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Discussion Starter #1
After using the forum to find information regarding the blown turbo on my Clovereaf I thought I'd share what I have learnt & the conclusion in case it can help other owners.

The turbo on my Cloverleaf 'blew' on the motorway, after initially assuming I had a split turbo pipe the racket from the turbo housing confirmed to my horror a knackered turbo at 56000 mostly motorway miles. Usual sketch, check engine light & limp mode.
Car serviced by Alfa, oil level checked weekly (never really uses any). Always cool down/idle properly before switch off

I have had a string of turbocharged cars, never had an issue before even at well over 100k miles.

Searching this forum & the web it flagged up a known 'issue' with these turbos. I read that Alfa want £3500 to do the work & £2600 just to supply the turbo (if you can get one!).
The going rate for new turbos is usually £1000 - £1500 so I thought 'that cant be right?'
It is unfortunately, I was quoted the same figures by Alfa dealer!

'No problem I thought, I will phone alfa parts dealers' - Bad news! They all said they have regular enquiries looking for these 'problem' turbos, "none available", "dealer exclusive part", "you can't get them refurbed"

I phoned & emailed the list of Turbo specialists, almost all of them said "its too new, no parts yet", "dealer exclusive part" & "no chance". many of the firms said they could do it initially but then changed their minds when they looked into it.

Finally some progress, one company phoned me back with good news. They confirmed the correct turbo part number (I asked for this to prove they did know what turbo parts were needed etc.) They said: "done 5 identical turbos in 12 months, all had the same issue".

Turbo was collected on one day, phone call with price quote & confirmation job could be done. I told them to go ahead & got it back the next day! All of the original parts were soda blasted & look new, turbo internals replaced with new parts. I had to supply the actuator so this could be calibrated etc. Returned with bearing pre-primed with oil, 24 month warranty, fitting instructions & warnings. Invoice & guarantee certs arrived in the post 2 days later.
Cost for turbo repair = £599 incl VAT & carriage.

Report with the turbo said: The turbo shaft had snapped, probably caused by poor oil supply (not necessarily low sump oil level).
I replaced the oil feed pipe & cleaned out the oil drain pipe. I checked for a healthy oil flow when turned over on the starter (minimum required is approx 1 litre/min - 0.25 in 15 secs).
Squirted oil down the feed pipe to prim turbo before reconnecting feed pipe to turbo etc.

Intercooler flushed out, oil was found pooled in the lowest part of the feed pipe from compressor to intercooler. No oil was in the exhaust side of the turbo so there were no clouds of smoke when turbo failed.

Switched off the 'check engine light' to put it out of limp mode. OBD fault reader £11.80 (delivered) off eBay cleared the fault, its not come back.

Engine flush,new oil, coolant, gaskets & rebuilt turbo = £600 approx.
400 miles done, no oil or coolant level drop - all seems well.

Apart from the disappointment of the (seemingly not uncommon) early turbo failure I am surprised at how old my 2011 car looks under the bonnet with the engine covers removed. So many of the bolts & brackets etc have the plating rusting off already. The brackets that hold the exhaust to the block look like they were excavated from a ww1 trench!

If you compare with my other car which has 120k miles which is 10 years, turbocharged it looks in far better condition than the Alfa.

Anyway, car is running normally again & I feel less angry about it now.
I hope this info is useful if your turbo is blown, £2600 from the dealer for the part is hideous & not necessary. PM me if you need the turbo specialist name & number.

The turbo is a Borg Warner (yes, the gearbox company) formerly kkk turbos.
Perhaps the Giulietta gearbox woes widely reported on here are because the gearboxes are being made by Garret Turbos ;)
 

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Borg Warner's gearbox on my Evo was absolute ****e. They've farmed most manufacturing out to China, like so many, and the parts supply is becoming unreliable as a result. It's, sadly, a universal issue. So, sadly, is the rusting under all the plastic covers. My local mechanic was shocked at how much corrosion he found on the Mitsi as well. That only had 31,000 on the clock. As the market becomes more and more competitive, cheap cost cutter parts are becoming, sadly, the norm. Cars were far better made in the '80s and '90s IMO.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Borg Warner's gearbox on my Evo was absolute ****e. They've farmed most manufacturing out to China, like so many, and the parts supply is becoming unreliable as a result. It's, sadly, a universal issue. So, sadly, is the rusting under all the plastic covers. My local mechanic was shocked at how much corrosion he found on the Mitsi as well. That only had 31,000 on the clock. As the market becomes more and more competitive, cheap cost cutter parts are becoming, sadly, the norm. Cars were far better made in the '80s and '90s IMO.
I have a company car allowance & often buy new cars, the rust on unpainted parts is the worst of any car I've had regardless of age & mileage. Oh well, lesson learnt!
 

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Discussion Starter #6

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Discussion Starter #7
What Oil did you feed the Cloverleaf?
It has been dealer maintained, so whatever oil they put in it (I'd hope it was Selina but reading the forum it appears that some dealers dont use it). It hardly uses anything between services.

Its been topped up with Magnatec 5w30 C3, but I've not gone through a 1 litre container of it in over 2 years.

I'm told that an uprated oil feed pipe is available, alfa dealer denied any knowledge
 

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Yes this was concluded as an oil issue spacifically the period/distance between changes. 35000km does simply not cut it. 15000km at most or every 12 months.

with Selenia Power Sport ONLY...the ONLY is the operative word.
 

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It has been dealer maintained, so whatever oil they put in it (I'd hope it was Selina but reading the forum it appears that some dealers dont use it). It hardly uses anything between services.

Its been topped up with Magnatec 5w30 C3, but I've not gone through a 1 litre container of it in over 2 years.

I'm told that an uprated oil feed pipe is available, alfa dealer denied any knowledge
Yes this was concluded as an oil issue spacifically the period/distance between changes. 35000km does simply not cut it. 15000km at most or every 12 months.

with Selenia Power Sport ONLY...the ONLY is the operative word.
What Guili posted is where i wanted to go.

It may not even be related (or remotely related) to your particular case, but Alfa Romeo's change from Selenia Star PE to Sport Power happened for a reason. I wouldn't feed mine anything different (and maintain the 12 month change).

Anyway, i'm sorry this happened to you :(
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Early failure appears to be a particular problem in this model of turbo on a 1750tbi, and uprated oil feed pipe appears to be a solution tried by Alfa.

I just nipped out to check, the Magnatec 5w30 I've topped with in 2 years is approx 500ml.
That is 250ml per year. Surely that can't be enough oil of the 'wrong brand', especially good quality oil to cause the trouble.

kkk (Borg Warner) turbos are in many many cars, the different manufacturers recommend different brands of oil. A fully synthetic quality branded oil for turbocharged cars in the right weight & additives should be sufficient avoid sudden & catastrophic bearing failure. Race engine builders usually have a favourite too, Mobil1 seems popular.

My car is dealer maintained including oil but out of warranty. There has to be a flaw if this problem is as widespread as suggested. Either the oil feed and/or the interval specified by Alfa appear to be insufficient



In any case, the point of my thread was to point out that there is an alternative to the £3500 repair bill from Alfa Romeo. It can be done for £600 approx.

If your car is out of warranty, I hope this information helps you :thumbs:
 

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Why the 5W30?

Even Castrol recommends on their site the Magnatec 5W-40 C3 (although it doesn't meet Fiat 9.55535-GH2 classification, only the S2)
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Why the 5W30?

Even Castrol recommends on their site the Magnatec 5W-40 C3 (although it doesn't meet Fiat 9.55535-GH2 classification, only the S2)
Because when I was away from home working it was the closest I could get on the day I topped it up, like I said 250ml a year shouldnt be a problem when mixed in with over 5 litres of Selina should it?

I doubt that caused the turbo to fail.
 

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Part number was changed mid June 2013 from 55258147 to 55224364 doesn't say why though.

Change that, dam ePer is confusing as to which is the current part number.

There is also a Service News in 2013 for the same thing for oil, turbo and pipe.
 

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Part number was changed mid June 2013 from 55258147 to 55224364 doesn't say why though.

Change that, dam ePer is confusing as to which is the current part number.

There is also a Service News in 2013 for the same thing for oil, turbo and pipe.
The 55258147 is the new/current one (same used on the 4C, obviously).
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Out of interest with the turbo blown were there any options to you for fitting a bigger turbo?

Also has anyone actually fitted this updated oil pipe?
I only found one firm that said they could definitely refurb it, nobody offered an upgrade.
 
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