MY05 Liberty GT auto ... worried about turbo

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MY05 Liberty GT auto ... worried about turbo

Postby binary » Wed May 02, 2018 12:09 pm

Hi guys,

I've just bought an auto MY05 Liberty GT with approx 220k on the clock. Has been regularly serviced all its life (every 10k kms) and drives nicely. One thing I'm worried about is the turbo, I've never been in another Liberty GT so not sure what a "normal" one sounds like, but I can hear the turbo quite a lot, especially between 3-4k rpm. Like as it spools it is definitely audible in cabin with the windows up, and I can't quite be sure but I am worried it's the dreaded dentist drill sound, albeit just mildly. Is this just the normal sound these make when they spool up? The sound isn't noticeable in lower or higher RPMs and it still seems to pull hard, but again I don't have any other GTs to compare it to.

I've been watching vids on youtube of other GTs trying to work out if its normal or not, and some kind of sound like it, and others not so much... argh!
Main thing I'm worried about is the turbo letting go and stuffing the motor.

From the reading I've been doing today it sounds like the banjo filter could be clogged and starving the turbo, but this doesn't seem to be straight forward to reach in order to remove... and if that is the case, the turbo may be past the point of no return anyway. I'm happy to pull the motor down a bit to get to it though!

It sounds like the best thing to do would be to actually inspect the turbo for shaft play, what's the easiest way to get to ours to check it? (all the info I have found online is for the USDM ones and it sounds like dropping the dump is the easiest for them, but given we have steering / brake stuff there too I figure that is a lot harder on a RHD car).
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Re: MY05 Liberty GT auto ... worried about turbo

Postby craig_ » Wed May 02, 2018 2:24 pm

Are there any modification to the air intake?

Does it have a silicone intake or a cold air intake? These will make wooshy wossh noises.
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Re: MY05 Liberty GT auto ... worried about turbo

Postby binary » Wed May 02, 2018 2:53 pm

Hey Craig,

Nah all looks stock from the outside at least, I'll pull the airbox apart tonight and see what type of filter is in there. I definitely can hear plenty of whooshing from 2k rpm as boost starts to build, and I can also hear the BOV / recirc valve doing its thing when I back off the throttle (just stock item but I can hear the internal whoosh, could be wastegate too I guess).

I initially thought it must just be how they sound, but because of the mileage and that I believe its on the original turbo, I've started to get paranoid that its not quite right. I'll try and get a vid of it tonight and throw it on youtube as I'm sure you'll be able to determine quickly whether it sounds right or not.
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Re: MY05 Liberty GT auto ... worried about turbo

Postby binary » Thu May 03, 2018 9:50 am

I didn't manage to pull the airbox off last night but I did try and get some vids... too much road noise though so I will have to try again at that.

Listening to the noise further, I was noticing it most between 3-4k rpm as in normal auto mode the revs sit around here when under mild acceleration in all gears... so I switched to sport mode and manually took the revs slowly up to redline and the sound is there all the time. It's definitely dentist drill'ish, but definitely not overly loud. Now I've been stressing about it I think it's getting louder, but again it could just be because I'm listening for it... Thinking it might be worthwhile buying one of the Kinugawa VF38 CHRA replacements and just be done with it.
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Re: MY05 Liberty GT auto ... worried about turbo

Postby craig_ » Fri May 04, 2018 2:57 pm

Have a listen to your power steering pump.. it maybe that. There is an O ring that leaks in the suction pipe. It's a common fault.

Any check engine lights?
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Re: MY05 Liberty GT auto ... worried about turbo

Postby bigBADbenny » Sat May 05, 2018 9:36 am

last time i had this issue it was just audio interference from my bluetooth adapter coming through the speakers...

The easiest inspection would be to pull the tmic and look for metal flakes at the inlet side.

Otherwise, being a journal bearing, they have just under a mm or so play when theyre good, so you really need to inspect the entry on the comp cover (or turbine) to see if the blades are making contact.

Perhaps guiding an inspection camera down the inlet post short fat bit would be the go...
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Re: MY05 Liberty GT auto ... worried about turbo

Postby binary » Sat Jun 09, 2018 10:50 am

Hey guys,

Thanks for the replies! I think it could be the combination of a few problems... since my last post I’ve had the P0134 code thrown (CEL and cruise flashing). I pulled the code using the diag mode. So seems front o2 sensor is on the way out.

Also, just pulled the plastic cover off the motor for the first time and I can see quite a bit of oil on the back of the compressor housing. I suspect the seal here is busted. It’s been throwing oil all around out the back there. What would one recommend? Given the age of the turbo would it be worthwhile rebuilding with new seals, or just go straight to a replacement CHRA?

Quick vid showing oil ...



Second vid with TMIC removes. Can see oil is definitely coming from back side of compressor housing, or the compressor side of the CHRA. The oil is thrown out following the rotation of the turbo.



And there is some oil noticeable in the TMIC, not running out, but definite wet residue... but no metal flakes which is good
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Re: MY05 Liberty GT auto ... worried about turbo

Postby bigBADbenny » Sat Jun 09, 2018 5:37 pm

Ok whilst the tmic is off, remove the pcv valve and clean it with thinners and a blast of air.

Oil at the turbo can be due to excessive crank case pressure due to a blocked pcv.
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Re: MY05 Liberty GT auto ... worried about turbo

Postby binary » Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:38 pm

bigBADbenny wrote:Ok whilst the tmic is off, remove the pcv valve and clean it with thinners and a blast of air.

Oil at the turbo can be due to excessive crank case pressure due to a blocked pcv.


Thanks mate! I put it back together before I saw your post unfortunately. All good, I know how to pull the TMIC off now so it won’t take too long. A job for next weekend :) I’ll let you know how it goes.

While I had the bonnet up I hooked up a boost gauge which has confirmed I get full boost in all gears (except 1st) of 15-16psi. So I presume that’s a good sign at least?!
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Re: MY05 Liberty GT auto ... worried about turbo

Postby binary » Thu Jul 05, 2018 1:51 pm

So, bit of a development... Did the Upper Engine Clean today, and when I was adding the Seafoam to the motor via the vac line off the BOV, I noticed smoke start to pour out of near the turbo... looks like I've got one or more major exhaust leak from the downpipe gasket I think. I do get exhaust smell in the car with the A/C not on recirc, and had been meaning to look into it. So... exhaust leak, plus oil leak I think from the oil feed banjo on the top of the turbo. I also bought a used TD04HLA that needs a new cartridge.

I don't think the turbo is stuffed yet, need to throw some new gaskets on the exhaust and also on the oil feed line then see how it goes...!

UPDATE: Hmm looking at how much the gaskets will cost, and the work involved (i.e. turbo has to be pretty much pulled off as I can't be sure the exhaust leak isn't the up pipe), I nearly think it'd be worthwhile doing a full turbo rebuild / replacement while its apart. Decisions decisions...
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Re: MY05 Liberty GT auto ... worried about turbo

Postby bigBADbenny » Thu Jul 05, 2018 4:05 pm

Unless you can score a good s/h oem turbo for a decent price, just upgrading to the kinugawa stock twin scroll replacement might be a good option, pending the rebuild costing...

Info: https://www.google.com.au/search?biw=32 ... b1ek-P4KZ0.
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Re: MY05 Liberty GT auto ... worried about turbo

Postby binary » Fri Jul 06, 2018 10:43 am

Thanks mate, that's a really good point! To do a rebuild, I was thinking the Kinugawa Billet CHRA ($600ish) plus gasket kit and line kit ($150ish) ... that's still $750, and would require me to spend the time to do the work of replacing the CHRA and cleaning up the housings.

I've just been looking at the kits and you can pick up either a Kinugawa or Mamba TD04HL-20T (VF38 replacement) with all lines and gaskets for $1,100-1,200 delivered. Wonder whether Billet or cast would be better? I prefer the idea of Billet given its from a solid block and potentially would have a better profile, although may spool slightly slower given the (potentially) extra weight. Pretty sweet deal. Especially given the power potential of one of these units over the stock unit given the bigger compressor and exhaust housings/wheels.

Although I've also just seen this pop up on eBay which sounds alright, I'd like to know how many km are on it first though as "excellent working order" doesn't necessarily fill me with confidence: https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Subaru-Libe ... 3337146181 ... plus, I'd still need a gasket set and might as well do the lines at the same time, so plus $150ish... along with the "unknown" condition. Makes me think a brand new unit would be the better idea in the long run (plus more fun given the tuning potential!)
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Re: MY05 Liberty GT auto ... worried about turbo

Postby jarrenowen » Fri Jul 06, 2018 8:36 pm

binary wrote:Wonder whether Billet or cast would be better? I prefer the idea of Billet given its from a solid block and potentially would have a better profile, although may spool slightly slower given the (potentially) extra weight. Pretty sweet deal. Especially given the power potential of one of these units over the stock unit given the bigger compressor and exhaust housings/wheels.


actual opposite. billet is lighter which makes it spool faster - less inertia.
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