Yesterday I asked a question regarding engine sludge – and “Seafoam” was recommended as a cleaner or using a oil with more detergent.
But here’s the questions behind the question. If you have never used any type of cleaner or detergent in your engine (lets say 60to 110 K miles or more) and you suddenly started to use a cleaner (Seafoam or what ever), would there be possibility of the seals (rear main etc.) starting to leak ? Am I over thinking the situation or am I on track??
I've used Seafoam through the brake booster hose and the gas tank. I have to admit, I'm afraid of putting anything other than oil in the crankcase. Couldn't you pull the valve cover and physically clean up as much sludge as possible, and start using an oil with with better cleaning abilities? Aren't the high mileage oils supposed to clean up gunk inside an engine pretty well?
A note to Seafoam used through the brake hose. I did get an amazing smoke show after it was sucked down through the hose. I have no idea if it actually cleaned anything as I had no way to inspect the combustion chambers before and after the treatment. Was the smoke from the Seafoam cleaning things, or was it just a part of the combustion process burning the Seafoam out of the cylinders? I really have no idea. I honestly couldn't tell that the engine ran any better or worse. It seemed to run the same as it did before the treatment.
Many people swear by Seafoam, I tried it and wasn't overly impressed. I've heard that a "mexican tuneup" will basically do the same thing. A "mexican tuneup" consists of sucking small amounts of water into the cylinders of a running engine via the brake booster hose and in essence steam cleaning the inside of the combustion chamber. AKA, doing the same thing as you would with Seafoam, but using plain water in it's place...while saving the $6 or $7 that a can of Seafoam costs. Again, I have no idea if this works or doesn't work.
Now, I know half of my post doesn't even involve your sludge issue. I guess I'm basically saying.....don't believe in a miracle in a can to cure your sludge problem. Use a good quality oil with high cleaning capabilities, and change your oil and filter in the 3k-5k range. I've read a lot of people rave on the AutoRX stuff on Bob is the oil guy's forums. I think I'd be more at ease using something along those lines in the crankcase instead of Seafoam. It makes sense that you'd want gradual cleaning instead of quick cleaning, so as to not break a large chunk of gunk loose and clog up an oil pump or oil galleys.
The main thing you have to keep in mind is if you have sludge right now is not to go high detergent all at once. If you do, it will build up in your pan and clog your oilpump screen and then your eating bearings. Do a light detergent oilchange and work your way up to full detergent oil and you shouldnt have any problems.
I sea foamed my 04 with 119,000 on it, worked like a charm. I slowly poured it down the brake booster till it was time to choke it out. Then I sprayed the shit out of my intake with deep creep till the can was 3/4 empty. Let it sit for 15-20 minutes.
I cranked the key until it started (I knew it eventually would) The smoke show began right away, I drove the balls off it up the highway like I owned it's ass. I know it was working because the smell was horrible. That combined with several other things got me 22.86 MPG
Well first off, is your engine sludged?
Heck when I pulled the valve cover off ours at 138000, it was as clean as a whistle.
Unless you were running a non detergent oil, which to the best of my knowledge all oils for autos have, then you were asking for it. That's why your engine has an oil filter.To remove the debris the oil picks up as it cleans.
Now something else, the PVC system. If the valving in your breather system is not functioning properly it could cause a sludge problem. It's a tiny hole in the back vent that acts as the escape for vapors, if it's blocked there is no where for them to go.
How bad? GM had a problem with PVC valves back in the late 80's.Along with those silly 5.7 diesels. I can't tell you how many sludged vehicles I had to repair, worse one I saw was an S-10 Blazer. The heads were sludged to the point you could not see the valve springs and barely the rocker arms. It took some doing cleaning all that out of there, but other then that and oil changes every 3000 miles, it ran last I knew over another 150000 miles, before my brother in law traded it in.
As for Seafoam, I dump a can in the jeep with each fill up.
If in fact yours is sludged badly, I have to agree, something that busts up the stuff quickly may do more harm then good if it blocks up the oil pick up.
97 Sahara, 74 Renegade, 72 CJ5, 55 Willy's (the Beast) Boss 302, 6:34 gearing, Bose 901 speakers.
God I miss that Jeep. Forgot the kinda Jeep, 80 SX4.