Aluminum is a highly versatile material that is used to make many things. Unfortunately, aluminum tends to oxidize over time, meaning that the material accumulates a chalky, grey cast. Once you start to see this oxidation form, there are several ways to remove it. Begin by cleaning and scrubbing the aluminum to remove any debris from the surface. Then clean the aluminum with acidic cleaners and scrub to eliminate the oxidation.
How to clean aluminum engine parts?
As soon as you notice the aluminum has corroded, you should do what you can to get rid of it. Gather all of the supplies you need and then get to work.
1. Eye Inspection
The first step of how to make cast aluminum look new is eye inspection. This happens by asking you how much dirt the aluminum parts have. In this case, you just have to rinse it with water and dry it with a clean rag. You can also use some light cleaner. If you get the required result, you did the job right.
2. Dirt Is Denser
After finishing the first step, in case you have not got the required result. Proceed with this. If you still have some dirt on the aluminum surface, you need to use some advanced cleaner. The aircraft-grade aluminum cleaner is the product that will get this job done. This cleaner cut through the tough build-up of grease and oil without harming the aluminum surface.
This product has been tested on aircraft bodies. It can be applied on any surface such as aluminum, fabric, and carbon fibers. So this product is ideal and has a super clean effect on aluminum.
Another feature is that the product is safe on the gaskets, seals, and rubber hoses, unlike other solvents that may harm the rubber parts of the engine.
3. Using A Wire Brush
The last step is using a soft wire brush. It usually comes in the size of a toothbrush. Use soft strokes on the surface of the aluminum part. Do not hard brush it not to make scratches on the surface and mess the parts. Go for the narrow spots and between parts. This may not be the best way to clean aluminum, but it gives it a good shine and makes it look as bright as new.
After getting to know how to clean engine parts made from aluminum is a mandatory act to maintain the life of the parts.
Let us learn how to remove oxidation from aluminum and how to keep aluminum engine parts from oxidizing in the future.
How To Remove Oxidation From Aluminum
Aluminum oxidizing is the process where the aluminum surface reacts with oxygen in the air producing a chalky, grey cast layer. There are several ways to remove this layer: they include:
1. Rinse The Aluminum Surface.
Begin the process of cleaning oxidized aluminum by rinsing the aluminum to remove surface dust. If you are cleaning an aluminum of the engine, rinse it under a strong jet of water. If you are cleaning aluminum use a damp cloth to wipe the aluminum or a hose to it with water.
2. Using Natural Cleaning Agents
Follow the below natural cleaning agents to know how to remove oxidation from the aluminum engines.
1. Use Vinegar
If you are cleaning an aluminum engine, add 2 tablespoons of vinegar to the water. Bring the water and vinegar to a boil and let the boil roll for 15 minutes, pour out the liquid. You may have to do this process a few times to eliminate all oxidation. In case of cleaning a large aluminum surface, soak a cloth in vinegar, wipe it across the oxidation. Scrub with a soft-bristled brush, then wipe away the vinegar and lifted oxidation with a damp cloth.
Don’t use any abrasive materials like steel wool or sandpaper to scrub the surface of the aluminum. While this can scrape away oxidation, it will also scratch the aluminum surface and make oxidation harder to remove in the future.
2. Use Lemon Juice.
Do the same cleaning process as you did with vinegar, this time with lemon juice. If you are cleaning a small surface, you can also simply rub sliced lemon over the oxidized surface and wipe it away. Dip the lemon slice in some salt to add abrasiveness if you are cleaning a particularly tough patch of oxidation.
3. Using Commercial Cleaning Products
Follow the below commercial cleaning products to know how to remove oxidation from the aluminum engines.
1. Apply Aluminum Cleaners.
There are many cleaners on the market specifically formulated to clean aluminum. After removing as much oxidation as you can, put on gloves and apply the commercial aluminum cleaner according to its packaging.
Only use commercial cleaners that are aluminum specific. Many commercial cleaners contain ammonia, trisodium phosphate, and other chemicals that can be harmful to aluminum.
2. Use A Metal Polishing Paste.
Aside from making a surface shiny, polishing pastes can also clean the surface of the aluminum and take off oxidation. Purchase a metal polishing paste that can safely be used on aluminum and refer to its package to apply it to the oxidized area.
3. Apply Wax After Cleaning.
Depending on what kind of aluminum object or surface you are cleaning, you may want to coat it with automotive wax after cleaning to help prevent oxidation in the future. Use wax on surfaces like car or bicycle wheels.
Avoid steel wool for aluminum. A lot of you might believe in using this instead of a wire brush. But that’s going to give you awfully negative results. Steel wools will break off and stick with the aluminum. Really soon they’ll form into rust to totally spoil the material.