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Discussion Starter #1
Hey folks...

My wife drives a 2000 F250 7.3 Powerstroke. Uses it for hauling a horse trailer.

I'm not terribly savvy on these vehicles so I just want to checkout some information she was given...

She noticed a drop in power and some noise so she stopped by our regular mechanic. He said a bolt was backing out of the turbo and that this indicated that something was split and required a replacement of the turbo.

I don't have all the details yet but I'm wondering... Does this sound right? He says that the bolt can not be tightened because the turbo is splitting and the only solution is to replace the turbo.

Any info appreciated!
 

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It sounds like the mechanic is trying to take you for a ride. The bolts holding the turbo together can work loose and allow the turbo to split apart, it's designed to split. You should be able to put some locktite on the bolts and tighten them down. Now if the housing has split enough, it's possible that it hit the wheel in which case you may have enough damage to require turbo replacement.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the reply...

That's what I thought on the turbo... He's not saying anything about any other damage and let her leave without tightening the bolt. Told her it couldn't be tightened because it would split the turbo more. Probably showed her where the housing was splitting simply because the bolt was loose.

Like I say, I a haven't had a chance to look at it yet but from what she describes it sounds like the mechanic is looking to make a payday. Personally, I don't trust him as he's pulled this crap before. We live in a small town so he's convenient. But, he's quoting $1500 to replace the turbo so I think it's time to get a second opinion on it.

He says that this is a common issue with the Powerstroke turbo.
 

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It's not a uncommon issue. Some people have gone as far as drilling the bolt heads so they can safety wire the bolts. $1500 is a bit insane. The hardest part is getting the V band clamp off at the rear. Otherwise, it's just two bolts at the to of the turbo once you have everything out of the way. If you decide to do it yourself, get some new orings for the pedestal.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Cool... Thanks for the help mate!

In talking to my wife on the phone I was mistaken about the noise... There was no noise. What really happened is that the truck starts to run like crap if it gets below a 1/4 tank of fuel. She fills it up and it runs fine. No noise or anything... She stopped in to the mechanic's shop to get them to change the fuel filter, because she's seen this before and that was the problem. Then the guy starts in about the turbo and says that's the problem and it's about to blow. I see where I can buy a brand new replacement for about $600.. $900 to replace? Really? Maybe not.

Tell me one other thing if you would... Even if the turbo actually went bad, could this possibly damage the engine, or anything else? Or would it still just be a matter of replacing the turbo.
 

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The 1/4 tank of fuel issue could be the mixing chamber in the tank. There is an annoying mixing chamber that combines return fuel with supply fuel. If the chamber has a issue, the truck will start to suck air around 1/4 tank. Here's a good writeup on how to bypass the chamber.

You don't want to let the turbo go too long. If you fix the bolts quick enough, there may not be any damage to the turbo. There are several things that could happen with the housing loose.
1) suck in dirt
2) compressor hits the housing and metal shavings go in the engine
3) compressor hits housing causing the seal to go out, oil gets pumped into intake and you have a runnaway engine
4) Not enough air for the fuel supplied causes EGT to go over 1250 which over time causes pistons to melt
 

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The day I bought my 2000 F-350, I was showing it off to my dad and somehow noticed that one of the bolts was missing on the turbo center section. On closer inspection, another bolt was backing out as well. I replaced them with a pair of Allen bolts and it's been fine ever since, though I should replace them with the correct Ford part.
 
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