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DIY: Best and easiest way to clean your engine

Discussion in '360/430' started by whatheheck, Apr 29, 2018.

  1. whatheheck

    whatheheck F1 Rookie
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    Mar 27, 2006
    3,254
    Seattle, Wa
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    Dan L.
    The usual disclaimer:
    Im posting for sharing knowledge and experience. Im not here to debate or argue with anyone.
    Just like anything in life, individual results may vary and you do this at your own risk.

    Here you go for sharing:

    Don’t use Gunk engine cleaner. I hate the residual petroleum smell that stays on the car for weeks. It stinks!

    Never pressure wash or steam clean your engine as water / moisture can get inside the electrical connections and can short out electrical connections or promote corrosion.

    So, here you go, the best engine cleaner in my opinion, and its soooooo easy to do. Takes 10 minutes with very little effort.

    No foul smell, very friendly to the engine, works great on rubber hoses, plastic, great on aluminum, works quick and does a fantastic job.

    Scrubbing bubbles! I have used this stuff many times in all my cars and it works great! I urge you to try and post results.

    Steps:

    Spray on directly to a cool engine, let it soak for about 5 minutes, then hose the engine off with stream of water from the top going down.

    Important: Once you have rinsed the engine wipe down side panels, muffler, etc. to prevent water spots / water stains.

    Start the engine, let it warm up to dry.

    Once water disappears check out your engine and your entire engine bay. It should be so clean like it just came off the show room floor.

    Let me know how it works for you. Oh, get the lemon scented version. It smells better.
    You can find Scrubbing Bubbles at Costco and other grocery stores for about 3 bucks a can.

    BTW, If you want a little bit of shine, not shiny or greasy look at all, my favorite engine bay dressing is Griots Garage engine bay dressing.

    Spray engine bay dressing from the top on a cool engine, then wipe down all areas with microfiber cloth.

    I tell you, cleaning engine from here on cant be any easier. People will admire how clean your engine is and I don’t know of any car fan or mechanic that doesn’t like to work on or see clean engines.

    Another note: The photos & short video below I took right after cleaning with scrubbing bubbles. I have not had the opportunity to apply Griots Garage Engine Bay Dressing.

    Hope that helps.

    Photos below:

    Dan / whatheheck
     
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  2. whatheheck

    whatheheck F1 Rookie
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    Mar 27, 2006
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    Dan L.
  3. bocaf430

    bocaf430 Formula 3
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    Jun 10, 2014
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    nice very clean
     
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  4. whatheheck

    whatheheck F1 Rookie
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    Mar 27, 2006
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    Thanks!

    Here's a short 1 minute video.



    Dan
     
  5. Raconteur

    Raconteur Formula Junior
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    Jan 19, 2015
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    Thanks, Dan! I was planning to do a complete detail in the next couple of weeks with drier weather now here in the northwest. Very helpful advice.
     
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  6. whatheheck

    whatheheck F1 Rookie
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    Mar 27, 2006
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    You're welcome Frank!

    Kindly share before and after photos if you can.

    Dan
     
  7. ferralc

    ferralc Formula 3
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    Sep 2, 2010
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    Dan that looks awesome I will give it a try.
    By the way the scrubbing bubbles take care of the streaks on the black side panels too??


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  8. whatheheck

    whatheheck F1 Rookie
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    Mar 27, 2006
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    Thanks.

    The streaks on the side panels are caused by water droplets that dried out due to intense engine heat.

    They can only be removed by paint polish, then application of paint sealant to prevent reoccurrence.

    Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk
     
  9. Flyingbrick242

    Flyingbrick242 Karting
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    Feb 26, 2017
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    So. Cal
    Hi Dan,

    That looks showroom new..
    Thanks for sharing this helpful insight.
    K//
     
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  10. Way2fast

    Way2fast Formula 3

    May 24, 2006
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    Sam
    How does it work on brake calipers and rims

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  11. whatheheck

    whatheheck F1 Rookie
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    Mar 27, 2006
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    Sorry I dont know as I've never tried them on rims and brake calipers.
     
  12. whatheheck

    whatheheck F1 Rookie
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    Mar 27, 2006
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    Thank you!

    I've been using this method on all my cars and everyone that sees my engines they all ask How do you get your engine so clean! Must be a lot of work!

    I said actually no, its only Scrubbing Bubbles and Engine Bay Dressing from Griots Garage.

    See below.
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  13. LI2782

    LI2782 Formula Junior
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    Jul 19, 2010
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    Looks good, but your argument against using steam or pressure washing methods kind of gets ruined when you say you rinse this off with a garden hose. Garden hose is actually introducing a much higher volume of water to the engine compartment than a pressure washer or steamer would
     
  14. whatheheck

    whatheheck F1 Rookie
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    Mar 27, 2006
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    Im not here to argue or debate back & forth but I will go ahead and explain further.

    When you steam clean an engine or jet pressure wash it you will inject water into the connectors and all the other electrical circuits in the engine and engine bay side panels electrical connections. Most electrical connectors in the engine bay are rubber sealed, but if you use a jet pressure washer the high water pressure can penetrate the connectors rubber seals.

    If you use a garden hose without the sprayer and just run a stream of water from above the engine the water will just flow down naturally taking with it dirt, grease and grime scrubbing bubbles removed from the engine.

    So I am not worried about water volume but high water pressure.

    The car is designed to accept water from above and naturally flow down like rainfall.
    I dont think Ferrari ever tested their engine using high pressure washer all over the engine and engine bay as part of their manufacturing process.

    My 2.5 cents as I am no expert.
     
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  15. rennspeed

    rennspeed Formula Junior

    Oct 4, 2007
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    wow pretty awesome as usual Dan. QQ when you rinse the engine with water, is it just a trickle or full blast?
     
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  16. whatheheck

    whatheheck F1 Rookie
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    Mar 27, 2006
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    Thanks Phil.

    My technique is to remove the sprayer from the garden hose, then hose the entire engine bay (without the sprayer) using normal full water pressure from house plumbing.

    I've used this technique for over 10 years, shared it my friends and no one has ever had an issue. They are all super happy as it is super easy.

    During last years auto show at my work at Boeing one guy said "Man, you can eat off of that engine, it is so clean". So I shared with him the technique and he sent me a big thank you.

    Here's a photo of my previous 360 Spider after using scrubbing bubbles and applying Griots Garage Engine Bay Dressing.

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  17. Patman

    Patman Karting

    Jul 5, 2014
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    Wow that’s beautiful! Will definitely give that a try.

    Been using simple green in a spray bottle on the engine bays of my everyday cars with some moderate success. Will now try your method! Thanks for sharing!
     
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  18. Shinigami

    Shinigami Formula Junior
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    So Scrubbing Bubbles is by Johnson&Johnson and marketed as a bathroom cleaner? Can you read out what chemicals are inside, I might be able to find a similar product here in Switzerland.
     
  19. Carnut

    Carnut F1 Rookie
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    Well I always say no matter how much you have done, you can always learn something new, and I just did. Thanks Dan!
     
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  20. sakodik

    sakodik Karting
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    Did you ever need to agitate or scrub after spraying?
     
  21. whatheheck

    whatheheck F1 Rookie
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    Chemical contents is on SC Johnson website.

    Sorry the chemicals are too long and difficult for me to spell out. I don't know how to copy and paste using my cell phone. My apologies.

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  22. whatheheck

    whatheheck F1 Rookie
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    You're welcome! Kindly post photos once you're done so we can see.

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  23. whatheheck

    whatheheck F1 Rookie
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    Mar 27, 2006
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    Not on my engine.

    I literally just sprayed it all over the engine, let it soak and let it do its job for 5 - 10 minutes, then hosed it off with water & it came out sparkling clean.

    If your engine has baked on and caked on grease due to oil leaks and lots of dirt and grime you may have to. I don't think any of us have that condition.

    Note: when I first try this method many years ago I wrapped all engine electrical connectors with Saran wrap to protect them from getting wet. A friend said it's not necessary as the engine is designed and built to get wet so it shouldn't harm anything. Just don't pressure wash.

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  24. ferralc

    ferralc Formula 3
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  25. ferralc

    ferralc Formula 3
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    But this car in particular is designed and built to get wet because it has open vents, what about the other engines you have cleaned over the years? All engines are designed that way? So it is safe to use this method with all kind of engines?


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