How to know if your intercooler is leaking?

Feature image for the blog : How to know if your intercooler is leaking?

Intercoolers are a must-have accessory for any modified or performance vehicle. These accessories offer a variety of benefits, ranging from improved performance to better horsepower. Intercoolers not only improve your car’s aesthetics but also allow its engine to bathe in cooler air for longer periods.

With all the benefits that intercoolers offer, certain drawbacks also need to be addressed. The foremost drawback is the difficulty of knowing whether the intercooler has been damaged or not. The most common type of damage that intercoolers suffer is leaking pipes, and it’s not easy to determine this fault.

In case of damage, intercoolers must be replaced or repaired immediately, as a damaged intercooler will only make your vehicle suffer. So this raises the question of how to know if your intercooler is leaking? In this blog, we shall answer this question in detail.

Leaking intercoolers can have a range of negative effects.

Overheating Engine

The biggest sign that your intercooler is damaged or leaking is that your engine will start to overheat. Since the intercooler is leaking, hot air continues to enter the engine. Your dashboard will signify a noticeable increase in temperature.

An image asking people to explore different intercoolers.

It is essential to turn off the engine in this case, as it may sustain immense damage. If prompt action is taken, you may even save your intercooler from getting worse.

Increased Emissions

picture of a car emitting high levels of gas
Thick smoke pours from the exhaust pile on a car. Shallow depth of field, focus on the end of the tail pipe. Closeup view.

Another sign of a leaking intercooler is thick black smoke coming out from the exhaust system. The smoke is caused by the engine not being able to get cooler air, resulting in more fuel being burned and being released through the exhaust. This can be extremely harmful to the environment as well even if your vehicle has a sport catalytic converter attached, which is why getting your intercooler promptly repaired should be the priority.


Most cars have a check engine light in case the car detects something off with the engine. The check light may turn on if the intercooler is damaged due to miniature detonations taking place within the engine. This is due to the hot air constantly entering the engine.

If you continue to drive your vehicle in this state, it may result in lethal damage to your engine. In such cases, getting your intercooler repaired should be the top priority.

Restricted RPM

Newer models have several intricate systems embedded that allow the engine to detect any deviations in various parameters of the engine. In case of a leaking intercooler, it will detect that there is a rise in temperature entering the engine, signalling the sensor system which will automatically restrict the RPM. Reduction in RPM means the vehicle will not receive any power, rendering it unable to move.


Despite being a sturdy device for performance vehicles, intercoolers are still prone to damage such as leakage. In such cases, the car will give off several signs that can be used to detect any issue with the intercooler. Just keep your eye out for these signs and you’ll be good!

Find the best intercoolers for your vehicle today at Turborevs and take your car’s performance to new heights.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *