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2005 Legacy GT
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Was changing my oil this past Saturday, and everything went smooth until I made a very noob mistake :icon_redface:. I tried to add a bit of oil while the car was running and it shot out everywhere. In my mouth, all over the motor, and even up to the grill/bumper. So whats the best way of cleaning this off the motor? Or should I just let it burn off?

I guess the only positive that came out of it was I got my engine cover shiny :biggrin: (well a little bit of it at least)
 

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2004 Subaru Forester XT 5 speed manual.
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744 Posts
I'd dilute the simple green if you were going to try and use it on the paint, or wax the area after as it'll strip any wax currently on it.

I know, it's only the engine bay, but still... :)
 

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2008 Forester 2.5X Prem
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....if you’re interested in cleaning it up, I would just wipe up what you can with paper towels and then use a good all purpose cleaner that is safe for this sort of thing. Simple Green is "ok" but it does have the potential to accelerate corrosion of bare aluminum parts. If you are going to use it, I would dilute it as recommended and not let it dwell more than a couple of minutes (being careful not to allow the solution to dry up). If you have gentle brushes at your disposal, I would use those to help agitate cleaner on the areas that you can reach. You can then use a slow, steady stream of water to rinse the engine bay thoroughly. Covering potentially sensitive areas is up to you. ….you can use plastic baggies or something similar for this. Personally, I have never had a problem although I am quite careful not to shoot water into areas that may have issues if it found its way in there.

btw, Pro HD and Aircraft Precision Cleaner are two cleaners SG makes that are safe for aluminum. If you were going to use their products for this task, you would be better off choosing one of those if they are available to you.
 

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2017 Limited
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I wouldn't leave it on there because it will smoke for a while, some simple green should clean that up easily.
I once read that Simple Green and aluminum were not compatible.

I don't want to get into it here , but, a Google search brings up much info on the subject.

I'd use brake cleaner for removing the oil, it will flush it away pronto, and then evaporate almost immediately.
 

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2017 Limited
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....there must be an echo in here.
Echo? I don't hear any echo.

Echo? I don't hear any echo.

Echo? I don't hear any echo.

Echo? I don't hear any echo.

Echo? I don't hear any echo.

Echo? I don't hear any echo.:biggrin:


Two people can't say the same thing? One re-inforces the other FYI.
 

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2008 Forester 2.5X Prem
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Two people can't say the same thing? One re-inforces the other FYI.
....Polly want a cracker? ;)

I already mentioned the specific reason why. I was just busting your chops regarding your response.

....I'll repeat it though. SG can accelerate corrosion on bare, unprotected aluminum surfaces. If you do use it, just make sure to dilute and don't let it dwell any longer than a couple of minutes. SG says 10, but IMO it would be better to err on the side of caution. Your best bet is to simply obtain one of their AL friendly formulations instead (I listed two).

The following is from their own FAQ's for reference:
Aluminum - Is it safe to use Simple Green® on aluminum?
When used with caution and according to the instructions, Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner has been safely and successfully used to clean aluminum. Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner, Crystal Simple Green® Cleaner/Degreaser, Simple Green Pressure Washer Concentrates, and Pro Series™ Simple Green® Automotive Cleaner have been used on aircraft, automotive, industrial and consumer aluminum items for over 20 years. However, caution and common sense must be used: aluminum is a soft metal that easily corrodes with unprotected exposure to water. The aqueous-base and alkalinity of Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner can accelerate the corrosion process. Therefore, contact times for unprotected or unpainted aluminum surfaces should be kept as brief as the job will allow - never for more than 10 minutes. Large cleaning jobs should be conducted in smaller-area stages to achieve lower contact time. Rinsing after cleaning should always be extremely thorough - paying special attention to flush out cracks and crevices to remove all Simple Green® product residues. Unfinished, uncoated or unpainted aluminum cleaned with Simple Green products should receive some sort of protectant after cleaning to prevent oxidation.
Simple Green has also developed break-through water based cleaners that are safe for use on metals, plastics, rubber and high tech alloys. Extreme Simple Green® Aircraft & Precision Cleaner and Simple Green® Pro HD are available on both the industrial and retail markets, respectively. These products were initially developed for the aircraft industry and extensive testing shows that they are safe and effective on a variety of metals and other sensitive surfaces even in the most extreme circumstances.
 

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2007 Forester Sports XT 4EAT
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Was changing my oil this past Saturday, and everything went smooth until I made a very noob mistake :icon_redface:. I tried to add a bit of oil while the car was running and it shot out everywhere. In my mouth, all over the motor, and even up to the grill/bumper. So whats the best way of cleaning this off the motor? Or should I just let it burn off?

I guess the only positive that came out of it was I got my engine cover shiny :biggrin: (well a little bit of it at least)
Most dealerships have detailing services. When I had my '03 in for service, I asked for the engine compartment to be steam cleaned. They did it at no additional charge. :wink:

If you want to do it yourself, I'd recommend this from Griot's Garage. :smile:

Bobby...
 

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2008 LL Bean (4EAT)
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A lot of people here use Simple Green to clean their Forester motors, and I have used it for years to clean my vintage motorcycles which have aluminum engine cases and wheel rims. Simple Green does not harm aluminum when used as directed. The instructions just posted say do not leave it on the motor for ten minutes. Actually, there is no need to leave it on the motor at all, as Simple Green is not for dissolving thick deposits. Just spray it on, and rinse with soft spray from hose.
The danger is in not rinsing well and letting droplets of Simple Green or half-rinsed Simple Green dry on aluminum or paint. Those droplets will cause white spots that are hard to remove.
As for removing oil spilled on the motor, I don't think Simple Green is well suited for that. An emulsifier like Gunk would work better.
 

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2008 Forester 2.5X Prem
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A lot of people here use Simple Green to clean their Forester motors, and I have used it for years to clean my vintage motorcycles which have aluminum engine cases and wheel rims. Simple Green does not harm aluminum when used as directed. The instructions just posted say do not leave it on the motor for ten minutes. Actually, there is no need to leave it on the motor at all, as Simple Green is not for dissolving thick deposits. Just spray it on, and rinse with soft spray from hose.
The danger is in not rinsing well and letting droplets of Simple Green or half-rinsed Simple Green dry on aluminum or paint. Those droplets will cause white spots that are hard to remove.
As for removing oil spilled on the motor, I don't think Simple Green is well suited for that. An emulsifier like Gunk would work better.
....simply applying and immediately rinsing off isn't likely going to be very effective on anything but light/loose residue. As with most APC's, you need to let it dwell a bit and/or use agitation to help loosen heavier deposits. In either case, SG makes other products that are safer (and better suited) for this task. Personally, I use Meguiars APC & APC+ when necessary and regular car wash solution or Optimum No Rinse for upkeep.


btw, here is SG's instructions on cleaning engines:

To clean with Original or Lemon Scent Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner:

1) Use a 1:1 solution of Simple Green and water (hot water if possible).

2)Apply to a cool, pre-wet surface and allow to set for about 3 to 10 minutes depending on the grease or soil. Do not allow the solution to dry onto surface.

3) Use a medium bristle brush to scrub, and repeat application if necessary.

4) Rinse thoroughly with clean water (hot water if possible).
 

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2008 LL Bean (4EAT)
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....simply applying and immediately rinsing off isn't likely going to be very effective on anything but light/loose residue. ... here is SG's instructions on cleaning engines... "3) Use a medium bristle brush to scrub, and repeat application if necessary"...
Simple Green is fine for keeping the engine and compartment clean of the usual "residue" of road dust. But the OP doused his engine with oil. SG may not be as good as a Gunk-type emulsifier for removing that much oil. Gunk will remove oil that is unreachable by the bristle brush that SG requires, and do it in one application rather than several.
 

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2008 Forester 2.5X Prem
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Simple Green is fine for keeping the engine and compartment clean of the usual "residue" of road dust. But the OP doused his engine with oil. SG may not be as good as a Gunk-type emulsifier for removing that much oil. Gunk will remove oil that is unreachable by the bristle brush that SG requires, and do it in one application rather than several.
....well, you're probably right but neither of those would be my choice anyhow. Although SG is quite effective if left to dwell for a while. Back in the day I used to use cleaners from manufacturers like "Gunk" but the chemical odor lingers. ....I prefer other APC's these days.
 
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