Lubricating Hinges

Lubricating Hinges, Pedals, And Locks: A Complete Guide

Are strange groans and squeaks in your car pestering you? In most cases, you need to focus on lubricating hinges, pedals, and locks.

Nothing beats a quiet, comfortable ride. So here are some tips on how to lubricate your car’s hinges, pedals, and locks. It only takes a few minutes.

Once you’re done, you’ll have flashbacks to the time your car was new!

What You Need

Lubricating hinges, pedals, and locks does not consume too much time. Usually, the job is doable within ten to twenty minutes. Additionally, you do not need too many supplies either besides some affordable lubricants.

You will be able to take care of all lubrications with the items below.

  • White lithium grease: Ideal for metal-to-metal joints
  • WD-40: Suitable for light-duty usage
  • Silicone spray: Excellent for nylon and plastic lubrication
  • Graphite lubricant: Best for locks and similar mechanisms
  • Motor oil or engine oil

It is advisable to clean as well as lubricate all moving parts from time to time.

It’s best to check the accelerator cable for stiffness too. You’ll have a good opportunity to check such aspects when you are lubricating hinges, pedals, and locks.

You may also want to scout out any areas needing dielectric grease. 

As for door hinges, pay more attention to door hinges than hood or trunk hinges since they have more usage.


Lubricating Hinges and Latches

First, you need to check the free movement of your car doors, hood, and trunk hinges. Usually, these require occasional lubrication.

Some car hinges have hollow steel pins with plastic caps at the top and the bottom. So, with the help of a screwdriver, you can take off the top and load the pin with gear oil. A rear-axle oil is the most suitable option for this.

Make sure you tightly replace the top of the pin.

Car Door Hinges

If your car door makes a squeaking sound whenever you open or close it, you could be dealing with corrosion.

To free your car door hinges, apply some WD-40 to them. Then, move the door several times to work the lubricant in.

After that, use white lithium grease or motor oil for smoothness. Once again, move the door a few times and then wipe any excess away. It is a crucial measure to take when lubricating hinges, pedals, and locks. If you leave excess grease in place, then it will attract and collect debris. It will become counter-productive.

Move onto the car door latches, checking the mechanism for corrosion. Newer cars come with non-metallic composite mechanisms, which you can lubricate with silicone spray.

Hood Hinges and Latch

Before you start lubricating, wipe the area of the hinges with a clean cloth. Then, spray it with white lithium grease. Alternatively, you can use a few drops of standard motor oil.

By now, you know that it is important to work the grease into the hinges by moving the hinge a few times. Then, make sure you apply the lubricant to both sides of the hood hinge.

Once you have worked it in, wipe away any extra grease.

For the hood latch, start with cleaning the dirt and grime with a clean cloth. Try to remove little dust particles or grains of sand that may be stuck within the existing grease.

If you notice any rusty or jammed parts, use the best rust converter or spray some WD-40 onto the latch. After that, move the element several times and liberally coat it with white lithium grease.


Trunk Hinges

When lubricating trunk hinges, follow the same technique you used for the hinges of the hood.

Keep in mind that you must not lubricate the gas struts of the trunk. Lubrication could ruin the gas struts and obstruct their ability to make the trunk movement steady and slow.

Taking Care of Pedals

Typically, clutch and brake pedals have a pendant action. The pivoting parts are above them and behind the dashboard. You may need a flashlight to see these.

You do not need to oil or lubricate pedals with nylon bushes.

On the other hand, pedals swinging on steel rods require a frequent oil injection at the pivots. That is because their surfaces of contact also need oiling.

Use clean engine oil to lubricate the metal-on-metal points. You can use white lithium grease too.

Before lubricating the pedals, place an old mat or some newspaper under them to catch any drips. Use a plain rag to wipe off the excess. Apply some methylated spirit to the cloth to clean the oil dripping onto pedal rubbers.

Does your car have its accelerator pedal pivoted at the floor? If so, lift the carpet to avoid staining it and then oil the metal hinge with engine oil. Apply the lubricant inside the tube if the pedal is fixed to a shaft operating via a metal tube.

Another kind of accelerator pedal is the organ pedal that has its hinges connected to the floor. The pedal functions like a standard pendant linkage.

If your car has such an arrangement, apply engine oil or white lithium grease to the metal-to-metal links.

Rubber hinges do not require oiling. However, make sure you keep them clean and free from dust and sand.

Lubricating Other Locks

You have already read about lubricating the latches and locks present on car doors and the hood. In addition to those measures, you can apply some petroleum jelly to them.

Lather petroleum jelly onto the metal-on-metal parts of the striker assembly as well. Make sure you wipe off any surplus amounts.

Keep in mind that you must not apply oil or petroleum jelly onto nylon striker assemblies. For such cases, use silicone spray.

Keyholes also require lubrication but do not use greasy materials on them. These lubricants attract and accumulate dirt and dust. In addition, it hampers the free movement of the tumblers.

You can use graphite powder on your key to lubricate the lock.

To Sum Up

Your car is critical to your daily life, often experiencing lots of wear and tear. Therefore, it is necessary to pay attention to its maintenance, especially the tiny details. Lubricating hinges, pedals, and locks are intrinsic to a comfortable driving experience.

Proper lubrication of moving parts also adds to the longevity of your vehicle. Moreover, you are bound to focus better while driving if no squeaks and groans are hounding you!

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