engine cleaning
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This is a discussion on engine cleaning within the General Maintenance, Troubleshooting & Accidents. forums, part of the Tech & Modifying & General Repairs category; I'm planning on cleaning my engine soon, i was wondering if there are certain spots i should cover up before ...

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    engine cleaning

    I'm planning on cleaning my engine soon, i was wondering if there are certain spots i should cover up before i spray it with the hose.

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    Moderator   Sasquatch's Avatar
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    I've never covered anything using a regular garden hose on my last four cars and never had a problem. Just use a light rinse spray around anything like exposed wiring, air intakes, etc.

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    Registered User Hot_Dog's Avatar
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    I'm going to clean my engine this weekend. I'll probably throw a plastic bag over my exposed airfilter. But if you don't have an aftermarket intake, there's really not much to worry about.

    The only things you usually cover are computers (some cars have them under the hood), air cleaners, and distributors. The WRX doesn't have any of that
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    Registered User Richie03's Avatar
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    I hear that the engine should be running while hosing down the engine bay. Not sure why but...

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    Registered User Darrell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richie03
    I hear that the engine should be running while hosing down the engine bay. Not sure why but...
    With the engine running and hot, the water will evaporate or boil away quickly reducing the risk of any water damage. That's my guess anyway. I sprayed down my engine bay last weekend with the engine stone cold after sitting in the driveway all night and all day. I have had no problems to speak of in the last week.
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    Registered User 2point5ohyes's Avatar
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    id be cautious about spraying a hot engine down. couldnt it crack in spots?
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    Moderator   Sasquatch's Avatar
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    I've always cleaned engines while cold or warm, never hot.

    ... and I usually take them for a spin after washing to heat the engine up so it all dries faster.
    Last edited by Sasquatch; 04-23-2005 at 01:41 PM.

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    Registered User zoinks's Avatar
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    I would definitely cover the alternator and probably any other electrical components that you can easily get to. I think that water is what caused the early demise of my alternator.

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    Moderator   Sasquatch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zoinks
    I would definitely cover the alternator and probably any other electrical components that you can easily get to. I think that water is what caused the early demise of my alternator.
    In my experience this has not been needed. I had two cars (Ford & Mazda) with about 100K miles on them still with the original alternators. Kept both engines bays clean the whole time I had them. Maybe I'm just lucky.

  11. #10
    Registered User Dale_K's Avatar
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    The stuff I use is made for cleaning motorcycles (including the motor) and it specifically says not to use it on a hot motor. Clean it while it's cold, rinse it off, then give it a little blow dry by taking a short drive.

    Suby motors sure get more dirty than cars without hood scoops.

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    Boba Fett BrianH's Avatar
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    I use brake cleaner and the airhose.

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    Moderator Integra96's Avatar
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    Just curious, can anyone think of any benefits to keeping an engine bay clean - besides appearance?
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    Moderator   Sasquatch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Integra96
    Just curious, can anyone think of any benefits to keeping an engine bay clean - besides appearance?
    Good question. I've done it for many years ... a guy I used to work with did. I thought it was cool. So I started.

    Minor work under the hood and your hands stay cleaner. A clean engine will run cooler than a dirty one? Anyone who works on your car will see you care about what goes on under the hood. You are able to see the slightest fluid seepage.

    Maybe it just looks cool

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    Registered User bthomas6674's Avatar
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    In Michigan it is a good idea in the spring to get all the road salt off. I always clean my motors. I always start with a cold motor. Spray off, I use my power washer on low setting. I have even used a sponge and wiped the under side of the hood and the black plastic parts. I have owned cars well over 200K. Never had water related problem. After the wash I use my air hose to blow most water off. Then start the motor and let it warm up.

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    Today I bought engine decreaser from autozone, I was planning to use it on tuesday. Is this a good or bad idea? If so, are there any parts i should avoid to spray?

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