Engine bay cleaning advice please

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BenC5HDi
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Engine bay cleaning advice please

Post by BenC5HDi »

Now, cleaning engine bays is a somewhat alien concept to me. However, my brother has a hydro-dipping business and has redone all my underbonnet plastics and covers in a nice carbon weave black. It looks very smart, but it's let down by the filthyness of the rest of the engine bay and he'd like to have some pictures of it all nice and shiny for his portfolio of work..

So, what can I use to clean it with? Obviously I'm not going to jet wash it or anything extreme. I'd rather not use anything too toxic and it's strictly a one - off clean so I'm not going to go and spend loads on cleaning stuff...

It's a Berlingo 2.0 HDi if it makes any difference..

Thanks!

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daviemck2006
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Re: Engine bay cleaning advice please

Post by daviemck2006 »

My advice is pay someone else to do it! You may think I don't like cleaning engine bays either and you would be correct. It's something I have never done!

bxzx16v
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Re: Engine bay cleaning advice please

Post by bxzx16v »

Bilt Hambers surfex Hd will work a treat on engine bay cleaning Ben , it can be diluted to whatever strength you require . It's probably one of the best all purpose cleaners around .I'm sure it's a available in a 1 ltr spray and a 5ltr container too .

Mark

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Re: Engine bay cleaning advice please

Post by Gibbo2286 »

Simple, paraffin a paint brush and some paper tissue.

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Stickyfinger
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Re: Engine bay cleaning advice please

Post by Stickyfinger »

Strip off as much as you can, then starting as far down as you can do the deepest areas and work up. Wooden coffee mixers are great (steal and handful from McDonalds) as they can be used to scrap crud away and be wrapped with some rag. Other long thin wooden sticks with gaffer taped rag gets into deep areas.

A good few small paint brushes (cheepos from B&Q etc) ....cut some down for "scrubbing" and tape to a long stick, thin long ally rod, bent at 45deg and a brush taped on gets into hard to reach areas.

inspection gloves AND some thicker thin "gardening" gloves over the top....prevents damaging your hands and ripping endless thin blue ones.

Gunk (or similar) in large tins decanted into a small spray bottle (that gives a jet)

Never been one for jet washing

Gibbo2286
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Re: Engine bay cleaning advice please

Post by Gibbo2286 »

One of my trade friends has a Berlingo standing on his yard for about five years now, he took it px as a non runner after the guy who owned it pressure washed everything, under the bonnet inside the cab and all.

All attempts to get it going including bsi immobilisers etc. failed, and it was put aside and forgotten, I think he recently nicked the head off it for another van and no doubt other bits and pieces have been taken by the cannibals.

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white exec
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Re: Engine bay cleaning advice please

Post by white exec »

If you've never tried it, any brand of biological (enzyme) clothes washing liquid, in warm water, cuts through oil, grease, grime and crud. Also cleans up paint brushes which have been used in solvent/oil-based paints, including Hammerite - just use a tiny amount of the relevant solvent first.

Well-kept secret.

Peter.N.
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Re: Engine bay cleaning advice please

Post by Peter.N. »

Back in the '50s they used a good old fashioned steam cleaner - worked a treat, probably banned by health and safety now.

Peter

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Zelandeth
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Re: Engine bay cleaning advice please

Post by Zelandeth »

Have to confess to having pressure washed engine bays of everything from Austin Metros to Ladas to the 107 and my current Xantia. Just use a bit of common sense, scope out where the ECU(s) are and avoid them, and don't go out of the way to direct a jet at close range at electrical connectors - from a decent range though you should be fine. Obviously stick a plastic bag over the air intake as well.

Only car that has ever protested was an L plate Fiesta - though all this proved to me was that it needed new HT leads - and even then a squirt of WD40 had it right as rain.

If you blast everything from an inch away though mind you, then yes you will be letting yourself in for a world of pain. Bit of care though and you'll be fine. If you have a washer that can do hot water too like the one we had at the garage it can be astonishingly effective.

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van ordinaire
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Re: Engine bay cleaning advice please

Post by van ordinaire »

white exec wrote:If you've never tried it, any brand of biological (enzyme) clothes washing liquid, in warm water, cuts through oil, grease, grime and crud. Also cleans up paint brushes which have been used in solvent/oil-based paints, including Hammerite - just use a tiny amount of the relevant solvent first.

Well-kept secret.
Really? I haven't found a laundry product that will get grease (all right, cooking oil) out of clothes!

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white exec
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Re: Engine bay cleaning advice please

Post by white exec »

Yes, it does work.
Paintbrush used for Hammerite or solvent-based paint just needs a good agitate in tiny quantity of solvent first. Then a hefty squirt of bio liquid in a jar, work about with brush, then add some warm water. Do second time to get an absolutely clean brush.
Dirty/oily engine parts will clean up with bio and water in a workshop sink.
Ditto paint-spray and wax-injection guns, after small amount of solvent first.
Doesn't eliminate the need for appropriate solvent altogether, but reduces need for it by huge amount.
Grease stains in woven material can be very difficult to shift if they have actually dyed the material. For these, try liquid Vanish or Vanish soap-bar, before a wash.

Bio liquid contains grease/oil/dirt-dissolving enzymes. These only become active when water is added to the supplied liquid, and have a life of about a day. This means that neat (undiluted) bio liquid will not have much effect on dirt, until water is added. Diluted bio liquid kept standing around for much longer than this will lose its rapid grease-dissolving ability. Not normally a consideration.