Advice for cleaning TB - GM Forum - Buick, Cadillac, Chev, Olds, GMC & Pontiac chat


1992-1999 Series I L27 (1992-1994 SE,SLE, SSE) & Series II L36 (1995-1999 SE, SSE, SLE) and common problems for the Series I and II L67 (all supercharged models 92-99) Including Olds 88's, Olds LSS's and Buick Lesabres Please use General Chat for non-mechanical issues, and Performance and Brainstorming for improvements.

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Old 06-16-2003, 04:14 PM   #1
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Default Advice for cleaning TB

Will good ol' carb cleaner do the trick? Any tips for cleaning the sensors?

Also where can I get a replacement TB gasket? Using the old one is not my style.
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Old 06-16-2003, 04:19 PM   #2
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Dont' use carb cleaner ( especially on your MAF sensor ) it'll destroy it. I don't even think there'* a way to clean the MAF sensors.. with such a small filament it has. Other then replacing it. remove the TB and clean both sides with a toothbrush to help dislodge any big or hard gunk. TB gasket can be picked up at the dealership.. I don't know if NAPA would have it ( or Autozone ).. but easiest way to find out is to call them
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Old 06-16-2003, 05:40 PM   #3
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I want to clean mine as well, but how hard is it to take it off?

I know Will did his and it was pretty dirty. After 112k I'm sure mine needs some cleaning.
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Old 06-16-2003, 08:22 PM   #4
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I can PM you the details from my Chilton'* tonight, but try to go out and buy a Chilton'* manual. Its my bible!
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Old 06-16-2003, 08:38 PM   #5
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I actually bought a shop manual from ebay, contacted the guy, but he NEVER got back to me. F'n d***!!

I'll get a Chilton'*/Haynes soon.
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Old 06-17-2003, 12:21 AM   #6
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I talked with a local mechanic and she said (yeah thats right, a WOMAN that knows a hell of a lot more on the 3800 than I could imagine) said she cleaned her L27 TB with carb cleaner and used a Q-tip on the MAP sensor.

So has Drifter been smoking drugs again or is he right for once?
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Old 06-17-2003, 12:30 AM   #7
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I was wanting to clean mine too, but I'm not that mech. inclined or anything, so is it very hard to take off.
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Old 06-17-2003, 02:10 AM   #8
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Its time consuming to take off. I got it about half way off and tried to remove my MAP sensor and the snapping components of the harness were brittle so I let it be.

Carberator cleaner should not be used. Go buy some intake/TB cleaner. Its usually right next to the carb cleaner aerosols.
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Old 06-17-2003, 02:14 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Allmachtige

So has Drifter been smoking drugs again or is he right for once?


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Old 06-17-2003, 03:19 AM   #10
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I have done this to my lesabre and it made a huge difference! Yes, the MAF sensor can be cleaned. You MUST use electrical contact cleaner, anything else will damage it. The 3800 has a tendency of getting bad buildup of black gunk on the sensor and the electrical contact cleaner will make it run right off. just allow it to dry good enough before installation..

To clean your intake/throttle body...
1. remove the air intake hose from the TB.
2. Unplug and remove the MAF sensor (this IS a must)
3. (optional) remove the IAT sensor and spray the carb cleaner in here, and whipe out excess fluid.
4. Have an assistant start the engine while you hold the throttle partially open. (Engine WILL stall if you do not hold the throttle slightly)
5. spray the carb cleaner into the engine with it running. The engine will hiccup and act like it wants to stall. if it gets bad enough to the stalling point, stop straying and let the engine clear up. You will want to be consitantly revving the engine to around 2,500 RPM while you are spraying the carb cleaner in. after a few seconds of this you will start to see black smoke coming out of the exhaust.. this a good sign. you want this to happen. This is all the carbon being cleaned out. Make sure you spray the carb cleaner all around in the intake/ throttle body to make sure you hit all surfaces. The carb cleaner is also going to be cleaning your intake manifold as well/air passages. When I did this, it also cleared up a stuck open EGR valve.
6. keep spraying until you have used up all the carb cleaner.
7. put MAF sensor back on
8. put air intake duct back on
9 disconnect batttery (to reset computer)
10. hook everything else back up
11. start car and take for a test drive, it should idle much smoother, and run better in general


I also suggest using a bottle of SEA Foam in the gas tank,

You can also remove the VAC line goign to the brake booster, and pouring a bottle of the SEA FOAM down that with the engine running. Keep pouring until engine stalls.. pour in entire bottle and let the engine sit for about 15 minutes-half hour. Engine may be hard to start. after engine starts the VAC system will be thoroughly cleaned out, and black smoke will once again be pouring out of the exhaust.. again, this is a good sign.

when I did this to my LeSabre there was such a huge cloud of smoke coming out it wasn't even funny. the black smoke eventually faded to a dull gray in color. You know your engine is cleaned out totally when the smoke stops coming out. Hopefully this post helped you guys out some. I know it sure helped out my car. Now I just need to do it to my riv.
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