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Discussion Starter #1
Anyone know if it's safe to clean the engine area with one of those car wash pressure washers? Just thinking of the day it looks all dusty and dirty in there. I'm leery of the orange stuff, if you know what I mean.
 

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I would recommend against that. Just get some good rags soaked in your favorite cleaner and take your time and wipe out all the dust you can see. A pressure washer should never be used under the hood of a modern car. An old jeep maybe but not a modern car.
 

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I don't bother to clean the engine until it's time to sell it. Then I just wipe it down like wainair said until it looks like new again.

The buyers are always amazed with how clean the engine compartment looks even though a week earlier it had 7 years of dirt built up throughout.

Rags, brushes and toothbrushes do the trick along with Magic Eraser to clean the painted and plastic areas quick and Vinylex to shine the plastic bits to a new, non-greasy finish.
 

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When I dry off my car after a driveway wash job, I use clean terry cloth towels. Then I wipe the surfaces under the hood with the wet/damp towels. No special cleaners necessary and the engine compartment never gets that 7-year-neglect look.
 

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I wouldn't take a chance. It's not like you can pull the distributor cap and dry off the points. I'd see if the dealer will do it for you.
 

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Ha! I would say the embossed X'd out symbol of a pressure washing gun would clinch it! But no, I did not notice it. Thanks for pointing it out, Scott.

My inclination was not to do it (I've never done it to any other car), but thought I'd ask just in case. Thanks for all the responses and suggestions everyone!
 
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@Steverino,

I agree with everyone else and would not recommend it. I also agree the best solution would be to just wipe it down.

Volt Advisor Trevor
Chevrolet Volt Advisor Team
 

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P1060392 (Large).jpg P1060388 (Large).jpg P1060282 (Large).jpg

Here is what my old car's engine compartment looked like after a few hours of detailing without pressure washing or using any harsh chemicals. This is the gas guzzler that got replaced by the Volt (17mpg to a current 131mpg -- nice!).

There was 7 years and 75K miles of dirt and grime all over the engine compartment before I started. I don't like cleaning the engine on a regular basis unless it's a show car because no one sees it and you might just damage something with a lot of regular cleaning.

So don't feel like you're doing any harm by not cleaning it regularly.
 

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voltage692,

My first thought on your other comment was to never buy a used car from you (7 years of built up dirt and grime under the hood). But, you really did a great job of cleaning up the 7 year old engine compartment. It looks almost new.
 

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Thanks! The guy that bought it was the first one to see it, and he paid the full nut after walking around it for 2 minutes and only driving it for 1 minute. He told me that he was planning to talk me down because I was asking over market, but after seeing it, he said he knew why.

I also sold a 911 that looked so good it sold in 4 hours from the time the listing went live on Autotrader (it went live at 4:30am in the morning, and the guy bought it at 8:30am!) for the full asking price as well.

When they see the cars in person and the garage that they come from (looks more like a living room than a garage), they buy them quick.

In all honesty, I used to show my exotic cars at concours events, so I know all the techniques and products to get a car looking great without too much work.

voltage692,

My first thought on your other comment was to never buy a used car from you (7 years of built up dirt and grime under the hood). But, you really did a great job of cleaning up the 7 year old engine compartment. It looks almost new.
 
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