Lubricate Your Vehicle Doors and Hinges

If you are you suffering from annoying squeaks whenever you open vehicle door, bonnet, fuel filler cap or boot, the problem can be resolved by spending a few minutes a couple of times each  year. All you need are a variety of inexpensive lubricants, which will also come in handy for every day household problems as well.

Lubricating car picture
White lithium grease is good for metal-to-metal joints like hinges and latches, which need a clinging grease to repel water and hold up under harsh conditions. WD-40 is for light-duty lubrication and freeing up sticking or partially rusted hinges and catches. Silicone spray is great for lubricating nylon, plastic and metal when only a thin layer of lubricant is necessary. And because silicone dries, it won’t get clothing greasy. Graphite lubricant is the right choice for locks—it won’t attract dirt to fine lock mechanisms like oil would.

Door Locks

We tend to forget about our door locks until the key breaks off in the cylinder. Keep these delicate mechanisms moving freely with a blast of dry graphite powder. You may need to push the dust protector flap back slightly with a small metal nail file to get at the lock. A quick pump of the tube will dispense enough graphite. Move the lock cylinder with your key several times to work the graphite into the mechanism. Do this to your boot lock as well.

Fuel Filler Cap

Your fuel filler cap really takes some abuse, especially in the winter months when the roads are being salted. Give it a squirt of WD-40 at regular intervals to keep it from rusting. Wipe away any excess to keep it from dripping onto your vehicles bodywork.

Bonnet Catch

Wipe the grime and dirt away with a clean cloth. Try to get any bits of grit that may be embedded in the existing grease. If you see rusted or stuck parts, give the catch a spray of WD-40, then move the mechanism several times. Wipe it again and give it a liberal coating of white lithium grease.

Bonnet Hinges

Wipe the hinge area with a clean rag and spray it with white lithium grease or a few drops of ordinary motor oil. Move the hinge several times to work the grease into the hinge. Be sure to get it into both sides of each hinge. Wipe away the excess to keep it from collecting debris.

Boot Hinges

Lubricate your boot hinges using the same method you used for the bonnet hinge. Don’t lubricate the gas struts that slow the bonnet movement as you could damage them.

Door Hinges

If the door squeaks every time you open it, the hinges could be bound by corrosion. If so, squirt the hinges with WD-40 to free them, and move the door several times to work in the lubricant. Once the hinges are in working condition, just squirt them with white lithium grease or motor oil, operate the door several times and then wipe any excess away. Check the door catch for corrosion. Many door catches now have a nonmetallic composite mechanism, which should be lubricated with a shot of silicone spray.