By continuing to use this site, you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more
Forum sponsored by:
Forum sponsored by Allendale Dec 6th

Additives to kerosene for degreasing?

All Topics | Latest Posts

Search for:  in Thread Title in  
choochoo_baloo30/10/2019 16:27:41
avatar
201 forum posts
39 photos

After realising I'm gunna need a load of degreasant for the next project I hoped there was a cheaper way than 2.5L Gunk cans from Halfords (thought Gunk is excellent stuff!).

...I just bought a 20L can of kerosene from a local heating oil company, for a fraction of the cost, unsurprisingly.

Is there something(s) I can add to the kerosene to improve its cleaning/degreasing performance? (I'm yet to try it neat).

Thanks in advance chaps.

Edited By choochoo_baloo on 30/10/2019 16:27:58

Mick Berrisford30/10/2019 16:34:53
121 forum posts
2 photos

Kerosene/Paraffin doesn't need any additives to work well degreasing, it does leave a bit of any oily residue but thats easily wiped off.

Lainchy30/10/2019 16:36:14
avatar
154 forum posts
39 photos

I've just helped degrease a 180Gal victorian sewage pump at Claymills.... we just used white spirit. That's dirt cheap and works well.

Mark Rand30/10/2019 16:48:55
798 forum posts

I tend to use a commercial water-rinsable solvent+detergent degreaser such as Jizer or sterling products's etc. and dilute it with kerosene in order to make it go further.

If I were braver/more informed, I'd probably find a suitable detergent to add to straight kerosene.

SillyOldDuffer30/10/2019 16:49:40
4838 forum posts
1017 photos

Not sure there is. Paraffin is a good cleaner except it's smelly and leaves a thickish greasy film behind. May not matter if the cleaned item is going to be re-lubricated, not so useful if the surface is to be painted. Petrol is an even better cleaner, but the fire hazard is considerable and it's toxic.

The advantage of Gunk is no risk and any remains can be cleaned off with water.

I suppose the handiest thing for cleaning off paraffin residue would be generous washing up liquid in hot water. Then Meths to remove water if you're fussy!

My new machines were cleaned with Garden Centre White Kerosene, because it's undyed, followed by a wipe over with WD-40. WD-40 is good for finishing a degreasing clean because it contains a slightly lighter oil than paraffin and is mildly anti-rust. Though WD40 still leaves a thin film behind, it evaporates faster than paraffin and leaves less mess. Still has to be cleaned off properly before painting though.

Dave

PS mention of white spirit in another answer reminded me - whatever you use check it doesn't accidentally remove paint or dissolve plastics and rubber wiring!

Edited By SillyOldDuffer on 30/10/2019 16:53:03

Richard Marks30/10/2019 17:16:10
184 forum posts
8 photos

Brake cleaner from toolstation removes everythingthumbs up well almost.

David George 130/10/2019 18:00:13
avatar
966 forum posts
313 photos

At work we just scrubbed with paraffin and wash in water it leaves a very slight film of paraffin wax and dosnt rust.

David

Bazyle30/10/2019 18:10:27
avatar
4789 forum posts
187 photos

Kitchen crème cleaner is good too. There is probably a more powerful version available to commercial kitchens/cleaners. I swap between that and white spirit. I also find different parts of a machine may respond in different ways depending on what they have been exposed to. Some things that don't respond to white spirit vanish under attack from carb cleaner.

Edited By Bazyle on 30/10/2019 18:12:02

Nigel Graham 230/10/2019 18:32:45
437 forum posts

While we are raiding the kitchen...*

Baked-on oil or other carbonaceous residues might respond to oven-cleaner, which is basically a strong (and highly irritant) alkali in a low-viscosity foam gel. Or soaking in strong, hot washing-soda solution.

These might attack paint though, so be careful. Don't use them on aluminium either - they are likely to eat it, even if the surface is plain anodised.

It will leave steel and iron surfaces open to rapid rusting, so dry and protect the clean metal immediately and appropriately. I found clean cast-iron develops rust-spots remarkably rapidly, when I'd inadvertently left an item outdoors and a shower found it first.

'

*If necessary, discreetly, under the guise of coming in from the workshop to make a pot of tea.

DC31k30/10/2019 19:48:28
82 forum posts
Posted by Mark Rand on 30/10/2019 16:48:55:

If I were braver/more informed, I'd probably find a suitable detergent to add to straight kerosene.

If you look at the MSDS here

https://www.img-limited.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/Blue-Jet-Degreaser-CLP-MSDS-Sheet-FULL-1.pdf

it is just kerosene with IPA (propan-2-ol) and a bit of ethoxylated oleic acid (which is a fairly generic non-ionic surfactant).

This is one of the few data sheets I found that actually list the minor ingredients; most others just say 90% kerosene and stop there.

duncan webster30/10/2019 20:06:00
avatar
2262 forum posts
32 photos

Gunk is £9.35 for 5l from Amazon, free delivery if you've got Amazon Prime. For smaller parts the dishwasher does a remarkable job, just wait till domestic authorities are out for the day

Nick M0NPH30/10/2019 21:59:56
avatar
21 forum posts

At work i am sure that our parts washer use's Kerosene and i always then spray it over with brake cleaner and that just takes the residue off

Nick

Paul Lousick30/10/2019 22:00:41
1212 forum posts
502 photos

Automotive and industrial hardware suppliers sell truck (lorry) wash detergents for cleaning engines, etc. Available in larger containers and water soluble.

Paul.

Clive Hartland30/10/2019 22:18:00
avatar
2481 forum posts
40 photos

Be careful with white spirit, if using bare hands it has a way of affecting the nails and cuticles and cause infection.

I also believe if white spirit soaked rags are binned they can cause self ignition,

Fowlers Fury30/10/2019 22:21:07
avatar
327 forum posts
72 photos

A certain proprietary, jelly-like hand degreaser is a mixture of green soft soap and paraffin (probably refined).

Paraffin aka kerosene is not a defined mixture, its composition will vary according to supplier and how much you pay. It's easy to think paraffin is a benign, safe solvent but it will contain a variety of hydrocarbons, many of which are irritating to the skin. It should never be sprayed.
Paradoxically, straight paraffin as a degreaser is said to promote rust formation.

Mark Rand30/10/2019 23:01:11
798 forum posts
Posted by Clive Hartland on 30/10/2019 22:18:00:

Be careful with white spirit, if using bare hands it has a way of affecting the nails and cuticles and cause infection.

I also believe if white spirit soaked rags are binned they can cause self ignition,

No, white spirit will not cause self-ignition. Oils which polymerise in the presence of oxygen (tung oil, Boiled linseed oil etc.) will do so as the process is exothermic. White spirit, kerosene, paraffin etc. do not do this.

Hopper31/10/2019 01:57:37
avatar
3774 forum posts
79 photos
Posted by Paul Lousick on 30/10/2019 22:00:41:

Automotive and industrial hardware suppliers sell truck (lorry) wash detergents for cleaning engines, etc. Available in larger containers and water soluble.

Paul.

And if you mix it with kerosene it works real well. Spray it on with a hand-pump bottle and hose it off.

XD 35131/10/2019 06:20:05
avatar
1362 forum posts
118 photos

If you look on some of the machinery sellers websites - places like machinemart in the UK, harbour freight in the US and hare and forbes here in OZ you should be able to find the degreaser they sell for those small workshop wash tubs . The stuff i get from Hare and forbes is water soluble , non flammable , non corrosive and works ok , it isn’t as good as kero but it doesn’t stink like kero and if you do happen to splash some on you it won’t irritate your skin like kero does ( to me anyway ) . I always keep a lookout for the Automotive spray can type of degreaser and when it is on special i buy a couple of boxes of it . I use it to remove the anti rust coating i put on my machinery ( lanotec ) , just a quick wipe over gets it off and a few drops of oil in the oilers and i’m machining !

I have used diesel as well but i hate the smell of that as well along with turps and i used to use a lot of shellite (lighter fluid ) but these days i only use that if something has to be scrupulously clean or i”m going to paint it .

Anthony Knights31/10/2019 08:18:53
287 forum posts
109 photos

Around here paraffin is more expensive than petrol. I've never done a large de-greasing project, but for normal workshop use I use Brake and Clutch Cleaner from the local auto spares shop.

Anthony Knights31/10/2019 08:19:52
287 forum posts
109 photos

Around here paraffin is more expensive than petrol. I've never done a large de-greasing project, but for normal workshop use I use Brake and Clutch Cleaner from the local auto spares shop.

All Topics | Latest Posts

Please login to post a reply.

Magazine Locator

Want the latest issue of Model Engineer or Model Engineers' Workshop? Use our magazine locator links to find your nearest stockist!

Find Model Engineer & Model Engineers' Workshop

Latest Forum Posts
Support Our Partners
cowbells
LMES
Warco
Eccentric Engineering
ChesterUK
TRANSWAVE Converters
Eccentric July 5 2018
Ausee.com.au
emcomachinetools
Allendale Electronics
Subscription Offer

Latest "Wanted" Ads
Get In Touch!

Do you want to contact the Model Engineer and Model Engineers' Workshop team?

You can contact us by phone, mail or email about the magazines including becoming a contributor, submitting reader's letters or making queries about articles. You can also get in touch about this website, advertising or other general issues.

Click THIS LINK for full contact details.

For subscription issues please see THIS LINK.

Digital Back Issues

Social Media online

'Like' us on Facebook
Follow us on Facebook

Follow us on Twitter
 Twitter Logo

Pin us on Pinterest