How to lubricate control arm bushings and other rubber components
Over time, control arm bushings and other rubber suspension components can deteriorate, crack and squeak. Lubricating the parts can eliminate the noise, but you must choose the lubricant wisely. Petroleum-based lubricants are NOT compatible with rubber. They will cause the rubber to swell and deteriorate quickly. Here’s a listing of products you can use to lubricate control arm bushings and which products to avoid.
Rubber safe lubricants for control are bushings and other rubber components
Use Spray silicone to lubricate rubber
Stick with a major brand like Liquid Wrench Silicone, PB Blaster Silicone or WD-40 SPECIALIST Silicone Spray. The off brands are mostly solvent and propellant, while the major brands contain up to 40% silicone.
Spray silicone is safe to use on all rubber components including control arm bushings and door weather-strip foam.
The one downside to spray silicone is that it attracts dust and dirt.
How to apply spray silicone to door weather-stripping
Since the solvent can sometimes cause the foam weather-stripping to swell, apply the silicone spray to a rag. Let the solvent evaporate. Then wipe the silicone onto the foam weatherstripping.
Use Dry Teflon lube to lubricate rubber
Find dry Teflon lube in the hardware/tool section at any home center store. Dry Teflon lube goes on wet. But once the solvent evaporates, it leaves behind a dry Teflon powder that lubricates rubber components. Use it on control arm bushings and door weather-stripping.
Use RuGlyde to lubricate rubber
RuGlyde is typically used as a tire mounting lubricant. Tire shops use it to lubricate the tire bead so to mounts to the wheel easily. It is compatible with rubber and eliminates rubber squeal in bushings and grommets. It can also be used to restore a new look to floormats, tires and upholstery
Lubricants that are NOT rubber safe
Motor oil will cause rubber components to swell, soften and disintegrate.
WD-40 is a petroleum-based lubricant. According to the WD-4o MSDS, it contains up to 35% petroleum base oil along with Aliphatic hydrocarbons. It should never be used on rubber components.
©, 2020 Rick Muscoplat
Posted on by Rick Muscoplat