So you want to learn how to install a turbo kit on a Honda? Most kits take a full weekend to put on then get tuned and road read. Before you begin, you’ll want to make sure your engine is able to take the boost of a turbo without blowing up. Once you are sure your engine can take it, you're set to order your kit. Open the kit and make sure all the parts are there and in good condition. Confirm things like the turbo doesn’t have shaft play, etc. Then you’re ready to take off the stock parts and get ready to start installing the kit.
- Remove the old parts. You’ll want to remove the intake pipe, filter, and unplug all sensors connected to the intake pipe. Then, unbolt the stock exhaust manifold from the block and downpipe. Take off most of the plastic shields and covers for more room to work with.
- Next bolt the turbo to the turbo exhaust manifold with the right bolts and gaskets and bolt the assembly to the block. Now you’re ready to run your intercooler pipes. Look at the directions at the layout of the pipes and start putting them in place. Most kits come with rubber connectors with clamps, but they are known to cause boost leaks if you go high boost. If you’re running a high boost setup you might want to invest in getting the pipes welded.
- Now comes the intercooler. For maximum airflow, put it in an open spot in the front bumper. Some people cut their bumper around the intercooler for more airflow. Bolt it in with the correct bolts, then continue running the intercooler lines to the throttle body.
- Now you can turn to the exhaust. If your car doesn’t have an after-market exhaust on it already get one now. A 3-inch cat back is good enough for lower boost applications. Install the turbo downpipe from the turbo itself to the catalytic converter (if you’re running one, some companies make downpipes with a converter built in) then bolt it to the rest of the exhaust.
- On to the smaller details, the turbo oil line. Read the directions very carefully. If you make a mistake here you’ll blow the turbo up. Use good quality lines and fittings. The turbo kit should come with them.
- The blow off valve and waist gate. If you don’t have a blow off valve (BOV) when you shift under boost, it will cause major engine damage. If you don’t have a waist gate you’ll over boost the engine causing it to blow up. The waist gate acts like a valve and opens under boost to keep from over boosting. If your car comes with a turbo (rx7, Subaru STI, etc) you can adjust the spring and allow it to run more boost than stock. Bolt these in the right places. The BOV should go on a fitting by the throttle body on the intercooler pipe, and the waist gate by the turbo.
- Almost done, now change stark plugs. Make sure you have the right tuning software like an AEM engine management or some other tuner. They are pricey, but if you want reliable power it’s best to spend a lot here. Make sure your fuel pump flows enough fuel to go with the extra air being forced into the engine, most low boost applications take a 255lph pump.
Once your Honda Turbo kit is installed it is time to take the car to the dyno and get professionally tuned. This may also cost some money but a good tune will insure you don’t hurt the motor.