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How do I clean the oil/coolant sludge out of my engine?

  
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How do I clean the oil/coolant sludge out of my engine?

 
bcarlson bcarlson
New User | Posts: 2 | Joined: 05/09
Posted: 05/10/09
04:33 PM

I bought a car sight unseen online on Thursday... it said it "needs engine work". I pulled the dipstick, and there was obviously some water in the oil. Once I got it home, I drained about two gallons (the engine only takes 5 quarts of oil) of brown colored mess out of it.

So, I assume the head gasket is shot, no biggie. The question is, what is the best way (barring a complete teardown) to clean the short block, yet leave it in the car?

I'm not opposed to yanking the whole thing and doing a complete rebuild, but the car isn't really worth it... it was just meant for daily transport 10 miles roundtrip to work.

Thanks in advance,

-Ben  
www.henrysrodshop.com

Pontiacman Pontiacman
Guru | Posts: 1890 | Joined: 11/07
Posted: 05/11/09
12:59 PM

Diesel fuel works good to flush a engine.  
Professional hi-performance engine builder
Horsepower sells Engines and torque wins races.
Pontiacman

waynep712 waynep712
Enthusiast | Posts: 436 | Joined: 10/07
Posted: 05/11/09
04:54 PM

coolant through a running engine will usually damage the bearings...   wiping them out..

the coolant has solids in it...   really opens the bearing clearances up...    

and yes.. diesel fuel will do a decent job.. i would probably pull the distributer...  get a oil pump priming kit...  with the adaptor.. as on chevys the oil to the mains is sent around the distributer housing.
use a powerful quality drill motor... lock it on at a medium speed...


pulling the motor and tearing it down as you need to pull the heads anyway...    doing it on an engine stand is quicker anyway...

if you get it apart...  do replace the cam bearings... as they take the most abuse when coolant gets into the oil...  

bcarlson bcarlson
New User | Posts: 2 | Joined: 05/09
Posted: 05/16/09
05:42 PM

Thanks for the info guys! I asked a few buddies too, and they corroborated the diesel fuel trick. I tried it this afternoon... wow! Other than having some tan-colored soup stuck in a few hard to get at places (rocker arms, various casting pockets) the engine is perfectly clean inside! No coolant residue anywhere to be found!

Thanks a heap guys!

-Ben  
www.henrysrodshop.com

Pontiacman Pontiacman
Guru | Posts: 1890 | Joined: 11/07
Posted: 05/16/09
05:46 PM

Your welcome any time.  
Professional hi-performance engine builder
Horsepower sells Engines and torque wins races.
Pontiacman

squarebackjalopy squarebackjalopy
User | Posts: 221 | Joined: 01/07
Posted: 05/23/09
06:04 AM

How much diesel fuel do you use?  
`

It may not be the fastest or prettiest, but i can pretend

Pontiacman Pontiacman
Guru | Posts: 1890 | Joined: 11/07
Posted: 05/23/09
07:13 AM

well it all depends if you are trying to just clean it 1-2Qts.
If you are trying to flush plugged push rods or sticking lifters then 3-3.5 qts.
That is if the engine holds 5Qts. total.  
Professional hi-performance engine builder
Horsepower sells Engines and torque wins races.
Pontiacman