Techical Discussions => General Tech => Topic started by: attkrlufy on March 15, 2010, 03:17:38 PM

Title: Kerosene - what's the deal?
Post by: attkrlufy on March 15, 2010, 03:17:38 PM
I'm in a situation where time is of the essence.  I need an exceptionally good oil cutter with minimal cleanup in order to clean the block of my engine as well as strip off old remnants of intake and water gaskets.  Two people I know have mentioned kerosene as the product of choice.

Now I'm no rocket surgeon, but I remember kerosene being extremely flammable.  So why would I want to WIPE DOWN MY ENGINE with it?

I'm told it needs no clean-up (they claim it evaporates 100% in a few minutes) and cuts oil like a champ.  However, I want to make absolutely sure of this - that if I start wiping my engine block down with kerosene I don't have to worry about blowing myself up when I start the car.

I'm trusting you guys here w/ my life.  (      I know, I know......

Title: Kerosene - what's the deal?
Post by: Brian on March 15, 2010, 03:28:18 PM
Sure Kerosene will work fine.  I have used gas and solvents many times.   As long as you do this in a well ventilated area and have no open source of flame or electrical that could arc and ignite.

Title: Kerosene - what's the deal?
Post by: Stan Paralikis on March 15, 2010, 04:18:59 PM
Been using mineral spirits forever.
STILL HERE and alive and well.
Title: Kerosene - what's the deal?
Post by: Leaburn Patey on March 15, 2010, 04:20:11 PM
Ditto on mineral spirits.
Title: Kerosene - what's the deal?
Post by: Stewart Van Petten on March 15, 2010, 04:28:21 PM
Kerosene is not near as flameable as gasoline, but as suggested above you still want to be safe while using it as a cleaner. I have used it to clean up semi engines. Afterwards I use soap with the pressure washer for my final cleanup. If you want to do any painting I would also clean your parts with some no residue brake cleaner after you do your major cleaning with the kerosene.
Title: Kerosene - what's the deal?
Post by: firedome on March 15, 2010, 04:31:22 PM

As an old Chem teacher... kerosene is very low on the volatility scale,
lower than mineral spirits, meaning it takes considerably longer to
evaporate and is less flammable, I can look up the volatility index in
my CRC manual if you'd like... it wil NOT evaporate in a couple
minutes, so  is safer than mineral spirits. NEVER use gasoline
as a parts cleaner. Kero
is the same thing as #2 heating oil. You can throw a match in a bucket
of it and it will not ignite.  It needs to be atomized, as is
in your oil furnace. If you
are worried about flammability, I'd clean off the outside of the block
with Gunk, it's water soluble and has no flammability at all, but you
must wash it off with water. As far
as gasket removal, it's going to be flammable, no matter what you use,
I'm not sure what may be best, but I used carb cleaner, aka Gumout,
when I
worked at the Marina repairing outboards.

firedome2010-03-15 20:41:40
Title: Kerosene - what's the deal?
Post by: Steve on March 15, 2010, 05:14:59 PM
Kero is like diesel.  It's only volitile when in a mist.  As a liquid, it's flash point is way higher than Gas.
As a precaution, I still wouldn't have a lit Havana in teeth while working.  (
Mix it with some brake fluid if you like.  Extra cutting power.  when we're done with the motor, we'll have to wash it down with some Gunk to get rid of the smell
I trust you're filling my list. . .