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  #1   IP: 98.242.190.174
Old 03-19-2012, 12:58 AM
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Vinegar flush

What's the longest you've left vinegar in your cooling system?

I am considering doing an acid wash with vinegar again before my maiden voyage and was wondering if it would be worth leaving it in there for an entire week. My concern is mostly for the hoses and impeller. Any experience?

I'm still not getting as much coolant flow as I would like and I can't justify spending that much money on a piece of bronze that small (m7 cam shoe).

I realize that if I am unsatisfied with my previous flushes I could "step it up" to HCl but I don't think there should be any difference between an HCl bath and a LONG vinegar bath. Some ions are doing all the work, its just that the solubility of the rust and carbonates is greater at the lower pH potentially provided by HCl. But then... everybody dilutes and unwittingly buffers their HCl before adding it anyways. Plus handling vinegar is safer for myself, my dock and my boat. I think the pool supply lobby has brainwashed everybody No evidence to back up these wild assertions of course.
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Old 03-19-2012, 07:31 AM
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Smile muriatic acid.

In my honest opinion vinegar takes a long time to work. There is nothing wrong with muriatic acid flush done with the right dilution and duration. You can retry it if you are not happy with initial results.

I like vinegar for some things. It takes about a week for rust to dilute and then it has to be cleaned up with brush anyway. That said, there are combinations one can mix with vinegar (ie. baking soda, a little salt and then scalding hot water in there.) You are then creating an acid....but why bother when we can use muriatic acid.

Muriatic acid flush is the way to go I think. I am RWC but I do a muriatic acid flush every two to three years just to stay ahead of the game. It does work and cuts allot of the debris that can build up in there. Ensure to rinse out the system after you use any method before filling again with antifreeze.
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Old 03-19-2012, 10:26 AM
Jesse Delanoy Jesse Delanoy is offline
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Several years back I did a vinegar flush, and I couldn't get down the next day to flush water through the system to get the vinegar out. I posted the question and, I believe, Don replied that after a day or two the vinegar would pretty much be neutralized anyway, and not to worry about it. In any event, after a week, no harm had been done.
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Old 03-19-2012, 10:27 AM
Jesse Delanoy Jesse Delanoy is offline
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Muriatic acid works really well, but don't leave it in more than about fifteen minutes. Also, I did it a couple of years back, and it blew up my plastic Vetus waterlift muffler.
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Old 03-19-2012, 02:38 PM
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Thanks for the experience.

Maurice, vinegar is an acid. An acid is simply (for our purposes here) a substance that acts as a proton donor in solution. The difference between muriatic (HCl) and acetic acid is that muriatic dissociates more protons per volume of acid. By adding baking soda and salts you are both buffering and neutralizing it, which is counterproductive to your goals.
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Old 03-19-2012, 05:12 PM
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Snook
This suggests a possible course of action. Do an HCl flush. Then do successive vinegar flushes leaving the vinegar in overnight untill it runs out clear. Or you can also pump or recirculate the vinegar through the engine by putting the inlet and outlet hose in the same bucket. Then you will be sure the cooling system passages are as as clear as you will get them by this method.

TRUE GRIT
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Old 03-19-2012, 08:06 PM
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I've left an engine full of vinegar soaking for as long as a week before without any issues whatsoever. This was only done after an acid wash (which was the best thing I've ever done for this engine) after several months. I now do an vinegar flush every year or so just to keep the gunk out and leave it for as long as a week.

So far, so good...
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Old 03-19-2012, 09:15 PM
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John Cookson-
That sounds like a good idea, I've always done vinegar flushes by handcranking the engine. Continuously recirculating seems better.

David
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Old 03-20-2012, 01:08 AM
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I did an acid flush with HCl about 12 years ago, before I added FWC. I just had a 5 gallon pail with two hoses. I put the pump supply and the manifold return hoses in the bucket with the acid. I ran it until it was "hot" then let it sit for an hour. Just like shampoo, I did the "repeat and rinse"

Vinegar contains a weak acid. Acetic acid. Muriatic acid (HCl) is stronger but comes fairly dilute too. I will say that the fumes from the HCl were pretty strong. Make sure you have plenty ventilation!!!

I dont think I neutralized it. I would have used baking soda, if i did.

Remember you can drink vinegar, or put it on food. HCl is stomach acid.

good flushing

BTW, I recommend getting that cam shoe. It is an investment with a high rate of return!!

Last edited by romantic comedy; 03-20-2012 at 01:09 AM. Reason: added something
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Old 03-21-2012, 12:59 PM
Jesse Delanoy Jesse Delanoy is offline
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Whenever I did a muriatic acid flush, I always had a plastic container with a pound or so of baking soda on hand, just in case of a mishap.
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Old 10-12-2021, 04:47 PM
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just did a vinegar flush

I know this is an old thread, I just thought I'd make a report.
I did a vinegar flush recently, due to poor coolant flow (salt, RWC).
I used about a quart of domestic white vinegar in about 2.5 gal fresh water, in a 5 gal bucket.
Hose from bucket to water pump inlet. 2nd hose from manifold coolant outlet to a second bucket.
Ran the mix through the engine ie till bucket 1 was empty - inspected and strained what was in exhaust bucket into bucket 1. Did it again. No major lumps, so I put both hoses in the bucket 1 and ran engine/circulated mixture till it was good and hot in the bucket (figured I'd want the thermostat to do its thing, and mix would work better hot.
Then I let it sit for a while. Then hooked regular hoses back up and ran salt water for ~10 min. Flow out tailpipe fully restored.
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Old 10-13-2021, 09:02 AM
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I always did my flushes by running a hose from the exhaust into a big bucket that also had the intake hose with a screen on the end. I let the vinegar go round and round until steaming hot. I figured it was better than letting it sit.
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Old 10-17-2021, 05:33 PM
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Yeah, this is an old post - but it's an old and enduring issue. So, I'll give you my old opinion..(from an old guy).
The stuff you're trying to loosen up and remove would take a hammer and chisel to remove mechanically. Think 'barnacle' or 'clam shell'. Put a clam shell into salad dressing (vinegar) and see what happens. Won't be much.
Muriatic acid is the way to go. It comes in gallon jugs but the concentration in the jug varies from 15% to 20% depending on the brand. Dilute it to 10% in your 5 gal bucket. Yes, you can do the math.
Don't run the engine - you'll be recirculating the acid and you won't be able to keep the exhaust cool. Use a cheapo (disposable) drill pump to circulate the acid. Put the foot of some old (or new) panty hose over the return line to catch any lumps.
As to how long, keep an eye on your progress. What does the stuff in the bucket look like? How much crud is in the filter? The acid flushes I've done have gone 30 min to 1 hr. I wouldn't go over an hour before wondering whether the engine was done or the acid was done.
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  #14   IP: 47.142.136.232
Old 10-17-2021, 08:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Al Schober View Post
As to how long, keep an eye on your progress. What does the stuff in the bucket look like? How much crud is in the filter? The acid flushes I've done have gone 30 min to 1 hr. I wouldn't go over an hour before wondering whether the engine was done or the acid was done.
This is why I always used muriatic acid rather than vinegar. It can be done and over in a short time period compared to letting vinegar soak for a few days.

ex TRUE GRIT
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Old 10-18-2021, 09:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Al Schober View Post
Yeah, this is an old post - but it's an old and enduring issue. So, I'll give you my old opinion..(from an old guy).
The stuff you're trying to loosen up and remove would take a hammer and chisel to remove mechanically. Think 'barnacle' or 'clam shell'. Put a clam shell into salad dressing (vinegar) and see what happens. Won't be much.
Muriatic acid is the way to go. It comes in gallon jugs but the concentration in the jug varies from 15% to 20% depending on the brand. Dilute it to 10% in your 5 gal bucket. Yes, you can do the math.
Don't run the engine - you'll be recirculating the acid and you won't be able to keep the exhaust cool. Use a cheapo (disposable) drill pump to circulate the acid. Put the foot of some old (or new) panty hose over the return line to catch any lumps.
As to how long, keep an eye on your progress. What does the stuff in the bucket look like? How much crud is in the filter? The acid flushes I've done have gone 30 min to 1 hr. I wouldn't go over an hour before wondering whether the engine was done or the acid was done.
My exhaust stays cool, the ENTIRE exhaust goes into the bucket, not just the cooling water.
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