Vehicle owners know how important it is to keep their carburetor clean. The carburetor is responsible for helping the engine run smoothly and it regulates the fuel and air that pass through the engine. A dirty carburetor affects the engine’s timing, which can lead to sluggish operation. Cleaning a carburetor is a frequent service offered by car maintenance shops. However, it is possible to clean a carburetor on your own, saving you time and improving the performance of your vehicle.
Most carburetors are near the same area under the hood of a car, but each will vary slightly. Using your vehicle manual and familiarity with the inner workings of the car, locate your carburetor. It is connected to five different lines extending out from your engine. These include the cold choke tube, the PCV hose, the gas line, the vacuum line, and the throttle. All of these lines must be removed and the carburetor must also be unbolted. An Allen wrench can be used to help you remove the carburetor safely from the car.
Soak the Carburetor
Your carburetor will need to soak in cleaning solvent to get clean. The stronger the solvent, the cleaner your carburetor will be after the soak. These cleaners can be purchased at an auto supply store. The cleaners are usually too strong to touch with your bare hands, so find a pair of work gloves that are waterproof. Agitating or shaking the carburetor while it soaks will help break up the dirt and buildup on the carburetor faster, but you need to be careful working this closely with the solvent. The carburetor should soak for at least 12 hours.
Wipe Off the Carburetor
Once the soaking is finished, remove the carburetor from the solvent and wipe it off. You should wear your protective gloves for this step, too. Even if it seems like the solvent is wiped from the carburetor, there can still be traces that will burn or damage the skin on your hands. The final step of the cleaning process is to use an air compressor to blow through the interior of the carburetor. This blows the inside dirt free after the solvent has loosened it. Use a fairly low pressure when completing this step.
Finally, return the carburetor to the car. Bolt the carburetor back in place and re-attach the hoses to the engine. Some people mark the hoses so they know how to re-attach them quickly, while others just remember the order without the markings. You should notice your engine running smoother once you have completed the cleaning process.
It is important for you to work very carefully, especially if this is the first time you have removed a carburetor for cleaning. The solvent is dangerous and if you damage the carburetor, your car’s engine will not run properly. Cleaning a carburetor is fairly simple, but removing a part from your car is always risky. It is also important for you to make sure you are following proper safety precautions when using the strong solvent. Even the slightest spill can result in injury and damage to personal property.