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The indicator on my turbo gauge never leaves the center bar (yellow). When not running, the gauge sits at about the gap, between the white and yellow bars. The maximum it ever reaches when driving is the between yellow and red. Is this normal? Is the gauge calibrated to use its full range (i.e. start at ‘0’ and peak into the red zone?
 

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Sounds pretty normal. The yellow-white divide corresponds to atmospheric pressure, which is where the needle should sit if the motor isn't running. Anywhere in the white corresponds to vacuum, which should be the condition in your intake manifold if, when driving, you take your foot off the 'loud-pedal' and let the vehicle coast. And, unless you've done any boost modifications, or the temperature in Canada falls to below 0 ºF, you'll rarely see the needle go into the red. Those gauges aren't really calibrated, but yours doesn't sound bad, at all. An interesting project is to attach a calibrated gauge to one of the nipples on the intake manifold, snake the hose through the hood and door jambs, and take a brisk
down the highway - a calibrated gauge will tell you exactly how much boost pressure (in psi, probably, being that you're in north america) you're getting.
 

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Atypical to a turbo with an automatic, the gauge will seldom if even go into the red. You would have to be in a low gear really punching it to get into the red.

The objective is to not rev the engine to the point that you are in the "red zone" Easier done with a manual shifter, but still strains the engine dramatically.

I agree, based on my gauge, that you are pretty normal in the range that you indicate.

wherewolfe
 
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