How to clean up carbon on heads? - Chevy Nova Forum
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Old 16th-January-2008, 11:50 AM   #1
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How to clean up carbon on heads?

I need to clean a thin layer of carbon buildup on my AFR heads. I'm thinking carburetor cleaner, but will it be effective? What have you found to work the best for heads and/or pistons? Thanks for the help.
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Old 16th-January-2008, 01:48 PM   #2
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auto solutions sells this stuff called optimizer. we use it at aur dealership and that stuff will work better then pb blaster on bolts and will remove slugh on engines. The main popuose it ahs is to be sprayed into the cars intake while running at ~2000 rpm to clean the throttle body, intake runners, valves,

I would suggest that if you can find some pick up a couple of bottles. they work great for lossing bolts. They are sold to cusomters at our dealer ship as induction severice. I would call around to dealerships and ask if they carry auto solutions probucts and if they carry optimizer. And it comes with some fuel treat meant that works wonders on injectors and some final cleaning product spray for cleaning intake track.

This stuff works PERIOD.
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Old 16th-January-2008, 02:20 PM   #3
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Why not just leave it on the heads ,thus more compression?
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Old 16th-January-2008, 02:29 PM   #4
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I in no way reccomend this, but back in the 60s and 70s guys would idle the engine at 2,000 rpm and trickle water, automatic trans fluid or rice down the carb to clean the carbon from inside of the combustion chamber.
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Old 16th-January-2008, 03:18 PM   #5
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Use kerosene to loosen it up.
after a little soaking and still wet.
I have used a brass wire coned wire wheel on a drill.
Will not cut the aluminum.
Will make a dam mess, but will clean them very well.
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Old 16th-January-2008, 04:54 PM   #6
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For a running engine you want to decarb just pour water down the carb while it's running. It still works fine and is often used by most dealers. This has been discussed to death here in the past. If you have the engine apart and want to clean the bowls and valve heads off you can use carb cleaner for light carbon build up if it will clean it up. Or you can use a wire brush and a rotary tool. If I pull the heads off I usually take them apart even if I don't do anything to them but look. RM
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Old 16th-January-2008, 05:16 PM   #7
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I assume from your post that the heads are on the work bench. If so, and the coating of carbon is light, you can use good old brake clean and a rag. I do this on heads that are lightly carboned and it works great. Spray it on, leave it sit a minute or two and wipe the carbon off. I did this last August to an engine I put in my Camaro that had approx. 13,000 miles on it. I had the heads off and I cleaned all the carbon off the heads and the tops of the pistons. Good Luck.

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Old 17th-January-2008, 12:42 AM   #8
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Thanks for the ideas. I went with carb cleaner and very fine steel wool. They cleaned real easy, look much better.
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