What degreaser do you guys use?


Old 04-03-17, 07:27 PM
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What degreaser do you guys use?

Curious what kind of degreaser are best for cleaning off oil residue from the bottom of the oil pan and other areas after an oil change and other areas in general that accumulate grease and grime. I was watching an Eric The Car Guy video and he sprayed something all over the pan then wiped it clean with a rag. I tried spraying simple green and letting it sit for a few minutes, sprayed it off with a hose and it practically did nothing.
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Old 04-03-17, 10:11 PM
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If you don't mind chemicals...


work best for me. The other versions (foaming, etc) work ok also but can evaporate before the job is done. The gel sticks to most anything and just hangs there and emulsifies the grease. Washes off with water (I usually do it at a stop and spray car place). Not good for washing off on the ground.

Your supposed to do it when the engine is cold, but since I drive to the spray place hard to do. I think another reason I found the other versions evap quick.

I also use it to clean small parts.

I use an orange based spray for cleaning up around the garage, just cuz I like the smell (it also works )
Old 04-04-17, 03:36 AM
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I usually use mineral spirits, mainly because I always have some on hand If you don't have any oil leaks it shouldn't take more than a rag damp with mineral spirits or even gasoline. Sometimes with stubborn areas I'll use an old paint brush to apply the thinner and scrub with. Not saying my way is best but rather what works for me ..... without having to go out and buy something
Old 04-04-17, 05:27 AM
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If you clean the oil pan up real good it will rust.
Old 04-04-17, 05:55 AM
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Only if it doesn't have paint on it.
Old 04-04-17, 07:47 AM
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And isn't cast aluminum.
Old 04-04-17, 06:23 PM
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Or magnesium.............
Old 04-07-17, 11:41 AM
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For stubborn grease, I find brake cleaner to be pretty effective. Just only use when the engine is dead cold, some are flammable (and some are more plastic safe than others so read the label carefully and get the most plastic safe one as there will always be some overspray) unlike the water wash off degreasers. You can also use WD40 which is really just a Stoddard solvent and some mineral oil, it is a good degreaser, again only on a cold engine. Works best when you can wipe things up with a microfiber rag as well.

For water based degreasers, I have had success with Simple Green purple, it is aerospace/aluminum safe and stronger than the regular product. Some people swear by Griots Garage oil and grease cleaner (stronger than their engine cleaner), although I have not tried it.
Old 04-07-17, 01:59 PM
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I'll agree with flatcrank on some items, and disagree on WD40 in it's ability to dissolve grease. Displace water, sure. Simple Green and Purple Power are super great for grease and other crud. I have used Purple Power and a small piece of mail chain in an old steel gas tank, and it came out shiny as a new coin.
Old 04-07-17, 03:34 PM
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I agree with brake cleaner, for heavy, isolated areas. It works great on those real stubborn areas, but would get pretty expensive for large areas. Going back to Tumble's post, I have had good results with Gunk. Last fall I had a head gasket leaking on the v-twin on my mower, along with a cracked crankcase vent line, and the oil and grass made for a pretty gloppy mess of the lower end including the engine, frame, etc. So I scraped out what I could with a putty knife, sprayed it with Gunk, let it soak a bit, hosed it off, and had a real clean area to work. Any of it though is best when used over gravel or dirt, because it will affect asphalt, and can discolor concrete if you don't get it rinsed off quick. Oh yeah, and I agree with Chandler in not using WD40; I use my share of it, but it is not going to go far on cleaning; you might move stuff around, but not going to remove it.
Old 04-09-17, 04:55 PM
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The best degreaser is clorethane, an industrial degreasing agent. That's the layman's name for 1,1,1 trichlorethane which is now pretty hard to find except at a very high price because it is a clorinated solvent. Years ago your brake cleaners, such as STP Brake Cleaner, were nothing more than clorethane. Today's brake cleaners are pretty good, but nothing like they used to be. I saw it under the label of Cable Clean for prepping high voltage cables for splicing just a couple years ago and it was close to $40 for one aerosol can. If you smelled this solvent you would swear it was flammable, but it wasn't.
Old 04-11-17, 07:57 AM
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And isn't cast aluminum.
Good one. Very funny. Haha. Definitely learned my lesson!

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