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Unread 05-01-2013, 11:03 PM   #1
EveryDayZeeJay
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1998 ZJ 
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: American Fork, Utah
Posts: 17
Engine Cleaning Tips?

Hey guys, I am wanting to do a good cleaning on my 4.0, it is beyond filthy and caked with dust/grime/grease/oil. It's literally covering the entire lower of the engine, I know I have a rowdy leak of oil in probably more then one spot. (Front main?) and definitely valve cover.

With it being so extremely caked, what is the best method of cleaning this off? What products have you had results with? What steps did you take to ensure no damage to anything in the engine bay with electronics and such, what can I hit with product and water and not worry? (alternator is filthy as hell from the oil leak too.)

Once it's clean it will be easier to diagnose where leaks are I'm figuring.

Can a few of you guys who have had to deal with this much build up on a engine and got it back to a manageable and kept engine and bay share your experiences and tips?

Thanks in advance!

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Unread 05-01-2013, 11:06 PM   #2
JohnCrabtree
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EveryDayZeeJay View Post
Hey guys, I am wanting to do a good cleaning on my 4.0, it is beyond filthy and caked with dust/grime/grease/oil. It's literally covering the entire lower of the engine, I know I have a rowdy leak of oil in probably more then one spot. (Front main?) and definitely valve cover.

With it being so extremely caked, what is the best method of cleaning this off? What products have you had results with? What steps did you take to ensure no damage to anything in the engine bay with electronics and such, what can I hit with product and water and not worry? (alternator is filthy as hell from the oil leak too.)

Once it's clean it will be easier to diagnose where leaks are I'm figuring.

Can a few of you guys who have had to deal with this much build up on a engine and got it back to a manageable and kept engine and bay share your experiences and tips?

Thanks in advance!
Note: This is just what I've heard people using, not my personal experience so it really means nothing.

I've heard a lot about people using simple green, mixing it with water and throwing it in a squirt bottle. They just squirt it right onto the engine and then wash it off with a hose.(do not pressure wash your engine).
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Unread 05-02-2013, 06:49 AM   #3
Marcos
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Join Date: Mar 2005
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I've had the best luck degreasing engines and engine compartments using Foamy Engine Brite. The foamy kind seems to stick better during the soak-degrease cycle. The regular engine brite seems to leave its own gel/grease residue.

I've also had good luck with one of those bottles you attach to a hose that usually comes with garden products, and filling it with Super Clean. The water picks up the degreaser and it comes out in a strong jet.
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Unread 05-02-2013, 08:53 AM   #4
StrateLOSS
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1998 ZJ 
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Brooklyn, NY
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I did my engine bay, buy a can of engine degreaser, spray it, wait 5 minutes and then hose it off.

do it again if needed.


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Unread 05-02-2013, 09:02 AM   #5
JohnCrabtree
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Would you have to worry about getting water on electronics/in your cylinders if you just used a garden hose rather than power washing? I've always been hesitant to wash my engine bay because of all the horror stories I've heard about having to buy a brand new PCM or having a misfire because some got past your spark plug.

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Unread 05-02-2013, 09:05 AM   #6
misfit77
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I used to liked purple stuff, but wow Simple Green really works.

Every time I use that engine degreaser in a can, I get a white film that won't wash away.
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Unread 05-02-2013, 11:58 AM   #7
JeepNicholson
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1996 ZJ 
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnCrabtree View Post
Would you have to worry about getting water on electronics/in your cylinders if you just used a garden hose rather than power washing? I've always been hesitant to wash my engine bay because of all the horror stories I've heard about having to buy a brand new PCM or having a misfire because some got past your spark plug
Do not power wash your engine! Garden hose should be fine, a plus if you can hook it up to warm or hot water. When I do mine I cover anything sketchy with aluminum foil (don't cover your battery with foil though, just disconnect it and remove it) such as the pcm, distributor cap, and alternator, also the belt if you left it in. Everything else should be more or less water resistant. Oh yeah and cover your throttle body if you take the intake off of it.
Basically apply whatever degreasing solvent you choose, let it sit, and rinse. It helps to have a soft thin brush to help get in all the nooks too. Repeat as needed. When it's done you can use a leaf blower or air compressor to blow the excess water out of all those nooks.
Then I personally like to apply some sort of engine shine/coating so it'll be easier to clean the next time.

Also don't run it while you're rinsing/cleaning it and make sure your manifold isn't blazing hot when you hose it off or you'll crack it.
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Unread 05-02-2013, 02:13 PM   #8
StrateLOSS
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there are many techniques, personally I just do it the way I posted above, never had an issue.


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Unread 05-02-2013, 03:29 PM   #9
McCloudsZJ
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Toothbrush, engine degreaser, and elbow grease. I got my niner with 230,000 miles. I don't think it had ever been washed, inside or out. I fixed that.

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