Supercharger vs Turbo. The ultimate concern in forced induction. If it’s much better to go supercharged or much better to go with a customized turbo set or an off the rack turbo kit, people ask us all the time. Both are various in regards to how they work, efficiency and cost. We’re not going to get into the technical information of each one, however hopefully this information will reveal you the distinction between the two so you can choose which route you are more interested in going on your car or truck.

Basically, a turbo sits off of your exhaust manifold, and the exhaust gasses spin one end of the turbo (the exhaust side), that makes your turbo compressor side spin likewise and require air into the intake system, therefore developing atmospheric pressure. A supercharger does not work off the exhaust gas, it is connected to your engine and spins with the crankshaft. When the crankshaft spins the supercharger, it requires air into the motor. The turbo is more effective as it doesn’t require engine power to spin it, so it makes more power per boost. A supercharger also does not produce complete increase until redline, which is when the engine is spinning the supercharger as quick as possible.


What is required induction?

Both a turbo and supercharger are required induction systems. They are developed to actually force air into your engine. The more air you can get into your engine, the more power your car will make.


What is a supercharger?

A supercharger is an unit that bolts to your engine and connects with a belt in between your crankshaft and the supercharger system. As the engine spins, it spins the supercharger and makes the supercharger force air into the engine. The supercharger is restricted by it’s effectiveness, so if you overboost the supercharger, it will blow hot air into your engine and you will not make as much power (among a myriad of other issues).


What is a turbo?


A turbo resembles a supercharger, other than it has an exhaust real estate rather of a wheel, and runs of your exhaust gasses. As your car produces exhaust, the exhaust gas spins the turbine which causes the compressor to force air into the engine. A turbo is more efficient than a supercharger considering that your engine does not need to work harder to power the turbo. It can spin much faster than a supercharger because a turbo is not connected directly to the engine.

Is a turbo or supercharger smog legal?

There are far more smog legal supercharger sets than there are smog legal turbo sets. The reason is that the supercharger doesn’t have as much smog customizing or changing devices such as a turbo generally.


Turbo vs Supercharger— What we like

We like turbo power over supercharged power. It’s an individual choice. Both produce lots of power, both feel terrific, however we like the power delivery and torque that a turbo produces. Plus, it simply sounds cool. Many argue that the supercharger is more reputable, but we have best of luck with our turbo vehicles and know they require more maintenance which we are completely okay with. You can’t fail in any case, but hopefully after reading this, you have a better understanding of the distinction between a supercharger and a turbo.

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