I kept this post in my pocket for a few days. After cleaning the throttle body I had hopes that I’d also have reinstalled before publishing it, but the weather around my parts has been brutally hot and unpleasant so that hasn’t happened yet. I did find my way to my local NAPA store where I bought some throttle body cleaner and a few other needed solvents. These included specialized throttle body and air intake cleaner, brake cleaner, and some belt conditioner. The last item was because I’ve found that when I start the engine and give it a little gas one (or more) of the belts is letting out a hellacious squeal. I figured a little belt conditioning couldn’t hurt and might fix that issue. I consulted with a friend of mine and he suggested that the squeal might actually be due to failing alternator or water pump bearings, but I’m hoping this doesn’t turn out to be the case as I’d rather not have to replace either of those things at the moment.
When I got home I took the throttle and removed the two the vacuum line fittings in the top. I put the all the bits into a disposable aluminum pan and gave them a thorough spray and soak in the cleaner which, as my son found out, is some pretty noxious stuff. But for all its smelliness it’s also terribly effective. The caked-on grime withered away beneath the spray and soon the pan had a little pool of very dirty chemical runoff. The gunk was especially thick around where the valve met the housing and seemed to make the action sticky and lethargic. I made sure to also whack a rag around the inside of the air channel and into the little nooks and crannies all over the piece. The valve now definitely opens and closes more readily than it did before.
Thanks again to Son 1 for helping me out with cleaning and reassembly.
Here’s the before and after.