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How to: Cleaning a Throttle body

Discussion in 'Technical Chat' started by rab89, Aug 29, 2009.

  1. Aug 29, 2009 at 12:48 AM
    #1
    rab89

    rab89 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Cleaning the throttle body.
    This write up will be using the throttle body from a 2001 Toyota Tacoma.

    you will need:
    12mm socket
    tooth brush
    Seafoam Deep Creep (deep creep is the exact same thing as regular seafoam, but in an aerosol can, if you have seafoam laying around, go ahead and use it.)

    The process:
    I decided, since my throttle body had never been cleaned, that I wanted to take it right off and do a good job of it.

    there are 4 12mm bolts holding the throttle body on, along with a few coolant lines and electrical connections, you'll need to remove all of the lines to completely remove the throttle body, be careful, they will spill.

    Here is my throttle body completely removed.
    [​IMG]

    deep creep, and a tooth brush (doesn't have to be brand new)
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    your going to spray the deep creep inside the throttle body, which will look something like this.
    [​IMG]

    scrub with your toothbrush of choice until everything is shiny clean!
    you will want to hold the butterfly valve open and clean everything you can reach, remember to clean both sides.
    [​IMG]

    Once you've scrubbed everything clean, rinse thoroughly with some more deep creep, and dry with a soft cloth.(sorry no after pic)

    but it will be considerably cleaner.

    side notes:
    after cleaning my throttle body, my truck was revving up and idling at about 2500 rpm, my best guess is that the throttle plate is now cleaner and is closing to the point where it used to close, now that there is no build up, air is able to pass through the throttle body at idle. This will fix itself within a few miles.

    Good luck!
     
  2. Aug 29, 2009 at 12:53 AM
    #2
    rab89

    rab89 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    get on it! I like the simplicity of this one
     
  3. Aug 29, 2009 at 6:53 AM
    #3
    neslerrah

    neslerrah Who needs 4WD?

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    Great write up. Great visuals. :thumbsup:
     
  4. Aug 29, 2009 at 7:18 AM
    #4
    coldcanuk

    coldcanuk Well-Known Member

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    Great write up. Probably a lot better than my method, but mines a lot easier.

    I use the Amsoil Power Foam every 50 000 Km's. You have to just nudge the air intake off to the side a little and put the 'red straw in'. This will keep it idling while you spray the cleaner in. If air intake is removed, it won't start. This is probably obvious to many here, but I had to learn the long way....

    [​IMG]
     
  5. Aug 29, 2009 at 7:45 AM
    #5
    chris4x4

    chris4x4 With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine. Staff Member

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    FWIW, An electronic contact clearner as the last step will ensure there is no residue, and it is completely dry. :)
     
  6. Sep 1, 2009 at 3:28 PM
    #6
    rab89

    rab89 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Pardon me?
     
  7. Feb 10, 2010 at 2:53 PM
    #7
    cabsav214

    cabsav214 Active Member

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    Question: To properly clean the throttle body you don't really have to take the TB completely off... right?
     
  8. Feb 25, 2010 at 1:02 AM
    #8
    rab89

    rab89 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    thats right, but it only took me an extra 10 mins to get it off, and it made it a lot easier, and you can really scrub the entire thing with it off.
     
    foampile likes this.
  9. Feb 25, 2010 at 1:03 AM
    #9
    rab89

    rab89 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    sorry confused me at first, good call, that would help dry the inside of the TB. Although it's just seafoam, so not a big deal if it doesn't get completely dry before running the truck again.
     
  10. Mar 15, 2010 at 11:36 PM
    #10
    ItalynStylion

    ItalynStylion Sounds Gooooood

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    How often do you guys clean your TB?
     
  11. May 5, 2010 at 12:05 PM
    #11
    dvgroup

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    2003 x-cab 4x4 taco 2.7l 5-speed 148k miles

    Initial reason for looking into this: low warm idle, 550-600.

    Using these excellent instructions, I removed and cleaned my throttle body. Notes:

    - Definitely take it all the way off. It's easy and there is simply no way to clean the front and back side effectively while mounted. Spraying in there with engine running? That might be the instructions on some cans but it needs to be scrubbed with toothbrush on the back side and do you really want all that gunk sucked down into the carb? LOTS of gunk.

    (1) The nuts to remove the resonator box are on the bottom of the mounting plate, ratcheting wrench worked well to get them.

    (2) Some have written they are worried about the coolant hoses; I just disconnected them and kept them pointing up, maybe dribbled a few tablespoons of fluid no big deal.

    (3) Remove, clean and re-install the IAC unit while the throttle body is off and you are cleaning. The first time. There is an open port in the throttle body tube that goes right down to the IAC. I scrubbed and sprayed, scrubbed and sprayed the unit with IAC attached as shown above to clean out all the gunk. I re-mounted the unit and atached everything and found my problem far WORSE; i.e. it would start but NO idle upon warm start. Uh-oh.

    Reading more right here at tacomaworld about IAC (thanks to all who have contributed here) I had to remove all again, remove the IAC and clean that as well. **** I think what I had done is effectively washed a bunch of gunk right down the "drain" and into the IAC. ****

    The IAC is held on with phillips head screws that might be a bugger to crack, be careful not to strip them, I used vice-grip around the head to crack each loos. The IAC has a rubber gasket, mine was fine, pliable and intact so I used it again.

    Re-installed all and STILL had the no-idle problem. But after several restarts it got better, the IAC probably started moving and now truck runs great, warm idle is 700 right at spec.

    (4) CHANGE SPARKS while you are at it. That air resonator and hose all has to come off to do the sparks as well, you might as well put fresh sparks in there if yours are aged at all.

    Be careful to do one spark at a time, leave the hole open as short a time as possible, you don't want ANYthing even dust down in there. And Torque properly to 14 ft-lbs (168 in-lbs), and use some anti-seize.

    SPARKS: online and at Kragan, they specified Iridium sparks for 2003 tacoma 2.7l. I think this is generally accurate for 2003-2004; spec for 95.5 - 2002 is copper I think; but the ones I pulled out were regular copper NGK. I called Toyota dealer with my VIN and the looked it up, it's probably an engine from the 2002 production that made its way into this 2003 tacoma and they were very explicit that I should NOT put irridiums in there.

    At $3 each, who cares if I have to replace them every 2 years / 30k. Feels good anyway.

    In the end truck running better, quiet and smooth. But then it runs better right after I wash it too, so who knows. Have not calculated a tank for MPG yet, hopefully improved that as well.
     
  12. May 5, 2010 at 2:44 PM
    #12
    BRP27

    BRP27 When I grow up I want to be just like Me

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    I clean mine by taking the Air inlet lose, open the throttle butterfly, spray in carb cleaner, scrub where the butterfly seats.

    The carbon builds up on the seat for the butterfly and it will not seat properly so you get a funky idle. I don't worry about all the carbon behind the butterfly that I can't get to with a tooth brush. Makes the job even easier.
     
  13. May 5, 2010 at 4:20 PM
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    dvgroup

    dvgroup Member

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    BRP27 (from the great state of TX!): If you clean it regularly, and there is only small amount of gunk, I like your approach.

    However, mine had a LOT of gunk (probably from previous owner neglect) and loosening it up with a cleaner solution washed that sludge right down the hole into the IAC which I think is what fouled that up.

    So I guess the recommendation to others is to use a flashlight and peer in there if you don't know when it's been cleaned last, if it's pretty thick I'd take it off for cleaning then keep ahead of it with regular quick spray treatment while attached.
     
  14. May 5, 2010 at 4:30 PM
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    Cars0n`

    Cars0n` Well-Known Member

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    sorry for the noob question here but can brake cleaner be used instead?
     
  15. May 5, 2010 at 5:07 PM
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    dvgroup

    dvgroup Member

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    Well, I'm not sure, I just don't know why you would do that. You can buy carb cleaner or other specific stuff for this job at any auto parts store. Just mention throttle body cleaning and I'm sure they'll fix you right up for under $10. Wal-mart too probably ibut there's just noone to recommend something there.
     
  16. May 5, 2010 at 8:40 PM
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    Peru

    Peru Well-Known Member

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    Just curious -- how many miles. That throttle body (butterfly valve) looks a tad dirty. I am assuming that the air filter has been changed regularly. A trick I used to use when I found my valve that dirty on my motorcycle is that I greased all the connections on the air intake. That way as the air filter gets dirty and pressure on the downside of the airfilter goes down it has less of a chance to draw air past any mated surfaces. The fine dust particles will come in contact with the grease and draw the oil out of the grease while plugging up the leak. Keep in mind all you need is a thin smear

    On my bike it helped considerably -- haven't looked at any of the conections on the taco but it certainly can't hurt.
     
  17. May 5, 2010 at 8:47 PM
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    HerNameIsLucy

    HerNameIsLucy I miss Lucy. :-(

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    Interesting idea Peru. Maybe put some white lith grease inside the tube between the filter box and throttle body, in a spot where it won't hot enough to melt it. Pull the tube off after a month or so and see what all has been caught in the grease. Would tell you if there's a leak around the air filter, box, or MAF mount.
     
  18. May 5, 2010 at 8:52 PM
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    rob1

    rob1 Well-Known Member

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  19. May 5, 2010 at 8:59 PM
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    Peru

    Peru Well-Known Member

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    I've used that technique on all my bikes. Some of which I use out in the dessert with lots of dust. As that airfilter gets plugged up the engine which in this case can be considered an air pump will draw down the pressure so much so that it will draw the fine talc like dust through anywhere there is a matted surface. Remember changing air filters regularly will avoid this but on a dirt bike this may happen in one ride. Like I said after I started doing this had no issues with grime in the carbs or throttle bodies. Plus it helps slide on the carb to the rubber connection between the carb and engine.

    One other thing I use an aluminum complex grease which has a drop point that is quite high. Having said that all quality greases will not come unzziped (oil seperating from the thickner) from the heat generated in the engine compartment or better said as long it is not too close to the headders. Also as per you question -- I use it every where from the gasket on the air filter to the last rubber boot
     
  20. May 6, 2010 at 5:01 AM
    #20
    BRP27

    BRP27 When I grow up I want to be just like Me

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    The throttle body gets dirty from combustion products coming up from the engine, not from dirt. The deposits are black and look like carbon build up.
     
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