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removing caked-on oil, grease, and crud

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  • #16
    Yes, hot steam is the thing for grease & hard gunk- it get it all & gets it fast. When I do not have access to a steam cleaner, I scrape off the worst of it and then turn the sandblaster loose on it. It is then ready for primer & paint. A cup brush on the big grinder does pretty well also. POR 15 is great for freshly blasted engine blocks & other cast iron pieces...
    Barry'd in Studes


    • #17
      Just for you eco nuts out there...
      purple power is the same class chemical as purple-matic, it is "technically" an enviromental NO-No and CANNOT be put down regular drains.
      If you really have a lot to do and want to be eco-friendly about it, since it sounds like you have a lot to do....
      Use one of the green cleaners, like SG, not to be confused with Simple Green, or Ecolution. They are all GREAT at varying levels of concentration and all are available at the same places as purple power, etc...

      Ideally, hit a car wash and then hit it with the green cleaners, let it soak in.... then scrub it off. You do get what you put into it and there is no really "quick" fix unless it is VERY unfriendly to the environment.

      In our shop, we use everything from green to mean....

      If you have some really tough areas and DON'T care about your paint... use Blue Beast, Purple-matic, Purple Power for amine cleaners that will eat your old paint right off.

      Or go for orange cleaners such as DuJel870 or FreshSense.

      Just remember, the more agressive it is to the dirt & grease, the more hazardous it wil be to your paint and your health.

      If you do use any of the damgerous chemicals, look at the MSDS' and handle & dispose of them right. In small amounts, these really are not an issue, but in any quantity, the run-off will kill your grass, your neighbor's dogs, etc....


      • #18
        Those forum members who live in Miami you remember Johnny&Mack......'by the rr track?' They did everything automotive........and had an outside lift where they would steam clean engines and chassis's Fifty yrs in business closed in the mid 70's:-(


        • #19
          Thanks new2drive. Good post.


          • #20
            Originally posted by PackardV8 View Post
            The quickest, easiest way is to go to a commercial wash bay at an off hour, so this procedure isn't holding up a line of cars impatiently and making one feel rushed. Wear clothes you are prepared to throw away and bring a change of clothes. With the engine warm, spray on or brush on whatever of the cleaners previously recommended. The underside of the pan, around the bellhousing is the most difficult to reach. Lying on cold, wet, dirty concrete is no fun and you haven't even started the worst part. Use a round stiff bristled parts brush to work the cleaner into the crevices. Let it work for about ten minutes. Then use a scraper to dislodge as much crud as possible. Remove the air cleaner and cover the carburetor opening and distributor cap with plastic bags and strong rubber bands. Plan on drying the inside of the distributor afterward. Then with a stack of quarters or a credit card, start the pressure washer with soap cycle. Start at the front and the top, working toward the back on each side of the engine. Don't forget under the intake manifold at every opening. Piles of crud hide on top of the bellhousing, so get behind the distributor and rocker covers as best possible. Then, back on the wet, now really nasty concrete to hit the oil pan and the bottom of the bellhousing. Switch to rinse cylcle and do it all again. Dry the distributor, change clothes and drive 'er home.

            jack vines
            There are three basic ways to break down oil and grease - Solvents, Alkalines and some natural oils like Citrus oil. You will find the first two in most non-green cleaners, and the Citrus oil in the Eco cleaners., from my experience the largest active ingredient in Eco Friendly cleanes is elbow grease ;-) The commercial / car wash suggestion is probably the best, as you can drive away and leave all that crud and chemcial cleaner residue behind. (My company supplies water clarification products for a lot of car washes, - they have to recycle 70% of their water by Govt regs, and the owners really squeal after someone has washed down an engine 'cause the oil, grease & alkalines play havoc with the recycle process - oops). What ever you use wear a face shield, even those small lumps of crud make a bee line for your eyes.

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