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Old 01-05-2002, 22:48   #1 (permalink)
Mmm, high pressure wash.
 
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Hosing the engine bay

Wasn't sure if this belongs in The Pub or The Garage. It's not really techie so I posted here.

When I wash my car is it OK to hose out the engine bay? I get a lot of dust, leaves and twigs in mine and I figure a good hosing would get all the crap out.

Today I just used an old milk bottle to flush out parts of the bay but I made sure I didn't get the engine, any wiring or other electrical stuff wet.

Obviously the engine would have to be cold and I'd need to let it dry out before driving it but I just want to know is it safe to give the whole bay a good shower?

Thanks in advance dudes.
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Old 01-05-2002, 23:02   #2 (permalink)
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When I did my EA I just stuffed a rag into the intake snorkal, then sprayed degreaser everywhere. Came back 30min later and hosed it down with the hose on full, I did avoid spraying near the distributer and oil cap though.

I notice some water had pooled around the spark plugs so i just blew the water out of there. Started her up a couple of hours later and everything was fine.

When my XR gets dirty enough under the bonnet ill probably do the same.


When I was a mechanic one guy said when washing down an engine leave the car running because he once washed the engine of a Landcruiser with it off and some water got into the alarm(??) and because of this it wouldnt start for 3 days.
Another guy said to NOT wash it while its running as your more likely to short out an electrical componant.
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Old 01-05-2002, 23:22   #3 (permalink)
proffesional stupid head
 
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With a motorbike i leave it running to blow any water out that gets into the exhaust... cause if u drown the engine she wont start afterwards....

If its not running i allways start it up to blow the shit out

Wouldnt have any idea about the engine bay, mines getting a tad on the dirtyside considering it was sitting out the front of someones house for 2 years before i got it and i havent washed it yet...
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Old 01-06-2002, 00:31   #4 (permalink)
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Yeh its fine I used to have to be careful with my twin cam because of how the plugs sink into the engine you have to use an air hose to get it out as its too deep to get out otherwise
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Old 01-06-2002, 00:35   #5 (permalink)
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I've always left it running, only coz i always do it down at carlovers. If it does stall on you, make sure you got a can of WD40 or something to get it going again. Just spray under dizzy cap and wipe after and also spray into the HT leads at the spark plug end...
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Old 01-06-2002, 00:46   #6 (permalink)
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I've never had a problem with it, infact i wasnt even aware it could cause problems till i read this. i just spray water everywhere at full pressure, all over the alternator, all over the engine, even when hot. never caused a problem tho, but ill be carefull in future now.

I only did this on my 3 decent cars, didnt bother about the rest. athough, i did need to dry out the distributor with a rag on the 929 or it wouldnt start.
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Old 01-06-2002, 01:06   #7 (permalink)
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I heard that its bad if you wash the bay, with a warm / hot engine, and you have an alloy head.
The Alloy head grows/shrinks faster than the iron block, so spraying water over an alloy head engine will cause head gasket problems.

However, when she's cold. No problems (that Im aware of)
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Old 01-06-2002, 01:16   #8 (permalink)
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My TX3 had plastic radiator tanks which I cracked when I sprayed water on the engine bay after not leaving it long enough to cooldown
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Old 01-06-2002, 01:31   #9 (permalink)
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Hmmmmmmmmmm... thats probly why my 929 blew a head gasket. it had an alloy head and i sprayed water all over it when it was hot. mind you the radiator was rusted to the shithouse as it was the origional one. that probly didnt help. and the temperature sender didnt work, so i didnt even know what the temperature was. Sadly. that was my all time favorite car.
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Old 01-06-2002, 02:12   #10 (permalink)
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I do mine with engine running but from a cold start (so no risk to the cold head) . Turn the engine on spray the degreaser everywhere hose off leave running until warm. Avoid getting degreaser on the belts or in the alternator; also avoid water in the alternator (ruins the bearings). Also of course make sure you don't get a lot of water in the air intake unless you want bent rods.

I doubt there is a big risk of a cracked head or blown head gasket washing a hot engine; after all what happens when you splash through a big puddle ? I guess using hot water might be the best solution.
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