Last Wednesday I purchased a 2008 H3 Hummer Alpha. I didn’t want to purchase another H3, but being able to tow my travel trailer dictated otherwise. As a skydiver by trade, I follow the warm weather to maximize my earnings. Only I had a problem. I wasn’t giving up my Luxury Package. I wasn’t giving up my Adventure Package. And I had to have the V8. Which meant I was looking for one of the most desirable true off-road SUV with a V8 engine from the factory.
Let me back up a bit here. The factory H3 Hummer was typically equipped with a 3.7L I5 engine. I5 means that the engine is an inline 5 cylinder engine, similar design to the straight 6 engines in those older Cherokees and Wranglers. The I5 engine is only rated for 242hp and 242 lbf⋅ft. Whereas the Alpha 5.3L V8 is 300hp and 320 lbf⋅ft. While 58hp and 78 lbf⋅ft doesn’t sound like much, but I certainly feel a lot more power from it.
Dishearteningly, I will have to cannibalize my old H3 of most of the aftermarket parts that I’ve bolted one on it. For example, I not willing to part with the original Schwarttzy.com Rock Sliders. But for the time being, I’ve only begun to deep clean the Alpha and I’ve started with stripping the interior.
I removed the entire interior so that I could pull out the carpet and properly clean the carpet. At first, power washing the carpet sounded a bit crazy to me. However, after watching a bunch of videos on YouTube I decided that I would give it a try. I started off clean the carpet with high-pressure soapy water and was impressed how much dirt water was flowing off of the carpet. I finish washing it with high-pressure water and was stunned at how well it worked out. After cleaning the carpet I hung it up on dry on two lines floating it in the air for nearly 24 hours which work great.
While the interior was drying I took this time to clean the leather. I purchase this interior cleaner that was okay to use on leather and a soft synthetic brush. Again, using a brush on leather didn’t make sense to me. However, the results of using a cleaning agent and a brush on the leather were simply amazing. Especially after cleaing it I used a leather treatment on the seats after they had dried. My variable speed polisher with a waxing pad made short work of rubbing that leather treatment into the seats.
Next up, I’ll finish cleaning the interior. I be tightening the torsion bar bolts on both sides to lift the H3 Hummer front end nearly 2 inches, install extend shackles for an additional 1.25 inches in the rear, and get an alignment to fix the steering geometry after tightening the torsion bar bolts.