Step By Step Guide to Clean Harley Engine Fins

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Cleaning the Harley engine fins significantly impacts the performance and longevity of your machine. 

How to Clean Harley Engine Fins

These fins are designed to dissipate heat from your engine. Overtime can accumulate dirt and grime, which hampers their ability to keep your engine cool. 

So, in this article, I’ll show you the detailed method of cleaning your Harley’s engine fins and the maintenance tips. 

Let’s begin!

Tools Require to Clean the Engine

  • Air Compressor or Canned Air
  • Degreaser
  • Soft Wire Brush
  • Old Toothbrush
  • Microfiber Cloths
  • Clear coat or wax (optional)
  • Polishing machine

How to Clean Harley Engine Fins

To clean Harley engine fins, blow away loose debris using compressed air, apply a degreaser like Simple Green, scrub gently with a soft wire brush and toothbrush, wipe off with microfiber cloths, and finally a protective clear coat or wax.

Here is a step-by-step cleaning process:

Step 1: Prepare Your Equipment

Firstly you should gather the cleaning supplies mentioned above. Also, prioritize your safety; wear protective gloves to shield your hands from the degreaser and any sharp edges.

Step 2: Cool Down the Engine

If the engine is too hot, let it cool down before beginning the cleaning process. Touching hot engine fins might result in burns.

How to Clean Harley Engine Fins

Step 3: Remove Loose Debris

Then use the air compressor or canned air to blow away any loose debris from the engine fins. It will ensure you are starting with a clean surface and prevent scratching from larger particles during the scrubbing process.

Step 4: Apply Degreaser

Next, spray degreaser liberally onto the engine fins, letting it soak in to break down the stubborn oil and grime. Also, read the instructions on your particular degreaser to know how long you should let it sit before scrubbing.

Step 5: Scrub the Fins

Start the scrubbing process using a soft wire brush for larger, external surfaces, and the old toothbrush for hard-to-reach areas between the fins. And be gentle to avoid any scratches or damage to the fins.

Step 6: Wipe Off the Degreaser

Clean the engine fins using microfiber cloths to wipe off the degreaser and loosened grime. Be gentle and thorough to ensure complete removal of all debris.

Step 7: Apply Clear Coat or Wax (Optional)

After cleaning the engine fins, you should consider applying a protective layer of clear coat or wax. This can add a nice shine to your engine and make future cleaning easier.

Related: Keep Your Harley Forks Brand New

Step 8: Repeat as Necessary

Regular cleaning of your Harley’s engine fins is crucial for optimal performance and longevity. Depending on your riding frequency and conditions, cleaning every few weeks or months may be necessary.

Methods to Clean Engine Fins

These are three ways to keep your Harley’s engine fins clean:

1. Compressed Air Cleaning 

This method involves using a high-pressure air source to blow out dirt and debris lodged between the fins. 

While it is simple and cost-effective, it may not be thorough for heavily soiled engines. Compressed air can dislodge up to 60% of dirt and grime.

2. Chemical Cleaning

It’s a specialized cleaning solution designed for engine fins that offers a more intensive cleaning process. 

These chemicals can dissolve stubborn dirt and grime that compressed air cannot remove. 

Related: Did You Know Harley Engine Size Chart

Chemical treatments can effectively remove up to 90% of contaminants; when used correctly. 

3. Ultrasonic Cleaning

For a professional approach, ultrasonic cleaning uses sound waves to create microscopic bubbles that dislodge dirt and grime on a minute level. 

This method can clean up to 99.5% of contaminants and is often used by professional mechanics for deep cleaning.

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