We use many different types of grease and industrial lubricants around our houses. You can find them on door hinges, garage doors, electrical components, cars, and heavy-duty appliances. When should you use each one? Grease lubricants? Spray lubricants? Read this article and find out.
White Lithium Grease
The composition of grease is a mixture of soap blended with vegetable or mineral oil. A trait of grease is that it has a high level of gooeyness when used on surfaces.
Lithium-based lubricants are used in cars and machinery in general. It’s not advisable to use them on plastic parts. As lithium is based on petroleum, it tends to speed up rubber and plastic components decay. Lithium-based grease can withstand high temperatures and are perfect for cars, heavy machinery, and guns.
White lithium grease repels water and is a prevalent option for not-so-demanding parts. It includes door hinges and sunroof sliding panels. Additionally, it helps to prevent corrosion and rust. Although, beware of the amount you use because it collects dust and dirt, which can defeat its purpose. Consider using a dry lubricant if you don’t want it to attract dust.
The silicone grease composition, waterproof, is produced by mixing silicone oil with a thickening agent, namely amorphous fumed silica. Combining these two, the grease comes out as a white coloured gluey paste. Specialised lubricants are produced from fluorinated silicones.
If you need a lubricant that won’t damage plastic and rubber parts, it’s better to go for a silicone lubricant. You can usually find it in two different forms: silicone grease and silicone spray. Those lubes work well on every surface, but they can’t stand high temperatures; they are not advisable for car parts that deal with extreme temperatures.
They are water-resistant and, in some formulations, non-toxic. A silicone lube stays put even when submerged. For those reasons, they’re commonly used for plumbing and dental tools. Silicone lubricants have a wide range of applications, from car doors to condoms. Yet, when it comes to private purposes, many will prefer water-based lubes.
What about oil
Vegetable oil or penetrating oil can free rusty parts, like bolts and screws. It’s called penetrating oil for its ability to penetrate narrow gaps between parts. Yet, they should not be used as a multi-purpose lube or to prevent corrosion. It’s based on a pretty volatile mixture, which means most of it will evaporate fast. Its volatility can also be dangerous if the product is mishandled.
When high temperatures and water ingestion are not issues, white lithium and silicone greases can be used for the same thing: door hinges of cars, garages, etc. Both tend to collect dust and dirt, so be careful during application.
Penetrating oil should not be confused with those lubes mentioned above. This kind of lubricant is best for releasing parts stuck by rust or dust. Getting the right lube is crucial for the best performance and longer life of the regions you applied it to.
Bisley International is a leading supplier of Lithium Grease & Lubricant Additives.