Turbocharger Shaft Balancing TF101-A

The information presented here will help clarify some of the often misunderstood effects of turbocharger construction, repair and test details surrounding the requirements of accurate shaft balancing.

  •  All turbochargers require that the rotating shaft utilising a pair of turbine wheels is dynamically-balanced at rotation speeds of 150,000rpm and sometimes higher.
  • This specialised procedure is carried out on all new, remanufactured and repaired turbos.
  • The test equipment consists of highly sophisticated devices such as accelerometers, high-speed stroboscopic light detectors, fine-tuned tachometers and state-of-the-art computer software.
  • To achieve such high levels of accuracy, the manufacturers use special fasteners designed to retain compressor-wheels to meet these exacting standards.
  • The balancing process uses a machine that identifies where small amounts of metal need removing from the compressor-wheel.
  • A small reflective line of paint helps the machine to determine the exact position of where there is an excess of material. The procedure is highly technical and requires a great deal of skill to perform the turbos balancing needs, correctly.
  • There is no known method for detecting the levels when a turbocharger is ‘out of balance’. The out of balance effect can cause vibrations when attached to a running engine. The amounts of natural vibration caused by a running engine are far too high.
This image displays turbocharger with special fasteners attached to correct in-balances.
Side of view taken of a Turbocharger with Special Fasteners to correct in-balances.