How To Clean Car EngineHow To Clean Car Engine

Last updated on October 16th, 2023 at 03:59 am

Car engines are usually designed to be water-resistant; otherwise, driving on a rainy day can cause you problems. To keep your car engine running smoothly at full power, it must clean regularly.

Before cleaning your car engine, make sure cleaning is required or not. Then make a schedule for engine cleaning. It must be a warm day to clean the engine. A warm day will fasten the drying of the moisture in the compartment. If you are well guided, you can do it on your own. Here are some simple steps to clean the car engine without spending much.

Important Tips To Cleaning Your Car Engine

  • Step 1 – Allow The Engine To Cool
  • Step 2 – Gather The Loose dirt
  • Step 3 – Disconnect the Battery
  • Step 4 – Cover Sensitive Component
  • Step 5 – Spray Degreaser On the Grease
  • Step 6 – Allow The Degreaser To Work
  • Step 7 – Scrub the Grease
  • Step 8 – Rinse the Compartment
  • Step 9 – Clean the Battery
  • Step 10 – Dry The Engine
  • Step 11 – Reinstall the component

Let us discuss in detail what will you need –


  • Synthetic or water-based degreaser
  • Water supply
  • Leaf blower
  • Synthetic bristle brush
  • A pressure washer 
  • Hose with a nozzle
  • Plastic bags
  • Tape
  • Microfiber cloth
  • Air compressor
  • Safety gears( safety glasses, gloves)

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It is very important to take precautions before handling any chemicals. For protection, you need glasses and gloves before you start cleaning. This will protect your hand and eyes from coming into contact with any harmful chemicals. After all the preparations, now you can start the engine cleaning. 

Step 1: Allow The Engine To Cool

First, you should ensure the engine is cool enough to touch. If you have to drive your car before cleaning the engine, then let your engine cool. You can lift the hood for early cooling. But spraying water to accelerate can cause damage to the engine by blistering and cracking. Take time until it is cool to touch.

Step 2: Gather The Loose dirt

Before you start cleaning, all the loose derbies need to be removed. In the engine bay, you may find derbies like dust, pebbles, grass, leaves, and sticks accumulated in your car engine. You can remove them by using your hand for large particles. Where your hand can not reach, you can use a leaf blower or a brush to remove all the derbies in the engine.

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Step 3: Disconnect the Battery 

It is very important to protect all electrical systems like batteries from water. It can damage if it comes in contact with moisture. Moisture can arc, blow fuses or corrode the electrical component. To avoid this damage, disconnect the battery’s negative and positive terminals. If the battery needs to be cleaned, remove it from there. Or if it stays inside the engine bay, then cover it properly with plastic and prevent the ground cable from coming in contact with the terminals.

Step 4: Cover Sensitive Component

You need to cover all the sensitive components like electrical wirings, plug-inlets, and batteries for the engine’s safety. You can use plastic bags to cover them and tape to secure the plastic cover. If there is an air intake in the hood, you also need to cover that. This step will lessen the possibility of damaging any component during cleaning.

Step 5: Spray Degreaser On the Grease

Now take standard degreaser for engine or any household degreaser. When spraying the degreaser, make sure all the surfaces are covered. After spraying the degreaser, allow it to set on the engine surface for a few minutes. At this time the degreaser will start its work. Avoid the degreaser coming in contact with any painted surface.

Step 6: Allow The Degreaser To Work

You need to allow the degreaser to affect the grease. To effectively clean the oil and grease, the degreaser needs to apply properly and set for at least three to five minutes. If you regularly clean the engine and have little dirt, letting the degreaser sit for three minutes is enough. Otherwise, it may need to sit for five minutes for heavy, oily grease and dirt.

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Step 7: Scrub the Grease    

After soaking the dirt, you need to scrub it to remove it. To do this job, you can choose a synthetic bristle brush. Take the brush and gently scrub the area that has heavy greases. If it doesn’t come off easily, apply some degreaser again and scrub it. During scrubbing, you need to wear safety gear like safety glasses and gloves. That will protect your eye and skin from the hazardous chemical of the degreaser.

Step 8: Rinse the Compartment 

Here, you will need a regular garden hose with a nozzle that will work well. You also can use a power washer with a low setting. When using water to rinse the engine, ensure no high pressure is applied. It will penetrate water inside the plastic wrapping and cause damage to the electrical wiring.

Wash away all the degreaser you applied well. After washing, if the engine still looks greasy and is not clean enough, apply some more degreaser, scrub it, and wash it.

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Step 9: Clean the Battery

A battery also gets greasy with oil, diesel, and debris. It corrodes due to dirt on its terminal. To clean the battery terminals, you need a wire brush. Gently scrub the battery dirt until it gets cleaned.

Step 10: Dry The Engine

It will make drying easy if you have compressed air. If you have one, you can use it to remove all the water left on your engine surface. Compressed air helps to dry where your hand can not reach.

Otherwise, a microfiber cloth also works well to wipe the moisture. Wipe the engine carefully with a microfiber cloth, make sure it is completely dry and does not leave any moisture.

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Step 11: Reinstall the component

After drying the engine and the compartment, it’s time to reinstall the battery. First, uncover the components from the plastic cover. Then place the battery in its place and its positive and negative terminal.

Finally, start your engine to check if it is running or not. Once the engine starts, it starts to get hot and dry the left moisture on it.

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