Whenever we deal with mechanical parts and components, they need to be clean to work efficiently. Having clean parts will ensure that each mechanical part will work as it is designated to do. With the best penetrating oils, you have a low-viscosity oil that can flow effortlessly through parts and remove debris like rust and other displaced materials.
Penetrating oils are often misplaced and misused for lubricants, but this is not their main purpose. While they do leave a small trace of oil on the parts, they will evaporate much faster, which means that the items still need some sort of lubricant to work effectively. With so many to choose from, this article is designed to help you find the best penetrating oils.
- Features to Consider in Good Penetrating Oils
- Top 7 Best Penetrating Oils 2020
- Guide to Buying the Best Penetrating Oils
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Final Thoughts
Features to Consider in Good Penetrating Oils
4 Common Types Of Penetrating Oils To Choose From
Before we look at each penetrating oil on its own, you will need to understand the different types. Unfortunately, it is not as easy as choosing milk from the shelf and there are a few different types that have different purposes. To ensure that you do find the right one for your needs. Here are the most common types:
Straight Penetrating Oils:
Made from lubricant based minerals with esters and extreme dispersion additives, these oils are non-emulsify oils that commonly work really fast. They flow through narrow parts and can clean out parts with ease. Some of the main ingredients include sulfur and chlorine, with the added touch of phosphorus also added.
Micro Dispersant Oils:
The Micro Dispersant Oils are some of the most commonly used penetrating oils. They are generally made from a solid base lubricant, but with the added addition of being fire-resistant. This helps a lot when you have to deal with mechanical parts that are exposed to extremely high temperatures. They also serve as a decent lubricant since they take somewhat longer to evaporate. One of the common ingredients includes polytetrafluoroethylene.
Synthetic And Semi-Synthetic Oils:
One of the more affordable options that still serves a great purpose is the penetrating oil with synthetic properties. This means that the main base of the oil is a synthetic compound that can actually stick to the surface of the object much longer. It helps a lot when you are dealing with moving parts that also need some lubricant. Silicone is one of the most common synthetic compounds used as the base for the oils.
Water Soluble Oils:
If you don’t need something that is really tough on your components, you might need an emulsion or water-soluble oil. As the name would suggest, these oils have been diluted heavily and this does translate to a more affordable price. However, the water will also evaporate much faster which does mean that they don’t really offer any lubricant. This can be a bad thing when you work with components near high temperatures.
Having seen the top types of oils available on the market today, you might be eager to see which of them we have selected as the best. We have included a thorough buyer’s guide with some helpful suggestions as well. However, this is what we think of these oils after using a couple of them for penetrating parts.
Top 7 Best Penetrating Oils 2020
One of the features that have made this oil stand out is the ability to go into extremely small spaces. It can penetrate one-millionth of an inch when we are looking at small spaces and this can often not even be seen by the eye. It will also flow rapidly without you need to help it along the way and make it more effective.
One of the benefits is that it does not actually attack the metal on the mechanical parts. The main focus of this oil is displaced materials. It has been shown to remove rust and dissolve things like gum from metal objects in just a couple of minutes. Additionally, the unique chemical structure means that it does not dissolve quickly and provides a decent form of lubrication as well.
Since we often mistake penetrating oils for only being effective on mechanical parts, we might often lose track of some of the other features. This oil has been effectively engineered by top chemical engineers to give you versatility. Not only does it resist heat, but it can also be effective on electrical parts without causing hazards.
Aside from the frozen fittings that make this oil excel, many users have also used it on things like brass or aluminum. This does not damage the molecular structure or the strength of the object, which means that you can use it on many of these parts if you choose to do so. The affinity that is created to the metal will ensure more strength and an additional coating.
One of the unfortunate downsides is the fact that this oil seems to be more on the expensive side of the spectrum. Especially given that you only receive 8 ounces. However, you will only need to use 2 drops of the oil to get some of the most effective results. This can be one of those special oils that you use for things that are really rusted or frozen up.
As we have mentioned, Kroil is one of the leading brands when it comes to producing top quality oils for penetrating purposes. This oil will still work wonders on frozen and rusted objects, allowing you to loosen them all in just a matter of minutes. However, it is available in an aerosol can for much easier application.
Another benefit is the fact that the can does not have extensively high pressure. Yes, having a high-pressure can is really beneficial when you want to spray deeper, but this oil will automatically run deeper into the mechanical parts. The upside is that you won’t need to deal with a mess around the sides.
If we can keep on drawing some comparisons, the Kano Aerokroil Penetrating Oil is also one of the most versatile options that are currently on the market today. You might not understand why you need versatility, but the versatility on this product will enable you to use it for more things than you might have ever thought.
It does not take as long as many of the alternatives that you will come across and this will make life much easier for someone that is in a hurry. The oil will only need a couple of minutes to be effectively set. Additionally, it can be used in chemical, electrical, and mechanical equipment for a deep and effective clean.
Once again, we have the same issue and this product is a little more expensive than some of the others on the market today. The expensive price tag might be a little daunting for many people, but you don’t need to use as much product. If you have something that has been heavily rusted, only a couple of drops could do the job.
Penetrating All Spaces
While this product does have many uses that will make it great, the penetrating oil aspect is one of the most impressive. Much like some of the best products, you only need a couple of drops and you will see how quickly it begins to move and work. In just a couple of minutes, you can see it penetrating deep into smaller areas.
The penetrating aspect does not only stop there and aside from giving you some decent lubrication to work with, but it can also go deep and add some sort of a waterproof film over the products. After most of the grease of the rust has been removed, your mechanical parts will now also be protected from the onset of additional rust.
Conditioning Surface Areas
Often times, you have a wide-open area that can be prone to oxidation and you need something to protect the area from this. The Gibbs Brand Lubricant is widely renowned for reducing the oxidation process by making sure everything is protected. It adds a small layer of protection over these areas that will keep them effectively protected from the elements.
One thing you should keep in mind is that this works more effectively the more you apply it. If you are applying it on a regular basis, you will build up a lot of resistance on the area. I personally try to apply it to these surface areas at least once a week for the best results. Some people still get results with once every other week application.
The product does come with a spray nozzle and this will definitely make the application process a little easier for most people. However, the can also have extremely high pressure. This high pressure might not be beneficial to everyone and it can often leave a mess on the outside of the can. You need to play around with it to find what works.
Corrosion And Rust
The main feature that this oil definitely brings to the table is the dissipation of rust and corrosion on your metal parts. The oil has a unique ability to clean out most of the rust and some of the corrosion directly after the application. Much like the previous oil, it can penetrate extremely small openings for an effective clean.
The oil is also designed to loosen some of the bolts and nuts that you have been struggling with for years to open. The average time will vary depending on the amount of rust or corrosion buildup, but this should not generally take more than a couple of minutes. Since you can spray it on, it is much easier to apply as well.
We have just mentioned the ease of the application and once you have found out how to use it, you will use it much more. The product has a really effective nozzle with a small opening that will ensure you don’t waste any of the product. By only adding a little bit of it to your objects, you will see how easy it can penetrate.
Unfortunately, it does have a downside and this is related to the fumes that are produced when it is used. You might notice that the smell can be a little overbearing, which means you will need to use it in an area with some open spaces. I have also used it indoors, but with some openings left open in the home or basement to help the smell dissipate.
While the oil will work quickly for certain parts, occasionally, you might have something that has been rusted for years. We would recommend leaving it for a couple of hours, or even overnight. One of the benefits is the addition of the lubrication film. This film will ensure that your parts are protected and they work as they should for a longer time.
One of the main features that you get with the WD-40 Multi-Use Product is the ability to protect some of the areas that you use it on. The product will still remove some of the dirt and the grime, but it is also a water-soluble oil that can attack some of the water particles that are found. Since it can remove moisture, it will protect the objects from potential rust buildup.
Additionally, the product dissolves rapidly after it has been applied and this means that you won’t have to deal with a greasy feeling object. It is fire-resistant, giving you more uses and more areas that it can be used on. However, it might not be the best idea to have it too close to some of your electrical appliances.
Easy To Apply
One of the main reasons why it is one of the most effective products is the fact that you can easily apply it. The product comes with a versatile spray nozzle that can be manipulated to different areas. It will easily flow through the can and ensure that you don’t waste the product. Additionally, it does not have as many fumes to deal with.
One of the potential issues might be getting the last bit of the product out of the container. Even though it is really effective, you might find that you have a few issues when it comes to the final bit of the product and this might feel like wasting. However, you can simply tip it over and the rest of the liquid should flow down to the spray nozzle.
It has some of the same basic features that we find in most of these products. It has a small film of lubrication that will effectively be added to the moving parts. However, this might not last very long due to the water evaporating. Additionally, it will easily dissolve the issue you have with any real sticky materials that cause issues.
High Levels Of Solvency
One of the main features of this product is the high levels of solvency that it has. This solvency allows the product to not only get rid of rust and some of the other corrosion issues in just a couple of minutes but also provides a level of lubrication. Since lubrication is really important, you will be killing two birds with one stone.
Additionally, it also has very low surface tension and while some beginners might not really understand the benefit, you will see once you use the product. Since it does not have a massive surface tension, the flow is extremely effective and it should easily penetrate most areas. This helps it a lot when flowing into smaller holes.
Safe On Plastics
It is not every day that you will find a product that is actually safe on plastics. However, the Liquid Wrench L106 Penetrating Oil is one of these products that will not damage the plastic materials. The hydrocarbon fluid and TMP Tri-foliate polyol Ester is combined with carbon dioxide for an effective clean, while still protecting most of the surface.
The only issue that we had with it, is in the use of the product on things like materials. Cloth and wood can be really daunting and this can lead to potential staining, which should not be something that you need to deal with. Since it does work on plastics and PVC, you can actually use it for toys and your bikes to be ready and working effectively.
We have discussed most of the common features and benefits that you can expect with this product. However, it is also one of the more affordable products with a less steep learning curve for beginners. The company had a goal in mind to design a penetrating oil that works specifically for the DIYers among us.
When you think of penetrating oil, the word technology is not something that always comes to mind. However, this product has incorporated many studies to design the perfect lubricant> As we have mentioned, it will still penetrate deep into the areas that you need to clean rust and loosen bolts, but this technology will give you some protective film.
You might think that this technology means that it contains silicone, but this is not the case as the product only contains some of the most common ingredients like carbon dioxide and a corrosion inhibitor. This gives you some additional uses to ensure that the product is working effectively for your needs.
Aside from making sure that everything has been adequately protected, the main function of this oil is to loosen parts. It can be used on most metal surfaces and will not cause any stains or issues. Additionally, you can use it for your tools, which is actually the primary reason for the product being designed.
As you might have seen, the product does have a few great additional benefits that will ensure you get great quality and value for your money. However, it might take a while to actually work and this can be frustrating when you are in a hurry. I would recommend leaving it overnight for the best possible results and effects.
Guide to Buying the Best Penetrating Oils
If you haven’t already made your decision on the best penetrating oils, you might need to understand how we went about selecting them. This took a long time research to ensure that you can find the right one for your needs. While you might have seen the different types, here are a couple of additional features that are also really important:
One of the first things we considered was the viscosity of the oils. The viscosity refers to the overall thickness of the oil and this will have an effect on the penetrating. While you might think that a thicker oil can provide you with more lubrication, you would probably be right and this is the generally accepted theory.
However, is the oil is too thick; it might not flow as rapidly and leave you with a lot of surface resistance? Since you want it to penetrate as deep as possible without any issues, you need to look for a low-viscosity compound. One of these compounds is anything that might be water-soluble and can penetrate deeper.
Many people might forget about looking for the chemicals that make up the oil. Unfortunately, you won’t have one single compound that will create the oil and with so many additives, it can be hard to find one that is actually environmentally friendly. Since most of them have a good dose of carbon dioxide, you will cause some damage to the environment.
Unfortunately, the carbon dioxide inside these oils can have a benefit to the surface areas that they are being used on. Looking for something with a lower carbon dioxide output will definitely offer you a multitude of benefits that could give you some great value for your money. We have tried to select those with a low carbon dioxide component.
Easy To Use
Most of these oils might be designed with a nozzle that looks like it is really easy to use. However, this is not always the case. The nozzle does not tell the whole story. Generally, you will find these oils either in aerosol cans or with a thicker substance that requires you to use it as you would with eardrops on the surfaces.
The aerosol can seem like the easiest and most effective way to get then job done, but since these products also have a high level of pressure, you might occasionally be left with a mess out of the bottle. They might have a lower viscosity, but you will be wasting a lot of the product and these products can be a little expensive.
Aside from the aerosol cans, the alternative has a few benefits and drawbacks. Yes, you will save some product and have more control when you add it by using a few drops, but these drops are not always easy to get out of the can. Brands like Kroil have a unique nozzle that will make it much easier to use without wasting the product.
These oils might be heat resistant, but you can also find penetrating oils that are not heat resistant. While you might think this is a bad thing, those that are not heat resistant also have a place and time to use. If you want to separate hot metals and you have a heat resistant option, you might not be able to do so as the oil will simply evaporate.
Some of the oils that are not heat resistant might not have the same low viscosity, but they also have a few great benefits that include separating hot metals. This is especially true when we consider oils that will be used on electrical components. You don’t want the oil to be affected by the heat too much and still get the job done.
Most penetrating oils are not primarily designed to lubricate the parts that you use it on. In most cases, they will dissipate rust and get rid of corrosion. However, your parts will still be vulnerable to rust and corrosion if you do not take care of them. This is especially true in areas that have a lot of moisture in the air.
Some of the top penetrating oils will create a thick film that will protect the parts from the environment and provide you with a little bit of protection. These can be more expensive and more often than not, they might have a high viscosity level. However, you still need to choose which ones you really need and what you intend to do with it.
We all have a set budget that we need to adhere to and if you are going to use the product a lot, you might be better off with something cheaper. This does depend on the reason you need it and what you need to clean, but looking for something that will meet your budget will ensure you also get some great value for your money.
Most of these oils are between $5 and 30$ and this can seem affordable, but once you use it a lot, you will see the price amount to $100 in no time. It is important to find out what your budget is and to shop around for something that will give you value while remaining affordable.
Which Types Of Surfaces Will Be Best To Use A Penetrating Oil On
Penetrating oils can be used on a wide range of surfaces and once you look at a brand like Kroil, you will see that most of their oils are really versatile. With so many chemical compounds, they can be used on almost anything. However, we have isolated some of the main types of things or tools that you use these oils on:
- Bike Chains
- Power Tools and Air Tools
- Mechanical moving parts
- Electrical Terminals
Frequently Asked Questions
I hope that this article will cover all the questions you might have had about these penetrating oils. However, I did come across a couple of questions that many people still had whilst doing my own research. Since I could not answer all of them, I have decided to take some of the most important questions and hope that you can effectively find the right penetrating oil for your needs:
The Difference Between Lubricant And Penetrating Oils
Most professionals might know the answer, but many beginners can still easily mix up the two. However, there is no reason to get confused as the difference is really simple. A lubricant is designed to keep moving parts from ever getting stuck. The penetrating oil is a little different and it aims to clean parts that are already stuck. As mentioned, some of them might already have a lubricant added as well.
How Flammable Are Penetrating Oils?
Most oils that we buy will also have a flammable rating and this will tell you at which temperature you find the flashpoint of the oil. However, penetrating oils have a much lower flashpoint than some of the other oils we use. This makes them safe and it allows you to use the product on power tools when they are still hot.
Will My Penetrating Oil Prevent Corrosion And Rust?
Not all penetrating oils are good at preventing rust or corrosion. Some of them are only designed for cleaning the rust that has already been accumulated from the part. However, some of the best fluids are a little thicker and they can create a potential film over the product to help combat some of the rust buildups.
Should I Choose A Spray Or A Oil?
This question is one that comes up quite often and many people are left a little confused. The spray sounds easier, but with the high pressure, it might not be as easy to use. It can cause the can to overflow, while also releasing a lot of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. We did mention that you should look for environmentally safe products if possible.
Will Penetrating Oils Stain Or Damage Plastic?
This answer can go both ways and penetrating oils have the ability to get rid of issues, while also having no effect on plastic or PVC. It might depend on the oil, with some of them being rated safe for plastic and PVC components, while others are not so safe. You will need to look at the instructions, as things like materials and wooden elements might also be stained when you do use these products.
By now, you should know everything there is to know about penetrating oils and you will also find that the products we have selected are extremely well regarded. All of them have served a great purpose to penetrate deep into objects or occasionally just add some sort of protection for the elements that nature throws at us.
Let us know in the comment section if you have any more questions and if we might have missed any other penetrating oils. We would love to see which of them you consider to be the best penetrating oils on the market today.