How to Install a Turbo Exhaust Manifold

For the automobile owner who wants increased power and performance from his car, a turbo exhaust manifold is an excellent solution. But it can also be significantly risky. Without needed boost control and tuning, installing this manifold can contribute to engine damage. For instructions about installing one of these manifolds, check out the information below:

Tools and Materials Needed:

  • Work light
  • Wheel chocks
  • Car jack
  • Jack stands
  • Torque wrench

Step 1 – Preparing to Install Your Manifold

The manifold you purchase will come in a kit, if you purchase it new. Before beginning your installation, open the kit and check the parts against the parts list you'll find with the kit. Don't begin installing until you know all parts are included.

Step 2 – Raise Your Vehicle

You'll need to work on the underside of your vehicle, which means you'll need to raise it high enough to work safely under it. You'll also need to work where there is ample light. If necessary, have a work light with you under the car. When you're ready to begin installing your manifold, use a dependable car jack to raise your car high enough to place jack stands under its frame. Then lower the car until it rests on these stands.

Step 3 – Remove the Car's Exhaust Manifold

Locate your car's exhaust manifold and the exhaust pipes that are attached to it. Be sure the manifold has cooled if your car's engine has been running, as it can be hot enough to burn you if it has not had time to cool. Use a wrench to remove the bolts that connect the manifold to the engine block. Allow the manifold to drop far enough to attach your new turbo, but to avoid bending the pipes attached to the manifold. Do not force the manifold downward.

Step 3 – Installing Your Turbo

From your turbo kit take your turbo, gasket and exhaust. Put the gasket into place, install the turbo onto the engine block and manifold. Tighten the nuts with your torque wrench according to specifications from your kit. Then, connect the new exhaust.

Step 4 – Install the Oil Feed Line

Take your oil feed line from your turbo kit and connect it to your engine's oil source as described in your turbo kit (probably the oil pressure sensor).

Step 5 – Install a Bung on Your Oil Pan

You will need a bung on your oil pan (a closure, or seal, that is partially inserted into the oil pan). Remove the oil pan and have a welder attach one of these bungs onto the pan. This bung will be used with your car's oil return line. With the bung welded onto the oil pan, install the pan with the return line connected between pan and turbo.

Step 6 – Install a Boost Gauge

To monitor boost pressure, install one end of a vacuum line to the intake manifold's vacuum source and the other end to the car's cabin. To compensate for supplemental air that enters the motor and adjusts fuel intake, flash the engine control module. This step is critical to avoiding damage to your car's engine.