Cleaning wire harnesses

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blkulis

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What is the best way to clean the wire harnesses and wires back to original shape???? Mine are all "gunked up" and electrical tape is peeling.

 
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jeff8877

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Couple things I have used are...

If there is paint overspray on wires you can scape off gently with a sharp pocket knife.

To clean them, goo gone works well and hand cleaner works without harming the wires.

Jeff

 

BDK

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Couple things I have used are...

If there is paint overspray on wires you can scape off gently with a sharp pocket knife.

To clean them, goo gone works well and hand cleaner works without harming the wires.

Jeff
I'll tell you the best thing I have found after trying all sorts of cleaning agents and degreasers, soda blasting. That's right! just make sure it is out of the vehicle. Not only does it remove all the gunk, tar, overspray and other items but it leaves everything looking new. I tried it on the trunk light harness with the "cloth" wrap around the wire.....wrap had overspray, many years of black gunk on it and all sorts of other items. After soda blasting, it looks brand new, even the "cloth" wrap around the wire.

Soda blasting also works great on all those painted or plastic parts, such as rear taillight assemblies, and marker lights (backside of these). It cleans off everything and simply leaves them looking like they came from the factory. The best thing about it is it is super easy and no scrubbing or letting parts soak or 2-3 cleanings and no smearing on the plastics either. Honestly, it has done wonders for me.

BDK

 

midlife

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I've never tried soda blasting, but I have tried Goof-Off, goo-gone and hand cleaners and don't like them. I've found simple lacquer thinner works great with a good rag and modest amounts of elbow grease. I'm about to try vinegar on some of the newer plastics that tend to melt under lacquer thinner to see how that works. Vinegar does wonders for brass contacts in less than 30 seconds. Otherwise, Formula 409 is also useful. Nothing will help the tape once it begins to unravel except to wrap another layer of tape over it or after the old tape has been removed.

 

BDK

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I've never tried soda blasting, but I have tried Goof-Off, goo-gone and hand cleaners and don't like them. I've found simple lacquer thinner works great with a good rag and modest amounts of elbow grease. I'm about to try vinegar on some of the newer plastics that tend to melt under lacquer thinner to see how that works. Vinegar does wonders for brass contacts in less than 30 seconds. Otherwise, Formula 409 is also useful. Nothing will help the tape once it begins to unravel except to wrap another layer of tape over it or after the old tape has been removed.
Soda blasting CAN change the shiny finish on plastics that had a shiny look or finish. However, the great thing again is not having to utilize ANY elbow grease. The other issue with lacquer thinner and other "agents" is they can tend to smear the tars, gunk, dirt, etc. into the plastics. They may also tend to melt the plastic or cause a reaction with the plastics. On wiring harnesses it makes the coatings appear brand new. Soda blasting is my preferred way and VERY VERY easy......

 

blkulis

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I've never tried soda blasting, but I have tried Goof-Off, goo-gone and hand cleaners and don't like them. I've found simple lacquer thinner works great with a good rag and modest amounts of elbow grease. I'm about to try vinegar on some of the newer plastics that tend to melt under lacquer thinner to see how that works. Vinegar does wonders for brass contacts in less than 30 seconds. Otherwise, Formula 409 is also useful. Nothing will help the tape once it begins to unravel except to wrap another layer of tape over it or after the old tape has been removed.
Soda blasting CAN change the shiny finish on plastics that had a shiny look or finish. However, the great thing again is not having to utilize ANY elbow grease. The other issue with lacquer thinner and other "agents" is they can tend to smear the tars, gunk, dirt, etc. into the plastics. They may also tend to melt the plastic or cause a reaction with the plastics. On wiring harnesses it makes the coatings appear brand new. Soda blasting is my preferred way and VERY VERY easy......
Do you have your own soda machine! Do you recommend one or do you take your parts somewhere?



I've never tried soda blasting, but I have tried Goof-Off, goo-gone and hand cleaners and don't like them. I've found simple lacquer thinner works great with a good rag and modest amounts of elbow grease. I'm about to try vinegar on some of the newer plastics that tend to melt under lacquer thinner to see how that works. Vinegar does wonders for brass contacts in less than 30 seconds. Otherwise, Formula 409 is also useful. Nothing will help the tape once it begins to unravel except to wrap another layer of tape over it or after the old tape has been removed.
Soda blasting CAN change the shiny finish on plastics that had a shiny look or finish. However, the great thing again is not having to utilize ANY elbow grease. The other issue with lacquer thinner and other "agents" is they can tend to smear the tars, gunk, dirt, etc. into the plastics. They may also tend to melt the plastic or cause a reaction with the plastics. On wiring harnesses it makes the coatings appear brand new. Soda blasting is my preferred way and VERY VERY easy......
Any recommendations on brands? Could I do my engine bay with a soda blaster????

 
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Bill73Ragtop

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I've used WD-30 on wiring that is moderately crudded up with some fairly good results. If the wrapping is worn, replace with new (and remember that adhesive backed electrical tape is the worst thing to use to re-wrap a harness). A roll of the correct wiring harness tape goes a long, long way. (Eastwood sells some nice stuff)

 

BDK

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I've never tried soda blasting, but I have tried Goof-Off, goo-gone and hand cleaners and don't like them. I've found simple lacquer thinner works great with a good rag and modest amounts of elbow grease. I'm about to try vinegar on some of the newer plastics that tend to melt under lacquer thinner to see how that works. Vinegar does wonders for brass contacts in less than 30 seconds. Otherwise, Formula 409 is also useful. Nothing will help the tape once it begins to unravel except to wrap another layer of tape over it or after the old tape has been removed.
Soda blasting CAN change the shiny finish on plastics that had a shiny look or finish. However, the great thing again is not having to utilize ANY elbow grease. The other issue with lacquer thinner and other "agents" is they can tend to smear the tars, gunk, dirt, etc. into the plastics. They may also tend to melt the plastic or cause a reaction with the plastics. On wiring harnesses it makes the coatings appear brand new. Soda blasting is my preferred way and VERY VERY easy......
Do you have your own soda machine! Do you recommend one or do you take your parts somewhere?



I've never tried soda blasting, but I have tried Goof-Off, goo-gone and hand cleaners and don't like them. I've found simple lacquer thinner works great with a good rag and modest amounts of elbow grease. I'm about to try vinegar on some of the newer plastics that tend to melt under lacquer thinner to see how that works. Vinegar does wonders for brass contacts in less than 30 seconds. Otherwise, Formula 409 is also useful. Nothing will help the tape once it begins to unravel except to wrap another layer of tape over it or after the old tape has been removed.
Soda blasting CAN change the shiny finish on plastics that had a shiny look or finish. However, the great thing again is not having to utilize ANY elbow grease. The other issue with lacquer thinner and other "agents" is they can tend to smear the tars, gunk, dirt, etc. into the plastics. They may also tend to melt the plastic or cause a reaction with the plastics. On wiring harnesses it makes the coatings appear brand new. Soda blasting is my preferred way and VERY VERY easy......
Any recommendations on brands? Could I do my engine bay with a soda blaster????
I use a small spot blaster from Harbor Freight...works great and cost all of about $40, media is a bit more expensive though. Believe around $25-$30 for a 40/50lb bag.....I wouldn't recommend doing the engine bay by soda blasting. Soda is great for plastics and light blasting where the finish needs to remain intact, but for the heavy stuff like frame rails and the like it would be best to follow what others have done on the forum.

Bruce

 

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