Bye-Bye, Engine Sludge: Preventing and Removing Engine Sludge

Some drivers love to go off-roading, intentionally driving their vehicles through the nastiest spots they can find. In fact, mud bogging is even a competitive sport with leagues sanctioned by governing bodies. If that’s your game, be safe and have fun! When it comes to your vehicle’s power plant, however, nobody wants to witness the bog-like conditions of engine sludge, no matter your hobby or the type of auto you drive. Sludge is the thick dark goo that develops when old broken-down oil and dirt/debris particles combine. It can wreak havoc inside your engine, and you may even see it hanging around on the outside of the engine, indicating that you likely have a severe sludge problem. Fortunately, there is help. Bring your car to Auburn Foreign & Domestic in Auburn, Washington, to have our certified technicians assist you with preventing sludge before it develops or remove it once you discover you have a problem.

Preventing Engine Sludge

It has often been said that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, so let’s start there. If you can avoid a serious sludge issue, you won’t have to worry about how to get rid of it or if it has caused permanent damage. The simplest preventive technique is to change your oil regularly. Sludge develops when oil breaks down and loses its ability to properly suspend dirt, keeping it away from the moving metal parts it can damage. Fresh oil performs well and resists sludge formation. Some mechanics and car enthusiasts recommend periodically using a sludge remover additive. Not everyone agrees with this advice. You can discuss your options with one of our technicians based on your specific vehicle, driving conditions, and concerns. Another helpful technique is avoiding frequent stops and starts. If you’re not far from your destination, you might consider walking sometimes. A pattern of short drives is said by some to contribute to sludge build-up. Finally, talk to one of our automotive professionals about any other prevention tips relevant to your situation.

Removing Engine Sludge

Your method of removing engine sludge may be dependent upon the severity of the problem and your comfort level with performing your own work. For less severe cases, some car owners choose to add a sludge removing chemical compound to their motor oil, allow the car to idle (but do not drive) for a few minutes, and then drain and change the oil and filter. The theory is that the added solution and idling will remove a good bit of the sludge and allow it to find its way to the oil pan that you then drain, removing the offending mess. Not everyone believes this is a wise methodology, however, and most drivers aren’t comfortable performing their own sludge removal and oil changes. The other removal method, of course, is to take your vehicle to a reputable shop such as Auburn Foreign & Domestic in Auburn, Washington, for professional cleaning.

Written by Auburn Foreign & Domestic