Automotive

Thoughts of CRC intake valve cleaner before engine codes appear?

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  • May 12th, 2020 1:21 pm
[OP]
Deal Addict
Sep 6, 2017
3195 posts
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Thoughts of CRC intake valve cleaner before engine codes appear?

It is a known issue that DI engines will develop this carbon deposits in the intake tracts, and behind valves. Making it necessary then to remove everything and either walnut shell blast or chemical/mechanical removal.
Since my ride has 62k kms would using a can of CRC every yearly oil change prevent or minimize the need for it to get so bad where engine lights comes on.
Thoughts??
50 replies
Deal Guru
Jan 27, 2006
14837 posts
7785 upvotes
Vancouver, BC
While the purpose of an intake system is the same across cars, different intake systems may perform differently when it comes to valve cleaners and how effective they are as the air flow through the system will differ due to the design and therefore, the cleaner may work well on certain engine designs and not so well on others.

Your best bet would be to find a forum that specifically covers your ride and see if anyone uses anything and how effective it was for them.
Deal Guru
Feb 24, 2007
14365 posts
2361 upvotes


Not all direct injection engines are designed the same way meaning some engines are much better in reducing the build up of the carbon deposits.

Deal Expert
Aug 22, 2011
34503 posts
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Center of Universe
You need walnut blasting.
[OP]
Deal Addict
Sep 6, 2017
3195 posts
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vkizzle wrote: You need walnut blasting.
If the buildup is severe enough it looks like that will be the only solution. Trying to prevent or prolong that from hsppening.
Deal Expert
Mar 23, 2004
27677 posts
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cristianosham wrote: If the buildup is severe enough it looks like that will be the only solution. Trying to prevent or prolong that from hsppening.
The walnut blasting will get it squeaky clean but not totally required. I pulled my intake off my [DI] engine last summer and did the cleaning with:
-Couple cans of aforementioned CRC GDI cleaner
-Couple cans of TB/carb/choke cleaner
-wire brush
-Bench Buddy brushes (spun with cordless drill)

Came out pretty good, though not as "like new" as you get with walnut blasting. The CRC cleaner is good but TBH it doesn't do any miracles. You have to leave it to soak once it is built up, and it's not like the standard TB/carb cleaner wasn't also able to clean the deposits. The only thing is the TB cleaner evaporates quickly whereas the CRC is made with PEA and is more oily and doesn't evaporate the same way.

I'm going to run a can through via the spray method this summer but I'm not all that confident it will do that much. This will not really do much to clean already caked on deposits of course, but it may help to prevent it/prolong the time before you get significant build up.

Car had maybe 90,000km or so on it when I did the cleaning. I wasn't having any issues but I did have some random misfires on the Mode $06 counter/data when pulled up (nothing that would set a CEL/MIL but just some randoms per drive cycle). After the cleaning, fuel economy did get better right away but I think that was just an initial difference as I don't really feel I'm getting better than usual FE anymore. The misfire counts in the $06 data went to zero though, so there was definitely something there. I haven't checked since a short time after the cleaning though to see if any randoms are coming up a few months down the road.

Pretty sure I'm gonna add w/m this year so that should do way more than periodic "spray cleaner through the intake" methods or mythical nonsense methods (like catch cans). I think that's really the best way to stop the problem. If that doesn't do it, we're pretty much doomed to keep mechanically cleaning it every 4-5 years (whether by walnut shells or otherwise).
Deal Guru
Feb 24, 2007
14365 posts
2361 upvotes
ES_Revenge wrote: The walnut blasting will get it squeaky clean but not totally required. I pulled my intake off my [DI] engine last summer and did the cleaning with:
-Couple cans of aforementioned CRC GDI cleaner
-Couple cans of TB/carb/choke cleaner
-wire brush
-Bench Buddy brushes (spun with cordless drill)

Came out pretty good, though not as "like new" as you get with walnut blasting. The CRC cleaner is good but TBH it doesn't do any miracles. You have to leave it to soak once it is built up, and it's not like the standard TB/carb cleaner wasn't also able to clean the deposits. The only thing is the TB cleaner evaporates quickly whereas the CRC is made with PEA and is more oily and doesn't evaporate the same way.

I'm going to run a can through via the spray method this summer but I'm not all that confident it will do that much. This will not really do much to clean already caked on deposits of course, but it may help to prevent it/prolong the time before you get significant build up.

Car had maybe 90,000km or so on it when I did the cleaning. I wasn't having any issues but I did have some random misfires on the Mode $06 counter/data when pulled up (nothing that would set a CEL/MIL but just some randoms per drive cycle). After the cleaning, fuel economy did get better right away but I think that was just an initial difference as I don't really feel I'm getting better than usual FE anymore. The misfire counts in the $06 data went to zero though, so there was definitely something there. I haven't checked since a short time after the cleaning though to see if any randoms are coming up a few months down the road.

Pretty sure I'm gonna add w/m this year so that should do way more than periodic "spray cleaner through the intake" methods or mythical nonsense methods (like catch cans). I think that's really the best way to stop the problem. If that doesn't do it, we're pretty much doomed to keep mechanically cleaning it every 4-5 years (whether by walnut shells or otherwise).
Have you seen any improvements in fuel consumption or performance since the cleaning?
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Mar 1, 2005
5516 posts
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Toronto
Start doing meth with an Italian tune up.

Or add port injection, though this option is not as widely available.
:arrowd: B/S/T Threads :arrowd:
[FS] N/A
[WTB] N/A
Deal Expert
Mar 23, 2004
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eldiablo wrote: Have you seen any improvements in fuel consumption or performance since the cleaning?
Like I said FE went up immediately after but I honestly don't track my fuel economy that closely to know for sure. Going by the avg. MPG telltale (which I always have up on the display) I feel it's more or less the same, by after a few weeks had passed from the cleaning. Of course I only cleaned it up near the end of summer and cold weather fuel economy sucks for me esp. since I work all of less-than-ten-minutes from home (my car has nowhere near enough time to warm up before getting to work, so kinda sucks in that regard). Even if it did get better it's probably like 1 MPG better or something like that.

The random misfire count went to zero (from having anywhere from 1-10 randoms depending on cylinder# and length of drive cycle) but I didn't really notice the randoms to begin with either, I was only seeing them on the mode $06 data counters. I haven't checked that in a while, I was monitoring it more before since the engine is modified and I had another issue before that was causing some heavy shaking/vibration but turned out that had nothing to do with any misfires. After the cleaning I was pretty happy seeing no randoms too of course, and in terms of that performance would be better (even if slightly) but there's really nothing drivability-wise that is all that different. I'm quite glad I cleaned it when I did though because there were probably going to be drivability problems coming soon if left to continue to build-up.

For the mileage on the engine it was not that bad of build up as I've seen worse (from pictures on forums) at less miles; however, it wasn't exactly good either. I think if I didn't have the super-short daily trips to/from work it might have been better, but who knows. In any event it needed to be cleaned, so a cleaning it got! :)
[OP]
Deal Addict
Sep 6, 2017
3195 posts
1900 upvotes
ES_Revenge wrote: The walnut blasting will get it squeaky clean but not totally required. I pulled my intake off my [DI] engine last summer and did the cleaning with:
-Couple cans of aforementioned CRC GDI cleaner
-Couple cans of TB/carb/choke cleaner
-wire brush
-Bench Buddy brushes (spun with cordless drill)

Came out pretty good, though not as "like new" as you get with walnut blasting. The CRC cleaner is good but TBH it doesn't do any miracles. You have to leave it to soak once it is built up, and it's not like the standard TB/carb cleaner wasn't also able to clean the deposits. The only thing is the TB cleaner evaporates quickly whereas the CRC is made with PEA and is more oily and doesn't evaporate the same way.

I'm going to run a can through via the spray method this summer but I'm not all that confident it will do that much. This will not really do much to clean already caked on deposits of course, but it may help to prevent it/prolong the time before you get significant build up.

Car had maybe 90,000km or so on it when I did the cleaning. I wasn't having any issues but I did have some random misfires on the Mode $06 counter/data when pulled up (nothing that would set a CEL/MIL but just some randoms per drive cycle). After the cleaning, fuel economy did get better right away but I think that was just an initial difference as I don't really feel I'm getting better than usual FE anymore. The misfire counts in the $06 data went to zero though, so there was definitely something there. I haven't checked since a short time after the cleaning though to see if any randoms are coming up a few months down the road.

Pretty sure I'm gonna add w/m this year so that should do way more than periodic "spray cleaner through the intake" methods or mythical nonsense methods (like catch cans). I think that's really the best way to stop the problem. If that doesn't do it, we're pretty much doomed to keep mechanically cleaning it every 4-5 years (whether by walnut shells or otherwise).
Appreciate it if you can kindly give me the part number of the product you used.
Deal Expert
Mar 23, 2004
27677 posts
8025 upvotes
cristianosham wrote: Appreciate it if you can kindly give me the part number of the product you used.
You mean for the Bench Buddy brushes or the CRC stuff? CRC was 05319 I think...this stuff:
https://www.crcindustries.com/products/ ... 05319.html

The TB/carb cleaner was just some cheap Peak-brand stuff I got at a discount store in US...like $4/can and much cheaper than the CRC stuff!

Bench Buddy was the BB100 set (four different sizes), I ended up getting them on eBay because they were cheapest there but was still something like $30-40 USD IIRC. Those are expensive though (they are nylon with microabrasives); there are much cheaper solutions for bristle brushes you can use and attach to a power drill I think.

TBH if I had a compressor/tank, I would have rather gotten a media blaster and walnut shells and found a proper port adapter for my engine.

BTW what car/engine do you have and how many miles at current time?
[OP]
Deal Addict
Sep 6, 2017
3195 posts
1900 upvotes
Anyways like everyone else that is non essential I am home and decided with such nice temperatures to do the carbon cleaning on the intake valves. I bought two bottles of CRC with the straw because Canadian Tire did not have the one with the straw.
Warmed up the car and decided to slip the straw after the electrical sensor. Sprayed in 1 second blasts and waited another 2 second and blast again. Actually the car did not stall and didnt require me to stick my kids kiddy shovel between the pedal and seat to keep the rpms at 2K.
Now I am just waiting another 30 minutes for the heatsoak before driving 10 minutes on the highway.
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[OP]
Deal Addict
Sep 6, 2017
3195 posts
1900 upvotes
ES_Revenge wrote: You mean for the Bench Buddy brushes or the CRC stuff? CRC was 05319 I think...this stuff:
https://www.crcindustries.com/products/ ... 05319.html

The TB/carb cleaner was just some cheap Peak-brand stuff I got at a discount store in US...like $4/can and much cheaper than the CRC stuff!

Bench Buddy was the BB100 set (four different sizes), I ended up getting them on eBay because they were cheapest there but was still something like $30-40 USD IIRC. Those are expensive though (they are nylon with microabrasives); there are much cheaper solutions for bristle brushes you can use and attach to a power drill I think.

TBH if I had a compressor/tank, I would have rather gotten a media blaster and walnut shells and found a proper port adapter for my engine.

BTW what car/engine do you have and how many miles at current time?
Could not buy the exact CRC 05319 but instead 75320.
Sr. Member
Oct 1, 2015
804 posts
988 upvotes
Barrie, ON
That's not going to do much. Only way to get things really clean is walnut blasting..
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Sep 2, 2006
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Stouffville, ON
Ah the ol seafoam cleaning.

Make sure you change the oil later, and if you hadn't changed the plugs in a while, please look at that too.
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