- May 31, 2003
Chinese Water Torture
a SeaFoam recipe
a SeaFoam recipe
This procedure when properly administered has been proven effective at improving power, and for some, fuel economy and other various improvements. While these results are usually immediately evident, not everyone who has run this procedure has had results that they could measure or feel. Be prepared for lots of steam and clouds of smoke to accompany this. *click for pic* This procedure is routinely run on a wide variety of cars regardless of make, model or number of cylinders, including Turbos, all with no damage. It is ideal to do this procedure just before every oil change, or at least once a year. Changing your oil soon afterward is ideal, but is not mandatory. Properly administered this procedure will not significantly contaminate the oil or cause any change in oil consumption rates.
<img src=http://www.threefattigers.com/Protocore/FunStuff/sphere07.gif align=absmiddle> 2.5 to 3 cups distilled water
You can use tap or bottled water if that is not available, if you are working alone the ideal container will easily stand up on it's own, not a plastic soda/water bottle. Suggest: 1 qt mayo jar / Mason jar / spaghetti sauce jar.
<img src=http://www.threefattigers.com/Protocore/FunStuff/sphere07.gif align=absmiddle> 1 can of SeaFoam (16 oz) *click for pic*
<img src=http://www.threefattigers.com/Protocore/FunStuff/sphere07.gif align=absmiddle> 2 to 2.5 feet of small vacuum line, 4mm (5/32")
<img src=http://www.threefattigers.com/Protocore/FunStuff/sphere01.gif align=absmiddle> Preheat the oven: Always start with a fully warmed up engine that has been running, preferably driven, for at least 20 minutes. Then park where you will be up wind of the car's exhaust, leave it running, or turn it off, but dont leave it off for long.
<img src=http://www.threefattigers.com/Protocore/FunStuff/sphere01.gif align=absmiddle> Locate a suitable vacuum port and connect your vacuum line, this will be a small nipple, around 4mm in size with good vacuum at idle, where possible down stream of the throttle body. Do not use any large ports such as for the brake booster *click for pics*
<img src=http://www.threefattigers.com/Protocore/FunStuff/sphere01.gif align=absmiddle> (Assuming your are working by yourself) Place the jar of water where it will stand on it's own, hold the throttle around 3000 RPM, best guess, and with the other dip the vacuum hose into the water. Use a rhythm where the hose is submerged for 1/2 second, and lifted out of the fluid for 1/2 second, repeated until all of the water is used up, while at the same time regulate the throttle to keep the engine speed around 3000 RPM as it will run rough.
<img src=http://www.threefattigers.com/Protocore/FunStuff/sphere01.gif align=absmiddle> Repeat using the SeaFoam. I recommend using an entire can for this, others have reported good results using between 1/3 to 3/4 of a can, then putting the remainder in the gas tank. During this process, Turbo cars seem to like to leak at the manifold, either between the head and manifold or between the manifold/turbo junctions...don't worry...it will seal back up after you run the car for a while.
<img src=http://www.threefattigers.com/Protocore/FunStuff/sphere01.gif align=absmiddle> It is recommended, but not required, that toward the end of the process you allow the engine to stall. This is done by dropping the throttle, leaving the vacuum line submerged in the SeaFoam, and allowing the engine to stall. An alternative and possibly better method may be to drop the throttle and immediately pull the hot wire off the (+) #15 terminal of the ignition coil, or if you have a helper, switch off the ignition. Then let it sit for 5 to 10 minutes. Then crank it up, and finish feeding in the remaining SeaFoam.
<img src=http://www.threefattigers.com/Protocore/FunStuff/sphere01.gif align=absmiddle> Then right away take the car out for a rev fest, here you want the tachometer to reach redline several times, stay in low gears. You should immediately notice the improvement in power.
<img src=http://www.threefattigers.com/Protocore/FunStuff/sphere01.gif align=absmiddle> Optionally you could run another can of SeaFoam in the tank, and then if you are planning to change the oil, wait until after the tank is run down, reason being most fuel injection cleaners run through the tank will tend to darken otherwise clean looking motor oil.
As for SeaFoam substitutes:
You want to use a product specifically designed to be fed through the intake manifold, they are commonly known as top engine cleaners, it must be oxygen sensor safe, which SeaFoam is. GM makes a top engine cleaner, Mazda does too, these are designed to be fed into the intake manifold just as this procedure describes and should produce similar results. Another alternative that I know of would be Lubro Moly "Ventil Sauber Valve Clean". I do not recommend using Barymans Chemtool (B12) or any other carburettor cleaner. I recommend using SeaFoam wherever possible.
Additional information can be found here: http://www.seafoamsales.com/
My initial experience with this procedure is documented in this post I archived from Miata.net: