engine steamclean

ken crosley

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1994 c180. bmw 1.8is coupe honda cbr 600
when my mercedes has gone in for service it appears that the garage sprays the engine bay with silicone this all looks nice.but now the engine bay is covered with dust and basically its a bloody mess. the dust has adhered to the silicone. am thinking the only solution is to steam clean the engine bay.i have been advised not to do this. has anyone got any ideas on this please? regards ken
 

NormanB

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Ken

There are a lot of plusses and minuses to this one.

For a start, I would not let anybody else steam clean my engine bay but that is just me - 'they' have no interest in the car just the cash. If I had the kit I would (when time permits) have a go myself but cautiously.

A few things to consider:

1. You can probably achieve just as good a result by hand cleaning.
2. You need to protect any electrics or be exceedingly careful.
3. Once you have removed 'oilyness' from the engine bay you need to restore some sort of protection otherwise unprotected metal will be vulnerable to corrosion.

I have in the past cleaned the engine bay by hand but only in way of work I was about to do or was in the process of doing. I used Autoglym engine cleaner (smells much nicer than Gunk) worked in with an old paint brush. For removing residue I topped up an old domestic spray bottle with hot water and a smidgin of washing up liquid and then wiped down with old towels. I hasten to add this was not preparing to concourse standards just cleaning off years of accumulated oilyness and dust build up.

The results are excellent. Being a bit anal I then waxed up the painted bodywork parts as protection with car polish. Looked really good when I finished but that appearance doesn't last long. My car is a daily driver and there ain't enough hours in the day to keep an engine bay spotless!!

But steam cleaning - for me - no way.

Good luck.
 

Anders

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I cleaned the engine bay last week, by hand and with liberal amounts of engine cleaner followed by water.

However, your remark on the need to protect the clean engine afterwards, warrants a question: With what product? We are talking about the actual engine, not the paintwork in the engine bay? Would have thought that the engine (mine is alloy) would be fine once cleaned, but are you suggesting some non-sticky oil/silicone or similar?
 

NormanB

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Anders said:
I cleaned the engine bay last week, by hand and with liberal amounts of engine cleaner followed by water.

However, your remark on the need to protect the clean engine afterwards, warrants a question: With what product? We are talking about the actual engine, not the paintwork in the engine bay? Would have thought that the engine (mine is alloy) would be fine once cleaned, but are you suggesting some non-sticky oil/silicone or similar?

Hi Anders

Sorry, it was not my intention to suggest the engine itself requires 'preservation; after a clean - that would not be necessary. What I rather inelegantly was trying to suggest (and this is particularly applicable on cars of advancing years) is that all this oilyness and dirt in the engine bay is actually preventing corrosion - if you clean and degrease it away then any exposed steel on bodywork or fittings will then start to corrode.

For example, a few months after doing mine I noticed that my air filter housing was starting to corrode around where the retaining clips had damaged the paint - I am sure I caused this by 'degreasing'.

Regards
NormanB
 

Anders

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Hi Norman,

All clear! I was actually wondering if there was some kind of non-sticky product out there for protecting the engine that I wasn't aware of, but I appreciate your comment on the corrosive nature of engine cleaners on other parts.

Cheers,

Anders
 

Dieselman

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Try using a very sparing coat of rustproofing wax and oil mixed together.
Rub it onto any parts that want protecting then rub off until you cant see it.
 

Munkee

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Hi, is it safe to clean this area with WD40 or a specialised cleaning fluid? I ask cos this area in my car has some corrosion and is quite dirty and it needs something like WD40 to shift it.
 

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NormanB

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Hi

Have a go with WD40 it should not do any harm.

The area you have indicated is I believe powder coated and the ravages of heat and time may have discoloured it - so any attempts at cleaning may be fruitless.

Regards

NormanB

PS: It looks pretty clean to me ;-)
 

jaymanek

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Its quite tough to get rid of that yellow ness, its the corrosion protection stuff... I swear by gunk and my hose pipe...
 

Munkee

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What exactly is powder coating?

Is it expensive?

Where can I get it done?

BY THE WAY

The pic of the engine is not mine (but very similar), I found the pic in one of the other threads. Sorry whoever this pic really belongs to but it's helped to explain where exactly I have to clean my engine!
 
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pluggers

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Munkee said:
What exactly is powder coating?

Is it expensive?

Where can I get it done?

BY THE WAY

The pic of the engine is not mine (but very similar), I found the pic in one of the other threads. Sorry whoever this pic really belongs to but it's helped to explain where exactly I have to clean my engine!

What exactly is powder coating?-Maybe this will help you! powder coating

Expensive-Dont know.Costs can vary between companys and how much labour you put in yourself or by letting them do it all.

Where can I get it done-Best do a search for powder coaters in your local area.
 

Munkee

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Powder coating the rocker cover seems to be quite expensive and time consuming. So is there an easier option of sanding and then spraying the cover? Is there a special paint to be used, which is also DIY friendly?

Can anyone recommend a good product, to clean the engine and make it shine but not be damaging and leaving marks or stains.

Cheers
 

NormanB

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Munkee said:
snipped
Can anyone recommend a good product, to clean the engine and make it shine but not be damaging and leaving marks or stains.

Cheers

I refer the gentlemen to the reply I gave earlier:

NormanB said:
I have in the past cleaned the engine bay by hand but only in way of work I was about to do or was in the process of doing. I used Autoglym engine cleaner (smells much nicer than Gunk) worked in with an old paint brush. For removing residue I topped up an old domestic spray bottle with hot water and a smidgin of washing up liquid and then wiped down with old towels. I hasten to add this was not preparing to concourse standards just cleaning off years of accumulated oilyness and dust build up.

But if it is really oily then Gunk is the product - some people even like the rather industrial smell!!
 

Dieselman

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Munkee said:
Powder coating the rocker cover seems to be quite expensive and time consuming. So is there an easier option of sanding and then spraying the cover? Is there a special paint to be used, which is also DIY friendly?

Can anyone recommend a good product, to clean the engine and make it shine but not be damaging and leaving marks or stains.

Cheers

Alloy wheel cleaner or aluminium cleaning acid will leave the alloy shiny.
 

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