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Engine Tune-up

Another item that requires some attention during an engine tune up is the fuel injector system.  The fuel injectors can be routinely cleaned by adding fuel injector cleaner to the gas tank.  Some folks do this on a periodic basis (every X thousand miles) while others rely on certain brands of gasoline that claim to keep your fuel system clean.  Since I do not frequent the gas stations that have the cleaning agent in the gas, I rely on pouring a bottle of fuel injector cleaner into the gas tank.  I'm not sure that one brand is better or worse than any other.  I normally use a name brand and follow the instructions on the container.  It will indicate the amount of cleaner to add to your tank for a "tune-up" cleaning and usually for routine maintenance.  Again, just follow the provided instructions and all should go well.

Last on my list of the things to do was to clean the throttle body.  It had been some time since this was last done and I knew I was over due for a cleaning. 


I couldn't find the product I was looking for so I opted for the old reliable carb cleaner.  I checked the directions and made sure the product was safe for vehicles with O2 sensors.  It was. 

The air tube had to be removed from the top of the throttle body.  It is easy to do as it is only held on with a hose clamp.  I loosened the clamp, pulled the vent hose from the side of the air tube (it goes to the valve cover), and then lifted the air tube off of the throttle body.


A look down into the throttle body revealed some residue but honestly, it was not as bad as I was expecting.


Then I opened the throttle (where the throttle cable connects) and found a lot more of what I was expecting to see.  Nasty! 

The directions for this brand of cleaner recommends you run the engine at a high idle and apply short bursts (3~5 seconds) of cleaner to the throttle body.  This stuff caused the engine to bog down so it was necessary to keep a bit of throttle action going so the engine would continue to run.  When I decided that enough was enough, I turned off the engine and opened the throttle again.  It wasn't perfect but it was a lot better than when I had started.  I'll run it for a bit and then give it another cleaning when I do the next engine oil change. 

That brings my version of an engine tune-up to a close.  I didn't change the air filter as I had done that just a few months back and it was not all that dirty.  If it has been a while since you last changed yours, now would be an excellent time to drop in a fresh one. 

Don't be afraid to roll up your sleeves and work on your Jeep.  As I've found over the years, it is usually not as hard as I thought it would be and in doing it myself, I've saved a LOT of money.....and I have a much better performing vehicle as the result of it.  You can too! 




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