7 Best Solvent for Removing Carbon [2023 Reviews]

Did you know that approximately one-third of the life cycle cost of a car is attributed to maintenance and repair? One of the most common issues that car owners face is carbon deposits.

best solvent for removing carbon

Carbon is a byproduct of burning fuel and can accumulate on the insides of car engines. This accumulation causes an increase in friction and will eventually cause the engine’s performance to decrease. Getting rid of them, whether they’re on your car engine, fuel system, or exhaust manifold, is a challenging process.

There are many solvents that you could use to clean these carbon deposits, but not all work. In this article, we’ll explore 7 of the best solvent for removing carbons that will make this chore easier than ever before.

Also, most people have trouble choosing which product will work well with their vehicle and situation! So, after these product reviews, you’ll find a buying guide that will teach you how to select the best carbon removal solvent for your needs.

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Top 7 Best Solvent for Removing Carbon:

Here are the detailed reviews on the top solvent products that you can use for dissolving carbon-

1. WYNNS Diesel Turbo Carbon Remover

The WYNNS diesel turbo cleaner carbon remover is a revolutionary product that removes carbon deposits inside diesel engines without dismantling. It has been developed to help car owners, DIYers, and mechanics with their automotive care needs.

The cleaner features an innovative formula that leaves no harmful residue behind, unlike other products on the market today. It cleans diesel engine turbines & EGR valve effectively, frees stuck vanes, eliminates deposits from Diesel Oxidation Catalyst to extend its life.

The WYNNS diesel turbo cleaner carbon remover is safe to use on all types of diesel engines. It works well for both cold start-ups and long idle periods to prevent the deposits of harmful substances like soot, unburned fuel, and oil on the engine walls.

This cleaner is a fantastic choice for individuals searching for a simple solution to keep their vehicle’s performance at its best or for those looking for a quick fix before selling their automobile.

The WYNNS diesel turbo cleaner carbon remover comes in a 500ml bottle. One bottle can serve up to 60 liters of diesel. The manufacturer recommends using the cleaner every 3000km or every 3rd tank for best results.


  • It is a powerful cleaner that removes carbon inside diesel engines without dismantling.
  • A bottle can treat up to 60 liters of diesel.
  • It is safe to use on all types of diesel engines.


  • It works only for diesel engines.

2. Sea Foam SS14 Cleaner and Lube

The Sea Foam SS14 cleaner and lube is a natural car care product designed with a unique blend of lubricants. It has been used for decades in the marine industry to clean engines. This cleaner and lube gently clean away dirt and grime while lubricating at the same time. It will clean out any carbon deposits that cause your gasoline engine to hesitate, stall, ping, or have a rough idle due to carbon accumulation.

This Sea Foam SS14 cleaner and lube also safely removes acid deposits from battery terminals, prevents corrosion of metal parts, stabilizes fuel systems during winter months, protects rubber gaskets, and seals against dry rot and oxidation. It is safe to use in all 2 and 4 stroke gasoline engines. And comes in a 15.8-ounce aerosol can with a spray straw for easy use. However, the spray straw doesn’t stay put.

You can apply the Sea Foam SS14 cleaner and lube the gas fuel-injection throttle body or carburetor throat of your vehicle. There are instructions on the can for use in different situations.


  • This cleaner works excellently well.
  • It is safe to use in all 2 and 4 stroke gasoline engines.
  • Instructions are on its can on how to use it for different parts of the engine.
  • It has a decent price.


  • The spray straw keeps falling off.
  • This cleaner works only for gasoline engines.

3. Orison Piston Kleen Carbon Remover

Piston Kleen carbon remover is a revolutionary product that removes the carbon accumulation from pistons and engine parts. This carbon remover also eliminates sludge in oil filters and increases octane ratings which improve fuel economy. It is a water-based cleaner that does not contain any harmful chemicals, so it is safe for your car. Also, it has no odor.

The Piston Kleen carbon remover is ideal for soak tanks, cabinet washers, ultrasonics, and through-put machines. For the best result, remove the piston/parts from the engine and soak in it for 2 to 24 hours, depending on the carbon/dirt concentration.

Only remove the piston/parts from the solution when it is clean. You can also mix and heat the fluid to reduce soaking time. If you want to do this, mix with a working temperature of 90°F to 180°F.

The Piston Kleen carbon remover comes in a one-gallon bottle. It is economical, saves time, and reduces the times of visit to the automobile repair shop. 


  • It cleans carbon buildup from pistons and engine parts.
  • It has no odor and doesn’t contain any harmful chemicals.
  • This cleaner is easy to use


  • It doesn’t remove carbon deposits from diesel engines.

4. Chevron Techron Concentrate Plus Fuel System Cleaner

The Chevron Techron concentrate plus fuel system cleaner is an EPA-approved fuel system cleaner that removes gum, sludge, and varnish deposits from different gasoline engines. Specifically, all high-performance engines with carburetors or electronic fuel injection systems such as gasoline spark-ignition engines, direct-injected gasoline engines (DISI), and gasoline hybrid vehicles.

It has a potent detergent action that removes carbon deposits from these engines, restoring lost power and performance.

The Chevron Techron concentrate plus fuel system cleaner reduces emissions by cleaning the intake valves and combustion chamber of carbon deposits. And it causes a significant increase in fuel efficiency. Techron sells it in a 20fl oz easy-to-apply bottle. However, the bottle leaks. One bottle treats up to a 20 gallons fuel tank. To treat difficult stains, add 6oz per tank full. Then, for routine engine maintenance, use 8oz per tank full every 5,000 miles.


  • This engine cleaner removes carbon deposits from gasoline engines fast.
  • It is EPA-approved and biodegradable.
  • One bottle treats up to a 20 gallons fuel tank.
  • It increases fuel efficiency.


  • The bottle is garbage because it leaks.

5. Bore Tech Eliminator Bore Cleaner

The Bore Tech Eliminator is a high-performance, non-ammonia bore cleaner that removes carbon fouling from any rifle barrel or engine bore in minutes. Its spongelike action helps loosen even stubborn residues, so you don’t have to scrub as hard when cleaning your guns or engine bores.

You can use the Bore Tech Eliminator on gas or diesel engines of any size without fear of damaging the engine. It is also safe to use on aluminum blocks and head gaskets. This cleaner will not harm air intake, rubber seals, or O-rings because it contains no acids or solvents that would degrade these items. You can soak the engine parts in the solution for hours, and it will not harm the metal surfaces. Plus, it works very fast.

The Bore Tech Eliminator bore cleaner comes packaged in a 16 oz easy-to-use container. You’ll be surprised at the amount of dirt that will come out from your engine bore after using this cleaner.


  • It is non-toxic, doesn’t contain ammonia, and can be biodegradable.
  • It removes carbon buildup effectively.
  • This bore cleaner saves time, money and reduces the hassle of regular maintenance on firearms and engine bores.
  • It has no nasty smell.


  • None

6. Spray Nine Cleaner/Degreaser

You may be ready to give up after spending hours washing your car’s engine compartment with a cleaner and a brush, only to have it become black the next day. But there is hope! With this Spray Nine cleaner/degreaser, that will never happen. It tackles tough grease and grime effectively, so you don’t have to scrub hard like you would with other products. It cleans and degreases engines, wheel wells, undercarriages, and more.

This cleaner/degreaser was formulated with careful consideration for human health and safety in mind – ensuring you get the best cleaning power without any harmful side effects. It sanitizes in 10 seconds, kills viruses in 30 seconds & bacteria in 45 seconds, making it ideal for domestic use around children and pets too. Plus, it is EPA and NSF approved.

The Spray Nine cleaner/degreaser comes in a 1-gallon container. Simply apply the cleaner on the surface you want to treat or pour into a spray bottle and spray the surface liberally with the liquid. You can leave it on the surface for up to 5 minutes before wiping it away with a wet cloth, or if necessary, rinse thoroughly with water. With such ease in use, it’s no surprise that many professional mechanics rely on this easy-to-use product in their day-to-day work.


  • It is multi-purpose for all kinds of dirt and can be used on many surfaces.
  • It is EPA and NSF approved, making it safe to use around children and pets.
  • This cleaner kills bacteria, viruses, and fungi.


  • None

7. Slip 2000 Carbon Killer

The Slip 2000 carbon killer is a pH-balanced, non-caustic degreaser that removes heavy carbon fouling. Its natural and synthetic solvent formula dissolves carbon deposits on engine parts such as valves, pistons, intake manifolds, and combustion chambers. The formula contains orange extract, which provides a pleasant smell while cleaning. Plus, it is biodegradable.

This carbon remover is used by automotive care enthusiasts or professional mechanics for quick cleanups on grease-covered surfaces or jobs where light-duty cleaning is required. It’s easy to use and safe to handle with your hands. Plus, it emits no hazardous gases and doesn’t pollute your house or workshop. However, if your engine or item has heavy baked-on carbon deposits, this cleaner might be ineffective.

The Slip 2000 carbon killer solution comes in a 15 oz bottle, perfect for the DIYers and car enthusiasts. However, the bottle cover is too big and doesn’t screw on most times. To use this cleaner, completely immerse dirty parts and allow to soak for 5 to 15 minutes. One thing we discovered about this cleaner is that it is reusable. You can use the same used liquid to clean out carbon deposits another time. This extends its life substantially.


  • It works quickly and is very efficient in removing carbon from metal surfaces.
  • It is easy to use and safe to handle with your hands.
  • You can use the same used liquid to clean our carbon deposit another time.
  • It has an orange scent.


  • The bottle has a flawed design.
  • It doesn’t work for heavy baked-on carbon deposits.

Detailed Comparison of Top 5 Carbon Dissolving Solvents

WYNNS Diesel Turbo Cleaner Carbon Remover    Size: 500ml
Engine Type: Diesel Engine
Sea Foam SS14 Cleaner and LubeSize: 15.8 ounces
Engine Type: 2 and 4 stroke gasoline engines.
Orison Piston Kleen Carbon RemoverSize: 1 gallon
Engine Type: Piston gasoline engines
Chevron Techron Concentrate Plus Fuel System CleanerSize: 20 fl oz
Engine Type: Gasoline Engine
Bore Tech Eliminator Bore CleanerSize: 16 oz
Engine Type: Diesel & gasoline engine bores and barrel

How to Choose the Best Solvent for Removing Carbon

It is not always easy to decide the perfect solvent for removing carbon deposits for your engine, piston rings, bolts, etc. You may need to clean carbon off the inside fuel injectors, on the base of valves, on pistons, inside combustion chamber cylinders, fuel storage tanks, fuel delivery lines, etc.

There are several factors to consider when making this decision. And these factors change depending on your needs. In this buying guide, we will educate you on how to choose a solvent that’s right for your situation.

For removing carbon deposits from fuel injectors:

Do you need to apply the solvent inside the fuel injector? If so, do not use a solvent that is flammable or likely to explode.

Not all solvents are compatible with wet injection systems like most modern car gasoline and diesel engines. Always check the compatibility of your engine before you buy a solvent!

For removing carbon deposits from pistons:

You may need to apply the solvent inside the piston chamber or under it. So, you’ll need a solvent that’s compatible with your fuel tank and piping systems.

Furthermore, if you have to remove carbon from the inside cylinder, then be sure the product is compatible with stainless steel or other types of metal used there!

For removing carbon deposits from valves:

First, determine what your valve will look like once you finish cleaning up the carbon deposits. Is it just going to be about surface cleanliness? Do you need something more thorough than that?

These are what you need to ask yourself before getting a solvent for cleaning valves. You may also consider whether or not you can spray the solvent into this area without it causing any harm to nearby components. Remember, non-flammable products are the safest to use.

For removing carbon deposits to use in Gasoline/Diesel storage tanks & delivery lines:

If your vehicle uses gasoline as a fuel source, it’s better to use a solvent designed for gasoline fuel. The same applies to diesel tanks.

General Features to Look For

Fast Action:

The ideal solvent carbon remover should work quickly to dissolve & break up accumulated carbon deposits from pistons, valves, and combustion chambers.

Ease of Use:

Is the solvent easy to use? Can it be sprayed or poured into the fuel tank for immediate results without issues? And can it be easily wiped off? These are what you should look out for before selecting the solvent to use for your engine.


You need to consider if the solvent is flammable or not. And if contains chemicals that are safe to use in your environment.


Solvent carbon removers are a wonderful thing to have on hand. Should in case you’re working on a project and don’t feel like going to the auto parts store. So, if you can, consider buying a product that’s compatible with long-term storage.

Safe For Most Materials:

The ideal solvent for removing carbon deposits should be able to be used in engine compartments without fear of damaging sensitive materials like rubber plastics, and metals.

Low Odor:

Some solvents can be very toxic – especially if you’re using them inside your engine compartment. Ensure the solvent you buy doesn’t have an obnoxious odor so that you don’t overwhelm yourself or other people in the surrounding area.

Final Thoughts

Carbon deposits are like the albatross of any engine, dragging you down if left unchecked for too long. With any of these seven solvents reviewed, you’ll be able to clean carbon off any engine. The seven products consist of cleaners specifically for fuel engines, diesel engines, and both. So, ensure you read through carefully to determine the one best for your engine, needs, and situation.

In addition, we’ve also discussed some questions that need consideration when choosing a solvent, and what factors to check before buying one. If you’ve read thus far, we’re sure you have all the knowledge you need to choose a carbon-removal solution that’s right for your engine. Good luck!

Is Carbon Solvent Toxic?

It depends on the formula used for making the solvent. Some of the products can be toxic but only at high concentrations while some are made to be safe for humans and other animals.

It has been proven that most solvents aren’t harmful to humans even though they might damage certain types of surfaces. However, there are still risks involved. Make sure you know how much of the chemical you’ll be applying to avoid overdoing it. Also, make sure you wear protective gear such as gloves and goggles while handling the substance.

Does Acetone Remove Carbon?

Acetone is considered a good solvent for cleaning carburetor jets because it dissolves oil and grease. It works well for cleaning intake manifolds and cylinder heads. But acetone isn’t recommended for cleaning exhaust systems since it may cause corrosion.

What Is Carb Cleaner?

A carb cleaner is a liquid spray designed to remove dirt and grime from carburetion components. They usually contain alcohol, detergents, and water.

Does Vinegar Dissolve Carbon?

Vinegar is acidic which means it will dissolve carbon and metal oxides. This makes vinegar great for cleaning out old gas tanks and carburetors. You just need to apply enough vinegar to get rid of the buildup.

How do I get rid of Carbon build up on my Exhaust?

You could use a wire brush to scrape away the carbon deposits. Or, you could try blasting the parts with compressed air. Another option would be to soak the part in gasoline until the carbon comes loose. Then, wash the part thoroughly with soap and warm water. Finally, dry the part completely.

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