I cleaned the hinges of my doors and tailgate, the grease had attracted all sorts of dirt and turned black, tar-like and abrasive (metal shiny when I wiped the stuff off). I used a toothbrush, WD-40 and then Simplegreen and now the hinges are clean. If I want to keep them that way rather than repacking with white lithium or chassis grease, is there a clean lubricant I can use? One of the dry lubes? Silicone spray?

  • 1
    Powdered Graphite Lubricant would do the job without any mess.
    – jujiro
    Commented Dec 29, 2016 at 13:55
  • Paraffin wax. Or a crayon. Might have to take the hinges apart to apply though.
    – Steve
    Commented Dec 29, 2016 at 14:35
  • Tried Silicone - so far so good. Commented Jan 3, 2017 at 20:37

5 Answers 5


Great question. My preference is silicone spray, as you suggested. I'm pretty sure this one is the one I usually get for this kind of job. Apparently I'm not the only person who thinks this is a good idea, either: Home Repair Central says,

The two best choices are a silicone spray or white lithium grease. My preference it the silicone spray. It is colorless and can be used sparingly. You may have to use it more often than grease, but it is less messy and a little easier to use. Purchase a spray can of silicone spray, one that is suitable for door hardware. It should have one of those long red tubes taped to the side of the can.

Saves on mess; just be aware that you may have to apply it more regularly.

  • 2
    Silicone spray works great on rubber-metal/plastic-metal interfaces as well
    – Zaid
    Commented Dec 29, 2016 at 3:56
  • Silicone spray will attract dust, as will silicone grease. Lithium grease is usual for doors. If you have huge dollars you can use DuPont Krytox flourinated grease.
    – mckenzm
    Commented Dec 30, 2016 at 2:15
  • 2
    Or preferably fluorinated. Adding flour makes a rather poor lubricant. Commented Dec 30, 2016 at 4:55

My weapon of choice for such a job is something like WD-40's White Lithium Grease:

WD-40 White Lithium Grease
(source: wd40specialist.com)


Powdered Graphite Lubricant would do the job without any mess.

  • You have a good sense of humour! Commented Oct 30, 2020 at 8:45

Try 3 in 1 oil, the same for barber shears, sewing machines and door hinges.


Cooking oil. Vegetable, Canola, Olive Oil, etc. ..... I've been told wd-40 was originally introduced as a food product similar to Crisco-Style Non-Stick Cooking Pan-Spray but it didn't sell well,so they begun to market it for the use it is now known for, door hinges, seized bolts, etc.

  • "wd-40 was originally introduced as a food product" uh, what? WD-40 means "Water Displacement, 40th Formula". It was never meant to be a food product. Besides that it tastes terrible. Commented Dec 29, 2016 at 19:26
  • Aside from the unholy terror of consuming WD-40, I would suggest with the weight of a door or tailgate is too much for the light grease of WD-40. Also, reading the original question, the OP knows it's main use is a degreaser, not a grease itself.
    – Sidney
    Commented Dec 29, 2016 at 19:30
  • 3
    WD-40 was originally created as a cleaner for aircraft flight surfaces. The WD does stand for Water Displacement and it works great as such, meaning on an aircraft wing it would allow any water deposited there to come off of it very easily. It was never meant to be, nor was it ever created as a food product. Commented Dec 29, 2016 at 20:44
  • @Sidney WD-40 works amazing for a door. I've used it several times and it stops any squeak or creak. Never judge the power of a liquid by it's viscosity.
    – DrZoo
    Commented Dec 29, 2016 at 22:59
  • en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WD-40 Commented Jan 14, 2021 at 7:15

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