Originally Posted by cboy
I have a power washer and a lift...what I'm interested in is what others have used for grease cutting (if anything other than the water spray) and what special precautions people take (such as bagging the carb, alt, distributer, etc). Just tips on how best to get the engine compartment cleaned up in the easiest way possible way without creating any damage. Or even if folks have strong recommendations against using a power washer at all under the hood.
My suggestion to take it to someone comes from, how much of a mess do you want to make in your shop.? I was the one to do the power washing/steam cleaning at the shop I worked in. It depends on how much grease and grime you need to remove, you can end up with the crap everywhere.
I clean everything I buy, usually at a car wash, usually late at night. I take a set of drive on ramps to get either end up in the air. Soak it with the degreaser of choice, the Castrol mentioned is a good one. I have also used one called Purple Power, I am not sure who makes it. I don't think much of Simple Green, it is a little pricey and seems to need to be scrubbed to make it work.
I clean the engine on my daily drivers 3 to 4 times a year, I do not spray directly on the distributor or the alternator and if it is carbed I use a towel to cover the carb. Maybe I have been lucky but I have never ended up with any moisture problems. If you want the engine compartment to look like new after you clean it use some no touch tire cleaner. A two piece rain suit, safety glasses and a hat will come in handy.