Why do you need the best carburetor cleaner?
We all know a dirty carburetor causes many problems to your vehicle. You will need the best carburetor cleaner or the best carb cleaner if you want to ensure it is running at peak performance. Cleaning a carburetor will increase fuel efficiency because the extra junk and dirt in your carburetor will affect the combustion process and cause your car to be starved for gas.
Having a clean carburetor also improves acceleration because it improves fuel flow. The dirt and debris stuck in your carburetor are known to slow down the flow of fuel, which directly impacts how fast your vehicle will accelerate. Finally, cleaning out a carburetor will help your vehicle start easier, as the flow of fuel is no longer prohibited by unwanted deposits.
Most of the time, you should clean your carburetor with the best carburetor cleaner when you have old gas in your vehicle. If gas has been sitting for a while, the lighter particles in the gas will evaporate leaving you with a thicker solution called varnish that will hinder your engine’s performance. Generally, you should be cleaning your carburetor every 6 months to ensure a clean unrestricted flow of air-fuel mixture into the engine.
Cleaning the carburetor is a time-consuming activity that requires you to remove the carburetor with tools. Then you simply apply the best carburetor cleaner or the best carb cleaner, wash it off, and put back the newly cleaned carburetor. The best carburetor cleaner or the best carb cleaner will be a solution that does not react with the parts of your carburetor and will still be able to remove unwanted particles, dirt, and debris. Please read below for reviews of our top picks.
Best Carburetor Cleaner Reviews in 2023
- Gunk Carb-Medic Carburetor Choke and Valve Parts Cleaner(Top Pick)
- Gumout Carb and Choke Cleaner Jet Spray
- Berryman Carburetor and Choke Cleaner
- Gold Eagle GC15 Carburetor & Choke Cleaner
- Briggs & Stratton Carburetor Cleaner
Types of Carburetor Cleaners
Carburetor cleaners come in different types to suit various cleaning needs. These cleaners are used to remove dirt, grease, and build-up from carburetors and other engine components. There are four main categories of carb cleaning solvents. These are:
- Aerosol/Spray Can
- Dipping Can
Note that the two most common types of carburetor cleaners are chlorinated and non-chlorinated. The other two are lesser known.
Chlorinated carburetor cleaner is an aerosol spray can that contains a powerful solvent designed to dissolve dirt and grime quickly. It’s ideal for quick cleaning jobs where time is of the essence, making it a popular choice among mechanics who prefer speed over thoroughness. However, chlorinated carburetor cleaner may not be suitable for every type of engine as it can damage some plastic parts.
Non-chlorinated carb cleaners have gained popularity among car enthusiasts and mechanics as a less-toxic alternative to chlorinated carburetor cleaners. These cleaners usually come in a dipping can containing a liquid solution that is safe for use on all types of engines, including those with plastic parts. The cans contain solvents that are less harmful to the environment and human health, making them a more eco-friendly choice. However, it is important to note that non-chlorinated carb cleaners have their own set of risks.
One major drawback of non-chlorinated carb cleaners is their flammability. Due to their high volatility, these solvents can easily ignite when exposed to heat or sparks, posing a serious fire hazard in garages and workshops. It is crucial for users to follow safety guidelines when working with these products, such as keeping them away from open flames or hot surfaces.
3. Aerosol/Spray Can
Most carburetor cleaners come in the form of a spray. This makes them easy to use and convenient for most people. Simply spray the cleaner onto the carburetor and let it sit for a few minutes before wiping away any residue with a clean cloth or rag. Unlike many other types of cleaners, carburetor cleaner requires a bit of patience as you wait for it to do its job.
4. Dipping can
Buying dipping cans filled with carburetor cleaner is not a very popular option.
These cans are specially designed to make cleaning your carburetor easier. You simply dip the parts into the can filled with a special formula of cleaning solution, which allows tough grime to soak off easily. This method is particularly effective for hard-to-reach areas that may be difficult to clean using other methods.
The dipping cans are also great for those who have multiple parts to clean at once, as they come in large sizes that allow you to fit several pieces inside at once.
However, if you are not a tool master and cannot remove the carburetor, then it is best for you to stay away from this solution.
#1. Gunk Carb-Medic Carburetor Choke and Valve Parts Cleaner
Gunk Carb Cleaner is the best carburetor cleaner or the best carb cleaner on the market. It is a brand that has been around in the industry for a while and is quite the heavy-duty cleaner. It is a chlorinated product that does not harm any catalytic converters or oxygen sensors.
We really like the cleaning power of this product. It is easy to use as you just spray it on and simply let it dissolve the unwanted dirt and debris in your carburetor. Compared to other products in this category, we found Gunk to be at the top end of cleaners as it is easy to use and gets rid of most of the “gunk” inside of your carb.
Some of the other products we’ve used just don’t have enough cleaning power. While it is only a few dollars more than competitor products, it more than makes up for it with cleaning power. We have used many other Gunk products as well and each one of them is solid. The only thing a bit annoying about this product is the need for a straw to use it. So if you are looking for a powerful carb cleaner, probably the best carburetor cleaner, we would highly recommend buying a can of this the next time you need to clean your carburetor.
#2. Gumout Carb and Choke Cleaner Jet Spray
If you are looking for the best carburetor cleaner, Gumout’s cleaner is certainly a great choice. It is VOC compliant in over 50 states and is quite safe to use in pretty much all parts of your engine. You can use Gumout Carb Cleaner to overcome engine starting problems and high exhaust emissions by having clean unrestricted fuel flow. We have never had any problems with Gumout.
We like the fact that there is no need for a straw. This means you can just spray directly from the can, which has enough power and pressure. In terms of cleaning power, we find this product slightly worse than Gunk. However, it is still in the top 10% of carb cleaners out there. We also keep a bottle of this handy in our shop and use it in case Gunk does not work. So the next time you cannot start your car or whatever machinery or vehicle, you might want to consider cleaning your carburetor with Gumout.
#3. Berryman 113 Carburetor and Choke Cleaner
Berryman makes the best carburetor cleaner on the market if you want a hands-off quick dissolve carb cleaner. Although this cleaner is designed to be used in your carburetor, it can be used on other parts of your vehicle as well. It is 100% safe to use on your auto parts and will not damage them. We really like this product because it quickly dissolves all sorts of dirt and debris in your carburetor. When you find it hard to start your engine or find that idling is bumpy or stalling, then it is time to clean your carburetor.
Since the carburetor mixes air and fuel and passes it into your engine, this is a channel that needs to be cleaned every now and then to make sure you get unrestricted flow. Berryman’s product does a great job cleaning and we put it on par with Gumout and slightly below Gunk’s product of a similar category. Of the three products we recommend, Berryman dissolves solid deposits the fastest. You really can’t go wrong with any of our recommended products and in the end, it comes down to brand loyalty and personal preference. So all in all, if you want a heavy-duty quick dissolve formula then the best carburetor cleaner for that is Berryman.
#4. Gold Eagle GC15 Carburetor & Choke Cleaner
The Gold Eagle is a great boutique brand if you want a quality carb cleaner. It comes in an easy-to-use spray nozzle and helps you reach tough spots. The greatest benefit of the Gold Eagle is its ability to dissolve gum, varnish, dirt, and carbon deposits on the spot. We would definitely rank Gold Eagle in the top 5 in terms of performance, out of all the carburetor cleaners we tested. It just seems to have that extra dissolving power to put it a few steps above the average competitor.
After you use the Gold Eagle Carb Cleaner, you will immediately notice faster start times and smoother idling. This cleaner also helps maximize power and mileage from your engine. The Gold Eagle Carb Cleaner is also quite safe for your auto parts. It does not leave a nasty oily residue and will not harm your catalytic convertors or other parts. It is also safe to use with oxygen sensors.
We would go as far as to say that you can definitely notice the benefits of Gold Eagle right away. It is hard to say this with most other carburetor cleaners. Although this stuff is quite powerful, it does have some drawbacks. The biggest one is valued, as this small 12.5-ounce aerosol can empties out quite easily. If you don’t mind spending a few extra bucks for a premium product, this is the one for you.
#5. The Briggs & Stratton Carb and Choke Cleaner
The Briggs & Stratton Carb and Choke Cleaner is a great carburetor cleaner from a very reputable brand name. Briggs & Stratton makes some of the best cleaning solutions for your car. First and foremost, it delivers tremendous value as this little 16-ounce can last much longer than most competitors. In other words, you end up using less of it to get the same job done. It quickly dissolves all deposits around your carburetor, which reduces downtime. You also get improved starting and better gas mileage with this application.
Although Briggs & Stratton is a brand that is not as well known as Gumout or CRC, it certainly makes up for its performance. This carb cleaner works great on all 2 and 4-cycle engines and significantly reduces the amount of maintenance work. If you have tried some of the more well-known brands out there and find that they are not really what you are looking for, you should give this product a try.
We love the fact that it instantly dissolves all sorts of dirt and grimes around your carburetor. You don’t need to bend over and scrub, which saves you time and effort. If you need help cleaning a carburetor, please refer to their website. Also, keep in mind that you are not just limited to auto engines. You can also clean lawnmowers, snowmobiles, mopeds, etc.
FAQ about the best carb cleaner fuel additive
Do modern cars have carburetors?
Modern cars do not have carburetors. Instead, they are manufactured with a throttle body and fuel injectors which offer better efficiency and performance. A carburetor is an older technology that mixes air and fuel in the engine’s combustion chamber. The carburetor system has been replaced by electronic fuel injection systems that atomize the fuel for more efficient combustion.
If you have an older car or a classic car, it might still be equipped with a specialist carburetor that requires specialized maintenance to run efficiently. In such cases, you might need to use a fuel additive designed specifically for use in cars with carburetors to ensure optimal engine performance.
However, if your modern car is experiencing problems like sluggish acceleration or rough idling, it’s unlikely due to any issue with the carburetor because it doesn’t have one.
Do I have to take the carburetor out of the car in order to clean it?
If you are experiencing problems with your car’s acceleration or fuel efficiency, it may be time to clean the carburetor. The good news is that you don’t necessarily have to take the carburetor completely out of your car in order to clean it. While some people prefer this method, it can be time-consuming and difficult for those who are not experienced mechanics.
Instead, a popular and effective way to clean your carburetor is by using a specialized spray solvent that is designed for the job. These solvents work by breaking down and removing any built-up gunk or debris within the carburetor without damaging any of its delicate parts. By simply directing the spray of the solvent into the carburetor while it is still attached to your vehicle, you can easily and thoroughly clean it without having to go through any extra steps.
What symptoms can a dirty carburetor cause?
A dirty carburetor can cause a range of symptoms in your motorcycle, which can ultimately affect the performance of your fuel system. A common sign of a dirty carburetor is rough idling. When this happens, the engine may run unevenly or stall altogether, making it difficult to operate your engine smoothly. And this is true for any type of engine, such as a car, motorcycle, etc. Another symptom is decreased horsepower as your engine struggles to generate adequate power.
If you notice any of these symptoms with your engine, it’s time to consider cleaning the carburetor. Dirt and debris build up over time and can clog the jets that deliver fuel into the combustion chamber effectively. This leads to reduced fuel efficiency, making you spend more money on gas than you should be spending. In addition, dirt buildup can prevent proper air/fuel mixture and reduce throttle response.
Why is there a straw attached to the carburetor cleaner?
Carburetor cleaning is an important maintenance task for any car owner. It involves removing dirt, grime, and other debris from metal parts of the engine to ensure the proper flow of fuel and air. To get the job done precisely, most carburetor cleaners come with a straw attached that helps in reaching pinpointing areas where accuracy is necessary.
The spray carb cleaner contains chemicals that can help in dissolving dirt from various metal parts. However, using the spray without precision can lead to wastage or even damage to some engine components. That’s why the straw attachment is so crucial – it allows you to accurately direct the spray into tight spaces where buildup might be causing problems.
Whether you’re a professional mechanic or just someone who likes working on their own car, having a carburetor cleaner with a straw attachment makes all the difference in ensuring your vehicle runs smoothly.
How often should I clean a carburetor with spray carb cleaner?
Maintaining your car’s carburetor is an essential part of ensuring that your vehicle runs smoothly. Carburetors regulate the air and fuel mixture that powers your engine, making it one of the most important components of your car’s performance.
Generally speaking, you should clean your carburetor every time you change your oil, which is about 3000 miles. This practice will help prevent any buildup or debris from clogging up the system and affecting its performance. When cleaning your carburetor, using a fuel injector cleaner or spray can be helpful in removing any stubborn residue or dirt that may have accumulated inside the component.
Additionally, regular maintenance practices such as changing filters and spark plugs can also aid in keeping the carburetor running smoothly for longer periods.
What other types of engines have carburetors, besides cars and trucks?
While they are primarily associated with cars and trucks, they also play an important role in other vehicles and machinery. For example, motorcycles often have carburetors that regulate the flow of air and fuel to the engine. These carburetors typically have a simpler design than those found in cars or trucks, but they still perform the same basic function.
In addition to motorcycles, lawnmowers also rely on carburetors to operate efficiently. Lawnmower engines tend to be smaller than car engines, so their carburetors may be even more simplified. However, these small engines still require precise control over the air/fuel mixture in order to run smoothly and produce enough power to cut grass effectively.
Even airplanes utilize carburetors in some cases.
What is the most popular carburetor brand?
When it comes to carburetors, one brand that is well-known among auto enthusiasts is Holley. Holley carburetors have been around for over 100 years (since 1903) and are known for their high-quality performance. They are used in a wide range of applications, from street cars to race cars and have a reputation for reliability and durability.
Another popular carburetor brand is Edelbrock. Founded in 1938, Edelbrock has become a household name in the automotive industry. Their focus on quality and innovation has made them a favorite among car enthusiasts looking to upgrade their engine performance. Like Holley carburetors, Edelbrock carburetors are used in various applications ranging from street machines to racing vehicles.