Easiest way to clean an engine? (Trying to avoid Auto-RX)

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1,397
Location
Katy, Texas
My best friend is getting his dad's 1989 Mitsubishi Mighty Max Pickup truck and wants me to do some things to it before he starts driving it. First off, it has 180K miles, its carberated, no power steering. His dad almost ruined that engine by using STP 4-cyl oil treatment. The mechanic somehow fixed it but its not like it was before. He doesn't like the lengthy procedure of Auto-RX because he won't be driving that far very easily and he doesn't wanna hassle me. Is 1 quart of ATF with a new filter, running for say 1 hour at idle enough to safely flush the engine? I ran a motor flush in my 4.0 Jeep with no problem but his mom is paranoid about it.
 
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491
Location
Ottawa
Why not try dumping in half a quart of atf in and run it for 500m and see the color of the oil if it has turned black.
 
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2,480
Lengthy? Auto-rx is only 500 mi??? A couple weeks and it's clean. Otherwise, the best cleaning I've seen was using Delvac 1...just use this in the next oil change. It's $35/GAL. though. Or try OTC stuff, eg. Gunk Valvemedic or CD-2 Oil detergent for $2/bottle...or GUNK engine flush...I've used it w/o problems.
 
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6,388
Location
Washington St.
Get two 12 oz. bottles of Schaeffer #131 Neutra from Mills...see the ad at the top of this page. Put one oz. per quart of oil into the engine oil and one oz. per gallon of gas into the tank and fill it. Drive the truck 500 miles, then change the oil. Easy. If the transmission or rear end need an oil change, do the 1 oz. per quart treatment for 1000 miles. Forget about the old shadetree mechanic trick of the ATF. It contains little detergents and doesn't do much more than flush things like a quickie oil change would...why would ATF contain detergents?...the transmission doesn't get dirty like an engine, just clutch particles. Ken
 

JeepZJ4.0

Thread starter
Messages
1,397
Location
Katy, Texas
quote:
Originally posted by Dr. T: Or try OTC stuff, eg. Gunk Valvemedic or CD-2 Oil detergent for $2/bottle...or GUNK engine flush...I've used it w/o problems.
Is this safe? I've heard that its not safe to use them since it may block an oil passage. I used the gunk engine flush with no probs but i knew there was a risk. [ April 30, 2003, 07:24 PM: Message edited by: JeepZJ4.0 ]
 

MolaKule

Staff member
Messages
21,588
Location
Iowegia - USA
Use Neutra or Lube Control as a flush at 16 oz. per 4-5 quarts and change the oil. With this engine, it sounds like anything is going to be Risky. And as Dr. T stated, 500 miles on Auto-RX doesn't take that long and it's the most gentle cleaning system around.
 
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8,756
Location
RI
The 5 minutes flushes will work well enough if you follow the directions on the bottle. I have used the cd2, gumout, gunk, and various other brands with no damage ever. There is too much hearsay concerning all the so called damage BS. I don't understand what the risk is or who starts these rumours. I recently took a car to Autozone, tossed in 1 quart of the gunk flush(into hot oil pan), and drove 50 miles. Note that I purposely used a hot engine(smelled bad), drove the vehicle, and exceeded the 5 minutes(broke all rules on the bottle). I then changed the oil/filter and have no seal leaks, no added engine noises..... The engine starts faster, oil in it now(1000miles already) is spotless, car gets better gas mileage, and runs stronger. I'll try another brand at the next oil change. Anyone want to make toxic flush brand recommendations as I try to kill the engine and dissolve the seals [Roll Eyes] Kerosene/B100(biodiesel) can also be used as a cold engine 5 minute flush with great results. Marvel Mystery Oil is also a mild(cheaper) engine flush that can be used at every oil change or during topoff.
 
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96
Location
Mississauga / Ontario
For those in the know, what cleaning agents are safe in an engine. What I'm asking here is; which "ingredients" (constituents) should one look for in an engine flusher as proven and reliable? What should one avoid? Thanks, Paul [ April 30, 2003, 11:39 PM: Message edited by: Paul ]
 

Patman

Staff member
Messages
21,988
Location
Oakville, Ontario
quote:
Originally posted by unDummy: The 5 minutes flushes will work well enough if you follow the directions on the bottle. I have used the cd2, gumout, gunk, and various other brands with no damage ever. There is too much hearsay concerning all the so called damage BS. I don't understand what the risk is or who starts these rumours.
It's not a rumor and there is a very real risk, if you use this stuff on a very dirty engine it will quickly dislodge large chunks of sludge which can clog oil passages and the oil pickup screen. A slower working cleaner which disolves the sludge into a liquid is definitely the safer way to go. Harsh solvents are not good on gaskets either.
 
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47,630
Location
Duvall WA - Pacific NW USA
Patman - you must admit that the hype against some of the solvent products is WAY overblown. For the last 5 years I have used, witnessed, sold, and given away LOTS of screw top containers of Amsoil engine flush - including people that had sludge monsters. This chunk phenomenon MAY happen - but I've not seen it...! Nor have I seen excessive wear, seal death, etc...I'm speaking for the Amsoil flush though, not the 1 qt variety. The biggest argument against solvent/idle Amsoil flush is that it doesn't clean that well in that short of time. I mean it does get the loose stuff...but varnishes remain untouched as far as I can tell. [ May 01, 2003, 09:20 AM: Message edited by: Pablo ]
 

MolaKule

Staff member
Messages
21,588
Location
Iowegia - USA
quote:
which "ingredients" (constituents) should one look for in an engine flusher as proven and reliable? What should one avoid? Thanks, Paul
I would avoid toluene's, methanols, and xylenes, since they attack synthetic elastomers, of which most seals are made. Flushes with calcium petroleum sulfonates are ok, since they help somewhat with the cleaning. These are found in products such as CD2 and Rislone (albeit highly overpriced!) Reliable hydrocarbon solvents - Cyclohexanes Kerosenes Heavy aliphatic napthenes, and of course, esters.
 
Messages
826
Location
ON, Canada
quote:
Originally posted by Greg Netzner: Well, here's what I'd do for the safest, least complicated, most gentle cleaning: Use a HDD oil like Delo or Delvac 1300 Super. If 15W-40 scares him off, the Delvac comes in a 10W-30 flavor too. Tell him to use this oil for at least 10k-12k miles-worth of changes, & all the extra detergents & anti-wear agents should make his engine happy. After that, he can either continue using it (no harm, & continued cleaning & protection) or switch to something else at a regular oil change interval.
How well do the HD oils clean an engine? All of my vehicles could probably use some clean up in the crankcase, either from mileage or short trips. I would like to try AutoRX or Neutra, but after it comes across the border it's way too expensive. I have always been weary of the solvent type flushes, even though many have used them with sucuss. But I want to do something to clean up my old engines. So how well do these oils clean? I am considering switching all my vehicles to HD oils permanently if they will significantly clean the engines. Are there any better at cleaning than others? I was considering using Pennzoil Long Life 15W40 in the summer months and Long Life 10W30 in the winter (it has -38*F pour point). Delvac seems good too, but their pour point isn't low enough for our winters around here. Delo is available around here, so I can't use it.
 
Messages
8,467
Location
Colorado
My Dad was a good mechanic-he could fix almost anything, sometimes using makeshift tools. He sometimes used the old trick of ATF to clean an engine also. I never felt comfortable seeing him do it. I also did not feel comfortable seeing him put STP Oil Treatment in a car in the wintertime, when we had to heat the stuff on the stove to get it to flow. I tried Valvoline MaxLife oil because I had some small seal leaks. Didn't seem to make a difference, although the oil ran good in my car. I discovered this web site. A lot of guys here really seem knowledgeable. I tried the Auto-RX and in all honesty it works. It stopped the small seal leaks and it seemed to clean my engine up. Auto-RX does not cost that much. I will put 3 oz. in my oil every oil change. Only oil additive that I believe in.
 
Messages
951
Location
Loveland, Colorado
Well, here's what I'd do for the safest, least complicated, most gentle cleaning: Use a HDD oil like Delo or Delvac 1300 Super. If 15W-40 scares him off, the Delvac comes in a 10W-30 flavor too. Tell him to use this oil for at least 10k-12k miles-worth of changes, & all the extra detergents & anti-wear agents should make his engine happy. After that, he can either continue using it (no harm, & continued cleaning & protection) or switch to something else at a regular oil change interval.
 
Messages
826
Location
ON, Canada
quote:
Originally posted by Mystic: Auto-RX does not cost that much.
It doesn't cost much if you live in the U.S. However, since I have three vehicles that need at least one treatment each, although some could use two, then add on the shipping costs to Canada, and then add on the duty charges at the border. Needless to say, I am looking at in the end about $120 CDN or so for three bottles (that's with the three bottle special). That is very expensive for an oil additive which may or may not work well in my vehicles. I would love to try the stuff, not at that price.So that's why I am inquiring about the HD diesel oil cleaning abilities. BTW, in my first post it should have said that Delo is not available where I live.
 
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1,836
Location
Pac NW
"Auto-Rx is not an oil ADDITIVE..." Say "It's a CLEANER"! Nuff said! [Roll Eyes] OLDSWAGON: You gotta' good point there about the difference in co$t up there in The Great North. [Canada] Your idea about using Pennzoil LongLife is probably a good one as all the HD oils pretty much ought to give you superior cleaning. I wish I could find the HD 10W-30 LongLife everyone keeps mentioning: we only see straight HD30 & the 15W-40 around here! [Cheers!]
 
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2,230
Location
SE MI
ATF does not contain detergent chemistry, however ATF does contain dispersants, which have properties similar to detergents.
 
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2,480
That's interesting because the response I got (and I posted it here before) was that ALL grades of M-1 clean equally well as Delvac 1. Yeah...right.
 
Messages
951
Location
Loveland, Colorado
Dr. T, Mobil's initial response to my question was "... use the stated weight of motor oil called for in your owner's manual ..." Since this answer didn't address my question, I pressed them further, saying the car was a 14yr old European import & any of their synthetics would meet the manual's original dino-range recommendations. That's when they modified their answer to the Delvac 1 recommendation. Of course, they also added this CYA, "However since you have a gasoline engine the Mobil 1 motor oils will do just as good of job while saving you an average of a $1.00 or so a qt." I'd interpret that to mean, "Mobil 1 cleans way better than dino oil, but Delvac 1 does even more. And don't sue us for your own boneheaded experimentations & mistakes."
 
Messages
8,756
Location
RI
quote:
Originally posted by Norm Olt: "Auto-Rx is not an oil ADDITIVE..." Say "It's a CLEANER"! Nuff said! [Roll Eyes]
Its an additive that cleans. You add it too your oil, it becomes an additive.
 
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