Some dumb questions about boost leak testing

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Joined: Mon Mar 12, 2012 6:53 pm
Location: Tallahassee, FL

Some dumb questions about boost leak testing

Post by bloodyzero11 » Tue Dec 29, 2020 10:10 pm

2005 189k daily driver.

a few months ago I began to develop what seems like boost leak symptoms, problems with building boost. The turbo still spools. my DS T1000 indicates that my wastegate is still opening and closing appropriately. At WOT sometimes I'll only get 5-7 ish PSI. If I press the accelerator slowly I can build boost to full 18ish PSI but usually its more like 13-15 PSI. At mid throttle, it sometimes surges and jumps to 15-18 PSI then drops down at higher throttle to 10 or less.

I just bought the MPx tester and I have a 3 gallon compressor. I've owned this car for 6 years and Ive never done a boost leak test before.

1. how do you monitor the pressure in the system? My tire chuck doesn't have a gauge on it. If people usually use their boost gauge, I don't have a traditional gauge any more, I use my T1000 on monitor mode. I plan on trying use that since the key needs to be in the ON position anyway. I just don't know if it will read the pressure while the engine is off. It will show me battery voltage so I hope it will work.

2. What parts are actually charged during the boost leak test? From what I've read, the throttle plate is what blocks off the airflow. That would mean that only the turbo and the piping through the intercooler to the throttle would be charged, that would mean that the entirety of the intake manifold would be uncharged, I might have a bad intake manifold gasket losing boost pressure. Could a boost leak manifest through the spark tube gaskets?

3. In the past I've only had two prior problems with my boost, the first time was when a shop switched the boost lines at the solenoid, that caused me to have a rapid boot build at about a quarter throttle and any throttle above that boost would fall flat, I switched the line back to where they were supposed to go and the boost returned to normal. the other time was a boost line that popped off the turbo it's self, that was fixed with a hose clamp. I've eye balled all of the lines and they all seems to be connected properly and in the correct places. I haven't been able to find any cracks or breaks. Would the boost leak test leaks in the boost lines? Also, what if I have a bad solenoid? How would I know?

I work night shift, and tonight is my Friday, I am planning on changing my oil, doin some good ol' fashioned tire kickin, wheel bearing wobblin, PMCS and the boost leak check either in the morning or tomorrow evening after I wake up. I'm hoping some of you experts can address some of my questions before I get started. I came here vs the FB groups because they would have just hit me with Twisted Tea memes about using the search bar but I've researched as much as I can and these are the questions that I haven't found answers too. Besides, the .org has never wronged me.

As always, I appreciate ya'll and everything this community has done for us neon enthusiasts through the years.

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