I Did it!
Finally got around to taking some time out to attempt to clean the
valve. I really couldn't have done it without the help & advice on this thread so a big thank you to everyone who posted something useful!
Once I'd got the bolts off I was worried that I may have broken the valve in two, as the top was wiggling fairly easily. I'd used copious amounts of Wynn's Carb cleaner but couldn't really make it budge much.
I'd tried using a long screwdriver as a punch but could really only get any force by using the bolt holes. Not sure if this is wise, as I look to have mangled two of the bolt hole sleeves. I did manage to get it all back together again though!
As for the valve, it eventually came out fairly easily. Once I'd got it out, I noticed that the top half is only kept together by the sleeves in the bolt holes...is this normal, or has it broke?
It was fairly dirty and I've done my best to clean it as much as possible. As for the inlet, that was also fairly clean. The whole wasn't clogged at all apart from a thin layer of soot. There was some build up of soot on the channels surrounding the valve. Due to failing light I had to rush the cleaning part but intend to get at it again soon. I ended up spraying what little carb cleaner I had into some rags and just wiped as best I could. Some came off but not it all.
Took it for a test drive, and it does feel slightly smoother, but I can't say I noticed THAT much of a boost, but as I said, the inlet hole wasn't blocked at all so I wasn't really expecting there to be any. Hopefully it may help my MPG rate though!
For anyone thinking about doing it, but being afraid not to.....go for it! I'm probably the least mechanically minded person, but after reading the thread carefully, I was very confident & it really wasn't as hard as you think! Once again....a massive THANK YOU to all on here!
One thing I did notice though....the pipe above the
valve (I think is the main inlet valve)....had a fairly bad
leak. On closer inspection......all three bolts were loose! Would this have caused the leak. I've attached pics of the 'damage'! Also, further down, there was another pipe attached to another big pipe. I noticed that this was held on with masking tape and was leaking! Is this a major pipe?? I'll hopefully manage to pick up one at the local scrappy's!