5 Best Carb Cleaner Reviews: Top Choices of 2018

If there is any section of your vehicle that can actually cause you a series of problems when neglected, then that is the carburetor. Your engine combustion process can easily be affected by gum, varnish, and sludge that clog in the carburetor.

A dirty carburetor does more than interfere with the performance of your engine. It results in poor fuel efficiency. You can prevent these undesirable outcomes by using the best carb cleaner the market has to offer.

The choice of carburetor cleaners is huge in today’s market, and you are probably wondering which one to buy. I have provided you with more than enough tips to help you with your selection. And even better, 5 top products you can buy today.

If you can’t wait…

  1. CRC Carb and Choke Cleaner
  2. Gumout Carb and Choke Cleaner
  3. Gunk Non-Chlorinated Carburetor Parts Cleaner
  4. Liqui Moly Carb + Valve Cleaner
  5. Berryman B-12 Chemtool Carburetor Cleaner

Before Buying a Carburetor Cleaner a User Needs to Consider Below Factors

High Energy Solvent Technique

The best carb cleaner should come with high energy solvent technique (HEST). I find this technology to be very effective at improving fuel efficiency and vehicle drivability.

The HEST technology is formulated to clean an engine’s entire fuel system. This is from the gas tank to the combustion chamber. The tech also actively supports combustion in all grades and types of gasoline.

A car’s dirty fuel system can result in a number of engine problems, including: rough idling, hard starting, and reduced fuel economy.

There are many products in the market that promise to clean the fuel system. How do you know which one is the best? The most effective way is just to read the label.

How does HEST improve your engine performance? It is simple really. Only carb and choke cleaners with HEST technology will dissolve varnish, sludge, and gum quickly.

Carb and choke cleaners that feature high energy solvent technique lead the competition when it comes to combustion. Unlike traditional cleaners, HEST cleaners offer better combustion that improves engine performance.

Multi Fabric Content

One of the most essential features of a high performing carb and choke cleaner is multi fabric content. Engineered to clean as well as maintain the carburetor system, fuel injector, and intake valves with a single treatment.

Oxygen Sensor Safe

Is it possible to effectively clean oxygen sensors? Oxygen sensors are situated in the exhaust system, and they are usually unprotected from toxic gases and fuel. Prolonged exposure pollutes the oxygen sensor, reducing its performance.

The best way to deal with the contamination and impurities is by using oxygen sensor safe carburetor and choke cleaners. However, I would not recommend washing oxygen sensors, since I cannot guarantee if it will work once cleaned. Replacement is a better option.

Dissolves Any Deposits

As stated by most carb cleaner reviews, the most recommended cleaner is one that can dissolve any deposits. Deposits buildup in the carburetor hampers the efficient delivery of fuel. If this happens, the engine will begin to stall, be hard to start and/or run roughly.

Safe and Quickly Dissolves

For your own safety and the safety of your engine parts, I advise you to use a carburetor and choke cleaner, that is safe and quickly dissolves deposits. This may include varnish, sludge, and gum.

Support All Vehicle Engines

If you want a resourceful and versatile carburetor and choke cleaner, then you should buy a solvent that can be used or applied on any type of vehicle engine.

Wash Small and Big Engine Parts

This is in fact one of the most important features that I insist you should consider. You can avoid buying two separate carburetor and choke cleaners by buying a high-quality cleaner that is capable of cleaning small as well as large engine parts.

Chlorinated vs. Non-Chlorinated Carb Cleaner

What is Chlorinated Carburetor Cleaner?

Chlorinated carb cleaner is the more popular version, which has been in use for a long time. This is regardless of the fact that most of the ingredients used in chlorinated cleaners are banned.

A chlorinated cleaner is made up of chlorinated solvents or atoms within its molecular structure. The chemicals composed in this type of cleaner improve the solvent qualities of the product.

Due to safety and environmental considerations, chlorinated carburetor cleaners are not popular in some states. You need to consult your local authorities.

What is Non-Chlorinated Carburetor Cleaner?

A non-chlorinated cleaner; on the other hand, simply means the cleaner’s molecular structure does not contain chlorinated solvents. Nonetheless, this does not mean that non-chlorinated cleaners are environmental friendly or safe.

In some cases, the alternative compounds used in non-chlorinated cleaners are just as toxic. Unlike chlorinated solvents, non-chlorinated solvents are flammable and fast-drying.

What are the Difference between Chlorinated and Non-Chlorinated Carburetor Cleaner?

When it is time to clean deposits off your carburetor, throttle body, and choke, the two most popular choices are non-chlorinated and chlorinated cleaners. Both choices will get the job done. However, understanding key differences can avoid safety and maintenance issues.

Non-chlorinated and chlorinated cleaners do both consist of toxic chemicals. However, chlorinated cleaners consist of the more destructive elements between the two options.

Chlorinated solvents are made up of trichloroethylene, methylene chloride, and perchloroethylene. These elements are regarded as volatile organic compounds or VOC.

Non-chlorinated solvents are made of more environmental friendly compounds, including: low toxicity petroleum hydrocarbons, isopropyl alcohol, heptane, and acetone.

Which Should You Choose?

It is essential to remember that many carburetor cleaners are not compliant in all of the fifty states. Therefore, before making any purchases, you should make sure that you get the ideal model.

If you are undecided between the two types of solvents, then you should settle for Berryman (a brand that offers both choices).

On a one-on-one test, the Berryman chlorinated cleaner will produce a harder stream that will simply flash dirt off your carburetor. The Berryman non-chlorinated produces more of a mist that will take more time to clean your carburetor.

When I hold the two cans separately in my hands, I realized that the Berryman chlorinated is a lot heavier. It is more of a denser product than the Berryman non-chlorinated.

In my opinion, the non-chlorinated works fine, but you will have to use a little bit more of it for the solvent action.

When I conducted a residue test using the two Berryman products, I found out that the chlorinated does not leave residue compared to the non-chlorinated. Even though, the non-chlorinated dries faster than the chlorinated.

Based on these findings, I think you should use the non-chlorinated over the chlorinated. Regardless of the fact that chlorinated performs a little better during use.

Carb Cleaner Kit and Gloves

Having the best carburetor cleaner is not enough. You need a carb cleaner kit and gloves to successfully clean and rebuild your carburetor, throttle body, and choke. For superior organization, you should choose a kit that comes in a ring.

Top 5 Carburetor and Throttle Body Cleaners of Today

CRC Carb and Choke Cleaner

The CRC Carb and Choke Cleaner, is effective at cleaning the carburetor without removing it from its place. There are two available version of this product that you can buy: clear and limited edition.

The CRC Carb and Choke Cleaner meet California volatile organic compounds and US EPA requirements. This simply means that there are low volatile organic compounds in the cleaner. Therefore, the compound will not harm catalytic converters or oxygen sensors.

It is composed of low volatile organic compounds formula (VOC), which will not mess up your carburetor. When your vehicle begins to misbehave, and you need a quick solution, then the CRC Carb and Choke Cleaner is the ideal choice.

This great choice for everyday driver is contained in a 12-ounce aerosol can. It is not only fast acting in providing solutions, but also very effective at dissolving common carburetor deposits, including gunk, varnish sludge, and gum.

It is recommended for cleaning the following apart from carburetor components: positive crankcase ventilating system, intake parts, and heat risers, exhaust gas recycling valve, crankcase breather element, and automatic chokes.

The carb and choke cleaner is easy to use. You must ensure that the ignition is off and the engine is cool. Then remove the entire exterior surface of the carb and air filter, including linkage.

Allow the carb to dry, then start the engine and spray the CRC Carb and Choke Cleaner in the gorge of the carburetor so as to get rid of the deposits from the throttle plate section.

Things I Liked:
  • Low VOC formula guarantees maximum fuel economy, improves fuel system performance, and maximizes carb performance
  • Meets California VOC and US EPA requirements
  • Fast acting cleaning action will not harm catalytic converters or oxygen sensors
  • Very effective at dissolving deposits, including varnish, sludge, and gum

Things I Didn’t Like:
  • Some reviewers claim that this product failed to clean the carb

CRC Carb and Choke Cleaner, 12 oz Aerosol Can, Clear
  • Low volatile organic compounds (VOC) formula
  • Effectively dissolves deposits such as gum, sludge and varnish
  • Fast acting cleaning action
  • Will not harm oxygen sensors or catalytic converters
  • Meets US EPA and California volatile organic compounds (VOC) requirements

 

Gumout Carb and Choke Cleaner

The Gumout Carb and Choke Cleaner, is nearly three times more powerful than the competition. The cleaner is contained in a 14-ounce can, and it is composed of carbon dioxide, toluene, and acetone.

It will help you to overcome high exhaust emissions, stalling, rough idling, and hard starting. It achieves this by quickly removing deposits from the outside and inside of the carb. This helps to improve fuel economy and engine performance.

It will effectively and quickly remove unvarnished metal sections and it is quick drying. Unlike competing products, this model will clean dirt, varnish, and gum from blocked choke and carburetor valves.

Most users have attested to the fact that Gumout does completely live up to its name. it does not fail to remove all of the gummy deposits that clog a carburetor. Generally, it is best for unpainted metal parts, choke valves, linkage, and carburetor components.

The Gumout is user and environmental friendly. This simply means there is less pollution imposed to the atmosphere. You will admire the fact that you do not necessarily need a straw for the cleaner to be effective.

You just have to spray the carb cleaner directly from the 14-ounce can. You will be surprised by the amount of pressure this product can release.

Things I Liked:
  • Effectively cleanses unpainted metal parts and it is also quick drying
  • Helps deal with high exhaust emissions, stalling, rough idling, and hard starting
  • Cleans dirt, varnish, and gum from blocked carb and choke valves
  • Fast at removing deposits to enhance fuel economy and engine performance

Things I Didn’t Like:
  • Repeated and prolonged skin contact may lead to drying of skin
  • According to some users, you may experience problems controlling the spray stream

Gumout 800002231 Carb and Choke Cleaner, 14 oz.
  • Helps overcome hard starting, rough idling, stalling, and high exhaust emissions
  • Quickly removes deposits from the inside and outside of the carburetor to improve engine performance and fuel economy
  • Cleans gum, varnish, and dirt from clogged carburetors and choke valves
  • Effectively cleans unpainted metal parts and is quick drying

 

Gunk Non-Chlorinated Carburetor Parts Cleaner

The Gunk Non-Chlorinated Carburetor Parts Cleaner is an instant carb parts cleaner and degreaser. This is a solvent based cleaner with a very high pressure nozzle on it.

What is really amazing about this product is the fact that it provides you with the solvency of the cleaner and the high blast. This would allow you to do a lot of different cleaning. You can clean the: carburetor, manifold heat controls, and choke linkage.

The product comes with amazing performance features that you would like. The first admirable quality is the power this sprayer has. A traditional carb cleaner offers a low volume spray, but the Gunk Carb Cleaner offers a pretty heavy volume spray that gets the job done faster.

It does not come with a thin extension tube, such as the one on the Red WD-40. However, you can easily attach one to the high pressure nozzle for a more efficient performance.

Generally, the Gunk Parts Cleaner is for parts that are gummed up with varnish buildup on them. You really cannot clean them well with regular carb and choke cleaners. You will be surprised by how fast acting the Gunk Cleaner will be.

Things I Liked:
  • High pressure nozzle offers pretty heavy volume stream for effective cleaning
  • It is a non-chlorinated parts cleaner that does not contain problematic compounds
  • Contains low VOC solvents that improves carb and choke performance
  • Can remove sludge, carbon deposits, gum, varnish, and dirt from the carburetor

Things I Didn’t Like:
  • Does not come with an extension tube

Gunk M4815NC Non-Chlorinated Carburetor Parts Cleaner - 12.5 oz.
  • GUNK is a local family owned company based out of Charlotte, NC. For more than 75 years, GUNK products, developed by the people who use them, has earned the trust of hard-working tradesment and the active DIYer through consistent, superior performance and a commitment to innovation.

 

Liqui Moly Carb + Valve Cleaner

The Liqui Moly Carb + Valve Cleaner is an ash-free, modern blend of additives along with dispersing and cleaning qualities that help to protect carburetor parts. This remarkable cleaner is made of top-of-the-line fuel technologies and additive.

The fuel technologies and additives are in accordance with the minimum standards of modern day running, fuels, and engine conditions. It is a multipurpose cleaner that will: clean carburetors, optimize engine performance, and prevent carb icing.

The Liqui Moly Carb + Valve Cleaner protects fuel against oxidation as well as aging. It gets rid of residues produced by combustion process. It minimizes the likelihood of knocking combustion, which makes it highly resourceful.

It works better than competing products. It is a suitable choice for all gasoline engines. You can use it to solve problems or as a preventive measure.

It is tested safe with turbochargers and catalytic converters. When adding directly to your fuel tank, I advise you to use 300 milliliters for up to 70 liters of fuel. Its effects will last for up to two thousand kilometers.

Things I Liked:
  • Effectively cleans carburetor parts
  • Does a great job of preventing carb icing
  • Can be put directly into the carburetor while the engine is on
  • Protects fuel against oxidation as well as aging
  • Prevents deposits produced by combustion process
  • It is tested for catalytic converters and turbochargers
  • Normalizes exhaust emissions and gasoline consumption values
  • It is highly economical and improves operational reliability

Things I Didn’t Like:
  • My not be the best choice for some of modern day engines

 

Berryman B-12 Chemtool Carburetor Cleaner

The Berryman B-12 Chemtool Carburetor Cleaner is a historical parts’ cleaner. This high energy solvent technology is formulated to clean an engine and the entire fuel system. This is from the gas tank to the combustion chamber.

This product does actively support combustion in all grades and types of gasoline. A car’s dirt fuel system can result in hard starting, hesitation, rough idling, and of course reduced economy. Berryman B-12 Chemtool Carburetor Cleaner is the solution to all your problems.

Unlike the competition, the Berryman B-12 Chemtool quickly and effectively dissolves fuel residues, varnish, gum, and distributor shaft with high energy solvent technology (HEST). This improves fuel economy and maximum performance.

With this carb, choke, and throttle body cleaner, you get to improve drivability by getting rid of residues that cause loss of acceleration, stalling, and rough idle. It is available in different sizes to accommodate a wide variety of jobs.

Things I Liked:
  • Contains a hundred percent high energy solvent technology (HEST)
  • The cleaner is VOC compliant in all the fifty states
  • Quickly dissolves carbon buildup, fuel residue, varnish, and gum
  • Does a great job of cleaning carburetors, throttle body, PCV valve, choke, and linkages
  • Offers better fuel economy, engine performance, and vehicle drivability
  • It is oxygen and catalytic converter safe
  • It is available in a number of sizes for different types of jobs

Things I Didn’t Like:
  • It is an extremely flammable aerosol, you should be careful

Berryman 0117C B-12 Chemtool Carburetor, Choke and Throttle Body Cleaner, VOC compliant in all 50 states, 16 oz.
  • Contains 100% high-energy solvent technology
  • Quickly dissolves gum, varnish, fuel residue, and carbon build-up
  • Cleans carburetors, linkages, choke, PCV valve, and throttle body
  • Better vehicle drivability and fuel economy
  • VOC compliant in all 50 states

 

How to Use a Carburetor Cleaner

Step One:

Remove the air cleaner unit from the engine by unscrewing the wing nut. You might need pliers to turn the wing nut if it is very tight.

Step Two:

Then, vacuum off the top of the engine area so as to prevent debris and dirt from being sucked into the engine while the air cleaner is not in place.

Step Three:

Spray the entire carb inside and outside with your carb cleaner in order to loosen vanish and gunk. You can use shop rags to effectively remove any heavy gunk and grease loosened by the solvent.

Step Four:

Start the engine and spray the carb cleaner down the throat of the carb as well as around the outside. Wait for a number of minutes before you switch off the engine.

Step Five:

Spray heavily the inside and outside of the carb once again. Start the engine again and do more spraying around the inside and outside of the carburetor.

Step Six:

Spray the entire air cleaner outside and inside. Wipe the air cleaner by using shop towels. Then install a new air filter element followed by the re-installation of the air cleaner unit onto the carb.

Check this video from Scotty Kilmer

Related Tips and Reviews:

Last update on 2018-10-18 at 14:44 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Avatar for Jack Harris

Jack Harris is a talented and advanced author, blogger, auto expert and senior technical consultant with Autosneed. He is a mechanical engineer who holds a Machine Lubricant Analyst (MLA) Level III certification and a Machine Lubrication Technician (MLT) Level II certification through the International Council for Machinery Lubrication (ICML) and ASE Certified. After years of working as both an automotive journalist and a Ford factory technician, to say I live and breathe the automotive world could still be considered an understatement.

3 Comments
  1. SHOULD CARBURETORS BE LEFT IN CARBURETOR CLEANER OVERNIGHT?

  2. How helpful are carburetor cleaner additives?

  3. Should I clean a lawn mower carburetor without a commercial carburetor cleaner?

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