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Garage Sultan
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As anyone who has looked at my other post (Clearer Pics of the K&N filter mod) can see my engine is savagely dirty. Ive been using Simple Green on the Engine block, strut towers and other things that look like they need it but my engine still isnt looking that good. How do I clean up some of the other things like hoses and plastic. I can use Armor All can i? Can Armour All stand up to the heat and stuff that the engine generates?

-Nick
 

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Moderator/ NPM staff
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If you have really heavy dirt and grim build up you probably want to get some engine cleaner at your local auto parts store. I have used a brand named "gunk" before and it works pretty well. Spray it on while the engine is running and hit it with a pressure washer (being careful not to directly hit the alternator) and it should clean it up well. You won't want to use armor all on it when its dirty like that because you will be doing nothing but polishing the filth.
 

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Screw Simple Green! Castrol Super Clean is the way to go. I use the stuff religously on my cars and at work. Go in with a spray bottle of Super Clean (full strength) and a scrub brush. Hose everything off when you're done and it'll look good. Make sure not to get water in places where it doesn't belong (i.e. air cleaner, distributor, etc...).
 
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Super clean is super stuff!!! I use this stuff on everything it works great, especially on dirty wheels. It will remove brake dust grime from your wheels with virtually no scrubbing. Buy it, use it, you won't regret it.
 

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If you have alot of time and patience, use Mothers Cleaner Wax on the painted surfaces like the strut towers and the firewall, it will take time, but they Will shine.
 

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Since my car isn't working I cleaned up the engine a bit, mainly the plastic hoses, wires, etc. I removed any hoses that were easy to remove and that didn't contain fluids, used a bucket of warm soapy water, a scouring sponge, tire brush and Simple Green and went to work. I couldn't believe the difference it made. Underneith the pressure clamps the hoses were brand new, after I was finished, the entire hose looked the same.

Afterward I polished them up with Turtle Wax Vinyl & Plastic protector which works excellent (stuff in the black bottle with green logo). Personally, I'd suggest Meguiar's Leather & Vinyl protector I think it is. The product is extra thick and provides a higher shine if you're looking for that but it also costs more. I've tried unscented baby oil as I heard someone mention it before and the results were undesireable. It doesn't leave a even finish and is more of a mess than anything.

Castrol Super Clean is by far a better product but it is also corrosive so you should wear gloves. I don't know about anyone else here but my hand do peal a few days later after using Javex or similar corrosive products.

If you're looking to polish up any dull metal, valve covers or heat shields I'd suggest Autosol or similar metal polish. These products work great for the most part and can really shin smooth surfaces to better than new condition but don't anticipate etched metal by oxidation or corrosion to look new although it will clean things up a bit. As for using Simple Green on aluminum, I've heard that it will cause oxidation. I can vouch for that although I'm more inclinded to believe it's because the engine hasn't been running for such a long time. To get into those hard to reach areas, Simple Green and a brass bristled brush worked fine. Most $1 stores should carry them (If you live in Canada, check out the "Buck Or Two".

Like LittlebittaContact mentioned, waxing the engine bay will do wonders as long as it's cleaned first. If you have the engine out to paint the car I'd suggest clear coating the engine bay as well to make for a stunning show car after polishing & waxing of course.

Let us know how it went with follow up pictures.

- Greg
 

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Nissan/Mazda Gumshoe
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man , ill definetly have to try out some of these products myself because my engine is really nasty. this is a good time to replace that gasket and paint the valve cover.
 
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