How to Tell What Garrett Turbo I Have

Written by sameca pandova
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How to Tell What Garrett Turbo I Have
Identify which Garrett turbocharger is installed on your engine. (Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images)

Turbochargers are forced induction devices that use exhaust gas to spin a compressor to pump large amounts of fresh air into an internal combustion engine. The turbo is a distinctive snail-shaped housing that is usually attached to the exhaust manifold. Garrett is a major turbo manufacturer that produces turbochargers for a variety of manufacturers and aftermarket companies. Identifying which Garrett turbocharger is facilitated by the installation of a identification plate built into the turbo housing.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Open your hood. Be sure you car has not been run recently and is cold to the touch because turbochargers and their associated piping get extremely hot.

  2. 2

    Locate your turbocharger. If your car is front-wheel drive, the turbo will typically be sitting in the front of the engine bay (as the engine is mounted sideways). If your car is rear-wheel drive, the turbocharger will typically be on the right side of the engine. Follow the exhaust manifold and you will find the turbocharger. It is a large circular housing with a large air pipe connecting it to the air intake.

  3. 3

    Locate the name plate on the turbo housing. The name plate is typically on the compressor housing, often at the bottom of the housing. It will be a flat, metal plate with identification information. On some Garrett turbochargers, the information is recorded on the compressor housing itself.

  4. 4

    Record the plate information. The plate design will vary slightly, depending upon whether the turbocharger is a factory application (equipped by a car manufacturer when the vehicle was sold) or an aftermarket unit that was installed by a private party. There will be a serial number, a Garrett part number, a model and serial number. The model number will tell you what Garrett turbocharger you have installed. You can contact Garrett for more information on your turbocharger.

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