A bikers guide to ultrasonic carburettor cleaning – how to pick an Ultrasonic Motorbike Carb cleaner ?

We all know the old saying that a grain of sand in a carburettor can stop the most powerful of motorbike engines. And it’s true. In the World of carburettors, cleanliness is king.

Having owned motorcycles on and off for more years than I like to admit and having rebuilt a few engines, from old BSA Bantam (D2), Norton Commando 750 (fastback) and a Ducati (250 Desmo), back in the day I would soak the carburettor in a bucket of degreasing solution for an hour or two, then rinse with water and blow it off with an air gun. Simple, but not really very efficient.

motorcycle ultrasonic carb cleaning

Technology has advanced over the last few decades and when it comes to cleaning a carburettor and related components, the accepted best practice is to use an Ultrasonic Cleaner.

Without getting too bogged down in the technical detail, an Ultrasonic Cleaner has a component called a transducer that generates sound waves, that in turn produce microscopic bubbles that very effectively dislodge dirt, grime and petrol residue from the intricate parts of a carburettor that would otherwise be almost impossible to get to.

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We supply ultrasonic cleaners to the best of the best

Using an Ultrasonic Cleaner requires no special knowledge or skill. All that is needed is water and a specific cleaning fluid to put into the tank. The unit is then plugged into a domestic power socket and the built-in heater raises the temperature of the water & cleaning solution mixture to around 60 degrees centigrade. Place your carb in the tank and turn on the ultrasonics. Normally around 15 – 20 minutes is a sufficient cleaning time. Remove the carburettor, rinse and leave to dry. Not only will the carb be deep cleaned internally, but the alloy casting will look bright and clean.

Which Ultrasonic Cleaner should I buy?

I have a mantra about the selection process. Obviously the price is a main consideration, but above that – SIZE MATTERS. I can’t say that enough, so I will repeat – SIZE MATTERS. Several customers make a purchase by guessing or estimating their carb will fit into a particular machine. And when the cleaner arrives, they realise that its a bit too small and phone me to exchange it for a larger ultrasonic tank. That isn’t a problem, but it costs you the customer money to post it back to us and it’s a bit of faffing around.

Ultrasonic cleaner with a bank of 4 motorbike carburettors

It’s far better to try and get it right first time. And the best way is (if you can) to actually measure the overall dimensions of your carburettor. This isn’t always possible if the bank of carbs are still fastened to the bike and it can still end up being a “guesstimate”. Also, you will be removing some of the carb parts such as float bowls, slides etc and this will reduce the overall required tank size. I think that if you can afford it, get something a bit bigger than you estimate. If you try to cram a small tank full of parts, the cleaning will not be as efficient as putting them into a larger tank. As the saying goes, “what will hold more will hold less”. You get the idea?

BU sonic range of ultrasonic motorcycle carb cleaners

Degassing – whats all that about?

Degassing is available on some models and is an addition function which, after a change a cleaning solution, quickly removes air from the liquid that in turn, makes the cleaning process more effective. This is especially useful when cleaning carburetors. Additionally, the cleaning power can be increased or reduced depending on the items being cleaned which means that delicate products can be cleaned gently. It does however, add a bit more money to the price.

If you look through all the models we sell, the choice can be a little confusing. To help sort the wheat from the chaff, so to speak, shown below are the most commonly purchased Ultrasonic Cleaners for cleaning motorbike carbs. The 3 Ltr tanks are good for individual carburettors. If you need to clean a bank of 3 or 4 without splitting them, you’ll need a 20Ltr as a minimum

3 Ltr Ultrasonic Cleaner with dial adjustment – suitable for individual carbs 

  • Tank Size (internal): 240 x 137 x 100mm
  • Wire Basket – included (L: 220mm x W: 130mm x H: 75mm)

3.ltr main

3Ltr Ultrasonic Cleaner with digital adjustment – suitable for individual carbs

  • Tank Size (internal): 240 x 137 x 100mm
  • Wire Basket – included (L: 220mm x W: 130mm x H: 75mm)

6ltr digital ultrasonic cleaner front

9 Ltr Ultrasonic Cleaner dial adjustment – suitable for medium size carbs

  • Tank Size (internal): 300 x 240 x 150mm
  • Wire Basket – included (L: 280mm x W: 230mm x H: 115mm)

9Ltr analoge ultrasonic cleaner front view

long Ultrasonic Cleaner with dial adjustment – suitable for banks of carbs

  • Tank Size (internal): 500 x 140 x 150mm
  • Wire Basket – included 485mm x 130mm x 135mm

9ltr ultrasonic motorcycle carburettor cleaner 2

20 Ltr Ultrasonic Cleaner / degassing – suitable for large carburettors

  • Tank Size (internal): 495 x 295 x 195mm
  • Wire Basket – (optional) L: 465mm x W: 270mm x H: 125mm

27Ltr degassing ultrasonic cleaner front

And finally, don’t forget the all important cleaning solution because an ultrasonic cleaner by itself won’t breakdown the petrol and grease. Additionally, when you’ve cleaned your carb, you want it to look the part and the use of a cleaning solution will give it the coosmetic “wow” factor. Cleaning fluids can be found here.

best ultrasonic cleaners logo 3


This entry was posted in CARBURETTOR CLEANING, GUIDES & HELP FOR ULTRASONIC CLEANERS and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to A bikers guide to ultrasonic carburettor cleaning – how to pick an Ultrasonic Motorbike Carb cleaner ?

  1. john tierney says:

    I am thinking of using ultrasonic cleaning for my bikes Norton Commando, Yamaha fj1200 & LC350 Honda sl &cb125’s all engine components not so much cycle parts. What device should I be looking at, I am only a hobbyist so commercial use isn’t the thing however I will need a professional finish and finally the question is which devices are suitable and how much? Also would need the appropriate cleaning fluids…

    Liked by 1 person

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