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  1. #1
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    engine detail

    I want to do the first engine detail for my car. Any tips, techniques, or products to use (other than meguiar? Noting against it, just have a very narrow variety of products to chose from here and ordering online gets more expensive once shipping is accounted for).

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    Registered Member Detailing by M's Avatar
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    What are you trying to accomplish?
    a simple cleaning?
    complete detail?
    just remove grease?

    I usually spray with APC (all purpose cleaner: Meguire's, Purple Power, Simple Green or the like) and wheel brighter/acid to make the aluminum and crome really clean and shiny. well chrome not so much aluminum.
    just be careful of electronics, distributor caps and all that good stuff.
    Remember you don't have to be to aggressive. then scrub and wipe things clean, then rinse carefully.

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    Sr. Global Product & Training Spec Michael Stoops's Avatar
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    Re: engine detail

    On a modern engine everything is pretty well sealed up so there usually isn't a lot to worry about when it comes to cleaning. You should be able to just warm up the engine a bit (but you don't want to clean a hot engine) and then spray something like our Engine Cleaner, APC or similar throughout the engine bay. Let it dwell for a bit, and use a brush or old towel to lightly scrub the dirtiest areas, then rinse with water. You shouldn't have to pressure wash, just a steady rinse from the hose should be all that's needed. Obviously if you have a lot of caked/baked on grease you'll need to get more aggressive.

    Older engines can pose some issues with regard to sensitive electrical components that are out in the open. These should be covered with a plastic wrap or similar before proceeding with the above process.

    Once the engine bay is mostly dry, you can spray any water based dressing onto it for a final appearance boost. Hyper Dressing is popular for this but M40 and Natural Shine work just as well.
    Michael Stoops
    Senior Global Product & Training Specialist | Meguiar's Inc.

    Remember, this hobby is supposed to be your therapy, not the reason you need therapy.

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    I went ahead and used simple green, cause I couldn't find meguiars engine detail. When using a small drop had ran down the side of the exerior paint. I quickly wiped it off with quick detailer. I noticed that the trail had left a slight fading of the paint. Not something that a easily seen but in the right angle it can be. I was wondering if this is the product itself and if so should I still be using it. I have heard that diluting makes it less aggressive?

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    Re: engine detail

    I used simple green on my engines.Then I heard that simple green corrodes aluminum. There is alot of aluminum on todays engines. Has this happened to anyone else?

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    Registered Member s word's Avatar
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    Re: engine detail

    I have always used simple green for the motor and never had an issue with aluminum, and never had a paint issue either. I just used it on a friends particularly nasty untouched in 7 years engine bay and it went from junkyard to show room with a little elbow grease. If you dilute just use some extra aggressiveness to get at the spot. I find that engine detailing can make perfectly good use of old grocery bags too. I usually wrap it around the alternator, block my coilpacks (when they are exposed), and my open air filter. Just dont use on super hot motor. Never had one melt, but would hate to see it happen.

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    Registered Member CHzo6's Avatar
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    Re: engine detail

    I would never use Simple Green at full strength, you can dilute it and still get good results with it. I've seen it stain aluminum and paint at full power several times.

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    Re: engine detail

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Stoops View Post
    On a modern engine everything is pretty well sealed up so there usually isn't a lot to worry about when it comes to cleaning. You should be able to just warm up the engine a bit (but you don't want to clean a hot engine) and then spray something like our Engine Cleaner, APC or similar throughout the engine bay. Let it dwell for a bit, and use a brush or old towel to lightly scrub the dirtiest areas, then rinse with water. You shouldn't have to pressure wash, just a steady rinse from the hose should be all that's needed. Obviously if you have a lot of caked/baked on grease you'll need to get more aggressive.

    Older engines can pose some issues with regard to sensitive electrical components that are out in the open. These should be covered with a plastic wrap or similar before proceeding with the above process.

    Once the engine bay is mostly dry, you can spray any water based dressing onto it for a final appearance boost. Hyper Dressing is popular for this but M40 and Natural Shine work just as well.
    Hello Michael,

    I hope you are doing fine.

    Can you please recommend me which all purpose cleaner is suitable for engine cleaning, and also does not damage paint? As for electrical,aside from the alternator, battery and fuse box, can you please advise about those other electrical ports, plugs, spark plugs jacks, and those plugs under the beauty cover ( my car is a 2010 chevy tahoe), are those dangerous to water spray?

    Thanks,
    Sherif

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    Registered Member oneway's Avatar
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    Re: engine detail

    I take nothing for granted. I cover all that I can which is electrical and the other important parts such as the alternator, distributor cap and wires, the exposed wires against the firewall. its just precaution for me. I use megs super degreaser for diluted to an almost weak state because that product is very well made and strong. it does the job for me really well. some folks will spray the aluminum if any, but I have seen degreaser stain it on both motors and wheels especially when the metal is hot. you can clean that separately if youd like. M40, in my opinion, is the perfect product for the detail and dressing part of the job. it leaves the engine looking brite, restores the black on hoses, wires, and all the plastic and rubber. I would also spray some kind of spray wax on the fenders or cover the fenders to avoid getting the degreaser on the paint which is not desirable. if it does happen quickly wipe off the fenders. be careful with the windshield as well. happy detailing my friend and keep it shiny...

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    Re: engine detail

    Quote Originally Posted by Sherif View Post
    Hello Michael,

    I hope you are doing fine.

    Can you please recommend me which all purpose cleaner is suitable for engine cleaning, and also does not damage paint? As for electrical,aside from the alternator, battery and fuse box, can you please advise about those other electrical ports, plugs, spark plugs jacks, and those plugs under the beauty cover ( my car is a 2010 chevy tahoe), are those dangerous to water spray?

    Thanks,
    Sherif
    APC (D101) or if you still have APC+ (D103) work well in cleaning the engine bay. Both can be diluted down for light to moderate cleaning of 10:1 and for heavy areas 4:1. 10:1 seems to work well with a little agitation by brush. It will not damage the paint but be sure to wipe it off and do not let it sit there for hours or even days.

    Quote Originally Posted by oneway View Post
    I take nothing for granted. I cover all that I can which is electrical and the other important parts such as the alternator, distributor cap and wires, the exposed wires against the firewall. its just precaution for me. I use megs super degreaser for diluted to an almost weak state because that product is very well made and strong. it does the job for me really well. some folks will spray the aluminum if any, but I have seen degreaser stain it on both motors and wheels especially when the metal is hot. you can clean that separately if youd like. M40, in my opinion, is the perfect product for the detail and dressing part of the job. it leaves the engine looking brite, restores the black on hoses, wires, and all the plastic and rubber. I would also spray some kind of spray wax on the fenders or cover the fenders to avoid getting the degreaser on the paint which is not desirable. if it does happen quickly wipe off the fenders. be careful with the windshield as well. happy detailing my friend and keep it shiny...
    That's good practice on an older car. But on newer cars a lot of the electronics are sealed. But I would still cover the alternator and battery.

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