.
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Old March 6th, 2018, 16:57   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blis View Post
Removed the lower intercooler junction in the hose and drenched my arm in a pouring of oil and then drained another 300ml or more into catch tray... will post pics as I get to the turbo.
Please go start a new thread, this one is old,7+years

also DO NOT DRIVE THIS CAR
your turbo journal bearings have failed, if you run it, you risk a run away as that oil can become fuel to a engine that will blow the F up on your azz. Member here just had a run away and his engine exploded and cracked into 3 parts on the block.

Take the turbo off and report back how much play it has, we will help you, but you need to start a new thread and DO NOT DRIVE IT or even try and start it up, suck it up and trust me on this one.
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Old March 7th, 2018, 00:03   #10
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OK Guys, will take some pics and I've made good headway, it's slow but good
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Old March 7th, 2018, 08:30   #11
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Guys, why would you want Blis to start a new Thread? We see comments time and again, "use the Search function." His question and concerns are relevant whether this Thread is old or somewhere in between.

Looks like I commented 7 years ago. And, I have an entirely different opinion today. Most of the oil is from the Turbo opposed to the blow-by mist. The CCV on the ALH in my Vanagon is vented to the exhaust via an Evac-extractor and I still get some oil in the IC, related pipes and Intake

Somewhere in my stash of photos, I have pics when I removed the pressure hose at the Inter Cooler on a 2003 Jetta with 149k miles on it. I was drenched with oil..... worst one I have ever dealt with. This was the first TB job on the engine (2nd owner and verified by the 1st owner). Today, at 301k miles the car is running just fine with the same Turbo.

Depending on the miles/kilometers on the Turbo and proper maintenance, it may not need a Turbo. They all, even new, dump some oil, especially at engine idle due to less back pressure!
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Old March 7th, 2018, 09:29   #12
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I agree with Andy in regards to not having to start a new thread; especially when the subject matter has been discussed numerous times before. I would not consider reviving a seven year old thread as hi-jacking either.
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Old March 7th, 2018, 09:50   #13
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I appreciate the points expressed here regarding the age of this thread, but his question is relevant here so I see no problem with his post or the need to start a new thread. I would suggest he double check the oil on the dipstick, and if the level is not way down, the oil may have been collecting since the previous owner had the car. Unless there is a bit more evidence, I would try not to scare this new TDI-er into needing a turbo as the only explanation for the oil.
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Old March 7th, 2018, 10:44   #14
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I know I'm in the minority, but I like reusing old threads if the subject matches.
The OP was a student, bils popped in 7 years later same problem, but real world.
We know some collection is normal, but I like Nevada's suggestion-monitor engine oil usage.
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