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How to Clean the Carburetor From Cars

by Contributing Writer; Updated June 12, 2017

Carburetors that work with 2-stroke motors tend to become clogged with sludge and other debris. So, it is very important to clean these carburetors as often as possible. In this way, you keep the carburetor working at the peak of its performance level.

Under The Hood:

 How to Clean a Carburetor on a Honda 250 Fourtrax

Locate the PCV hose wire and cold choke line near the top of the carburetor and disconnect them. Find the vaccum line and throttle wire, disconnect them also.

Slowly lift the carburetor out of the Honda 250. The carburetor is heavy so you may need an extra pair of hands to help you lift it out safely. Place the carburetor carefully on the floor when removed.

Soak the Honda 250 carburetor in a cleaning solvent and leave for 12 to 18 hours to allow the solvent to do its job. The kind of solvent needed for this can be purchased from auto repair stores.

Remove the carburetor from the solvent and spray it with compressed air. This will break up any build up of dirt and oil. Wipe the carburetor down with a rag to get any specks of dirt left.

Lift the carburetor back into the vehicle and reconnect all the wires that were disconnected.

Items you will need

  • Compressed air

  • Rubber gloves

  • Cleaning solvent

  • Rag

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Shut off the fuel flow to your carburetor by turning the petcock valve under your fuel tank. Remove the seat to access the carburetor and air filter. Remove the air cleaner, then loosen and remove the choke and throttle cables from the carburetor. The choke cable is exposed, but you'll need to remove the plate that covers the throttle linkage in order to access the throttle cable end.

Remove the fuel line either from the carburetor or fuel tank, depending on what you find easier to access. when you disconnect the line, hold a rag around the fitting to catch fuel drips, and then carefully lower the line into a catch jar. If you opted to remove the line from the carburetor, make sure that your catch jar is shallow enough to fit under the carburetor float bowl. Once you have the fuel line off and drained, hold a rag under the carburetor fuel inlet while you loosen the intake boot clamp from the carb.

Pull the carb off, and set it -- fuel-inlet side down -- on an absorbent, disposable mat. Look on the bottom of the carburetor; you'll see four screws securing the carburetor float bowl to the carb body. Remove the screws to expose the jets and float mechanism.

Carefully note the position of, and then remove the pilot jet, main jet and starter jet. If this is the first time you've removed the pilot screw near the engine-side of the carb, then you'll need to remove the brass plug covering it. The jets come out by simply unscrewing them with a flathead screwdriver. Pull the jets out, and lay the mechanisms out on a table in the order that you removed them. Organization is essential here, so don't get parts mixed up.

Start cleaning with your carburetor cleaner. Clean out the carb bore, and all around the throttle plate. Use the straw on your carb cleaner nozzle to spray into the jet bores and the jets themselves. Clean around the floats, and inside the float bowl. When you clean inside the jets, allow the carb to sit for a few minutes so the cleaner can soak in and dissolve deposits in the carb body.

Give your entire carb a final spray-down to clean everything you can access. Allow the carburetor to air dry, so that all the cleaner evaporates. Re-install the jets in the reverse order of removal, just as you laid them out. Make sure that the jets are oriented in the exact manner they were when you removed them. Once you get everything back together, reinstall the float bowl, and tighten the screws hand-tight; or 45 inch-pounds, if you have an inch-pound torque wrench.

Reinstall the carb just as you took it out. Put it onto the intake boot, tighten the clamp and reinstall the fuel line. Install the choke cable, the throttle cable and then the throttle cable cover plate. Install the air cleaner, and open the petcock valve on the tank to send fuel to the carburetor. Start the engine to ensure proper function, and then reinstall the seat.

Items you will need

  • Screwdrivers

  • Torx bits

  • Spray Carburetor cleaner

  • Wrench set

 How to Clean the Carburetor From a 2-Stroke Motor

Remove the carburetor from the machine and set it on a clean rag on the ground.

Spray the carburetor out thoroughly with carburetor cleaner. This will eat up rust, sludge and other contaminants within the assembly. Be sure to get the spray into all the valves and crevices.

Wipe the carburetor out with a clean rag, getting it as clean as possible in this way. Use more carburetor cleaner if needed.

Take an air compressor with a pointed blowing tip and blow out all the valves within the carburetor. These must be as clean as possible and free of debris for the carburetor to work properly.

Wipe off all the seals and edges that connect with the attachment hoses.

Reattach the carburetor to the machine.

Items you will need

  • Carburetor cleaner

  • Rags

  • Air compressor with pointed blower tip

About the Author

This article was written by the It Still Runs team, copy edited and fact checked through a multi-point auditing system, in efforts to ensure our readers only receive the best information. To submit your questions or ideas, or to simply learn more about It Still Runs, contact us.

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