Can I Put A Bigger Turbo On My Diesel?

Improving the airflow to the engine is a surefire technique to boost a diesel vehicle’s performance. More air will reach the engine using an enhanced air flow kit, resulting in increased power.

In addition, the new airflow kit will pull air from outside the engine compartment, bringing colder air in. The amount of power produced by the engine will rise because cooler air is denser and holds more oxygen.

An enhanced air flow system can boost horsepower while also improving fuel economy.

Change or Reprogram the ECM

Engine performance is controlled by the Engine Control Module (ECM), which alters critical engine parameters such as the air-fuel mixture and maximum RPM.

You may easily change these settings by reprogramming or changing the ECM. This will allow the engine to create more horsepower and torque, which will increase performance.

ECM upgrades not only increase power, but they also help to increase diesel efficiency.

Using New Fuel Injectors

The next step is to upgrade the fuel injectors if you’ve improved the air flow to the engine and set up the ECM to produce additional power.

More fuel will reach the engine thanks to new fuel injectors, resulting in increased horsepower. Individual injector nozzles are found on most performance fuel injectors, which provide higher pressure and better atomize the fuel.


Adding extra power to diesel engines using a performance turbocharger is a wonderful way to do it.

The turbo operates by pressurizing the air intake and forcing additional air into the engine. It is possible to generate more power while improving engine efficiency by using a turbo.

In comparison to a non-turbo engine, a stock turbo boosts air flow three to four times. A performance turbo, on the other hand, can enhance airflow by five to ten times over a non-turbo engine, resulting in a bigger horsepower boost.

Performance Exhaust

You’ll need to update your exhaust system if you want to increase the engine horsepower.

Unlike factory exhaust systems, which are designed to reduce noise, a performance exhaust system will have a wider diameter and fewer bends, allowing for more exhaust flow.

A broader, straighter exhaust system will help reduce exhaust gas temperature and boost the engine’s horsepower and torque.

Can you upgrade a diesel turbo?

A turbocharger is used in the majority of today’s diesel trucks. A factory-installed turbocharged diesel engine has an excellent overall baseline turbo that is also cost-effective for the OEM. This is the kind of tradeoff that occurs throughout the manufacturing process, and the aftermarket was created to allow you to choose where the compromise should be made.

Any deviation from the factory default setup has the potential to cause problems. When it comes to turbo upgrades, the risk is that you’ll end up with a turbo that’s too big for the engine, necessitating additional upgrades. Your engine may run worse rather than better after a turbo upgrade if your components aren’t properly matched.

It’s also vital to keep in mind that the turbo boost-to-fuel ratio is delicate. Too much fuel causes the engine to operate badly and smoke; too little fuel causes the engine to be power-starved and can overheat, resulting in high EGTs (Exhaust Gas Temperatures). When an engine’s intake isn’t getting enough air, similar problems emerge.

For the most part, a modest turbo boost is a wonderful approach to increase power and throttle responsiveness without jeopardizing the engine’s balance.

The Applied Performance Solution

Applied Performance Products is a newcomer to the aftermarket turbo scene, with a variety of turbos ranging from moderate to wild. On a 7.3-liter Ford Power Stroke engine, we had the opportunity to cover the installation of one of their APP-branded performance stock-replacement turbos (Part number: APP-802-011). This truck’s owner uses it primarily for work, transporting a trailer, and other general purposes. The idea was to increase power output without being trapped in a never-ending cycle of engine changes. For this diesel owner, Applied Performance had the ideal solution.

The APP turbo is larger than the factory turbo and feeds the engine additional air (boost). The most significant characteristic, though, is that this turbo isn’t so extreme that it can’t be utilized on a standard engine. This turbo, which is designed to be a “straight bolt-in” item, provides significantly more air than the factory turbo and can be your only improvement. This turbo, on the other hand, may be used with a variety of moderate improvements that are limited or impossible with the factory turbo. The benefit is that you receive greater power right now while also having room to prepare for future increases if you wish to do so.

This turbo shell is made of high-quality A-356 aluminum alloy and is both light and sturdy. It’s equipped with a billet CNC compressor wheel that’s engineered to provide maximum boost at all levels while reducing turbo lag and compressor surge. Your diesel engine will have a smooth power curve if you supply a smooth, consistent air intake flow. Faster spool-up and a boost curve that better fits engine needs are also achieved thanks to the lighter compressor wheel and improved vane design.

The internals of this turbo were also built to last by APP. A larger turbine shaft, improved step-gap oil seals, superior bearings, and greater quality control all contribute to a more consistent product than the original stock one.

Compare and Contrast with Stock

According to the specifications, the APP turbo features a 62mm inducer wheel and a 92mm exducer wheel, compared to the standard unit’s 60mm and 80mm. While the wheels are larger, the casing is only slightly larger than the stock unit, allowing it to fit into the existing space with ease. The new turbo also includes a brand-new billet aluminum adjustable wastegate actuator that is pre-set at 24 psig. The factory unit’s pressure is set to 8 psig.

What Is PSIG, Anyway?

Because the basic pressure of the air around you is roughly 14.7 psi at sea level (and somewhat lower at altitude), any absolute boost pressure readout will automatically include that amount of pressure. PSIG stands for Pounds per Square Inch Gauge, and it denotes pressure relative to atmospheric pressure by subtracting the fundamental atmospheric pressure from the value.

Other enhancements over the OEM turbo include: The turbo shaft has a greater diameter than the stock unit (22 percent at the hub and 16 percent at the journal bearings). The thrust bearing’s contact area has been expanded from 270 degrees to 360 degrees. For better sealing, a step-gap oil seal was added to the turbine side, and the turbo inlet was increased from 3 inches to 4 inches. To make installation with the larger inlet easier, APP includes a new silicone intake tube and T-bolt clamps. All intake air passes via a ported-shroud housing, which is more efficient than the stock unit. When you combine the larger turbine and compressor wheels, the more efficient housing, and the higher wastegate actuation point, you obtain superior performance.

It’s worth noting that simply replacing the turbo won’t result in significant power gains. This is due to the fact that the fuel flow remains unchanged from before. Lower EGTs will result if all you do is improve the turbo. As a general rule, the manufacturer claims a drop of 100 to 150 degrees. Lower EGTs are a positive thing since they allow you to utilise the power you’re producing without fear of engine damage caused by high exhaust gas temperatures. However, with a few little changes to the fuel flow and tune, your engine will be able to produce significantly more power. It’s only a matter of playing the correct cards, so to speak, to get higher outputs than the stock turbo.

Easy Installation

We were given the opportunity to see the installation at R&S Automotive in Newhall, California. The modification was completed in less than a day and went without a hitch. Engine power was increased and EGTs were reduced when paired with a few basic power enhancements performed by the owner prior to the installation. With just a little more work, we’ll show you the highlights of a simple turbo modification that will result in lower EGTs and more power.

L Turbo Fitment

For the 7.3L Power Stroke, there are two turbos to choose from. One is only for cars with a circular EGR cooler from 2003 and early 2004. Later models with square EGR coolers from late 2004 to 2007 should utilize a different part number. When implemented, both will have comparable effects.

Taking Advantage Of Your New Turbo

This story’s light turbo upgrade can be completed without any more modifications. You may, however, increase the power of your truck with some more work. These upgrades are either impossible to achieve with the stock turbo or will result in even higher gains with your upgraded turbo. The owner of our 7.3L Power Stroke F-250 went above and above.

He had already fitted an MBPR 4-inch cat-back exhaust system, a Donaldson 7.3L AIS Intake, and a TS six-position switch tuner, all with Swamp’s Diesel custom programming, prior to the turbo installation (stock, high idle, fuel economy, tow, hot street, and race programs included). We were told that he was happy with the end results after the turbo installation. He did, however, install a set of Swamps Diesel Performance 7.3L injectors in search of more power. This pair of injectors was the mildest of Swamps’ injector improvements, and it was a perfect complement for the mild turbo upgrade.

Even More Power

When it comes to updating your truck, keep in mind that everything works together. We upgraded to a somewhat larger turbo in this scenario, but not a massive one. This upgrade is intended to be used with a stock injector set and tune. While you can run with just the new turbo, you can also benefit from a few enhancements and receive better overall output than you would without it.

Just keep in mind that small turbo enhancements can help other light power modifiers, but don’t get caught up in a never-ending cycle of upgrades you don’t need. A knowledgeable shop and/or supplier can guide you in the proper way, one step at a time, to achieve your goals without overstressing any of your components. A well-balanced and well-planned power boost will outperform a component mix-and-match design.

additional costs and upgrades They’ll almost certainly have the proper turbo for you, no matter what your end aim is.

Other changes were done by the truck’s owner to take advantage of the new turbo’s capabilities. Swamp’s Diesel Performance’s new, bigger injectors are one of them.

Can you replace a stock turbo with a bigger one?

Changing your factory turbocharger for a bigger or better unit might be an effective element of the procedure if you want to increase your vehicle’s power and performance.

What happens if your turbo is too big?

Not necessarily does a larger turbo guarantee more power. A turbo that is too big will almost always cause problems, such as difficulties to spool up and less power than what you started with.

Can you add a turbo to a stock engine?

The horsepower capability of your car’s stock engine can be significantly increased by turbocharging it. Turbochargers pressurize and drive air into the cylinder head of an engine, allowing for far more powerful combustion than is feasible with naturally aspirated engines. Many of the turbo system’s components, such as the intake and exhaust manifolds, will be swapped out for stock parts in the engine. However, there are a number of upgrades you can make to your original engine that will help you achieve full turbocharged horsepower potential in the future when you install a turbo system.

What is a stuffed turbo?

These turbos improve HP without increasing turbo lag; in fact, as we refine the setup, we’ve watched the lag reduce. These turbos are far more efficient than stock and will lower your IAT, allowing you to make more power while also making the system easier to maintain.

Should I upgrade turbo?

This is an example under the category Daily Driver/Work Truck/Tow Vehicle. This includes vehicles with up to 150 horsepower more than stock. But wait, this amount of power can be achieved using only a chip or tuning module. So, why bother with a new turbo upgrade? The improvements obtained by installing the chip and other modifications will be amplified by an upgrade turbo. The upgrade turbo’s more air and reduced backpressure will lower EGTs, enabling more power with less smoke, and address the stock turbo’s longevity issues at higher boost pressures and power levels. Because this is a minor improvement, overall boost response and drivability will be improved.

Do turbo diesels need back pressure?

A diesel engine requires backpressure, and excessively opening the exhaust can harm my engine. Back pressure is required by a diesel engine, and if I open the exhaust, I will lose power. To begin with, a turbocharged diesel engine does not require even a pound of back pressure after the turbo to function properly.