Black is beautiful, but not in a T engine. Is there any fuel additive that works to reduce carbon.
Seafoam works wonders on carbon build-up. It's also a fantastic fuel stabilizer.
Water misted into the intake of a running engine really removes carbon.
Any downside of either of the two previous ideas?
How long do you have to do the water adding? Do you need the engine to be running at high idle?
Seafoam is added to the gas tank. It is a petroleum based product that was developed by the US Navy. I've been using it in all my gas-powered tools and vehicles since 2003 without any issues.
The water idea is a great tool, which steam cleans your engine on the inside. When in the combustion stroke the water turns to steam and loosens crud quickly, but don't add to much to quick, as you do have to keep the engine running for it to work.
A few ounces of Marvel Mystery Oil in each tank of gas works for me.
Back in the late '70's I had a '65 buick LeSabre which had carbon build up pretty bad. It would "diesel" after turning off the ignition. The engine would continue to knock and lunge for sometimes up to 15-30 seconds due to the hot carbon.
My Dad had a friend, Mr Johnson, or Mr J. Mr J had been in the car business forever. If you described a problem with your car, he could generally diagnose it if your description was good enough...
Anyway, I asked Mr J about my Buick. He told me to take the air cleaner off, manually open the throttle valve (big four barrel carburetor) and slowly pour about a gallon of water through it.
So I did, and the engine "grauled" and slowed a little bit as I poured that water in. Huge clouds of steam came out the tailpipe. Afterwards, there was a huge black spot of carbon on the driveway.
Like James said, it steam cleans the inside of your engine!
I don't believe I'd use the water method in a model T engine for three reasons.
The low compression T engine has hotter than normal exhaust valves and seats. Why chance cracking them?
The T engine may still have two-piece valves.
The T engine has an updraft intake system.
In fact, with today's high octane (for the engine) fuel, I don't know why you'd want to remove the carbon anyway since pre-ignition at 4:1 CR shouldn't be an issue, but 4:1 CR certainly is an issue and carbon deposits would help increase it.
Now, if I had that '65 LeSabre (or better, a Wildcat), you bet I'd use the water to remove the carbon. Been there and done that, and it does work.
Detergent oil will keep carbon from forming but will not affect what is already there.
kIETH AND sETH,
DCL=Damn Cap Lock. Sorry.
i HAD A 454 rIVERIA. i WAS TOLD TO USE WATER, i RACED THE ENGINE AND FLOWED WATER FROM A GARDEN HOSE UNTIL THE ENGINE SLOWED DOWN. AND i REPEATED THIS SEVERAL TIMES. tHE DRIVEWAY WAS CLUTTERED WITH CHUNKS OF CARBON FOR 50 FEET. tHE ENGINE NEVER RAN AS GOOD AS IT DID AFTER THIS WATER TREATMENT.
iN jAGUAR CIRCLES WE REFER TO A FULL THROTTLE GO FROM STOP OR ON AN ON RAMP UNTIL THE CLOUD YOU SAW ON THE FIRST TREATMENT DISAPPEARS. jAGS HAte city driving.
Why does low compression make the exhaust valves hotter?
(Just writing this may have kindled the answer in my brain)
B12 will remove carbon from crusty pistons with stuck rings during an overhaul. It takes about a week of soaking to get them to look like new.
Poor combustion. Fit a high compression head and the engine runs cooler. Don't run enough spark advance with the low compression head and watch the exhaust manifold glow.
Your're lucky you didn't crack your engine. Pouring cold water into a hot engine will cause it to crack.
My son tried that trick on a corvair, and dropped the valve seats. Of course, the corvair has aluminum head with steel valve seats and the quick cool off of the valve seats made them loose.
The old practice of water injection actually used a very fine mist which would quickly heat up along with the fuel mixture, but pouring in water until you almost kill the engine, couldn't be good for it.
Actually, if you have your spark and fuel adjustment mixture correctly set, and every time you run the engine you get it up to operating temperature, and drive it a few miles without a lot of idling, you won't develop much carbon.
How much carbon are we really talking about? In the twenties it was a serious issue but with modern fuels & oils it's not a problem. That thin black soot that forms is usually not of any consequence in a T. If you're trying to remove heavy carbon that has formed since the twenties then maybe you've got a problem.
What is wrong with scraping? It does work.
I was just wondering what others use to aid in cleaning out carbon. The stores in my area don't stock much else than the usual snake-oil. The carbon in the current project isn't as bad as my touring was (caked and baked solid)!
Quote: "What is wrong with scraping?"
It's just hard to do a good job, working through that 1/2" NPT spark plug hole. Hard to see and harder to manipulate the scraping tool at the same time.
I can usually tell what kind of oil has been regularily used in an engine for decades just by looking inside an engine. The engines that have been using regular multiweight detergent oil for years are pretty darn clean inside with hardly any carbon in the valve gallery light carbon on the pistons and in the head and maybe a little junk around the pan shoes. Engines that have always been given "non-detergent" oil are always a total mess, with big gobs of black carbon junk all over the valve stems and inside the valve galleries, carbon all over the pan, flywheel, etc.