When looking at the best throttle body cleaner to buy, you need to know this cleaner’s purpose in your car. The throttle body has an important function that is critical to the longevity of your air intake system and the airflow within your vehicle. In modern cars, the throttle body controls the amount of air flowing to the engine to run properly.
The amount of air allowed in the engine depends on how much you press the gas pedal to accelerate your vehicle, influencing how the throttle position sensor tells the engine how much air must flow to run the car. The throttle position sensor receives this signal from the pedal pressed down, relaying this data to the car’s engine control unit. This car’s computer provides consistent updates as to the throttle position, altering how much fuel should be injected into the system.
Since the throttle body determines how much fuel is injected into the engine to run the car, this part plays a key role in the engine’s performance, acceleration capabilities, and horsepower provided. The throttle body balances the amount of air and fuel in the car’s engine, allowing your car to run quickly, smoothly, and at an optimal level – no wonder you want the best throttle body cleaner.
Causes of Why a Throttle Body Stops Working
However, there are various reasons as to why a throttle body may stop working. To determine why the throttle body might be damaged, broken, or have become worn down over time, you need to look at the causes of this issue in your vehicle.
Dirt and other contaminants inside of the housing
Dirt, grime, and debris can accumulate inside the engine’s housing unit, leading to a stop in transferring air and fuel into the engine to power the vehicle. As a result of this debris build-up, the mixture of air, and fuel is contaminated and interrupted. This unbalance in the air and fuel flow can lead to an uneven surface and coating of the throttle body walls. To prevent this from happening, you need to purchase one of the best throttle body cleaners to prevent debris build-up.
Problems with electrical connections in your vehicle can cause a lack of information and data to be sent to the car’s internal computer, the engine control unit, and the powertrain control module. Like any electrical connection inside or outside of your car, problems with connections, like a lack of tight seals and frayed wires, can lead to a range of erratic signals.
In this case, cleaning the throttle body using one of the best throttle body cleaners is advised. When inaccurate signals of information are sent to the computer, this results in the air and fuel mixture’s incorrect ratio, showing why you need to keep your throttle body in optimal conditions.
Vacuum leaks, either with the wires or the seals, can harm the air and fuel mixture flow. If the mixture of air and fuel becomes disrupted due to the throttle body pressure issues, this can cause incorrect fuel to be sent to the engine, leading to unburnt fuel being wasted. In addition, if the throttle stop is maladjusted, the throttle body plate may open and close at the incorrect time, leading to an incorrect amount of the air and fuel mixture to enter the engine.
High Engine Idle
Suppose your throttle body is damaged or not working at the optimal level. In that case, there will be very noticeable characteristics that drivers and passengers will notice – one of these signs is a high or rough engine idle. This rough idle can include the engine stalling when you slow down your vehicle, idle after first starting up your vehicle, or engine stalling when you quickly press the throttle.
If there is a vacuum leak in your car, you might experience a high idle due to the high air influx in the intake system. This vacuum leak can cause the lack of engine performance and the check engine light to illuminate on your dashboard, immediately alerting the driver to the problem with the throttle body.
Although the check engine light can turn on for various reasons, a dirty throttle body that causes a high engine idle could be the culprit. When you go to your mechanic to have routine maintenance, you might ask the professional to check the air induction and air filtering system.
What to Consider in Throttle Body Cleaners
Since carburetors need certain liquids and products, like strong solvents and other throttle body cleaners to get rid of grime and dust in the bores, you need a fluid that quickly dissolves when the fuel is added to the engine. In addition, you need to use a specific type of fluid that will clean the debris and contaminants in the throttle body. The carburetor and throttle body cleaners are some of the best throttle body cleaners.
Compared to fuel injected engines, carburetor cleaners are usually stronger and evaporate quicker, while the best throttle body cleaners are slower to evaporate. You can use a mixture of a carburetor cleaner and a throttle body cleaner to prevent any carbon buildup and engine deterioration. To do this, you need to keep the following points in consideration when choosing the best throttle body cleaners.
You have to know what you want the carburetor to remove – what type of debris and contaminants do you need to get rid of? If you find that you need a specific type of throttle body cleaner after doing an inspection of the throttle body, you need to remove varnish or carbon. These kinds of substances, like gum and varnish, stick to your throttle body and carburetors. This means that before you choose the best throttle body cleaner for you, you need to check the liquid’s function and ingredients.
When designing the best throttle body cleaner, you need for your vehicle, make sure that it doesn't negatively affect any other engine parts. If you buy a throttle body cleaner that affects other parts of the engine in a negative way, like a catalytic converter or oxygen sensors, then this might not be the best throttle body cleaner for you. Most of the formulations do not harm other engines or fuel parts, but it is something to keep in mind when purchasing your cleaner.
The main purpose and function of the throttle body cleaner in your car is to improve your engine’s engine quality, performance, and enhance your engine’s longevity. Both the carburetor and throttle body cleaner must prevent harmful engine emissions from hurting any other parts and improve the engine’s power and performance. Hence, it is crucial that you choose the best throttle body cleaner for your specific car’s engine’s performance.
Ease of Use
Carburetor and throttle body cleaners usually come in different forms, like sprays and fuel additives. Using a spray might seem easier, but you need to access the carburetor from all different angles, requiring you to remove other parts to get to the part possibly. In addition, this spray additive requires you to remove air filters, hoses, and other parts of the engine that can require extra labor, time, and money.
If you decide to use fuel additives instead of the spray throttle body cleaners, this can be easier to use since you just need to add them to the fuel tank without taking out any additional parts of the engine.
Best Throttle Body Cleaners
Genuine Chrysler Accessories 4897156AC
Designed explicitly for Chrysler vehicles, this kind of throttle body cleaner effectively prevents any varnish from clogging up valves, dirt from accumulating in hoses, and debris from gathering in the connecting seals. This type of throttle body cleaner could be considered the best option for you if you have a Chrysler vehicle, but it is still not the most affordable option for budget-conscious car owners.
Although most spray cleaners require you to remove much of the car’s internal mechanisms that can require extra labor time and costs, these cleaners can sometimes be very effective in getting rid of built-up debris. Most spray cleaners need you to apply the throttle body cleaner manually, but Gumout avoids this by being directly injected into your fuel tank. Although not effective as a standard throttle body cleaner, this could be the best throttle body cleaner for vehicles with over 30k miles.
Gunk is a fluid that directly gets rid of the dirt, debris, grime, and contaminants that have built up on metal and plastic within the car. Since this product is chlorinated, it is easy to clean, leaving behind very little residue and wiping off easily.
Hi-Gear features lubricants and anti-corrosive ingredients that prevent this throttle body cleaner from hurting the car’s oxygen sensor and other air intake system components. This cleaner should be used every 4k-6k miles, using a fast-acting formula that is great for luxury and sports cars.
Johnsen’s was specially made for modern cars and luxury systems, which can sometimes be damaged and hurt by older and more conventional products that work better in carbureted engines instead of fuel injected engines. This throttle body cleaner features a 360-degree spray valve for ease of use and efficiency.
Able for use on both carbureted engines and throttle bodies, 3M is great for those who need an all-around and versatile option for various types of engines. The bottle features a usable spray handle that sprays the cleaner at any angle, making this an efficient and safe choice for catalytic converters. Since this is so versatile, it could be considered one of the best throttle body cleaners.
Berryman 0117C B-12 Chemtool
Berryman offers consistent, reliable, and easy-to-use throttle body cleaners that effectively clean various parts and throttle body cleaners.
Gumout Jet Spray 800002231
Gumout effectively works to get your choke clear of any built-up dirt or debris by being powerful enough to work on all surfaces. In addition, you do not need to disassemble your engine, making it an effective product that is a great value for what you pay, making it one of the best throttle body cleaners on the market.
If you have built-up deposits in the throttle body, this can cause various problems that need to be fixed by choosing the best throttle body cleaner for your car. CRC does an effective job of preventing these build-up issues and contamination by breaking down excess dirt and residue without harming any other internal engine components.
How to Clean a Throttle Body
To figure out how to use these products effectively, you need to know the steps to clean a throttle body. First, you must disconnect the air duct from the throttle body and any additional connectors or vacuum lines that could hold the body in place.
Next, spray the best throttle body cleaner you can find around and inside the throttle body. Make sure you have rotated the throttle plate, so the throttle body is easy to get to. Lastly, you have to dry off the solvent by shooting compressed air into the throttle body. Reinstall the connections and vacuum hoses that you removed, and attach the lines and connectors back into the system.
To do this cleaning of a throttle body in the right way, you need certain tools to do the procedure safely. You will need a 4-in-1 screwdriver, nut driver, and plastic gloves to prevent any unwanted debris from getting on your hands.
In addition to the mechanical tools required for this throttle body project, you will also need certain materials to quickly and efficiently figure out the fix. You will have to get compressed air, paper towels, and the best throttle body cleaner.
When figuring out the best throttle body cleaner to use, you have to determine what needs fixing, what materials you need to get out of your system, and what kind of throttle body cleaner you want, either spray or fuel additives. Determining what kind of throttle body cleaner is best for your vehicle can help you keep your engine and air intake system working properly for a long period of time.