Of all the different components and devices that go into constructing the average turbocharge, the turbo's hoses are probably the most overlooked. Despite their innocuous nature, however, the hoses which are used to carry air, water and fuel to and from your turbo are vitally important, and damaged or worn out hoses can rapidly cause a turbo to fail or suffer irreversible damage.
Consequently, many car enthusiasts will replace the factory-fitted rubber hoses of their vehicle's turbocharger with aftermarket turbo accessories and hoses made from silicone. These hoses are often used simply to add a little colour and visual interest to a shiny engine bay, but these hoses are far from all style and no substance; here are just some of the ways replacing your stock hoses with silicone hoses may benefit your vehicle's turbocharger:
Higher pressure ratings
As a general rule, silicone turbo hoses has significantly greater maximum pressure ratings than rubber hoses of equivalent diameter and wall thickness. This makes them ideal for handling the increased air and liquid pressures created by tuned turbochargers, and accounts for their enormous popularity in tuning and motor sport circles. This extra strength also reduces the chances of gradual weakening causing blowouts during regular driving, so silicone hoses can benefit track and road cars equally.
Higher heat resistance
Silicone hoses are also resistant to tremendous temperatures and will not deform or crack like rubber hoses do if temperatures within your turbo become too high. The most minor of engine tuning projects can dramatically increase temperature levels within your vehicle's turbo, making silicone hoses a worthy investment for anybody who has modified their turbocharged engine to produce more power or torque.
Unlike rubber hoses, silicone hoses do not perish as they age. They are also immune to the rot which can plague aging rubber hose networks, and they conduct heat more readily than rubber to prevent the creation of damaging hotspots at bends in your hoses. These qualities ensure that silicone hoses stand the test of time, even when fitted to powerful and regularly used turbos, and reduces the frequency with which you replace your hoses, saving you time and money.
Easy to install and remove
If you do need to remove or replace your silicone turbo hoses for whatever, reason, taking them off is a snap requiring only basic tools; this places them in stark contrast to rubber hoses, which adhere tightly to valves and nozzles and sometimes have to be completely destroyed before they can be removed. They are just as easy to fit, so hoses can be swapped out quickly for different applications, such as regulating airflow to increase fuel economy during endurance runs.Share