Saturday, June 25, 2016

Cleaning Engine Bay Waterlessly

In most cars, engine bays tend to get neglected when it comes to cleaning and washing. There is this fear that water and detergent used to wash the engine bay will cause problems. I still remember back in the old days where road side car wash centers would wrap "important" parts with plastic bags before hosing down the engine bay. With cars getting smarter and with more electronics fitted in the engine bay, determining the "important" parts becomes a guess work and most people might not want to take the risk. This led to engine bay being opt out when it comes to washing.

However; with waterless wash; we can safely wash our engine bay. It is easy, quick, and safe. Start by getting your favorite waterless car wash product and one or two dedicated microfiber towels for engine bay. If you have access to compressed air or a vacuum blower or a leaf blower then it will be even better. You could use those to blow away thicker dusts and trapped twigs or leaves. If you do not have those then manually pick up trapped twigs and leaves before washing.

meguiar's wash & wax anywhere

First, damped the microfiber towel and wring dry. Spray some waterless wash onto the towel to prime it. Then spray on the engine bay.

Wipe off with the microfiber towel.

Wipe with microfiber towel

The microfiber towel will get dirty very fast. Be sure to rinse it when it gets too dirty. This method could be use to wash anything inside the engine bay safely. Just avoid timing belts and pulleys as they might squeak after washing.

For delicate parts like electrical connectors, spray the waterless wash on the microfiber towel instead and use the microfiber towel to wipe. If in doubt, always spray it on the towel and wipe. That is the safest way.

For auxiliary battery, I would recommend wiping with kitchen towels (disposable paper kitchen towel). There might be some acid stains, salt build-up, terminal grease on it and we do not want to spread this stuffs all around.

Do not forget the clean the underside of the car hood. It can get pretty nasty too.

Car hood

Just avoid parts with grease used for lubrication.

If your engine comes with an engine cover, you could open it up and clean the engine block for a more thorough cleaning.

Remove engine cover

For areas with engine oil spill; especially near the cap; use kitchen towels.

Follow up with spray wax if desired.

That is it. Simple. Safe.


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