How Essential Is An Oil Catch Can?

Do I need an oil catch can?

Oil catch cans are highly recommended for all direct injection engines. This is due to the small amount of blow-by that is present in a factory engine. This excess crank case pressure has been bled past the piston and the piston rings and into the crank case during a compression stroke. This engine blow-by increases with the RPM’s of the engine. To vent this extra pressure, it is then fed back into the intake system of the engine. Over time filling the intercooler, boost hoses, intake manifold, turbo and valves with a coating of oil. This reduces efficiency and can reduce the life of components as the engines intake need to be dry and not covered in oil. This oil coming in contact with either the hot turbo or intake valves can cause it to solidify essentially blocking the intakes ability to flow air.

Having oil caked onto your intake valves can cause the following symptoms:

  • Knocking
  • Pre-ignition
  • Loss in power
  • Loss in fuel economy

An oil catch can will prevent all of this. It catches or prevents the oil from re-entering the intake tract. A catch can is placed right after the PCV  (Positive Crankcase Ventilation) and before the intercooler. This means that a purer (sometimes 100% pure) air mixture will go through the intercooler and intake valves. A purer air mixture entering the intake valves means no caking and none of the symptoms listed above.

An oil catch can doesn’t add any power or make any cool noises, so it is often overlooked when modifying vehicles. However, a catch can will ensure you that your always running in the most power and the most reliable state by having a cleaner intake tract free of oil.