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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
There are numerous threads about the valve coking we get on our GDI motors and there are two ways to really tackle this job. You can either buy chemicals and (bong)brushes - which could be cheaper for you - or walnut blasting. I chose to walnut blast because I wanted to just do the job and be done with it, vs. soaking with chemicals, scrubbing, sucking out fluids, stuffing rags down in the ports, etc. (also, I just wanted a media blaster) But to each their own.

Before I get into it, I want to apologize for not taking more pics. I was really more focused (pun intended) on the task at hand. But I do have some info that should prove handy for those that are planning on tackling this job. There are also a number of other threads for other cars, explaining the process.

Here were my valves...72k miles, no catch cans, no wmi and they had never been cleaned before. They looked like this:





and when I was done, they looked like this:



**NOTE** This is not a hard job for someone with basic wrench experience, but you want to pay attention to what you are doing and be methodical because there is potential to screw up royally.



TOOLS:

You will need an assortment of basic hand tools and supplies:
  • 8mm socket/wrench (removing intake tube, coils, symposer, etc)
  • 10mm socket/wrench (removing intake manifold, etc)
  • Flathead Screwdrivers - stubby & a fairly long one helps too (removing clamps, poking at crud on valve, scratching your butt)
  • 5/8" Spark Plug Socket
  • Extensions for socket wrench (to reach intake manifold bolts & spark plugs)
  • 21mm socket or wrench (for crank bolt)
  • Torque Wrench (not mandatory, but not a bad idea)
  • 19mm socket or some way to remove your tire
  • Floor Jack
  • Flashlight
  • Blue Tape
  • Rags
  • Old bed sheet(s) << not necessary, but recommended
Beyond the basics:
  • Air compressor: I used 8gal/2HP and it worked fine, but I wouldnt go much smaller.
  • Blaster Kit: Link to Product
  • 25lbs Fine Grit Walnut: Link to Product
  • Shop Vac
  • Brass Pipe Nipple - 1/8” MIP x 4” long | BN-721NL (Lowes plumbing section | pictured below)
  • Brass Hose Barb - 1/2” ID x 1/2” FIP | BHB-390NL (Lowes plumbing section | pictured below)
  • Brass Pipe Bushing - 1/2” MIP x 1/8” MIP | BF-826NL (Lowes plumbing section | pictured below)
  • 90* piece of radiator/heater hose that will fit over the end of the vacuum hose

Ok, let's get down to biz....


First things first. Make sure you are parked somewhere you dont mind cleaning later. No matter how hard you try, walnut gets around. I had it stuck behind my ears, in my hair, etc...lol.

  1. Chock the tires: rear pass, rear driver, driver front.


  2. Leave the car in neutral and pull the e-brake.


  3. Jack up front passenger wheel and remove it.


  4. Now you want to remove the intake tube, coils and plugs. If you need to see this done, check out the tute from @skizzo81 How to Change Spark Plugs


  5. Remove the intake manifold: How-To Remove Intake Manifold


  6. Now, take precaution. Stuff rags in intake openings, put tape over your spark plug holes, etc. Plug it all up good and then drape everything with some old sheets. You should be left with something like this:






  7. Now let's get that blaster gun modified. You want to have some sort of a "wand" to be able to reach down in the part a little. This is where the brass fittings come into play. Check the images. I laid out the parts as it is to be assembled. You just take the provided allen wrench and remove the tip from the gun. Then assemble the bras pieces as shown, shove it into the gun all the way, and put tighten the allen screw back in...it works great!






  8. Grab your piece of heater/radiator hose and cut it down. You want it to be a good fit over the end of your vacuum. Some people poke a hold in the back to put the wand through, I just went in from the side. You'll figure out what works for you.


    slap this baby on the tip of your hose (just the tip)


  9. Fire up your compressor, hook up the blaster and get everything together. You're ready to roll!


  10. Pick a pair of ports and tape off the rest. (I worked from left to right)


  11. Now to turn the engine over. This is why we took the plugs out and the wheel off. Look in the side of your passenger wheel well and put a 21mm socket on the crank. You will want someone to turn this for you while you watch the valves open, then close. Once they are closed, have that special someone give the crank another half a turn to be sure.

    ONLY TURN THE CRANK IN A CLOCKWISE DIRECTION.




  12. With your valves closed and everything else covered up, you're ready to get in there and blast away. Use short burst of about 10sec and move the wand around a bit to hit it at every angle (like a porn star). Do this for a bit, then blast it out with some air to see your progress. For really heavy globs, you can break them up easily with a screw driver and then just blast everything else out. It will take a few till you get your process down, but it will go pretty quickly.




  13. When you are satisfied with those two valves, blast them out really good with some air and move to the next set. Turn the crank and watch them open then close. Make sure everything is blocked off and blast away. Rinse and repeat.


  14. When all is said and done, tape off all the ports and CAREFULLY gather up your blankets and vacuum up the engine bay.


  15. Put it all back together - use the above tutorials for torque specs and manifold torque pattern.


  16. Once it's all back together, air blast the engine to get the remaining walnut bits cleared away.

That's it! The main thing here is to make sure you are careful not to get walnut shell in your engine. Dont sweat the powdery dusting that remains after you airblast the ports clean...it won't harm a thing. Just make sure you clear them out good with air before moving along to the next set.

Finally, while it isn't completely necessary, you might want to go the extra mile and get an air/water separator for the compressor. They are cheap and you just run them inline. This will prevent any moisture from causing a clumping/clogging.

Now enjoy your clean valves! Go out and get them dirty again, lol.


Hope this helps.
 

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There are numerous threads about the valve coking we get on our GDI motors and there are two ways to really tackle this job. You can either buy chemicals and (bong)brushes - which could be cheaper for you - or walnut blasting. I chose to walnut blast because I wanted to just do the job and be done with it, vs. soaking with chemicals, scrubbing, sucking out fluids, stuffing rags down in the ports, etc. (also, I just wanted a media blaster) But to each their own.

Before I get into it, I want to apologize for not taking more pics. I was really more focused (pun intended) on the task at hand. But I do have some info that should prove handy for those that are planning on tackling this job. There are also a number of other threads for other cars, explaining the process.
Great job n tutorial!

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Much better than so/so! Sticky this ish!
 

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And just to be clear, "rinse and repeat" is a metaphor. Don't actually rinse.
 

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I only skimmed thru it for now.. but saved for later use.

Thanks for taking the time to write it up, thread should be stickied in the maintenance section or linked in a sticky.

First guy had to quote the whole post, pictures and all....? ugh lol.
 

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I hope you checked valve closure on every cylinder as you went along. There is not a cam position where all the intake valves are closed at once. "Edit" read again and you mentioned going on to the next and checking for closure. Great write up.
 

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I feel ya, lol. Deuce fixed that for me.

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Yep, I am here to help, despite what some clowns might think, lol

I made it a sticky, lmk if you want it locked or open
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Yep, I am here to help, despite what some clowns might think, lol

I made it a sticky, lmk if you want it locked or open
I think for now, we can just leave it open for questions, suggestions, etc. If it gets out of control, off topic or gets tool much wang-wagging, I'll hit you up. Cheers!

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This looks wayyyyy easier than I thought it would be. Pretty cheap to get the setup for it too. Definitely cheaper to buy everything than it is to pay someone to do it once. Great article, thank you for taking the time.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
This looks wayyyyy easier than I thought it would be. Pretty cheap to get the setup for it too. Definitely cheaper to buy everything than it is to pay someone to do it once. Great article, thank you for taking the time.
You're very welcome. Forum how-to's have always been a great resource and I wish people did more of them vs having to watch and pause a video at every step, etc. It's a better format and in the end, you can add things you missed a lot easier.

You are correct in that the job is not hard to do, just take your time and make sure the valves are closed, that's all. Happy wrenching!

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This makes me want to install an OCC.....that's a lot of build up for only 72k miles.

I like how easy this method is but unfortunately it doesn't hit an important part, the seating surface. Granted the seating surface won't have nearly as much deposits because of it being smacked around all the time but to me personally, if you're going to go through the effort of cleaning valves you might as well pull the head and do it all, just me personally :)
 

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Discussion Starter #15
This makes me want to install an OCC.....that's a lot of build up for only 72k miles.

I like how easy this method is but unfortunately it doesn't hit an important part, the seating surface. Granted the seating surface won't have nearly as much deposits because of it being smacked around all the time but to me personally, if you're going to go through the effort of cleaning valves you might as well pull the head and do it all, just me personally :)
After looking in there, the seated area looked fine, but to reach their own. Just know that a catch can is not going to prevent this. It's been talked about at great lengths and even those with OCC's and WMI combined still see some build up. Not saying an OCC is a bad idea, but it's not going to prevent this from happening. There is a thread here where folks from Stratified talk at length about it and it's a worthwhile read.

I figured that I'm not seeing much blow by, so I'll save the cash till I do. If you look at build up on other cars with this much mileage (and less), you'll see this wasn't all that bad. I had no issues, just felt it was time to do it before the winter set in.

Like I said, to each their own. I'm not going to turn this thread into that discussion, there are plenty around for that. But you'll know where to go when it's time to do the job. (Probably when you install that catch can)

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@ST_Fan spring cleaning day?


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Excellent write up! Thank you so very much for this! At 63k my valves are definitely in the back of my mind and this job is going to be done in the very near future. @DoubleD we should do this once I go back to dayshift!
 

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There are numerous threads about the valve coking we get on our GDI motors and there are two ways to really tackle this job. You can either buy chemicals and (bong)brushes - which could be cheaper for you - or walnut blasting. I chose to walnut blast because I wanted to just do the job and be done with it, vs. soaking with chemicals, scrubbing, sucking out fluids, stuffing rags down in the ports, etc. (also, I just wanted a media blaster) But to each their own.

Before I get into it, I want to apologize for not taking more pics. I was really more focused (pun intended) on the task at hand. But I do have some info that should prove handy for those that are planning on tackling this job. There are also a number of other threads for other cars, explaining the process.

Here were my valves...72k miles, no catch cans, no wmi and they had never been cleaned before. They looked like this:





and when I was done, they looked like this:



**NOTE** This is not a hard job for someone with basic wrench experience, but you want to pay attention to what you are doing and be methodical because there is potential to screw up royally.

Having owed a 2008 Audi A4 in the past, which had the Direct Injection long before Ford did, Audi already had experience w/the issues and problems of Direction Injection.

The Audi dealer told me when I bought the car about the issues of coking, which they were already encountering, and so gave me some suggestions as to reduce the problem. First, to keep the RPM's no lower than 3000 on it, second not to do a lot of short drives, thus not allowing the engine to get up to normal operating temperature, to use full synthetic oil, and finally, to use a good quality tier 3 gasoline like Chevron. I follow his suggestions to this very day w/my ST.


Questions, looking at your photos:

1. What brand of fuel do you use?

2. What RPM do you normally drive at?

3. What type of oil do you use, Mineral Base (Regular Oil), Semi-Synthetic, or Full Synthetic?

3. Do you do a lot of local short trips or long ones at highway speeds?

I traded in my Audi long before I had any coke issues, so I can't prove that the suggestions work or not, but they certainly make sense.


Thanks.
 
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