Posted by Performance Auto Specialists Preventative Maintenance

What Walnut Blasting Can Do for You

Is your vehicle acting funny? Maybe you’re experiencing a loss of horsepower, your engine keeps misfiring, or you’re having trouble accelerating? Your engine may need to be cleaned. One method of doing so is walnut blasting. Continue to learn more about what that is and how it can help your vehicle.

What is Walnut Blasting?

Walnut Blasting is a process used to treat carbon build up. During this process, the intake manifold is removed and blasted with crushed walnut shells and compressed air. A walnut blaster is very similar to a sandblaster but gentle enough to maintain the integrity of the engine parts.

Walnut blasting is necessary if you have a vehicle with a gasoline direct injection engine such as an Audi, BMW, Cadillac, Mercedes-Benz, Mini Cooper, Volkswagen or a few more cars from European automakers.  Direct injection is becoming more and more common because it allows manufacturers to increase fuel mileage without taking away from the vehicle’s power or efficiency.

Why do I need to do this?

When you accelerate in your car the car releases gas into the combustion chamber. Then the spark plugs ignite the gas in the combustion chamber causing the car to run. Carbon is a byproduct of this process.

The carbon interferes with the vehicle’s normal combustion, altering the compression ratio, operating temperature and sensor readings on your vehicle. It builds up and coats the inside of your engine including the air intake valves, combustion chambers, and exhaust which restricts your car’s ability to “breath”.

When the carbon builds up over time there are a few warning signs you’ll notice:

  • Gradual loss of power over time
  • Engine misfire (not specific to a cylinder)
  • Random engine misfires
  • Check engine light codes
  • Sluggishness
  • Extended cranking/ start times


There are several benefits to walnut blasting the carbon away from your engine. Because carbon is hard and tough when it forms manually it requires a lot of work to clean it from the intake valves. Walnut Blasting allows you to forgo the costly and time-consuming process of stripping the engine and cleaning it by hand.

Regular engine cleanings prevent wear and tear and extend the life of your engine saving you money on major repairs in the long run.

  • Better throttle response
  • Smooth idle engine
  • Improved fuel economy
  • Increased horsepower

How Often do I need to Walnut Blast?

The frequency of walnut blasting your car’s engine will vary depending on several factors. Some dealers would say it should be done for the 1st time between 22,000 and 40,000 miles. Other factors include your driving habits, the quality of gas you use, how well you take care of your car and more.

If you are not sure if your European car’s engine needs to be walnut blasted don’t fret, just call the experts at Performance Auto Specialists, your European Auto Repair Specialists since 1991. Performance Auto Specialists can perform the same services as area car dealerships while beating the quality and prices you get at dealer repair centers. For more information feel free to contact us!

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Performance Auto Specialists has offered affordable, reliable repair and maintenance to Wilmington residents since 1991.