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Author Topic: What do folks use to clean oil off engines?  (Read 2546 times)
belfert
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« on: June 25, 2011, 06:50:32 PM »

I have lots of oil all over the side of my engine from two oil leaks.

What is the best product to remove this oil?  Bryce (BK) used brake cleaner to remove oil when he fixed an oil leak on my engine at his place a number of years back.  My only worry about brake cleaner is that it removes paint.  I would prefer not to use something that has to be rinsed off as that makes a mess for working on the engine.
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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
thomasinnv
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« Reply #1 on: June 25, 2011, 06:53:26 PM »

oil eater is the best i have found. it is gentle on hoses and paint, but tough on oil. cleans up really nice, you could almost eat off it after you clean it.
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There are three kinds of people in this world....those that make things happen, those that watch things happen, and those that just wonder what the heck is happening. Which one are you?

1977 MCI Crusader MC-8
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« Reply #2 on: June 25, 2011, 07:13:58 PM »

 Ive tried about everything, but mineral spirits and elbow grease has worked better than anything. Someone a while back mentioned using Armorall, then wash down with windex, said the two compound each other. Never tried it, but im going to, sounds like it just might work.

  Be careful with pressure washers, while they are great at removing heavy grime, they can blow out gaskets, push water past seals, strip off paint, destroy soft hoses, push water inside electrical components, flood the engine, etc..
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Cary and Don
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« Reply #3 on: June 25, 2011, 07:28:09 PM »

The best thing we have found is the cleaner they use just before applying new paint on a vehicle.  There may be other brands, but the one we have been using is Acryli-clean.  Won't hurt the existing paint.  Just scrape off the big stuff and wipe down with the cleaner.  Bad news,  $30 a gallon and California is banning it as of the first of the month.

Don and Cary
1973 05 Eagle
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1973 05 Eagle
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bergdoll
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« Reply #4 on: June 26, 2011, 04:33:02 AM »

while in the army, we used diesel to clean our engines. toilet brush & diesel. worked very well.
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1982 Prevost Champion/Marathon under construction...
belfert
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« Reply #5 on: June 26, 2011, 05:43:41 AM »

My plan is to buy some Oil Eater at O'Reilly.  I need to buy an external torx socket anyhow.  I may try the mineral spirits.

I'm not going to use diesel as it tends to attract dirt unless you use another degreaser to remove the diesel residue.  I operated a diesel riding mower in college and it had dirt all over the fuel tank from diesel spills.
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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
trucktramp
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« Reply #6 on: June 26, 2011, 06:16:37 AM »

I had some stuff that I think I got from Sam's Club or one of those "Warehouse" places.  It was called Simple Green.  I never used it as a degreaser but my boy claims that it worked great and was suprisingly gentle as he used it as the soap to detail carpets in cars.  I don't know if it is still around though, I bought it several years ago. 

You might try Dawn dish soap.  It's what the EPA uses to clean crude oil off of waterfowl and that stuff is like tar.  Or try starting fluid.  It will take off the oil but be careful around any open fires.  Just a thought.
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Dennis Watson
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luvrbus
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« Reply #7 on: June 26, 2011, 06:20:11 AM »

You don't want to use the Simple Green or the Purple stuff around or on wiring will cause you some problems later fwiw

good luck
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« Reply #8 on: June 26, 2011, 06:27:18 AM »

Why?
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Ace Rossi
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luvrbus
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« Reply #9 on: June 26, 2011, 06:34:28 AM »

 Corrosion at the connections Ace the stuff has a acid in it or did,spray it on aluminum or bare copper and check in a week

good luck
« Last Edit: June 26, 2011, 06:42:06 AM by luvrbus » Logged

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babell2
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« Reply #10 on: June 26, 2011, 07:00:36 AM »

I have my bus in a storage lot on gravel. I have used multiple products to de grease the engine and trans. My bigest concern is the oil slick forming under the bus. It is hard to catch up on 30 years of accumulation.

Brice
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1980 MCI-9 "The Last Resort" Located just south of Atlanta GA.
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TomC
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« Reply #11 on: June 26, 2011, 08:37:17 AM »

Oil Eater has already been mentioned-but it works so well-I'm saying it again.  Oil eater is THEE BEST degreaser I've EVER found!!! In 10% with 90% water-I wash my bus with it.  On really grimy spots I just spray 50/50 mix from my pump bottle-and presto it is gone.  I use a 50/50 blend to clean my carpet inside the bus (always seem to track grease in somehow). My wife uses a 50/50 blend to degrease my clothes.  I use a 25% blend to clean the grease in the kitchen.  And on and on it goes.  I don't use anything else.  Fantastic, 409, Simple Green are all like water in comparison.  You can order it online.  Good Luck, TomC
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Tom & Donna Christman. '77 AMGeneral 10240B; 8V-71TATAIC V730.
belfert
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« Reply #12 on: June 26, 2011, 08:49:24 AM »

I already bought a gallon of Oil Eater at O'Reilly this morning.  I also picked up a couple of spray bottles to mix it 50/50 with water.  I wanted a spray bottle as a gallon might last the rest of my life and I'm not that old.
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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
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« Reply #13 on: June 26, 2011, 01:16:38 PM »

Either I'm doing something wrong with the Oil Eater, or this stuff is plain worthless.

I mixed up a 50/50 solution in a spray bottle and let it soak for about 5 minutes.  When I wiped it after 5 minutes hardly anything came off.  I soaked it down real good and let it sit at least 30 minutes this time.  Still hardly anything came off.

In some areas the oil is caked on 1/4" thick.  I scraped as much as I could off and the Oil Eater still didn't help.
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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
Chopper Scott
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« Reply #14 on: June 26, 2011, 03:06:47 PM »

Pretty hard to beat a pressure washer. One does have to use some common sense however. I used mine today cleaning off some areas in fact. I wish I had a steam cleaner. Those babies really get stuff clean. Warning however...... I stated common sense is involved. If you direct the pressure towards your rearend in may not be wise!! Wink
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