Best way to remove down pipe bolts from turbo

434nova

Active Member
#1
I tried to remove one of my bolts from the downpipe to turbo but they seem stuck. They have alen heads on them. I don't want to strip the bolts. Down pipe has been on the turbo for 10 years. Should I use heat to loosen them ,pb blaster, wd40 etc. What are some tricks you guys use to get them bolts out. Thanks
 

bison

Moderator
Staff member
#3
Strike the end of the bolts with a hammer using a brass punch. You need a punch that's at least a half inch in diameter or it will bend when you hit it. A steel punch would work but might damage the socket head and create more problems.


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RUQWKNF

KEEPER OF SECRETS
Staff member
#6
Here's some tricks I've learned over the years.
PB Blaster soak all the bolts for at least 24 hours. Tapping the bolts with a hammer helps break the carbon / rust seal. Heat also helps but it's the last resort. Once all bolts are loose and or moving, I do the bottom bolt first, then go front to back. This way the weight of the pipe is not pulling down on the bottom bolt when the pipe starts to move around. This can cause the threads to strip if the bolt is in a bind from the pipe twisting/moving. It's also best to have a 3rd hand supporting the pipe, IE: keeping the flange flush against the turbo while removing the last two bolts up top. It's also much easier if the cat back / test pipe is disconnected first. This way there's no extra weight pulling down on the downpipe during removal. Take your time, use penetrating oil frequently. And don't freak out and start Hulk smashing stuff if one of the bolts breaks. It can be removed.

-Patrick-
 
#7
Here's some tricks I've learned over the years.
PB Blaster soak all the bolts for at least 24 hours. Tapping the bolts with a hammer helps break the carbon / rust seal. Heat also helps but it's the last resort. Once all bolts are loose and or moving, I do the bottom bolt first, then go front to back. This way the weight of the pipe is not pulling down on the bottom bolt when the pipe starts to move around. This can cause the threads to strip if the bolt is in a bind from the pipe twisting/moving. It's also best to have a 3rd hand supporting the pipe, IE: keeping the flange flush against the turbo while removing the last two bolts up top. It's also much easier if the cat back / test pipe is disconnected first. This way there's no extra weight pulling down on the downpipe during removal. Take your time, use penetrating oil frequently. And don't freak out and start Hulk smashing stuff if one of the bolts breaks. It can be removed.

-Patrick-
Thanks I got those stupid Allen key bolts.. managed to get one out but the other is stuck and 2 are hard to get too.. don't think the PB trick will work because bolrs are on the side of housing and shoulder of bolt is flush against the flange.. gonna try some heat with a torch a few cycles and hit it with an impact gun.. trying a floor jack under the pipe for the weight. Guessing these bolts haven't been touched since mid 90's...
 

~JM~

Wrinkled Member
#8
I have not tried to remove the down pipe bolts yet. I do have a bit of experience with exhaust manifold bolts though. Follow the directions that RUQWKNF posted. To that I would like to add... Use a tool that places the torque as close to the bolt as possible. No extensions. No long handles. No power tools. Then attempt to just slightly TIGHTEN the bolt first. Just a slight fraction of a turn. Then loosen a slight fraction & repeat. Back & forth until it breaks free & will turn.
 
#12
Melt it into the bolt's threads. It wicks surprisingly well.
Thanks, did my best, got a 50% success rate.. the front two bolts were stubborn bit came out in one piece. The back 2... Top one snapped and bottom one under the down pipe stripped the inside Allen keyway... That's gonna be fun trying to get that out now...

Used a brass punch and hammer first to tap them, then Used a torch to gently heat the turbo housing as best as I could, applied some PB blaster as best as I could get it into the downpipe holes, then a socket and ratchet and gently tried to tighten and loosen back and forth.. eventually the front 2 loosened and then the back ones got the best of me... Next I'm gonna try the 3 header flange bolts that go into the turbo...
 

bison

Moderator
Staff member
#14
Thanks, did my best, got a 50% success rate.. the front two bolts were stubborn bit came out in one piece. The back 2... Top one snapped and bottom one under the down pipe stripped the inside Allen keyway... That's gonna be fun trying to get that out now...

Used a brass punch and hammer first to tap them, then Used a torch to gently heat the turbo housing as best as I could, applied some PB blaster as best as I could get it into the downpipe holes, then a socket and ratchet and gently tried to tighten and loosen back and forth.. eventually the front 2 loosened and then the back ones got the best of me... Next I'm gonna try the 3 header flange bolts that go into the turbo...
use a cutoff wheel to cut the head off. In the future use a pair of locking pliers on the head as well as the hex key when trying to back off. you can apply force on both at the same time and most often get them loose successfully.
 

TurboBuRick

Moderator
Staff member
#18
Like Brian mentioned, vice grips and a allen wrench used together is the way to go.
Heat the turbine housing if they are frozen or they will break.
Have some good rust buster ready once they start to move. I have had good luck with PB Blaster. I hate the smell though....
 

seedling

Well-Known Member
#19
Zep 45 best penetrating lubricant I’ve ever used.
Kroil is better than ZEP though ZEP is better than most
X2 on Kroil! It’s harder to find and not cheap! However, after the YUGE Flood we had here in 2016, I found myself attempting to salvage all kinds of stuff (a year after the flood waters had come and gone).

To make matters worse, most of this stuff had been exposed to chlorine tabs (they floated up out of the bucket and landed in parts bin). So, to say the corrosion was intense, would be quite the understatement.

And yet, all we had to do was hit it with a little Kroil and bolts / fasteners that had been together for 20-30 (and then chlorine corroded on top of that) were coming apart no problem. The stuff just plain works!!




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#20
X2 on Kroil! It’s harder to find and not cheap! However, after the YUGE Flood we had here in 2016, I found myself attempting to salvage all kinds of stuff (a year after the flood waters had come and gone).

To make matters worse, most of this stuff had been exposed to chlorine tabs (they floated up out of the bucket and landed in parts bin). So, to say the corrosion was intense, would be quite the understatement.

And yet, all we had to do was hit it with a little Kroil and bolts / fasteners that had been together for 20-30 (and then chlorine corroded on top of that) were coming apart no problem. The stuff just plain works!!




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Im still waiting to know if you guys are comparing it to the zep in the white can or the black? huge difference. If you are comparing it to the black can I’ll have to try the kroil. Cause if there is anything better that can bust saltwater bathed bolts that are on the fishing boats that I deal with I’m all ears.

I asked bison and no reply.