Can I Wash My Engine While it is Hot?(No! Some Facts)

Can I Wash My Engine While it is Hot?

Note: As an amazon associate I may earn a small commission from qualifying purchases if you click to amazon from my site and choose to make a purchase.You can read my complete affiliate disclosure for more details

Can I Wash My Engine While it is Hot?         

Many automobile owners ask, can I wash my engine while it’s hot? This is not a tricky question to respond to. In normal circumstances, the answer would be No.

No! regardless of the urgency, it’s not recommendable to wash the engine bay when it’s hot. As long as the engine is hot, you better not try to touch these components.

You will be burned when you try to touch them while hot. Cleaning a car engine requires keenness and a few considerations.

When it comes to a car engine, many people scarcely pay attention to its cleanliness.

Because it’s not visible unless you pull the bonnet lever, they will not worry if the engine is dirty or clean.

However, it’s a good thing to think about cleaning such a widely neglected part of the car.

As you continue reading, you will be able to decide whether you need to wash your engine regularly and if you can wash it while it’s hot.

Should My Car Engine be Washed Regularly?

The engine bay collects a lot of dust when you are driving the car. Much dust and oil drops accumulate on the engine, making it very dirty if not cleaned regularly.

Many people will have other parts of the car cleaned but avoid the engine. This is like washing a cup only on the outside.

Astonishingly, many car manufacturers do not provide instructions on how and when to clean your engine.

Can I Wash My Engine While it is Hot?

This should not be the reason to leave your engine neglected and dirty. It’s very critical to have a schedule of washing your engine after every few months.

When you wash your engine, it will look good and neat. But that’s not all. There are more benefits when you keep your engine clean on the outside.

Engines that are regularly washed or cleaned will last much longer than neglected engines.

For the components on the engine to be more flexible and free, the engine bay will have to be decreased and cleaned. This will guarantee that the parts work efficiently.

However, the most significant concern remains, how do you wash the engine, and when do you do that?

Additionally, can the engine be cleaned while it’s hot, or must you wait for it to cool down before washing it?

What about the naked wires? How do you protect the water-allergic components?

After all these considerations, what cleaners must you then use for the task, or aren’t any specific cleaners for washing the car engine available?

Many questions might flood your mind as you contemplate washing your car engine.

Let’s try to demystify this worthy task of cleaning your car engine by addressing all questions you might have and explain why you can’t think of washing the engine while it’s hot.

Why Can’t I Wash My Engine When It’s Hot?

After driving or running your car engine for some time, the engine bay becomes hot. This is not the time to wash the bay since it’s impossible to wash it when hot.

Before trying to wash the engine bay, several precautions need to be taken.

For instance, it’s essential to have specific components covered. This the only sure way to prevent water from entering them and interfering with their functionality.

Can I Wash My Engine While it is Hot?

When water penetrates some specific components in the engine bay, it renders them un-functional hence grounding your car.

As you wash the car engine, you need to cover these components using polythene bags, rubber, and other flexible materials.

The hot metals can occasion severe burns on your skin, so never attempt to connect them before the bay cools down.

Additionally, the materials that you might try to use covering the engine components might be melted when attempting to cover them before they cool.

The dangers connected to washing a hot engine are numerous, and you don’t want to engage in such a risky task.

After all, why can’t you wait until the engine is thoroughly cooled down? .

And since it only takes about 30 – 45 minutes to have the engine cool down, you will be better off waiting.

Understandably, this little time may seem too much, especially if you are in a hurry.

But waiting will protect you from incurring high costs of repair and replacement that may result from washing the engine when hot.

Alternatively, you may decide to catch a taxi or reschedule the engine wash for another day. You can also wash the other parts of the car as you wait for the front bonnet to cool.

When you start washing your car from the back, you will find that the front will have cooled as you get to wash it.

How Safe Is It To Spray My Engine With Water?

Many people know the dangers of sprinkling water on electrical cables or devices. They can easily relate to electric short-circuiting and other electrical hazards.

Harmed with such information, how safe is it to spray your engine with water, knowing that it has naked electric cables?

But washing an engine must require water, so how is it done?.

From a general perspective, it’s safe to spray your engine with water. However, there are some precautions that you must put in place to accomplish this task safely.

Can You Pressure Wash Your Car’s Engine Bay?

You can pressure wash your engine bay with great success. However, there is a right way and a wrong way to use a pressure washer to clean your engine bay.

For instance, using a powerful gas pressure washer with a 0-degree blast nozzle tip is a very wrong way to wash your engine bay.

This is especially so if it is attached to a 3,000 PSI water jet stream.

There is much havoc that can be wrecked on your engine with that kind of jet stream. However, it is safe to use any electric or gas pressure washer with a 40-degree nozzle tip.

This should be held about 3 feet away from the engine.

The pressure will be about two times garden hose pressure which will clean the engine in a very efficient manner.

Therefore, it’s safe to wash your car engine using a pressure washer. CLICK HERE to check current prices on Amazon Prime

In some instances failing to wash your car engine will interfere with its functionality and lifespan.

For instance, those who travel roads in salty regions need to clean the engine at the end of the season using a non-corrosive chemical.

Can Electrical Components In Your Engine Bay Get Affected By Water?

Spraying your engine with water is a concern for many people. To some people, it is pretty scary. Most car owners are careful to avoid cleaning the engine bay.

While it’s a good thing to be cautious with the electrical components in the engine bay, it is needful to clean your engine bay regularly.

All you need is a careful approach to ensure the safety of the water-allergic components in the engine bay.

Indeed, there are many components in the engine bay that are not allergic to water.

Can I Wash My Engine While it is Hot?

As long as you can take care of the water-allergic components, you can wash the engine without anything to worry about.

All you need to do is to cover the electrical components and then spray your engine with water. Failure to cover the water-allergic components will cost you a lot.

However, this discussion is mostly related to older car models. Today, modern car models have all components covered.

Additionally, there are no naked wires in modern cars. In this case, you may not need to cover anything in the engine bay.

How is a car engine washed?

When it comes to washing your car engine, it’s best to have it scheduled.

Never allow it to be an impromptu event. You can wash the car’s body anytime you wish, even without prior planning. Not so with the car engine.

The engine bay needs careful consideration as well as planning. Irrespective of the age of your car, you need to be very careful with an engine wash.

As already implied, some components in the engine are water-allergic, and these shouldn’t be touched by any water.

To wash your engine, you will need enough de-greaser, a garden horse or pressure washer, a smooth piece of cloth, plastic bags, and a small firm brush.

The first thing for you to do is to have all visible electrical components covered. The air intake cap and alternator need to be covered as well.

After this, use the de-greaser for application on all the visible metals. This is a critical step that requires you to refer to the degreaser’s manual.

This will be the best place for you to understand how to use your de-greaser. CLICK HERE to check current prices on Amazon Prime

Some surfaces will require the de-greaser to be applied as a mixture with water, while others will require the application of the de-greaser as it is from the shop.

To apply the de-greaser to every part of the engine, you will use a small brush. When applied all around the engine, the degreaser will remove all accumulated oils on the corners.

Remember that you can’t use your hands for the task. The degreaser requires some time to lose the dirt from the corners.

After washing the engine, it is time to scrub the engine gently using a soft cloth towel. Let the engine dry up and later remove the plastic bags.

How Often Must Car Engines Be Cleaned?

Many people are not comfortable with diving into their car’s engine. The mere thought of diving into a car’s engine can effectively make your skin crawl.

However, depending on where you live, it may be time you did it.

Your engine may be in dire need of the service. Over time, it is understandable that engines gather much debris and dirt.

Dusty environments, highly polluted zones, and areas with solid weather patterns will dictate a faster build-up.

In such climates, a car may require frequent engine washes like once every three months.

There are other environments with extreme conditions that may require an engine wash for your car every other month.

On the other hand, a twice a fear engine wash may suffice in different environments. Regardless of the environment, a car needs engine wipe downs that can be done every day.

Your car does not have to wait for the scheduled engine wash as the engine can be wiped in between the washes with a soft cloth to reduce the build-up.

A toothbrush should also be used to reach hidden areas that cannot be accessed by the cloth piece. As you do this, always ensure that your engine is cool before commencing the task.


It’s a daunting task to wash a car engine. Many people will avoid it altogether, while others will take too long before they clean it.

Still, some wash it with no regard for the last time they did it.

They wake up and decide that they are doing it today. This is not the best way to handle an engine wash.

The best way to go about it’s to ensure that you schedule an engine wash regularly.

As you do this, you will be guided by the environmental conditions of the places you frequent.

There are a few precautions that you need to be conversant with as you wash your car engine.

Most importantly, you must never wash your car while the engine is hot as this may occasion burns and other injuries.

It may also melt the plastic bags you use to cover the electrical components.

After these precautions, you will need to have all the tools required to accomplish the task effectively.

The devices must be gathered early to ensure that you do not waste time performing the task.

You will find that it is a reasonably easy task to accomplish once you know how to go about it.

Recent Posts