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      07-28-2011, 10:08 AM   #1
prodigymb
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ESS VT2-625 Major Boost Issues. SC owners please chime in.

So over the past 2 months or so I have been trying to figure out a boost problem on my friends ESS VT2-625 M3.

The problem came up after we had the car updated to 625 tune and updated the airfilter to correct size. Went for a test run and car pulled great in 2nd gear and after that the boost problem started.

Car barely ramps up boost and hits a max of 2.9psi and sometimes less. Obviously feels fairly slow in comparison to 499whp it amde before on VT2-600.

I have been in touch with AJ, Hans and Roman from ESS. AJ has been very helpful in troubleshooting guidance but we just cant seem to find the problem. Week into it I gave up and took the car to VAC Motorsports who's a premier BMW show on East coast. They had the car for 2 weeks and couldnt find the problem. Here is a list of things they did...

-Compression Test (170 in all 8)
-Leakdwon Test (Perfect % in all 8)
-Smoke Test
-Pressure Test
-Pressure Test the BOV
-Removed and Reseated the manifold

After that, they basically ran out of ideas.

So I picked the car up from VAC and thats when I started going back and forth with AJ, and went back to it myself because the ESS kit is a very simple design and there are only so many places that can let boost out. I needed to see it with my own eyes because there has to be a big leak for it to only hit 3 psi.

First thing I did when I picked it up was switch the belt to one Roman told me and check the tensioner. That did absolutely nothing

Then I smoke tested and pressure tested the car, found nothing. As you see in the pic there is NO smoke coming from anywhere and thats after me pumping the smoke in there for few minutes.


Then I decide to swap bypass valves with another ESS car I just helped put together. Took the M3 out for spin and was able to hit 3.5psi in 2nd and 5psi in 3rd and it actually felt somewhat quick. Still not even close to the 7.5 psi it should be hitting with 625 kit and the pulley thats on there.



I originally installled the kit on this car over a year ago and it ran fine for over a year.

Has anyone had similar boost issues? Anyone have any ideas?

Here is full list of what has been done...

VAC Motorsports
-Compression Test (170 in all 8)
-Leakdwon Test (Perfect % in all 8)
-Smoke Test
-Pressure Test
-Pressure Test the BOV
-Removed and Reseated the manifold

By me
-Smoke Test
-Pressure Test
-Tighten Runner clamps
-Insall new belt
-Check belt tensioner
-Swap BOVs
-Check SC Intake elbow

AJ asked me to dyno the car to see exactly where we are so I will be doing that within the next few days.

Can the charger be bad???

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      07-28-2011, 10:54 AM   #2
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      07-28-2011, 11:18 AM   #3
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Did you ever take the car to the dyno with a boost gauge to see what's really happening? I didn't see any mention of that, and that seems pretty obvious idea for diagnosing the problem.
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      07-28-2011, 11:27 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by img View Post
Did you ever take the car to the dyno with a boost gauge to see what's really happening? I didn't see any mention of that, and that seems pretty obvious idea for diagnosing the problem.
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AJ asked me to dyno the car to see exactly where we are so I will be doing that within the next few days.
car has a good boost gauge. we also hooked up a mechanical gauge to make sure the gauge is not faulty. ofcourse its obvious that the car feels slow. im hoping that on the dyno under load i may be able to spot the leak. as i said in my original post i am going to get it done within few days.
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      07-28-2011, 11:47 AM   #5
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Why not just try putting the old set up back on the car with old tune? That way you can see if maybe it is a conflict with the new set up or an actual problem with the car. Also remove your air intake and inspect sc fins and seals. Check if they are damaged at all. Scs do go bad too.
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      07-28-2011, 12:03 PM   #6
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Why not just try putting the old set up back on the car with old tune? That way you can see if maybe it is a conflict with the new set up or an actual problem with the car. Also remove your air intake and inspect sc fins and seals. Check if they are damaged at all. Scs do go bad too.
well the only thing changed was the tune and filter. not at the same time. car ran fine after the tune update. after the filter update ir ran fine once and then the boost issue came up. so i thought it may be an intake restriction, kink in new tube or w/e. so i completely removed the intake tube and filter and the problem persists.

i have looked at SC fins and they look fine to me. i have not inspected the seals..
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      07-28-2011, 01:06 PM   #7
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Boost on this kit is 100% mechanical. There is no way that software will affect boost. There has to be major restriction or leak somewhere in the system. As AJ suggested I would dyno the car with a boost and AFR log and send us the files. You can also always send the vehicle to us if you cannot find the source of the issue.
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      07-28-2011, 01:26 PM   #8
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      07-28-2011, 01:26 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roman@ESS View Post
Boost on this kit is 100% mechanical. There is no way that software will affect boost. There has to be major restriction or leak somewhere in the system. As AJ suggested I would dyno the car with a boost and AFR log and send us the files. You can also always send the vehicle to us if you cannot find the source of the issue.
yes boost is mechanical and this has nothing to do with tune, i understnad very well how this kit works.....remember i did install it, and this is not the only ESS kit i've installed. i am by no means a BMW mechanic extrodinaire, but i feel like your suggestions and my actions are going in circles. it's almost to the point where you dont want to believe that i actually pressure tested the system and smoke tested it. VAC did all of this as well per instructions of ESS, but what you are saying keeps going in circles and adds to the frustration of this car.

it ran fine after the tune. there is no intake restriction and i smoke tested and pressure tested the system. i even sent AJ video of me smoke testing the system and there is clearly no smoke coming from anywhere. everything i have done is in my original post.
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      07-28-2011, 01:31 PM   #10
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Since swapping bypass valves made a difference, I would probe that further. Does ESS adjust the bypass valves differently depending on the kit? Generally, you don't use more spring than you need to hold the boost you are running. The valve adjustment could be different on a 4 psi kit than on a 7 psi kit, so if you swapped valves with a 535 kit, they may not have worked on the 625 kit. ESS would know the answer.
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      07-28-2011, 01:35 PM   #11
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Quote:
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...but what you are saying keeps going in circles and adds to the frustration of this car.
Have you dyno'd it with boost and AFR logs like they recommended? If not, I don't see how it's going in circles.

I'm sure it's frustrating, but if the engine is in good mechanical shape, it shouldn't be a huge worry, just dyno it and see the results. I'm sure they'll be able to help you out from there.

Good luck getting back on the road and running happily asap!
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      07-28-2011, 01:38 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pbonsalb View Post
Since swapping bypass valves made a difference, I would probe that further. Does ESS adjust the bypass valves differently depending on the kit? Generally, you don't use more spring than you need to hold the boost you are running. The valve adjustment could be different on a 4 psi kit than on a 7 psi kit, so if you swapped valves with a 535 kit, they may not have worked on the 625 kit. ESS would know the answer.
the valve originally on this car was set stiffer then the valve i tried the other day... yet the other one still seemed to make a small difference. like i said still no where close to 7psi.

i will take the hose of the valve at the dyno and see if it leaks any boost under load.
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      07-28-2011, 02:10 PM   #13
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Last time I ran into a problem like this on a turbo car (less boost than expected), I found that the vacuum hose to the bypass valve had a kink in it when everything was in place, and thus the valve was not holding against system pressure without the signal pressure on the other side of the diaphragm. This caused the system to run at much lower boost than he had previously run before the intake manifold swap.

The owner said "I already checked that, and it's fine". He was under the impression that it had to be the intake manifold since it was new. I told him that we should just "humor me" and let's swap the entire vacuum hose to the bypass valve, NOT route it the way he previously routed it (so we could see most of the routing when everything was in place), and whala, his boost was back to normal. We then put the old hose back in, routed it the way he had previously routed it, the problem returned. The hose had been kinked (out of view once everything was secured and routed), causing the issue.

I also found the issue on a different car a year earlier, but that one was a nick in the vacuum hose going to the bypass valve instead of a kink, so it was an even easier diagnosis.

Not getting full pressure to the correct side of a bypass valve is one of the more common reasons for the symptoms you are expressing. It's also one of the more overlooked.

Just some food for thought.
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      07-28-2011, 02:20 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robertyu View Post
Last time I ran into a problem like this on a turbo car (less boost than expected), I found that the vacuum hose to the bypass valve had a kink in it when everything was in place, and thus the valve was not holding against system pressure without the signal pressure on the other side of the diaphragm. This caused the system to run at much lower boost than he had previously run before the intake manifold swap.

The owner said "I already checked that, and it's fine". He was under the impression that it had to be the intake manifold since it was new. I told him that we should just "humor me" and let's swap the entire vacuum hose to the bypass valve, NOT route it the way he previously routed it (so we could see most of the routing when everything was in place), and whala, his boost was back to normal. We then put the old hose back in, routed it the way he had previously routed it, the problem returned. The hose had been kinked (out of view once everything was secured and routed), causing the issue.

I also found the issue on a different car a year earlier, but that one was a nick in the vacuum hose going to the bypass valve instead of a kink, so it was an even easier diagnosis.

Not getting full pressure to the correct side of a bypass valve is one of the more common reasons for the symptoms you are expressing. It's also one of the more overlooked.

Just some food for thought.
thanks - i was actually talking to AJ about this earlier today. boost gauge is tapped right next to the bypass valve. so i will replace this line and see what happens. thanks for your input!!
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      07-28-2011, 02:56 PM   #15
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good luck with everything man hope everything works out.
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      07-28-2011, 03:33 PM   #16
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had a similar problem with another car, i had pusched the intake pipe to far in ,in the airfilter, which causes a big restriction.
I just had to pull out the pipe .
Could be worth to check.
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      07-28-2011, 03:52 PM   #17
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good luck with everything man hope everything works out.
Thanks man. My friends dubbed this problem "German boost aids" and are afraid to park their 335s in the same driveway lol.
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had a similar problem with another car, i had pusched the intake pipe to far in ,in the airfilter, which causes a big restriction.
I just had to pull out the pipe .
Could be worth to check.
The air filter and the tube are completely off the car now to eliminate the possibility of intake restriction.
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      07-28-2011, 03:59 PM   #18
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Quote:
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car has a good boost gauge. we also hooked up a mechanical gauge to make sure the gauge is not faulty. ofcourse its obvious that the car feels slow. im hoping that on the dyno under load i may be able to spot the leak. as i said in my original post i am going to get it done within few days.
Take a ride up here on a weekend and ill have it fixed
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      07-28-2011, 04:59 PM   #19
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Quote:
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thanks - i was actually talking to AJ about this earlier today. boost gauge is tapped right next to the bypass valve. so i will replace this line and see what happens. thanks for your input!!
Replace the vacuum line and do not T anything off the line to the BPV. If you have a leak somewhere in your boost gauge setup the BPV will not function correctly. Leave the BPV on a dedicated vacuum circuit for the dynotest.

If you have ruled out any obvious pressure leaks then most likely the BPV opens under boost because it does not have a 1:1 pressure valve/diaphragm.
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      07-29-2011, 10:05 AM   #20
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Bring the car to CT like IMG said we have someone who can take a look at it but AJ made a good point it sounds like a vaccum leak from you boost gauge , that's the first thing I would have looked considering that line was fished through the firewall , good luck
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      07-29-2011, 01:32 PM   #21
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Bring the car to CT like IMG said we have someone who can take a look at it but AJ made a good point it sounds like a vaccum leak from you boost gauge , that's the first thing I would have looked considering that line was fished through the firewall , good luck
that line is not fished through the firewall. we left the sensor under the hood and fished wires thru the firewall.

also keep in mind that if a vac line is bad - it would come out in a smoke test in 30 seconds. we did the same to my 996tt and found several vac leaks - vs on this car we found no vac leaks.

either way - got a dyno appointment at 6:30pm today. we'll see what comes out of it ....
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      07-29-2011, 02:17 PM   #22
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Bummed !! Keep us posted ..
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