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Discussion Starter #1
I read the article about how to clean your engine bay but I have a question.

A friend of mine used to work for Toyota and he said that when they used detail engine bays that they wouldn't cover anything up, they'd just hose everything down, use soap and water to clean everything and then spray everything down again. Now I know that most dealers don't care about your car but I know this guy and he cares about his. Plus, I've watched him do this to both his car, his friends car, and my girls car. So far none of them have complained of any problems. Anyway, is this safe to do or not? If not then could someone give me an explanation as to why. Also, if I should be covering stuff up could someone please give me a list of all things that should be covered? I'd really appreciate it. Thanks in advance.
 

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For some cars its not a problem. My old audi had a distributorless ignition, so there was no problem with getting it wet. Some toyota's may have that as well.

The main problem is the distributor, which if it gets wet can cause electronic problems. It does have a gasket to prevent moisture from entering in, but I wouldn't trust it for a hose or any sort of pressure.

It takes 10min at most to cover up the important areas (air filter, battery, distrubtor, spark plugs wires). Much better 10min of work, vs hundreds of dollars to replace your distributor.
 

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i know that in my jeep we didn't cover anything up. but if you are covering up i would do the distributer and any other electrical plugs that might hold water.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Appreciate the responses and I probably should have mentioned that all 3 cars that I've watched him clean have been Honda's. Actually all 3 were Civic's.

So StyleTEG, you're saying that I should cover up the spark plug wires too. Should I just cover them where they attach to the valve cover or at the distributor as well?
 

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I cleaned mine last week.
Covered up distributor, battery, spark plug wires, MAP and Injector sensors and other electrical connections.
Somehow water got into my 3rd cylinders spark plugs, fouled that, and stopped it from firing. I had a 3 cylinder teg for about 5 days until I replaced all 4 plugs and the spark plug wires.
Moral of the story, cover everything and still be very careful, dont spray water in one place for an extended period of time or high pressure.
 

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i've sprayed mine down a few times. never covered anything, never had any problems. of course, i didn't aim the hose directly at any of the "iffy" spots either.
 

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thats why I'm just going to do it by hand one day
 

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To be safe cover up the intake and distributor. It is better to use a garden hose with low pressure then a high pressure carwash hose. Also dont spray directly over the spark plug valves. I decided not to cover my distributor once and then accidently sprayed some high pressure water on it. My 3rd valve was not working the next day and it also burnt out my spark plugs, wires, and rotor.
 

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Cover anything that you don't want to corode. The spark plug wires are good to cover because one end goes into your valve cover (get water in there and good luck getting your car to start for awhile) and the other end goes to your distributer (definatly not something you want water on). Just keep water off the areas that are electric. Covering them is a good idea. You can always clean them with some armor all and a rag later. If you decide not to cover them then just be very very careful. Never hit them with high pressure. Just spray everything down with engine degreaser and let it do its work. on the really dirty areas maybe you want to hit it a couple times. Some good degreaser is all you really need. Check this out....

Before....


After....


The guy didn't even realize that his valve cover wasn't black to begin with. lol That was done with nothing more than some good degreaser, water, and my trusty brush and towel. It took maybe 30 minutes or less. once you get the hang of it I think it gets kind of easy. Not to mention that if you stay on top of it then its just that much eaiser to clean the next time. :)

Here is my engine just for kicks. I detail it maybe once a month.
 

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Holy crap your engine bay is clean!!! What do u use!!!?? and as far as the other comments, me and my dad used a high pressure hose and some degreaser one time and covered only the intake filter and it cleaned up everythign and nothing was hurt!
 

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The thing is, you may not do immediate damage. The damage may be caused by getting water on connections that will eventually rust or corode away. Its just safer to avoid getting electronics wet, ya know? Cover whatever you don't want to frizz out on you later.

I just use degreaser and a towel. When I'm done I use CD2 engine detail spray. It gives the hoses a nice shine to them. Keep up on your engine and it will always look good. Its the people that never even pop their hoods that I worry about.
 

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Here is a pic of my engine bay



This the first time i've done this and i wanted to know what to cover up? From all the stories of people having problems and all, i'm getting scared about cleaning my engine bay. Please if you could photoshop my pic to show me what to cover as well as listing what to cover. I want to be as safe as possible....thanks for your help
 

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Please take a second to read these Forum Guidelines

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Keep it fair to all members and do not needlessly "bump" or "ttt" a topic you started. Chances are very good that if someone knew the answer or wanted to by something, that they most definitely would post a reply
As for those engine bays....WOW! The first one is like night and day.
 

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I just use a degresser wait about 5-10 min, then I wipe it off with a rag. I only use water on the firewall but I do cover up (using dry rags) the battery, plugs (spark plugs wire) distr. cap anthing thats wire and looks importance.
 

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That seems like a good idea phatintegra but do you really get all the dirt off? Wouldn't it be better to hose the engine down plus take less time off your hands? I just can't imagine myself spending hours just to wipe my engine bay than to hose it off in a few minutes or less. If someone still has a list or photoshop of my engine to help me clean it, i still would appreciate it. Thanks
 

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If your engine isn't flithy (e.x. isn't covered in oil) you probably don't need a "engine cleaner". If I were you, I would probably use a product like Simple Green or Formula 409 (no need to use anything harsh). Just spray a little on and wipe everything down with a dish sponge. Take your time, get all the little pieces and it'll look nice.
I would avoid spraying copious amounts of water on electronics. I little isn't going to hurt anything, but you don't want to marindade your wire harness or relays.
 
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