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View Full Version : Product review: Griot's Engine cleaner kit(m)


The HACK
01-08-2002, 02:59 PM
I posted this on .org as well...

Bought the Griot's Garage Engine cleaner kit about a month ago, this package came with Griot's Engine cleaner (35oz + Fine sprayer), Engine Gloss (spray can), and 4 detail brushes (brass, aluminum, nylon, and horse hair in tooth brush size).

Unfortunately I have been extra lazy recently and have not been taking pictures of the process, or perhaps it's because I dropped my last camera and broke the optics and I've been extremely [Oops!] about taking pictures with it...But I did not take the before picture as well as the process. However, I've taken a few after pictures here, bear with me eh?

First of all, the application of the cleaner was fairly easy. The only thing to keep in mind is that you should mask off whatever you don't want to get wet. I masked off the brake fluid reservoir (brake fluid is VERY sensitive to moisture) and the ABS controllers, as well as the diagnostic port, positive battery terminal and the ECIS cold air intake. I just used plastic saran wraps, wet the rubber edges/seals with some good o' fashion spit, and wrapped the electronics with it. Then, while engine is still warm from my little spirited drive earlier, I sprayed on the engine cleaner and agitated the plastic rubber part with the nylon brush and the metal/aluminum part with the brass brush. Used a little extra elbow grease around the shock/strut towers because a lot of dirt and oil has settled there. I think my engine was still too hot, since SOME of the engine cleaner started to evaporate around the engine block. I let the engine cleaner sit for about 5 minutes and rinse off with light, gentle flow of water. Afterwards I did a quick wipe down with a 100% terry cotton (probably should've gotten Griot's disposable wipedown towels) and let the car dry under the sun for about half an hour with the hood up. Good thing I live in Sunny So. Cal. :)

After a quick inspection to ensure most engine components are dried, I removed the saran wrap except for the one covering the ECIS intake, did another, more thourough wipedown with a cotten terry, and sprayed the Engine Gloss on. I tried to be careful around the edges of the engine, trying not to get any of this stuff on the clearcoated surfaces...But the spray is very fine and will get blown around by any turbulence in the air. It's best to cover the fenders and front bumper when you use this. I washed the car afterwards right away and did not notice any oversprays. Went over the engine once, noticed the spray was forming some very odd patterns on the plastics and not drying uniformly. So I panicked and started going wild with the engine gloss, trying to get an even spray and a more even result...Well, it turned out that wasn't necessary, the gloss dries evenly and will produce a matte but very nice satiny finish. Overall I am very happy with Griot's engine cleaner product, it was very easy to apply and clean off, produced a very clean engine and the engine gloss made the engine look BRAND NEW. It's hard to imagine this car is almost 2 years old now. Next up? Griot's undercarriage spray. It's time to clean up the wheel wells and underneath the car. :)

Here are the pictures:

http://www.studio2321.com/carstuff/temp/enginebay1.jpg

http://www.studio2321.com/carstuff/temp/enginebay2.jpg

Notice inside the ECIS intake. That's the area that was masked off through the entire cleaning process. See how much dirtier it is? That's how dirty my engine used to look.

http://www.studio2321.com/carstuff/temp/enginebay3.jpg

Hey Alee, here's something else for you to buy. :)

alee
01-08-2002, 03:05 PM
Must... stop... myself... aaaaagh!

But does it work in freezing temperatures? :D

Man that looks really really good. I've got a growing list here that I'm getting from Griots when the weather actually gets better. Add that to the list.

I think I need another job just to pay for my obsessive cleaning compulsion.

-Al

Alex Baumann
01-08-2002, 03:12 PM
That's a nice detailed engine. Good job, Hack.

The HACK
01-08-2002, 03:19 PM
Originally posted by alee
Must... stop... myself... aaaaagh!

But does it work in freezing temperatures? :D

Man that looks really really good. I've got a growing list here that I'm getting from Griots when the weather actually gets better. Add that to the list.

I think I need another job just to pay for my obsessive cleaning compulsion.

-Al

I swear, my car looks BETTER than when it was brand new. Like I said, undercarriage spray is next, but in terms of the finish, the engine, the brakes...etc everything is better than when it was brand freaking new. Even the interior stuff, Griot's interior cleaner, was good...The only thing is that I'm not sure if just simply using warm water and their engine gloss would not have produced the same effect. When the engine was dry it didn't look all that impressive until I sprayed on the engine gloss. Phenominal product. The interior cleaner is a little questionable, but their leather care left a long lasting leather smell, and their interior car scent produced a new car smell if used regularly.

But I'm rambling. The engine cleaner is DEFINATELY worth it. So far my impressions of Griot's products on a scale of 1-10:

Best of Show wax: 9
Machine polish 3: 5*
Machine polish system (random orbital + pads): 8
Speed Shine: 8**
Claybar: 9
Interior Cleaner: 4
Leather Care: 7
Interior Car Scent: 10
Microfiber Polishing towel: 6
Microfiber Wax Remover towel: 8
Microfiber Wax Removal Bonnet for Porter Cable Polisher: 10
Engine Cleaner: 8
Engine Gloss: 10
Detailing Brushes: 8

*The only reason I'm giving it a 5 here it's because it did NOTHING to remove some of the deeper scratches caused by rock chips. 3M Imperial hand glaze does a much better job at hiding the scratches. It does, however, remove most of the light swirl marks visible only at certain light angles and conditions (like under direct sunlight)

**I would've given the Speed Shine a 10 if it weren't for the freaking fact that I go through it so damn fast. A smaller bottle of Maguire's Quick Detailer has lasted me much longer than a 35oz bottle of Speed Shine. The stuff really works well but man, a 35oz bottle will only last you a few months.

jAb
01-08-2002, 03:49 PM
looks good dan
im gonna give that kit a try
i detailed mine about a month ago but did it all by hand with damptowels and a all purpose degreaser(took me forever and i still couldnt get all the little crevices)... didnt want to spray water into my engine since i dont know what exactly to cover up

can you circle in this picture the parts that you covered? thnx

The HACK
01-08-2002, 04:01 PM
Your engine bay is slightly different than mine because you've got the Dinan cold air intake...So I've doctored up one of my pictures to show you what is masked off.

http://www.studio2321.com/carstuff/temp/maskthis.jpg

1) Battery Positive terminal.

2) Brake control unit and diagnostic port

3) Brake fluid reservoir

4) ECIS cold air intake. I'd suggest you wrapped your air filter with a plastic bag and some rubber band. You will not want this stuff to get wet.

5) there are two small plugs with exposed wires behind the headlights. I wrapped these just to be safe with saran wrap and rubber bands.

rinse with a light gentle stream. It took me a total of 10 minutes of work to clean it up this good. :)

jAb
01-08-2002, 04:14 PM
thnx dan

Edge/330ci
01-08-2002, 04:24 PM
You must have posted this to .org and copied/pasted.. note the "[Oops!] " .. heh..

also .. I have a big empty area where you have marked "brake control unit". I have noticed some people have something in that space (have seen black boxes similar to the stock intake box. ??), and other's have nothing..

???

The HACK
01-08-2002, 04:30 PM
Originally posted by Edge/330ci
You must have posted this to .org and copied/pasted.. note the "[Oops!] " .. heh..

also .. I have a big empty area where you have marked "brake control unit". I have noticed some people have something in that space (have seen black boxes similar to the stock intake box. ??), and other's have nothing..

???

Only on MY 2000 or earlier is there something there.

And yes, I posted on [Oops!].org first. :)

alee
01-08-2002, 04:30 PM
Originally posted by Edge/330ci
also .. I have a big empty area where you have marked "brake control unit". I have noticed some people have something in that space (have seen black boxes similar to the stock intake box. ??), and other's have nothing..

???

Stuff was moved around under the hood in the 330Ci.

-Al

in_d_haus
01-08-2002, 04:36 PM
Nice writeup Hack. I couldn't agree more, I've been using the stuff since I bought my car and it does look bettter than when I got it from the dealer.

One suggestion, go over the rubber partrs with Vinyl and Rubber dressing and prepare to be amazed!

in_d_haus
01-08-2002, 04:40 PM
Oh and I just got some of the Carnauba wax...going to test it -vs- the best of show wax I have been using.....stuff smells like candy!

Jim Seattle
01-08-2002, 05:10 PM
How do you like your ECIS intake? How much noise does it add. Is there a noticeable power increase. I'm thinking about getting one and need to be convinced....

BayDetailz
01-08-2002, 05:13 PM
Hey Hack,

Good Job, but man...There is alot better product out there than that one. This product won't crack nor chip on flexible hoses, etc...plus this product won't even damage your clearcoat paint. This product is all water base. You dont' have to cover anything. And the wax you use is good, but not the best. I'm not trying to bash you or anything, just suggesting few things. I do stock all the products you use, I let the customer decide on what product they want on the car. But if they don't, I offer them what's the best for what color. Remember every car is painted different. For example, BMW paint is alot harder to keep clean and very easy to scratch then a Honda paint. well anyways,......just wait for my website to be ready. Plus, if you ever come down to Northern California, 'll hook you up with a free detail job on the whole car, that includes, engine, interior, exterior, undercarage, trunk, etc. :)

The HACK
01-08-2002, 05:19 PM
Originally posted by BayDetailz
Hey Hack,

Good Job, but man...There is alot better product out there than that one. This product won't crack nor chip on flexible hoses, etc...plus this product won't even damage your clearcoat paint. This product is all water base. You dont' have to cover anything. And the wax you use is good, but not the best. I'm not trying to bash you or anything, just suggesting few things. I do stock all the products you use, I let the customer decide on what product they want on the car. But if they don't, I offer them what's the best for what color. Remember every car is painted different. For example, BMW paint is alot harder to keep clean and very easy to scratch then a Honda paint. well anyways,......just wait for my website to be ready. Plus, if you ever come down to Northern California, 'll hook you up with a free detail job on the whole car, that includes, engine, interior, exterior, undercarage, trunk, etc. :)


Sweet. I'm going to hold you to that. :)

I think the pluses of the Griot's engine gloss over water based products is that it's suppose to be very long lasting...This stuff is almost laquer like once it'd dried up. Also I've heard the PS21 stuff is actually much better than the Griot's best of show wax. I've yet to try that but right now I'm very happy with Griot's products. Of course this is all going to be an evolution of products, I'm going to keep using product A until I find something that does a better job. :)

How much is the water based product? I'd like to get some to try on my wife's car. It does require some cleaning first, does it not?

The HACK
01-08-2002, 05:22 PM
Originally posted by Jim Seattle
How do you like your ECIS intake? How much noise does it add. Is there a noticeable power increase. I'm thinking about getting one and need to be convinced....

Jim, there are more than a few posts and opinions on this, but so far I loved ECIS. Sean over at ECIS has been a very straight up vendor and his price is very reasonable. The product provides excellent performance/price ratio, the power increase isn't a lot but I'd equate it to the difference between the AC on and off. Akakubi has just installed one on his car so you may also want to get his opinion on that. Search the archives here for ECIS and you'll find a lot of good reviews and information on that.

Keep in mind ECIS is no longer using K&N filters...That may be a cost saving move.

alee
01-08-2002, 05:24 PM
Originally posted by The HACK

Keep in mind ECIS is no longer using K&N filters...That may be a cost saving move.

What are they using now?

With all the fuss about the hiss, now that you've had it for a while, what do you think?

-Al

The HACK
01-08-2002, 05:28 PM
Originally posted by alee


What are they using now?

With all the fuss about the hiss, now that you've had it for a while, what do you think?

-Al

Some generic brand...Looks like what Dinan uses, it's got the blue oil rather than the purple oil K&N uses.

Hiss? What hiss? I've gotten so used to it now that I hardly ever notice it unless I'm in my wife's car. I'm used to a much quieter car but now the car just GROWLS off the line the way my wife drives. She's mentioned the "hiss" to me a few times so it obviously bothers her, but like I said, I get so used to it I never notice it anymore...Maybe like the ODB II software I've adapted? :)

alee
01-08-2002, 05:37 PM
Originally posted by The HACK

Hiss? What hiss? I've gotten so used to it now that I hardly ever notice it unless I'm in my wife's car.

I've really got to hear one in person. If it's like the fuel pump noise, that isn't so bad. If it's like I'm letting air out of my tires, then I'd be pretty aggravated.

Did you ever ask Sean about his ECIS hiss fix? Wondering if the fix actually works.

-Al

The HACK
01-08-2002, 05:55 PM
Originally posted by alee


I've really got to hear one in person. If it's like the fuel pump noise, that isn't so bad. If it's like I'm letting air out of my tires, then I'd be pretty aggravated.

Did you ever ask Sean about his ECIS hiss fix? Wondering if the fix actually works.

-Al

Will probably ask him that later. As far as I'm concerned it sounds like a very loud fuel pump. My wife actually thinks it sounds like something scraping against the wheels and I'll have to agree, it sounds a lot louder on her car than mine... However mine's had the opportunity to wear in after almost 1.5 years now...When I first installed it I was still posting as "Dan Wu". :)

BayDetailz
01-08-2002, 08:56 PM
The water base product costs about 50.00 dollars for a gallon, but you mix that to make 4 gallons. The products last 4 to 5 months. All you have to do is, hose down the engine, let it dry then just spray it on. Wait for 5 to 30 minutes, depending on the weather conditions cold or hot. The hotter it is outside, the faster it dries up. But it shines it very good. Also about the product you used, that finish is great, but once it starts cracking or chipping, you will be disappointed. I have lots of customers that complained about that product, they just like it at first. Anyways, You can hold me to it. I got you cover when you come down to Northern California. Detail on the house Buddy.....just make sure you have a loaner planned ahead, cuz you're going have to leave it for about few hours or so. I'll get you more info, once i'm back in the Bay Area, currently i'm in Vegas because I do mobile detailing for auto shows.