Parts Cleaner Fluid: What do you use?

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by Vankaye, Dec 21, 2012.

  1. Vankaye

    Vankaye n00b on the move

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    I saved two parts cleaners from going to the scrap heap and made one old-skool working parts cleaner with nothing but time and effort.
    So, I bought a 5 gal container of Parts Cleaning solution at Northern Tool but over the last year about half of it evaporated.

    I was at Northern Tool last weekend but I just couldn't swallow another $69 bucks for 5 gallons of fluid.
    Checked Mineral spirits at Walmart but that was also about $12/gal

    My garage is attached to my house so odor is a concern (otherwise I would have already filled that sucker with diesel)

    What fluids are you guys using?
    #1
  2. jar944

    jar944 Been here awhile

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    I use mineral spirits, and yes the solution cost far more than the parts washer itself.
    #2
  3. bomber60015

    bomber60015 Anatomically Correct

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    Ive JUST started using PineSol . . . . much info here on ADVrider . . . .works pretty well on anything less than homeric amounts of crud and grease . . . . . . and easily disposed of when yer done.
    #3
  4. H96669

    H96669 A proud pragmatist.

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    The price of mineral spirits sure has gone up.:eek1 I have been reclaiming mine, magnets in the tank to get rid of the steel, some decanting and then I filter it and add some fresh stuff to top up. But sure gets stinky after a while, have to keep the shop clothes outside sometimes.:puke1

    The really dirty stuff, I presoak in gasoline in a closed bucket outside. Then wait til it dries out and that smell evaporates.Old gasoline mixed with mineral spirits, even stinkier.:puke1
    #4
  5. Vankaye

    Vankaye n00b on the move

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    Know where to get 5 gallons??? My wife would absolutely love if the garage smelled like PineSol!! :deal
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  6. H96669

    H96669 A proud pragmatist.

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  7. Lomez

    Lomez Yea...Sunday too

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    Hard to beat acetone, though it's polar, it still solves non-polar stuff like grease and grime. Plus, it evaporates fast leaving behind just clean. However, you must keep the lid closed....or like I said, it evaporates.

    My usual technique is to clean in two steps.

    • Step one is to remove the big stuff. For this, my favorites are diesel or naptha (lighter fluid).
    • Step two is a finish cleaning with acetone or MEK because they solve most everything, and finish clean and DRY.
    #7
  8. kantuckid

    kantuckid Long timer

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    Bandsaw mill owners (as myself) use pinesol for the blade lube & I buy it at the Dollar Store in their private brand.
    I use kerosene or paint thinner for parts cleanup. If it's not a retail shop it's ok
    #8
  9. GreaseMonkey

    GreaseMonkey Preshrunk & Cottony

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    For parts cleaners, I really like to use mineral spirits but the thing is just use 2 or so gallons. Then fill it up with water to the normal level and reposition the pump pickup tube to be in the spirits. What happens is all the trash falls into the water and gets trapped there, the spirits stay clean. Once or twice a year depending on how much dirty stuff you wash, just siphon off the spirits and dump the water and trash. You can even clean paint brushes with a setup like this on a Friday afternoon and when you come back on Monday the mineral spirits will be clean again. About the only thing you need to be careful of is if you are cleaning things with stale gas in them, that old gas smell never leaves and gets rather annoying after a while and the only way to get rid of it is to change the fluids.
    #9
  10. anotherguy

    anotherguy unsympathetic

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    I spend the money and use Graymills Super Agitene. $100+ for five gallons but with care lasts for years. To stop evaporation close the lid on the parts washer.
    #10
  11. buls4evr

    buls4evr No Marks....

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    Mineral Spirits from the local auto parts store.Comes in big expensive buckets.
    #11
  12. H96669

    H96669 A proud pragmatist.

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    I like this water trick, will put it passed my friend he wants to build a parts washer. Could make it easy to set an old kitchen sink on a drum without requiring too much solvent.

    Febreze or such in the water to deodorize?:wink:
    #12
  13. homerj

    homerj 742 Evergreen Terrace

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    Pinesol is also non-flammable and safe for rubber o-rings inside a lot of the parts I end up cleaning.
    #13
  14. Guy Young

    Guy Young Long timer

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    I just bite the bullet and use the Stoddard Solvent that Northern Tool sells since it seems to work well for me. Yes, it does evaporate over time and I keep a can of the stuff around for make up. I usually pull the tub and pump assy. every couple of months to replace the filter sock that is attached to the drain, and add fresh solvent at that time if needed.

    Fortunately, my garage is detached so the only time my wife catches a whiff is if she's in there when I'm using the washer, get some on my clothes, or have some residual fluid left on my hands.

    Personally, I like the smell of it and other solvents that will probably kill me over the long-haul. I turned 69 today, so at this point I'm not too worried about it.

    .
    #14
  15. HapHazard

    HapHazard Waiting for Gudenov

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    My local Home Depot has 60 ounces of real-deal PineSol on sale for $3.20. If you want 5 gallons of it, it would be $35.20, or less is you cut it 50-50 (or whatever ratio you want to try).
    (If my math is wrong, be gentle:lol3).
    I'd try it - my Harbor Freight parts washer can't use flammable solutions, anyway.
    #15
  16. Vankaye

    Vankaye n00b on the move

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    Now we're talkin'!!!

    :clap
    #16