Walnut Blasting: What Is It And Why Do We Need It?

What Is Walnut Blasting

If you have landed on this page, then either ‘walnut blasting‘ is a new phrase to you, or you’ve heard of it before and kind-of know what it is. So lets dive in and see what it’s all about.

In short, walnut blasting is a procedure in which fine grains of walnut shell are blasted at high speed to remove carbon build up from inlet tract and inlet valves.

From the short brief above, it’s pretty clear that it’s not a procedure that is usually performed at home. If this is something you need doing to your vehicle, then it’s probably best to seek a professional. That aside, lets look at some other questions you may have on walnut blasting.

How To Tell If I Need Walnut Blasting?

In most cases, your car will probably let you know if it has ran into some issues. Apart from the usual engine light showing up, you may also experience one or two of these:

  • Engine misfiring
  • Declining fuel economy
  • Throttle response issues
  • Lack of engine power

If you are having any of the issues above, then the best thing you can do is to get your vehicle checked out by a professional.

Additional note: If your an owner of a BMW N54 engine then it’s more prone for this to happen for you, so keep on the lookout for these symptoms. I had to seek a BMW walnut blasting services for my E82 1 Series M Coupe. See our section below on BMW Walnut Blasting And Your N54 for more information.

E82 1 Series M Coupe

How Much Does It Cost To Walnut Blast A Car?

One thing we can say for certain on this, is that it’s not cheap, especially if it’s done professionally and correctly. I understand that in some cases, it’s a procedure that needs doing. However on a personal level, it’s always hard to justify the cost of something like this as it’s not like splashing out on a set of shiny new wheels for instance (something you can actually see and other people can admire).

So it’s worth mentioning, whether it’s cheap or not is for you to decide!

We have seen a walnut blasting range from $300 to $600 dollars, depending on the make and model of you vehicle and how bad of a condition it’s in. As always, be sure to get some quotes to compare to make sure you are getting the best service and bang for your buck.

Is Walnut Blasting Safe?

Walnut blasting is the safest way to remove carbon from the inlet valves. The procedure blasts fine grains of walnut shell onto your valves at high speed, so your vehicle will not be harmed as this will not effect the construction of the valves.

Here’s a fancy video on how its done from the guys over at bmwexcluservice.com:

Here’s a longer more in depth video on exactly how the procedure is done. Very interesting stuff:

BMW Walnut Blasting And Your N54

N54 bmw engine before and after walnut blasting

If you do have this engine and were to speak to BMW about maintenance, one of the things they would say it to walnut blast your engine every 30,000 miles to keep it running at it’s best.

The reason his happens is because in this engine, the fuel is injected directly into the cylinder causing oil and carbon to be collected on the valve.

Additional note: If your into tuning, then it’s definitely something you should look into before you take it on your next dyno run.

Can I Prevent The Build Up From Happening?

Unfortunately there is nothing you can do to prevent this from happening. There are something’s you can do to postpone the build it, but in all honesty it’s just not worth it.


I'm Scott, a BMW enthusiast and many time owner of these wonderful machines. I'm here to document my experiences with BMW's over the years and hopefully help people out along the way.

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