Cleaning Aluminum Intercooler

I would like to chemically remove the oxide buildup on the exterior fins of
the intercooler for my car. It is made entirely out of Aluminum. I have
already degreased the interior but would like to chemically strip off some
oxide buildup from the external fins without dissolving them. Does anybody
know of a suitable product of have a home made recipe?
Reply to
Boris Mohar
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You can buy alloy wheel cleaner which I think is basically a phosphoric acid prep with other items, surfactants ?. I have also used phosphoric acid based rust removal products which seems to remove the corrsosion quite well without effecting the aluminium.
Boris Mohar wrote:
Reply to
David Billington
Mothers wheel mist- has a little phosphoric acid, foams a little.
Note that if you don't then coat the fins with something, they'll oxide right up again, quite quickly.
Dave
Reply to
spamTHISbrp
The standard solution for cleaning aluminum fins DOES dissolve them; in a controlled manner.
Commercial air conditioning fin cleaner consists of sodium hydroxide (lye) and detergent. It's usually applied fairly dilute, and allowed to "work" for a few minutes before thorough rinsing.
The action of the lye releases hydrogen as it dissolves the superficial surface of the aluminum. The bubbles that result lift not only oxides but dirt, lint, grease, etc., where it is suspended and held by the detergent. The detergent also helps remove grease and oil that might interfere with the action of the lye.
It's a 'tricky' operation. Leave it on too long, and it will, in fact, dissolve the fins. To little, and the cleaning is incomplete.
LLoyd
Reply to
Lloyd E. Sponenburgh
Find some Duragloss Aluminum Cleaner & Brightener. It's like wheel cleaner, but more general in purpose. We sell a lot of it to truck fleets.
Reply to
Rex B
HVAC repairmen use a chemical cleaner to clean the aluminum coils at the condenser. Any HVAC supply shop would have it.
Tony
Reply to
Tony

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