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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My 01 TA is my first car I can say I'm extremely proud of, so would love to keep it looking great. How do I get that car show look under my hood?

What products do y'all use to keep the engine bay clean and looking like new? Any techniques anyone has to share on the best practice to cleaning under the hood?

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1968 Convertible 400, 200 4R, 1971 Formula 400 M-22 Rock Crusher, 1984 Trans Am...........
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My Formula I basically use the same products I use on the rest of the car. For the painted portions I use the same as I use on my exterior paint. For hoses I use Mother's VLR. The engine bay is pretty clean and stays that way, so not a lot to clean up.

My Grand Prix I haven't tried this yet. I was just told about this, so I can't promise the results. Use foam engine cleaner while the car is just slightly warm, not heated up. spray everything except the cloth hood liner and let it sit 5 min or so. Power wash everything off. Use a leaf blower to dry as much of engine bay as possible so no water spots form. Then treat with favorite detail products.
 

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1994 Firebird Formula 381ci LT1 / TH400+GV O/D
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Might want to post a photos (or photos) of what it looks like now. That way we can recommend the least invasive method of removing the dirt and grime. With modern electronically controlled engines, it is often best to select the methods that pose the least risk to the delicate electronic components.

Once you get it clean, maintenance is simple. But how you get it clean is critical.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I tried to do a quick wipe down with a dry rag and agitate some of the dirt with a toothbrush but that proved to be extremely time consuming. I also had a Dremel with a soft brush for some of the grime seen on the plastic hose but stopped midway down to try and find a more effective way. https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20180619/fcf1ce53206935fb4dfb1b6c4c3d9b89.heichttps://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20180619/887e5fac9bda2a412779df0c58255ad7.heichttps://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20180619/85c86284fe2875c58dc04c958d4bfc51.heichttps://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20180619/a00f4c8cddbb2962a6191534368b6b7d.heichttps://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20180619/1897480934dfe17bc5bf939b584f0918.heic

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https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20180619/e9faf9edeaa1214fca7f2517337b0307.heic

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https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20180619/3e97b269482c6b587224682532b8fb4d.heic

Those 1st few pics didn't come through.

https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20180619/6efbed4ef7b6142d73f4cf88847f0c0a.heic

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1994 Firebird Formula 381ci LT1 / TH400+GV O/D
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Doesnt look all that bad. Maybe try some Simple Green to cut any heavy oil/grease areas. Follow the Simple Green instructions, letting it sit 5 minutes, then rinse. I would use only free flow from a hose, no nozzle. And I would not recommend a pressure washer. With the electronic components getting up in years, it would be too easy to force water past dried seals in the harness connectors for sensors and actuators. But that's just me. Work a small area at a time.

The painted surfaces under the hood are not well coated, lacking the clear coat. Unless you want to pull the engine and repaint, theres not much you can do. Because the paint is so thin, its hard to touch up scratches and nicks because the touch up doesnt match anything. You could try to have a paint shop do a computer match and make you a small quantity of paint to get a better match for touch up. A mixture of mild dish soap and soft rags and soft brushes would be better on the painted surfaces than anything harsh like Simple Green.

Theres a couple picture of my engine in my gallery. Not intended to be a show car.... mainly a track car, and I dont like dirt and grime. Engine compartment was steam cleaned in 2000 when the engine was out for the stroker build. Obviously the engine looked like new when it was reinstalled. I would have painted the block and cleaned up a few parts better, but unfortunately my employer sent me to Italy for 6 months and I missed most of the build.

I like Mother's Back to Black for the hoses and rubber surfaces. Wherever aluminumcan be polished - fuel rails, throttle body, top if intake manifold - I used Mother's Billet Polish. My favorite photo in the gallery:

https://www.firebirdnation.com/forums/gallery/image/5895-dcp04269jpg/
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the advice! I'll definitely look into the simply green and mothers products. I think the paint will be an after thought if it ends up sticking out like a sore thumb after the hoses and plastics/metals all polished up and clean.

Thanks again!

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