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Is it Normal for my RZR or CanAm Turbo to Glow Red Hot

Have you been riding at night and noticed a red glow coming from your engine compartment? Are you wondering if it's normal or something to be concerned with? Trust BoonDocker for all of your UTV and Snowmobile answers!

Under normal operation, your RZR or CanAm is producing heat as a byproduct of combustion. You might be asking what kind of heat is normal. Well, under normal-loaded operation, exhaust gasses escaping your motor are in excess of 1200 degrees . That heat is transferred to your turbo and down-pipe through (primarily) conduction heat transfer.

Iron or steel will begin to glow as you heat it above 900 degrees Fahrenheit, which is easily attainable given the exhaust gas temperatures (EGT's). Don't worry, though, most steel doesn't start to melt until 2500 degrees Fahrenheit. As the temperature of the heated steel goes up, the color will change from brown to red to orange to yellow to white. The transition to a yellow color happens around 2000 degrees F. 

In summary, yes, it is absolutely normal for a turbocharger to glow red during normal operation. Glowing can occur with minimal drive time at a normal engine-load. The OEM's have recognized the heat that the turbo will hold and have appropriately supplied heat shields to manage that heat.

One of the things you can do to reduce heat in the system is to free up the exhaust. The RZR has no restriction in the down-pipe, just the muffler. The CanAm has restriction in the down-pipe. A free-flowing exhaust better evacuates heat.




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