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Discussion Starter #1
My car is at the dealership and they are saying the stock PCV/ oil separator is clogged or plugged. I call BS as I cant find anyone here with a similar issue. Now with the back story...

Turbo was replaced at 40k. I removed the intake and noticed the fins were worn, they agreed it was "out of spec" and replaced.

30k miles later I get a weird noise (not turbo related it turns out) and check the turbo. It looks the same if not worse than before. This time they claim the separator is plugged and I also have a bad intercooler pipe. They say the clogged separator could cause the turbo to fail, yet they say the turbo is fine. I asked if it was clogged last time and never caught, they couldn't answer and said they would get back to me.

Has anyone had a bad separator or know how to verify it has faulty.
 

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The oil separator is part of the Positive Crankcase Ventilation (PCV) system. It used to be many decades ago that crankcase oil vapor vented into the air. The oil vapor made the engine bay and the air dirty and one of the first emissions related systems introduced was the PCV system. With better engine efficiency and higher manifold vacuum, oil vapor can accumulate in the intake manifold. The oil separator on the 1.4L engine takes excess oil and lets it drip back into the engine. That is all it does. The PCV valve is the only thing that can become clogged. If it is clogged, the oil vapor doesn't get gradually sucked into the intake manifold. It's easy to test. Just pull the valve while the engine is running and you should feel vacuum at the valve. Turn the engine off and the valve should rattle when shook. That oil vapor going through the valve, once it enters the intake manifold gets burned in the combustion cycle.
Turbocharged engines use exhaust to spin the turbine.The spinning turbine pushes extra air (and oxygen) into the cylinders, allowing them to burn more fuel each second. With the compressor wheel spinning at over 100,000 rpm, any foreign object that is allowed to enter the turbo can cause total destruction in seconds. The turbine has it's own oil supply. If your oil is dirty, oil passages can plug up. Both air and oil filters are critical.
In my opinion they are guessing. The damage is obvious and it needs to be fixed. Google "what makes a turbo fail".
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I know how to check the older PCV valves, but I don't believe the dart has one unless I've missed it. I believe everything is in the separator(the big black box). Is that how I check this one as well? Pull the whole thing and shake it? I haven't found a valve in any of the parts breakdown.
 

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It is part of the black box, not available separately, but you can take it off and test it.

Remove:
125143



Install:
125144
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks, just got off the phone with the dealer. They said the “oil in the intake means the separator is bad” I’m not convinced, from what I’ve found it’s a normal thing for these cars. It’s never burned excessive oil, I think it’s half way on the safe point with 6k miles on it.
I will test how you said, I am also getting a service manual to see what they have to say.
I also am putting a catch can on so I don’t know how concerned I am about the separator letting “too much” oil into the intake.
 

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You don't really need a catch can. Perfectly normal to have some oil in the intake manifold. Like I said before they are guessing. Turbochargers fail for other reasons. If they replace the separator ask for the old parts. Cut the separator apart, see whats inside, and test the pcv valve. Let us know what you find.
 

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Thanks, just got off the phone with the dealer. They said the “oil in the intake means the separator is bad” I’m not convinced, from what I’ve found it’s a normal thing for these cars. It’s never burned excessive oil, I think it’s half way on the safe point with 6k miles on it.
I will test how you said, I am also getting a service manual to see what they have to say.
I also am putting a catch can on so I don’t know how concerned I am about the separator letting “too much” oil into the intake.
I'm at 160,000 miles and have been recycling oil into the intake for quite some time.
In case your worried about your cylinders and valves getting excess carbon deposits from the oil burning you could add a water methanol injection system and it would essentially steam clean the carbon deposits from your combustion chamber.
 

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Looks like an alternate aftermarket part number for the pcv valve is Beck/Arnley 045-0347. It's strange it isn't a separate part from FCA.
 

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You don't really need a catch can. Perfectly normal to have some oil in the intake manifold. Like I said before they are guessing. Turbochargers fail for other reasons. If they replace the separator ask for the old parts. Cut the separator apart, see whats inside, and test the pcv valve. Let us know what you find.
Really don't see a reason NOT to run a catch can though. I run one on my 2.4 NA, and it pulls out a shitload of bullshit from my driving. Highly recommend them. This is after an hour long drive.
125152
 

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The 2.4 (and 2.0) do not have an oil separator like the 1.4. Your catch can needs to be periodically drained. The 1.4 oil separator drains right back through the valve cover, never need to be drained, and so there is no need for a catch can for that engine. The internal baffles and packing inside the oil separator condense the oil vapor before all of it reaches the PCV valve. That little bit of oil that gets to the intake manifold is not a problem. I have never used a catch can.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Little update,

I got the car back and installed a catch can first. It just so happened the next couple days were extremely cold, around 5 for a high. The first day the lines frosted up to the point they were almost plugged after 50 miles. This caused oil to spray all over the engine. For the moment I have routed it back to factory and will try again in the summer.

A few days after this I finally pulled the separator off and cleaned it. There was definitely some crud in it, I think I might add this to my "to do list" every time I service it. At the same time I installed my new charge air piping from HPSI. I wish I would have done one at a time because it drives so much better. I have already saw an increase in fuel mileage after 100 miles. There's no more "bucking" on acceleration around 2-2500rpm. The pep in acceleration is so much better, I wonder if the pipes made that big of a difference or if I did not notice the slow decline in performance from several small problems.
 
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