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Old 25-12-2016, 11:06   #16
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Re: Flushing Diesel with Distilled Vinegar?

Another recommendation I frequently read is to remove the h/e and take it down to a radiator shop. Not sure if radiator shops even exist anymore??
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Old 25-12-2016, 11:40   #17
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Re: Flushing Diesel with Distilled Vinegar?

Long time ago I used the described procedure on a Volvo Penta MD17 HD, but instead of vinegar, I used CLR mixed with demineralized water. I bypassed the water pump, and with a cheap 12 volt bilge pump and some hose and a bucket, I made a close circuit with the pump runing at the bottom of the bucket feeding the water intake(thermostat removed!) and the return hose connected back to the bucket. At the begining not much effect, but I was amazed to see how much dirt, crust, salt and other strange stuff came out after an hour of running the pump. Rincing and flushing with fresh water for some time to remove all residues was done. My engine was not overheating before, but I was quite surprise to see all that crap that was in my engine innars...
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Old 25-12-2016, 12:29   #18
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Re: Flushing Diesel with Distilled Vinegar?

Our old work boat powered by a 71 series Detroit Diesel has a heat exchanger
made from copper-nickel with bronze end caps and a cast iron tank. It can be cleaned with almost any chemical known to boaters without an issue.
I guess equipment was engineered better in the old days. 1955 built engine.
Or could be that modern industrial engines still have the good-stuff, still built that way.
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Old 25-12-2016, 12:42   #19
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Re: Flushing Diesel with Distilled Vinegar?

FYI, I left a part of a raw water cooled engine that had mineral deposits soaking in vinegar overnight & it didnt do much dissolving at all. I'd try something else
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Old 25-12-2016, 12:51   #20
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Re: Flushing Diesel with Distilled Vinegar?

I use Rydlyme and it seems to work well for a biodegradable. I have 2 Detroit mains and a Perkins 4108 and Onan generators. I use a 5 gallon bucket with a hose to the sw pump and attach another hose where the sw enters the exhaust stream back to the bucket. I idle the engine until the bucket water will no longer cool the engine. I've had no problems. I'm 68, been on or near the water my whole life and never had a heat exchanger plug or fail to cool. The only heat exchangers I've had to take apart were on ships or customer's un-cared for engines. And many I fixed w/o taking apart using the above method. For the past 10 years or so, I've used Rydlyme on the fresh side, too.
To me vinegar has two uses and not in an engine.
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Old 25-12-2016, 13:08   #21
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Re: Flushing Diesel with Distilled Vinegar?

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I use Rydlyme and it seems to work well for a biodegradable. I have 2 Detroit mains and a Perkins 4108 and Onan generators. I use a 5 gallon bucket with a hose to the sw pump and attach another hose where the sw enters the exhaust stream back to the bucket. I idle the engine until the bucket water will no longer cool the engine. I've had no problems. I'm 68, been on or near the water my whole life and never had a heat exchanger plug or fail to cool. The only heat exchangers I've had to take apart were on ships or customer's un-cared for engines. And many I fixed w/o taking apart using the above method. For the past 10 years or so, I've used Rydlyme on the fresh side, too.
To me vinegar has two uses and not in an engine.
So I gather the Rydlyme won't do any harm to the r/w pump? It sounds like if you remove the end caps and clean out any debris from time to time, and keep up with your r/w pump impeller & zincs, you ought to be fine. Maybe the h/e is not such a big preventative maint. item after all.
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Old 25-12-2016, 15:20   #22
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Re: Flushing Diesel with Distilled Vinegar?

The OP is concerned with salt deposits. I posted a commercial product designed to remove salt deposits. Another concern, and probably more of a concern is marine growth. Barnacles and the like.


There are different products designed to remove marine growth. Barnacle Buster is one.


Whenever we are trying to deal with a problem, it should be common sense to determine just what the problem is and then use procedures and products designed to deal with that specific problem. Salt and barnacles are not the same and it's best to use a specific product for each.


Vinegar is best for making pickles and in combination with olive oil for salads. I doubt it will do anything for your engine but it won't hurt it either. You'll just be wasting your time and money.
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Old 25-12-2016, 16:16   #23
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Re: Flushing Diesel with Distilled Vinegar?

Yes there is a fair bit of marketing hype associated with those demos. We've never been able to replicate the ease and speed of an acid flush with any of the newer "safe" products.
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Old 25-12-2016, 18:09   #24
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Re: Flushing Diesel with Distilled Vinegar?

Although my Westerbeke is fresh water cooled I always did a vinegar flush of the saltwater part of the engine ---kept the heat exchanger and other parts pretty clean ----so one year I had the (not so) bright idea of leaving the saltwater system part of the engine cooling system full of fresh vinegar for the 7 months or so that our boat was on the hard.

Next winter (our boat is in Mexico and we are snowbirds) I had a problem with the engine overheating when I revved it up under load ----- no problem when at idle but after 5 minutes under load at speed up would go the engine temp making it necessary to shut down. Checked everything --- couldn't find any problem --everything clean as a whistle --- no obstructions --eventually resorted to starting to replace pieces one by one ----then found that the saltwater impeller for the saltwater pump was intact but it needed a dose of Viagra --- the vinegar had softened the impeller so much that when the revs went up the impeller was so soft that the vanes just folded over and couldn't pump any water ---lesson learned the hard way: yes vinegar will dissolve salt (and other stuff too) if left standing too long ---so ---for short periods I still think a vinegar flush is a good idea, just don't leave it standing in the system too long

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Old 26-12-2016, 06:13   #25
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Re: Flushing Diesel with Distilled Vinegar?

Go to Home Depot get concrete cleaner its phosphoric acid. It's not as bad muriatic acid, I would never use on a motor or AC unit. Saltaway is excellent you can even leave it in your engine. It will get rid of the salt. Go to the Saltaway web site. When WM was started it was given to them for there boats. Ever sence its been in the stores!
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Old 26-12-2016, 11:04   #26
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Re: Flushing Diesel with Distilled Vinegar?

For cleaning out the salt water side of the cooling system, not so great. Use something like "Salt Away", following the directions.
For regular maintenance, vinegar works very well, and is not going to damage anything. About 3 times per year, I get a gallon of it, suck it through the system, leave it sit for a week, then run the engine for about a 1/2 hour. ( my current boat has a Yanmar 3GM30F)
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Old 26-12-2016, 15:10   #27
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Re: Flushing Diesel with Distilled Vinegar?

I found an inexpensive small basement sump pump to recirculate Rydlyme from a 5 gal bucket thru the raw water loop, but never got around to doing it. Lepke's method makes a lot of sense, just use the raw water pump to recirculate the acid.
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Old 26-12-2016, 15:48   #28
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Re: Flushing Diesel with Distilled Vinegar?

On my 4-108 I used vinegar to try to clean the exchanger tubes a bit. They had a just a light white buildup not much at all. In one day of soaking it pretty much did nothing I could see.
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Old 26-12-2016, 17:42   #29
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Re: Flushing Diesel with Distilled Vinegar?

I had a real problem with small motor with fresh water / to salt heat exchanger dealer wanted ks. for replacement boiled heatexchanger in muriatc from hardware (that green stuff sold as antifreeze) took a while but it is now as good as new without cost money, which means I dont have to work to get it but I learnt a good thing ANTIFREEZE IS REALLY ANTIFREEZE ( anticorrosion)
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Old 26-12-2016, 18:38   #30
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Re: Flushing Diesel with Distilled Vinegar?

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Originally Posted by baycruiser View Post
I had a real problem with small motor with fresh water / to salt heat exchanger dealer wanted ks. for replacement boiled heatexchanger in muriatc from hardware (that green stuff sold as antifreeze) took a while but it is now as good as new without cost money, which means I dont have to work to get it but I learnt a good thing ANTIFREEZE IS REALLY ANTIFREEZE ( anticorrosion)
Anti-freeze is not muriatic acid.
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