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Oil in the carbs...

Neil Potter

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So I've got the turbo plenum dismantled at the moment while my alternator is rebuilt and I replace the aircon compressor, and have noticed some oil pooling in the top part of each carb. 


Need a picture at this point, but if you imagine the gaskets between carb and plenum backplate; two of the gaskets have an extra, larger hole in the top.  That leads into this part of the carb, like an extra chamber at the top corner.


Carbs were spotless when they went back on the car about 1500 miles ago, and it runs well.


I've got the crankcase breather directed to a filter, not back to the airbox, so I'm guessing the oil is coming out of the turbo.


Anyone seen this before and does it suggest the turbo is on the way out?

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How much oil...a teaspoon or so is pretty normal.

Robert Costa
1984 Turbo Esprit
Very Black!
2004 Lotus Elise
Quite Green! gone 😞

1977 S1 Esprit, in less bits

1998 Lotus Elise S1, Azure Blue
Sydney, Australia

“The car's weakest part is the nut holding the steering wheel”

Recommended procedure before taking on a repair of Lucas equipment: Check the position of the stars,kill a chicken and walk three times clockwise around your car chanting:" Oh mighty Prince of Darkness protect your unworthy servant.."

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Seems odd. The only place that oil could be coming from is the air going to the plenum, if you have removed the connection of the crankcase breather to the turbo inlet, then I'm surprised that oil has got in. With the normal arrangement, you will always get some oil. The turbo seals are of the labyrinth type and seal by dint of the shaft it is possible that small amounts of oil might leak through when the engine has been stopped whilst hot. If the engine isn't using oil and not blasting out great quantities of smoke under acceleration, I wouldn't worry!!

Scientists investigate that which already is; Engineers create that which has never been." - Albert Einstein

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My 1988 carb turbo accumulates a small amount of oil at the bottom of the plenum. I havent noticed anything in the carbs but then again I havent stripped them down. I am told its a small amount of leakage around the turbo seals which is fairly normal, although an expensive rebuild should prevent this happening.

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