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Fuel injector cleaners

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  • My 1990 chevrolet Lumina stalls after the brakes are applied and the engine is warm. The car just shuts off after you apply the brakes when the engine is warm. I would appreciate it if someone could please help me with this problem. Other than the above problem, the car runs very good. It also passed the smog test
  • newcar31newcar31 Posts: 3,711
    I know first hand what these are all about. The cooling system flush involves disconnecting your upper radiator hose and connecting the hose to a line that dumps the old coolant into a waste barrel. You also connect another hose to the radiator which fills the radiator with coolant. It works simply by gravity and the water pump, as the old coolant is being pumped out by the vehicle's water pump, the new coolant is being drawn in by gravity as the radiator empties. You use more coolant than the cooling system capacity to make sure that you get all of the old coolant out. I have never seen or heard of a machine that actually flushes the radiator. Yes, some have a pump on them that can reverse the flow of coolant, but why, when you get all of the coolant out anyways with a regular machine and a good "flush" additive that is added while you are doing the proceedure. Your Jeep is due for a "flush"(often misused term), it is not too early, you are *late* because you do not have extended life coolant (150,000 miles) in that vehicle. The general rule of thumb is 2 years/30,000 miles. Some jeeps, maybe yours, even recommend it at 24,000 miles. Check your owners manual for the severe service schedule. Some manufacturers say 45K the first time and 30K everytime after that. Either way, you are due. Most shops that advertise the "fuel injector cleaning" don't actually clean the injectors. Quicky lubes hook up a metered device with a strong detergent in it to the PCV line, brake booster hose, or other vaccum source and run the engine permitting the detergent to go through the upper and lower intake manifold and everywhere else that air goes after that (which doesn't include the injectors because air doesn't get mixed with fuel until the combustion chamber, after the fuel has gone through the injectors) Then they put an additive (similiar to what you buy at a gas station) in the gas tank which is *supposed* to clean the injectors.
  • brorjacebrorjace Posts: 588
    Cbanard83, I don't think this is something that a little fuel injector cleaner will fix. I had a 1986 Escort GT which would stall every now and then for no reason but I never figured out why.

    --- Bror Jace
  • adc100adc100 Posts: 1,521
    Your problem could be a solenoid which locks in the torque converter on your auto trans. alcan, who posts here will probably answer this post.
  • alcanalcan Posts: 2,550
    adc100 might have your diagnosis for you. Are these the symptoms?:
    - engine stalls when vehicle stopped after 5-15 minutes higher speed operation
    - engine will restart but stalls when shifted into gear
    - ok if vehicle sits for 5-10 minutes
    - may be intermittent

    These are the typical symptoms of a stuck torque converter clutch solenoid. More common with 3 speed transaxles. To diagnose, locate and disconnect the square electrical connector on the front of the transaxle. Retainer clip's usually on the bottom (naturally). Will have tan with black trace, purple, or both wires. If symptoms disappear, tcc solenoid is defective. About a $200-$250 repair job. Not recommended to leave tcc disconnected as internal transaxle damage may occur due to overheating.
  • brorjacebrorjace Posts: 588
    That certainly wasn't the problem with MY Ford. It would stall as I was going along and I suddenly stepped on the clutch and threw it into neutral.

    Obviously this was not a problem as I was moving ... I merely let the clutch out again and the car would run again ... although some times with a really LOUD backfire ... getting rid of the unspent fuel in the motor.

    --- Bror Jace
  • ken126ken126 Posts: 39
    I used STP injector cleaner in a rough idling 96 intrpeid and believe it or not, it cured the rough idling after about 200 miles......
  • mrdetailermrdetailer Posts: 1,118
    I recently had a car that was running rough even though it was tuned a month ago. It ran smoother on premius gasoline. I went to Jiffy Lube and had them do a multi-step fuel injector cleaner. They:

    1. Put a cleaner in the oil
    2. Put a bottle of cleaner through the vacuum hose directly into the engine, and
    3. Put a follow up bottle in the tank.

    When they did Step 2 it really stunk when it started, but was much reduced by the end of the bottle.

    I ran the tank completely empty witht he followup bootle. (Yes I had to push it to a station) and filled up with regular. It has been running smoothly since then, and passed emissions with flying colors.

    It seems good, but could I have saved a lot of money with Techron, or Syntech?
  • brorjacebrorjace Posts: 588
    Mr Detailer, it's hard to tell. Actually you'll never know for sure because it's impossible to set up that EXACT same condition with your car again.

    Basically, I recommend people try the easier/cheper things first. If your car begins to run rough again, I'd try the $5-10 solution first and see if that does the trick.

    --- Bror Jace
  • mrdetailermrdetailer Posts: 1,118
    At least the large 15,000 ones.

    I now have proof. A few thousand miles ago I did the fancy 3 step de-carbonization procedure. I had a state emssions test. Never do it just before inspection. Let at least 3 tank fulls go by before inspection.

    My high speed CO2 was 0.00, the Idle CO2 was 0.04. The the Ultra clean California Standard is 0.05. The hydrocarbon level was 21 at 50 MPH, and 62 at idle. The inspector said that most NEW cars aren't that clean.

    I never had readings so good on this 10 year car. I compared it with last years and they were 3 times that.

    The car runs smoother and unknowingly I struck a blow for clean air.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,855
    Hmm...I'm wondering if you refreshed your 02 sensor by doing all that (cleaned it up). Usually if you can't pass smog on a old car, replacing the 02 sensor will help.

    An injector will screw up smog big time if it is spitting out irregularlly, and you know, sometimes you get lucky with these treatments if you can stop the injector from dribbling or spritzing.

    MODERATOR

  • rayfbairdrayfbaird Posts: 183
    If it was cleaned that would certainly help. But I haven't replaced it.

    I've never failed our stringent emissions tests, and fortunately have never had to go to the expensive EPA stattion. It was just that this car has never gotten such good readings.
  • rayfbairdrayfbaird Posts: 183
    THE FTC has filed a number of suits against oil additive companies, Slick50, Prolong, Valvoline, Motorup, Duralube, and now ZMax.

    Fuel injector companies have demonstrations showing dramatic differences with both valves and pistons. Extremely dirty pistons and encrusted valves look very clean after treatment. Is this reality or garbage like most oil additives have proven to be? Does their stuff work, or is this an exaggeration?

    Buy the way I don't buy the oil companies claims that everything needed is in the gas. I did a fuel injector treatment and was able to get away from premium gasoline to the recommended regular. I generally tune this car once a year, so other factors were generally eliminated.

    IS the FTC just too busy, or is there some truth to their claims?
  • q45manq45man Posts: 416
    There are four main types of injectors, depending upon the gasoline you buy [different types/levels of detergents] and if you drive the dreaded 15 miles at 55mph then an hour hot soak then the same cycle again you can have severe problems with injectors [pintle type mostly].

    A 5% difference in flow from injector to injector will show up as a varying idle especially on 4 cylinder engines, 6 better, V8 best [smoothest].

    Some gasoline [Chevron] seems better at washing the baked on additives off the pintle but may be worse on build up of valve stem material.

    If the idle is not perfectly as new [assuming adequate intake/throttle cleanliness and periodic EGR valve cleaning [so it doesn't stick open a little at idle] your first area of focus is injector cleaning, however most retail products are just a concentrated form of the additives in gasoline [they are generally to weak to do much good].

    Professional pour in tank products [BG 44k] are 10 times more effective when used every 5,000 to 15,000 miles but even they cannot dissolve all the buildup from trash in gasoline which gets through fuel filter and is deposited on the individual injector filter screens. For this you must get a high pressure fuel rail treatment...running the car on a pressurized bottle of special concentrated cleaners which dissolve the varnish and allow it to pass into the injectors where it gets burned in the engine...this may tend to add build up on piston sand spark plugs so the plugs get changed and the engine gets [needs] a 15 minute high rpm stress drive.

    http://www.off-road.com/isuzu/injectors.html

    http://www.injectioncorrection.com.au/Injector%20Cleaning.htm
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