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Gearheads: Fuel Injector Cleaner?
Old 08-29-2007, 03:57 PM   #1
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Gearheads: Fuel Injector Cleaner?

1) Have you seen any reputable report on the benefit (or lack of) of Fuel Injector Cleaner. Links please.

2) Do you use it at all? Would you recommend it? If so, which brand?

Thanks.
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Old 08-29-2007, 04:09 PM   #2
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I really don't think there is a need for injector cleaners. The gas you buy has the cleaners in it in most cases.

You can try it if your having a problem but I wouldn't buy it on a regular basis. Also I'm sure they all contain the same cleaners so one is as good as the other.
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Old 08-29-2007, 04:10 PM   #3
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A couple of points...

1) most gasoline you buy already has fuel injector cleaner/detergents in it. If your car runs normally you probably don't need to do anything else.

2) If the car is running rough you can try a bottle of fuel injector cleaner, it certainly doesn't cost that much and just might be worth a try. Just use per the directions on the bottle. The Techron brand gets high marks.

3) If that doesn't fix the rough idle (or other symptom) it just might be something else like maybe a sensor/plugwires/plugs etc. Engines also run rougher as they age and lose compression.

4) I can speak wonders of a similar much stronger product called Sea-foam. You can put it in the gasoline like fuel injector cleaner. However I have had my best results by removing the PCV tube and (while the engine is running) let the engine suck the Sea-Foam out of the bottle.

5) It's also worthwhile to get a spray can of carburetor cleaner/throttle body cleaner and spray that into the throttle body/throttle plate and hinges while the car is running. Some people also let the car get cold then spray this stuff into the throttle body and let stand overnight. Then upon starting the car, lots of stuff gets burn't out and the throttle body is much cleaner. (Don't stand behind the car when you first start er' up though)
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Old 08-29-2007, 04:27 PM   #4
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Here is what Click and Clack on CarTalk had to say on this topic:

Car Talk
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Old 08-29-2007, 07:40 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MasterBlaster View Post
Here is what Click and Clack on CarTalk had to say on this topic:

Car Talk

Interesting that click&clack mention Techron by name -- I am one who very much steers away from brand endorsement, especially about something as unbiquitous as gas, but I will say that my initial response to the OP's question was that I use Chevron fuel with the Techron, and feel it is pretty popularly believed by the car crowd to at least be innocuous, and possibly be useful in keeping the system clean.

Outside of that one nod (using that gas when it's handy), I would not worry at all about keeping injectors clean, and I especially would not pay for service or additives with no clear symptom present.
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Old 08-29-2007, 08:24 PM   #6
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Concur on Techron, however, should you feel the desire, Sea Foam (brand name) is a recommended cleaner.
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Old 08-29-2007, 08:38 PM   #7
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Two more fuel injector cleaners that seem to work pretty well are BG 44 and Gunout Regane. Cleaning the throttle body on a regular basis is a good idea for a smooth running engine.

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Old 08-30-2007, 09:23 AM   #8
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Thank you all for your input.
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Old 08-31-2007, 08:00 PM   #9
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When my buggy starts running rough, I put an alcohol-based gasoline dryer in the tank. A wee bit of water seems to wind up in the tank from time to time.
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Old 08-31-2007, 10:52 PM   #10
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On a related note: Never buy the "injector cleaning service" at a Jiffy-Fast-Quicky-Lube type place. It is a big rip-off (like the other add-on high margin things they try to sell you when you have your oil changed.).
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Old 09-01-2007, 01:39 AM   #11
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Techron is the way to go, also exspensive. Last time I used it it ran about 10 bucks a bottle,but if you just run a tank of higher octane gas thru the engine that could help, could be cheaper buying the techron now that 92 octane is so high. I have heard from mechanics on fuel injec cleaner saying that it breaks off pieces of carbon from intake that can clog your egr recirculating system ( depending on type of engine)a small holed hose or pipe that recirculates unburned gasses back to intake.Then your engine will run very rough because of the carbon obstruction.It happened to me and I had to install a small screen in the egr hole to catch the carbon .No problems since installing screen but havent used techron since, does a great job but almost to good.Also I would believe the milage on your car could have a large effect of the build up of carbon deposits -
Good luck, Bob.
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Old 09-01-2007, 10:14 AM   #12
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The best thing you can learn to do is to change your spark plugs and gap them properly. It is about the only maintance thing you can do on your car these day. You can try Sea Foam.
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Old 09-01-2007, 12:47 PM   #13
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These fancy injector cleaners are probably little more than xylene (can't use benzene any more) or mixed aromatics. Aromatics like xylene and benzene dissolve gum and other deposits from gasoline. Buy a pint at your paint store for $5.

High octane Sunoco 260 used to have a lot of benzene in it, if memory serves, and xylene isn't very different form benzene. Your car could burn 100% xylene.
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Old 09-06-2007, 03:52 PM   #14
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Ah, the chemical engineer to the rescue! Thanks Ed. I didn't know that.
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Old 09-06-2007, 03:53 PM   #15
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The best thing you can learn to do is to change your spark plugs and gap them properly. It is about the only maintance thing you can do on your car these day.
Oh boy! How long is the spark plugs changing course? Is it offered at most local community colleges? Spark plugs still need gapping today?
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Old 09-06-2007, 07:53 PM   #16
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Oh boy! How long is the spark plugs changing course? Is it offered at most local community colleges? Spark plugs still need gapping today?
Changing and gapping is easy IF you can get to them.

I've done two of the family cars recently. Both 4 cyl, FWD. Spark plugs right on top in easy view. Easy, I was just very, very nervous about stripping the threads and turning a $100 savings into a $1000 expense. No problems though.

The mini van is a V6, I can't even see or feel where those back three wires go to. I had no problem paying for that.

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Old 09-07-2007, 09:39 AM   #17
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NO. I dont/wont ever use a fuel injector and this is why:

The cleaner itself is designed to remove the tarnish/gum deposits left by your fuel. By putting this in your gas tank, it begins to work immediately on the tarnish/gum in the tank. This in turn loosens the gunk and it has nowhere to go but towards the fuel filter and then injectors, gumming more stuff up as it goes. It may temporarily work, but will cause more issues in the long run, IMHO.

IF you are having issues, goto a mechanic and get the injectors blown out...should be 100-120 bucks?Seafoam gets lots of rave reviews...but never used it myself. Ditto on NO jiffy-lube type cleanings (they just pour stuff in and call it a 2 or 4 step special process). Make sure they are physically blowing them out...if they are misfiring/gummed up they might be spitting out codes already....check that first


DO clean the throttle body yourself. VERY easy in most cars. You can find it by tracing the tube coming from your air filter to the engine itself. Disconnect it, usuly using a few scres or hose clamps, and spray it really well with carb cleaner. Then take a rag in there and wipe it out. soak it again, close it up, replace everything...and proceed to drive



Just my .02
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Old 09-08-2007, 11:53 AM   #18
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The cleaner itself is designed to remove the tarnish/gum deposits left by your fuel. By putting this in your gas tank, it begins to work immediately on the tarnish/gum in the tank. This in turn loosens the gunk and it has nowhere to go but towards the fuel filter and then injectors, gumming more stuff up as it goes. It may temporarily work, but will cause more issues in the long run, IMHO.
Not sure I agree with you. If what you're saying is true, then most of the gasoline sold are bad, because most of them have the cleaner in them.
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Old 09-14-2007, 06:04 PM   #19
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Changing and gapping is easy IF you can get to them.

I've done two of the family cars recently. Both 4 cyl, FWD. Spark plugs right on top in easy view. Easy, I was just very, very nervous about stripping the threads and turning a $100 savings into a $1000 expense. No problems though.

The mini van is a V6, I can't even see or feel where those back three wires go to. I had no problem paying for that.

-ERD50
ERD50,

Sorry. I was being sarcastic . I have never paid anyone to change the spark plugs, even on FWD V6 engine. Yes, the rear plugs are hard to get to, but with a little patience, they can be done. And with today's plugs designed to last 100Kmiles, I only have to change them one time before the car is junked/sold.

BTW, gapping is usually no longer necessary with newer cars.
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Old 09-14-2007, 09:08 PM   #20
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ERD50,
Sorry. I was being sarcastic .
Oh, I got the sarcasm. I was just trying to agree that it really is pretty easy, *unless* you can't reach the darn plugs!

-ERD50
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