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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So in my very uneducated ways then I first got my bike I did a little upkeep on it with WD-40 pretty much spraying any mechanical part of the bike to keep it nice and clean/rustfree.

And tonight I read that WD-40 is a big no-no for pretty much everything I sprayed.

What have I done?
 

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~Disc~Golf~
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Brambled said:
So in my very uneducated ways then I first got my bike I did a little upkeep on it with WD-40 pretty much spraying any mechanical part of the bike to keep it nice and clean/rustfree.

And tonight I read that WD-40 is a big no-no for pretty much everything I sprayed.

What have I done?
well, you've degreased everything you've sprayed. (WD-40 is a solvent)

What did you spray? - from there we can assess the damage.
 

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I wouldn't say you have actually damaged anything (unless you sprayed the brake pads). You just need to re-oil and lubricate a few things.
 

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R.I.P. DogFriend
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WD40 ("WD" stands for "water displacement") is primarily a solvent, penetrant, degreaser and water displacement solution. You can use it to free up gummed up parts on your bike, but you should follow that up with a proper lubricant for the long haul. It has lubricating properties in the sense that it is a liquid, but it doesn't stick around very long and that's not good, especially on things like your chain or other spinning parts.

If parts are gummed up, rusted or slightly corroded, WD40 can be useful to get them freed up and it will have a wicking action to help get some proper longer lasting lub into where it needs to go. But if things are not gummed up, rusted or slightly corroded, there's not much point in using WD40 unless you are really in a temporary jam and things are totally dried up with no lube at all present.

For your chain, use a proper bike chain lube and follow the recommended directions for best results. You could do a lot worse than using Tri-Flow and it is readily available, but there are many different products available and some address various conditions better than others (wet, dry, dusty, etc.). Tri-Flow, DumondeTech, Boeshield T-9, Finish Line, Pedros, White Lightning, ProGold ProLink, Rock N Roll & Phil Wood are some of the more popular lube brands that would be better than WD40 to one degree or another.

When applying lube to things like derailleurs, use a less-is-more approach so long as it gets applied right where it needs to go. Use the small tube many come with to get a couple drops right on target rather than a spray. If you wipe away excess in places it doesn't need to be, it will not attract and/or hold as much dirt and dust.
 

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jeffj said:
WD40 ("WD" stands for "water displacement") is primarily a solvent, penetrant, degreaser and water displacement solution. You can use it to free up gummed up parts on your bike, but you should follow that up with a proper lubricant for the long haul. It has lubricating properties in the sense that it is a liquid, but it doesn't stick around very long and that's not good, especially on things like your chain or other spinning parts.

If parts are gummed up, rusted or slightly corroded, WD40 can be useful to get them freed up and it will have a wicking action to help get some proper longer lasting lub into where it needs to go. But if things are not gummed up, rusted or slightly corroded, there's not much point in using WD40 unless you are really in a temporary jam and things are totally dried up with no lube at all present.

For your chain, use a proper bike chain lube and follow the recommended directions for best results. You could do a lot worse than using Tri-Flow and it is readily available, but there are many different products available and some address various conditions better than others (wet, dry, dusty, etc.). Tri-Flow, DumondeTech, Boeshield T-9, Finish Line, Pedros, White Lightning, ProGold ProLink, Rock N Roll & Phil Wood are some of the more popular lube brands that would be better than WD40 to one degree or another.

When applying lube to things like derailleurs, use a less-is-more approach so long as it gets applied right where it needs to go. use the small tube to get a couple drops right on target rather than a spray. If you wipe away excess in places it doesn't need to be, it will not attract and/or hold as much dirt and dust.
+1 on this
 

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Fat-tired Roadie
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Bearings should be greased. Anything that comes in a spray is not going to be heavy enough for that purpose. When I rebuild a bearing, I pack it with grease, and expect to see grease weeping past the seal for the first ride or two. With sealed bearings - just leave them alone. Or clean the outside with a dry rag.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Well I did not spray any bearings or anything with it. Mostly just chain, gears, dereailers, and axles.

Planning on getting some proper bike lube and to go over everything properly.
 

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AndrwSwitch said:
Bearings should be greased. Anything that comes in a spray is not going to be heavy enough for that purpose. When I rebuild a bearing, I pack it with grease, and expect to see grease weeping past the seal for the first ride or two. With sealed bearings - just leave them alone. Or clean the outside with a dry rag.
yes, bearings definitely need greasing....i was thinking of just spraying away the teflon spray to clear the dirt/dust from riding without washing the bike......will it wash away the bearings grease also....currently im only using it on my stanchions/eggbeater/FD/RD only
 

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willrace4food said:
"How harmful is WD-40?"

I wouldn't get any in your mouth, or around any bearings on you bike
Decent advice that I tend to follow, but I remember when WD40 was touted (not by the manufacturer, but by people that used it as such) as a fish 'attractant' when sprayed onto bait. They also claimed it was OK for humans to ingest, at least in small amounts, and I saw a guy do it several times :eek:
 

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jeffj said:
Decent advice that I tend to follow, but I remember when WD40 was touted (not by the manufacturer, but by people that used it as such) as a fish 'attractant' when sprayed onto bait. They also claimed it was OK for humans to ingest, at least in small amounts, and I saw a guy do it several times :eek:
I heard one of the main ingrediants in WD40 is fish oil or something like that. So maybe that's why fish are attracted to it. And WD40 stands for Water Displacement number 40. It was the 40th version of it before they started selling it. I got a whole long e-mail forward one time with all these useless facts about WD40, haha.
 

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Brambled said:
Well I did not spray any bearings or anything with it. Mostly just chain, gears, dereailers, and axles.

Planning on getting some proper bike lube and to go over everything properly.
Re "lube" the chain and a drop of oil on the pivot points of the derailleur as already mentioned and your good to go.

I don't see any harm in wiping the chain rings and cassette etc with WD40 to clean them. YMMV
 

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I use only as a cleaner to de gunk stuff before relubing/greasing.
I've seen it used to put on grips but I have never had success with that.
Its just a wonderful cleaner that makes the front door not squeek .
 

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Before I had a compressor

I used it to displace water when I would wash my bike after a very messy ride and needed to sit overnight. Next morning the bike was clean and dry and without rust. Then I would give the bike of full lube.
 

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WD-40 is not so bad!

I have tried many lubes over the years, and I work in a bike shop, so in theory I "should know better" but WD-40 and a rag arer eally the only things that touch my bike chain anymore.

Most bike lubes are good at lubricating, but they are also great at collecting dirt and grit, which depending on a riders bike cleaning habits, may actually speed up wear (read sandpaper!) At least with the WD-40 my drivetrain is always clean as new, and I can't prove it , but I believe my chain and cassette last longer because of it.

I also use it on derailleur bushings, but I don't let it get any where near any bearings which need grease.

There are worse things you can do than put WD-40 on your chain. And the price is right.

It Is OK to Put WD-40 on Your Chain...Seriously!
 
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