Valve cover cleaning (1 Viewer)

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So I am in the process of doing valve cover gasket and am going to have the cover powder coated or ceramic coated. Any suggestions on cleaning will a machine shop hot tank? I know it has been brought up certain solvent can hurt aluminum? Any body ceramic coated valve cover before? Thanks

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80ways

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Portland, Oregon
Here's one thread to check out for ideas on what others have done...
 
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Olathe, KS, USA
One cannot hot tank aluminum.

You can head blast the exterior, drill out the rivets and remove the inner cover plate to clean it, but yours looks exceptionally clean inside.

If you beat blast you must take great care to not get any inside where it won't get purged.
 
Joined
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One cannot hot tank aluminum.

You can head blast the exterior, drill out the rivets and remove the inner cover plate to clean it, but yours looks exceptionally clean inside.

If you beat blast you must take great care to not get any inside where it won't get purged.
 
Joined
Dec 10, 2007
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I had my valve cover put in an engine block washer years ago, but I don't recall what they said they used to clean it, some type of ?detergent. The washer looked like a tall vertical commercial dishwasher with multiple spray nozzles inside.

I do recall asking the engine shop if the cleaner/detergent they used would be OK for aluminum, they said yes, not as caustic as hot tanking, which could cause damage. They ran it through the washer before and after bead blasting, they then rinsed it out some more with a hose and then I washed it more once I got it home. Let it sit in the sun a few days (had read that aluminum absorbs oil into it's pores so it's good to let it "sweat"), then washed again, then took it to be powder coated.

The powder coating shop then baked the valve cover bare first to force
any moisture/solvent/gas out of the pores of the aluminum. Then sprayed on the powder once it cooled and cooked it again.

The powder coating looked good for about eight years but more recently it's started to bubble a bit near the top front. Don't know if that is due to the porosity of the aluminum with gases seeping through or out of the aluminum
(from the head side) or if oxidation is starting underneath the powder coating.

Haven't scrapped the bubbles to see what's underneath but I'm thinking more likely it's from oxidation as other exposed aluminum (intake) has some of the white powder oxidation thing going on (it's parked 150 feet from the ocean most of the time).

I did spend a lot of time cleaning out the oil baffle box after the bead blasting, but before the powder coating. Most of the sludge had been removed by the giant dishwasher, but there was still a little left inside. Carb/brake cleaner did not do much, Purple Power and a garden hose at full blast removed the last little bit of sludge inside the baffle.

FWIW
 
Last edited:
Joined
Jan 1, 2020
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Oregon
So I ended cleaning myself with some purple power 50/50 mix and water let it soak for a hour or so and than gave it a serious rinse out with the hose and air compressor to dry and blow away any junk left behind. Let it sit in the sun all day to dry was 80 degrees today so that helped. I am gonna drop of at the powder coater tomorrow and have a long talk about about masking of the bafflesto keep media out. I think I am going with a dark bronze color. Will post up some picks when reinstalled.

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So I ended cleaning myself with some purple power 50/50 mix and water let it soak for a hour or so and than gave it a serious rinse out with the hose and air compressor to dry and blow away any junk left behind. Let it sit in the sun all day to dry was 80 degrees today so that helped. I am gonna drop of at the powder coater tomorrow and have a long talk about about masking of the bafflesto keep media out. I think I am going with a dark bronze color. Will post up some picks when reinstalled.

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Nice!! Came out clean. I'm sure the powder coating is going to look great!
 
Joined
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Julian, CA
This valve cover is holding up well. It has been a few years. (Yes, nothing in terms of Land Cruiser years!)
I had it hot tanked by the shop surfacing my head, then I took it home and washed and sanded it very well with good old dish soap, super hot water, and abrasive pads. Rattle canned it with a clear coat over.

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Joined
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You guys and your fancy valve covers ;)

I must in the minority in that I prefer the bare non painted look. :flipoff2:


For about the same reason I powdercoated my valve cover in a shade of Platinum which was a bit darker than bare aluminum, seems to match up well
in the engine bay.
 
Joined
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Oregon
This valve cover is holding up well. It has been a few years. (Yes, nothing in terms of Land Cruiser years!)
I had it hot tanked by the shop surfacing my head, then I took it home and washed and sanded it very well with good old dish soap, super hot water, and abrasive pads. Rattle canned it with a clear coat over.

View attachment 2348032
Looks good, what is that oking of your air box another intake?
 
Joined
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Oregon
You guys and your fancy valve covers ;)

I must in the minority in that I prefer the bare non painted look. :flipoff2:
No I think the few others and I are the minority, I just like doing thing to make it stand out. Hopefully my color comes back the way I think it will.
 
Joined
Jan 1, 2020
Messages
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Oregon
For about the same reason I powdercoated my valve cover in a shade of Platinum which was a bit darker than bare aluminum, seems to match up well
in the engine bay.
I’m going for a burnt bronze valve cover. Like the 2020 land cruiser rims.
 

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