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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-05-2016, 09:47 AM Thread Starter
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Engine Bay

After popping the hood after my recent offload trip, the engine bay is a bit of a mess. Mud and dirt got pretty widespread.

What recommendations might you have for cleaning up things in the engine bay? Is it safe to just grab a hose and go to work? Should i use cleaner of some kind too? is it irrelevant and I should just leave it as it?

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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-05-2016, 09:55 AM
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I clean mine with a rag that I just dip in a water bucket. I use to take interior wipes and use them on the plastic parts but haven't in a while.
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-05-2016, 11:08 AM
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only time I used a hose on an engine it turned out badly (forgot to put 4Runner valve cover cap back after topping off oil - oil got everywhere, then washed with hose and cleaner but then it needed service). now I just wipe things down periodically. if it's a real mess you might consider a pro detailer who knows the ins and outs of engine cleaning, someone who has made mistakes in the past and knows what not to do. I think if you hose it down some things should be wrapped up/covered

chances are if you take it slowly and do whatever you can easily reach section by section you might be happy with the results. if you do use a hose don't use high pressure or a lot of water - use it sparingly. but then, I'm an old lazy scaredy cat :/

Last edited by rumrunner; 05-05-2016 at 11:11 AM.
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-05-2016, 01:05 PM
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Whenever I wash ANY of my vehicles (past and present) I use the same soapy water with sponge to wash everything down. When I rinse, I just make sure that there is just enough water to wash away the soap. NEVER had a problem in the past 20 years or so. I wash the engine bay when I am finished with the exterior.

Makes it easy to keep clean if you do it often enough.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-05-2016, 05:21 PM
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Be sure not to wet your alternator...they don't like water...

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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-05-2016, 06:11 PM
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I haven't had the need yet on my Cherokee, but my old Amigo I'd pull the hood off, drive to a pay and spray. Pressure wash everything then since the hood was off, air dry everything on the way home. It would run like doo doo for the first 20 minutes or so while the electronics dried out but it was fine after that.

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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-05-2016, 06:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by R2D2 View Post
Be sure not to wet your alternator...they don't like water...
Spraying it down with the engine off should be fine. Submerging it while driving through flood waters, not so much. They trip the breakers (not fuses) and then you lose all kinds of things until you shut off the vehicle and restart it.

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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-05-2016, 10:37 PM
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I've hosed and pressure sprayed (using a light nozzle) my engines for at least the last 40 years. Start the engine, spray it down to get it wet and remove leaves and other debris. Stop the engine and wipe the flat surfaces and other stuff as needed with soapy water. Start it back up and spray off the soapy water. Close the hood and let it run for 5 or 10 minutes to start the drying process. Never had a problem.

I may be mistaken, but doesn't the engine bay get water spray while driving in the rain? Rain hits the radiator, the fan(s) pull the water through and sprays it over the front of the engine and other devices in there.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-06-2016, 04:24 PM
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Not sure about washing my TH V6. But using a leaf blower to dry everything may work. Will let someone else try it first. In the meantime I will accept the dirt and dust.
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-06-2016, 04:38 PM
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I am a detailer. what i do it firstly cover up any electronics battery covers, alternators, etc anything that could get damaged by water. Then use a pressure washer(hose also works well) with a 40 degree tip about 2-3 feet away from the engine. Rinse it down making sure not to stay in 1 spot at a time always be moving the wand. Then follow it up by soaking the engine with a car engine de-greaser such as meguirs or chemical guys. Then take as firm but soft brush and toothbrush and scrub everything down top to bottom making sure nothing gets dry while doing so. Then again take the pressure washer and do the same thing you did to rinse off any lose dirt, but make sure you get all the de-greaser off, then use a blow dryer (optional) and microfiber towel to wipe everything dry. Then remove all plastic bags and covers you have used to protect the electronics and run the engine for about 5-10 mins to help get rid of all the water. Then use a water based dressing with a microfiber towel. I use chemical guys vrp to dress the engine bay. if this wasn't helpful enough there are plenty of youtube videos that will help you out. Also forgot to add make sure the engine is cool to the touch before you start doing anything to it.
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