Clean fuel injectors for $200? - Kia Forum

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post #1 of 35 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 07:03 AM Thread Starter
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Clean fuel injectors for $200?

When reviewing the vehicle checklist after my oil change a few days ago the Kia service advisor recommended a fuel injector cleaning service for $199.99. He said injectors can get dirty and/or clogged up and suggested it should be done given my current mileage (44K). He didn't explain what that service entails. He also said check the maintenance schedule in your owner's manual. I do check that every once in a while and didn't recall seeing anything about fuel injector service so I checked again and I still don't find it.

I checked into fuel injector / engine cleaner additives that you put in the gas tank every six months to a year and they apparently help keep things clean. Don't know much about them yet.

Any comments or suggestions on this subject would be welcome.

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post #2 of 35 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 07:14 AM
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I personally use seafoam in the gas tank every year. I also do the spray seafoam into the throttle body once a year to help clean the top of the valves.

I keep seafoam around as a cleaner and stabiliser also for my lawn mower, trimmer and snow blower.

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post #3 of 35 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 09:50 AM
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The service manager is trying to use your bank account to make the next payment on that Sea Ray SLX 350 he bought in March. It's that simple.
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post #4 of 35 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 10:00 AM
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I also do the seafoam and seafoam spray thing......
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post #5 of 35 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 10:12 AM
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I think some tank additive cleaner will take care of your actual injector cleaning - if you've been running cheaper less-additive types of gas.

The key thing - IMHO - is getting the intake-induced Seafoam (or other similar product) treatment performed to help remove any potential carbon build-up on the BACKS of the valves. Since the advent of direct-injection engines, where the fuel is spayed directly into the cylinder and doesn't wash down from the intake above, DI-style engines have been know to accumulate carbon from oil vapors introduced by the PVC system. Since no gas/fuel is washing past the actual valves from above, thick carbon residues can develop and bake on to the backs of your intake valves. Sending the cleaner foam down through the intake and running the engine hard is about the only thing that can be done to emulate the old intake-located fuel injector design.

The carbon build-up situation with direct injection is serious enough, that some manufacturers (Ford and Toyota for example) are putting secondary injectors BACK UP in the intake to provide a small amount of fuel to help keep the valvetrain clean, and enhance performance.

Good article here on direct injection: https://www.cnet.com/roadshow/news/w...s-of-car-tech/

Article on DI and carbon: https://www.underhoodservice.com/car...ction-engines/

-SM2016

Last edited by SorentoMan2016; 07-11-2019 at 10:15 AM.
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post #6 of 35 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 10:57 AM
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Seafoam is chemically similar to kerosene and does just about as much good. The only two additives tested by SAE that worked (and this was many years ago) were Techron CONCENTRATE (not the diluted fuel system treatment) and BG 44K (expensive and hard to find over the counter). If you use a top tier gasoline (which all the majors are, Costco is, Sam's club is) then you will never need to clean your injectors because it has Techron in the blend. If using a lesser grade of gas, throw a bottle of Techron Concentrate in every 6 months and you'll be fine.

As to cleaning the back of the intake valves - Seafoam will do absolutely nothing, the CRC product specifically for this purpose may work, not sure the jury is totally in yet. I've borescoped many an engine cylinder before and after a Seafoam treatment - water, creating steam, does a better job but is tricky to use due to the possibility of hydrolock. Even Techron, applied directly (which is NOT recommended), does not make much of a difference in carbon buildup on the pistons. Top tier gasoline, used exclusively, makes a huge difference on the piston face and used to make a difference on all valve surfaces in the days of MPI, not so much in GDI. GDI is going to require some type of separate treatment (like the CRC product) on a regular basis, just not sure that product or process is out there just yet although I did buy several cans of the CRC product.

Whenever the service writer says something is in the recommended maintenance procedure, pull out your maintenance handbook and politely ask them to point it out in the scheduled maintenance section. When they can't find it, politely ask them to stop misleading customers about what is and what is not required. If you have a particular complaint that is related to a non-maintenance item (like fuel injectors) then they may recommend a service to cure that problem, not because it's a required maintenance item.
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post #7 of 35 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 11:45 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ecanderson View Post
The service manager is trying to use your bank account to make the next payment on that Sea Ray SLX 350 he bought in March. It's that simple.
Yeah, that was sort of my first impression when he mentioned it. I can't recall ever being offered anything like it from a new car dealer. So I guess he doesn't think I'm going to check the manual. I don't like the dealership but it's the only one around (still an hour away for me) and I like getting oil changes there to maintain an irrefutable service record along with receiving warranty and TSB updates.
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post #8 of 35 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 12:30 PM
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If your not having any drivability issues, and you've been using good quality fuel with a high rating, and you've been adding the Techron fuel additive every 6K, I believe your not in need of this service, which makes a lot of extra money for the dealership.

For the most part they will hang a can of pressurized cleaner from your hood latch (with the hood open of course) and hook it into the fuel rail for the injection system. While the vehicle runs (idles mostly)the can is sucked M/T, and wa-laa, your injectors are cleansed. The can of cleaner costs the dealership 5 bucks tops. Not much else for the Tech to do.......

But, on the other hand, have you had your spark plugs changed recently???
Check your manual. The DI Turbo motors need plugs ever 40K or so........
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post #9 of 35 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 01:14 PM
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Originally Posted by tom4416 View Post
Seafoam is chemically similar to kerosene and does just about as much good. The only two additives tested by SAE that worked (and this was many years ago) were Techron CONCENTRATE (not the diluted fuel system treatment) and BG 44K (expensive and hard to find over the counter). If you use a top tier gasoline (which all the majors are, Costco is, Sam's club is) then you will never need to clean your injectors because it has Techron in the blend. If using a lesser grade of gas, throw a bottle of Techron Concentrate in every 6 months and you'll be fine.

As to cleaning the back of the intake valves - Seafoam will do absolutely nothing, the CRC product specifically for this purpose may work, not sure the jury is totally in yet. I've borescoped many an engine cylinder before and after a Seafoam treatment - water, creating steam, does a better job but is tricky to use due to the possibility of hydrolock. Even Techron, applied directly (which is NOT recommended), does not make much of a difference in carbon buildup on the pistons. Top tier gasoline, used exclusively, makes a huge difference on the piston face and used to make a difference on all valve surfaces in the days of MPI, not so much in GDI. GDI is going to require some type of separate treatment (like the CRC product) on a regular basis, just not sure that product or process is out there just yet although I did buy several cans of the CRC product.
My dealer used the GDI Fuel/Air Induction service from an outfit called 'BG Products'. See: https://www.bgprod.com/blog/avoid-gd...ction-service/

https://www.bgprod.com/catalog/gasol...ystem-cleaner/


Have you heard of this company/brand? I wonder if it's similar to the CRC product you describe?

For what it's worth, here's a video about the specific product my dealer used -

Finally - an interesting back-and-forth on the topic here: https://www.e90post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1058697

-SM2016

Last edited by SorentoMan2016; 07-11-2019 at 01:32 PM.
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post #10 of 35 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 01:17 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by SorentoMan2016 View Post
I think some tank additive cleaner will take care of your actual injector cleaning - if you've been running cheaper less-additive types of gas.

The key thing - IMHO - is getting the intake-induced Seafoam (or other similar product) treatment performed to help remove any potential carbon build-up on the BACKS of the valves. Since the advent of direct-injection engines, where the fuel is spayed directly into the cylinder and doesn't wash down from the intake above, DI-style engines have been know to accumulate carbon from oil vapors introduced by the PVC system. Since no gas/fuel is washing past the actual valves from above, thick carbon residues can develop and bake on to the backs of your intake valves. Sending the cleaner foam down through the intake and running the engine hard is about the only thing that can be done to emulate the old intake-located fuel injector design.

The carbon build-up situation with direct injection is serious enough, that some manufacturers (Ford and Toyota for example) are putting secondary injectors BACK UP in the intake to provide a small amount of fuel to help keep the valvetrain clean, and enhance performance.

Good article here on direct injection: (Link)

Article on DI and carbon: (Link)

-SM2016
Thanks for the info. I'm clueless on engines, etc. but I read both DI articles and found them quite interesting. The articles give some insight into the never-ending quest for improved fuel mileage without negatively impacting performance.

I live in NW Florida which was heavily impacted by Hurricane Michael. We lost one gas station (Chevron) but the Exxon station has reopened. Other than that there are a few stations pumping unknown gas off in various directions. I've never put additives in my cars and have no issues but I'm open to improving their longevity, especially with the Theta II engine problems.
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