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Thread: vaseline on battery terminal posts good idea?

  1. #1 vaseline on battery terminal posts good idea? 
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    is it a good idea to put vaseline on battery terminal posts to prevent corrosion?

    what can i use to prevent the screws on my license plates to rust? WD40? or vaseline?

    if anyone has any more simple and easy tips like this, i would like to know them.

    thanks.
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  2. #2  
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    that's a good idea. i use that all the time.

    i'd imagine using WD40 on those screws would be fine. WD40 is a water-repellant.
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    I prefer a "jelly" instead simply because it lasts longer, but if you keep up on your maintanance, then either of those things are ok.
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    I could think of better uses for the vaseline
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    Using vaseline would work on the bettery terminals would work.
    Use wd40 on the license plate would work great because it wont hurt you paint, unless you know the vaseline wont react with your paint or parts.
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    Use stainless screws.
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    Quote Originally Posted by carmaster
    Use stainless screws.
    Corrosion Stop. Make sure you don't pick up the primer paint variant like I did though.
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  8. #8  
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    Quote Originally Posted by sk3k
    is it a good idea to put vaseline on battery terminal posts to prevent corrosion?
    Not really.

    Underhood temperatures will cause the petroleum jelly to liquify, and run down between the cable and the terminal - effectively creating an insulating barrier.

    I've cleaned up several of these well-intentioned mistakes that were discovered when a car would not start.

    There is a battery terminal spray coating specifically formulated for the job, and available for a couple of bucks at the auto parts retail stores like Pep Boys, Auto Zone, etc.

    THAT is the correct product to use.

    The BEST thing I have found to reduce cable/terminal corrosion is the little felt washers that slip over the battery post before you place the cable on.

    Corrosion comes from acid vapors leaking past the seal between the post and the top of the battery. The oiled, felt washers help to keep these vapors from going up between the cable terminal and the battery post.



    Quote Originally Posted by sk3k
    what can i use to prevent the screws on my license plates to rust? WD40? or vaseline?
    WD-40 will evaporate within one week's time.

    Again, use the correct product - in this case, anti-seize.



    Quote Originally Posted by sk3k
    if anyone has any more simple and easy tips like this, i would like to know them.
    You really don't need any more "....simple and easy tips like this...."

    There are any number of *correct* products to use on most automotive maintenance procedures.
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  9. #9  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Canuck
    Not really.

    Underhood temperatures will cause the petroleum jelly to liquify, and run down between the cable and the terminal - effectively creating an insulating barrier.

    I've cleaned up several of these well-intentioned mistakes that were discovered when a car would not start.

    There is a battery terminal spray coating specifically formulated for the job, and available for a couple of bucks at the auto parts retail stores like Pep Boys, Auto Zone, etc.

    THAT is the correct product to use.

    The BEST thing I have found to reduce cable/terminal corrosion is the little felt washers that slip over the battery post before you place the cable on.

    Corrosion comes from acid vapors leaking past the seal between the post and the top of the battery. The oiled, felt washers help to keep these vapors from going up between the cable terminal and the battery post.





    WD-40 will evaporate within one week's time.

    Again, use the correct product - in this case, anti-seize.





    You really don't need any more "....simple and easy tips like this...."

    There are any number of *correct* products to use on most automotive maintenance procedures.
    You sound pretty confident
    For some reason maintenance and repair books and user's manuals were recommending vaseline for battery terminals during the most part of the previous century. Were all of them wrong? And, I have to admit this sin, I've been using it myself for more than 30 years. And never had a problem mentioned. In a region with up to 6 months a year freezing temperatures. Any explanation?
    Misha
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  10. #10  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Misha
    You sound pretty confident
    For some reason maintenance and repair books and user's manuals were recommending vaseline for battery terminals during the most part of the previous century. Were all of them wrong? And, I have to admit this sin, I've been using it myself for more than 30 years. And never had a problem mentioned. In a region with up to 6 months a year freezing temperatures. Any explanation?

    My experience comes from working in the field - often doing several tune-ups per day for a number of years in the era of breaker point ignition where adjustments were critical - unlike today's 50KV "flamethrower" ignitions that start and run under the worst conditions and neglect.

    One of the common procedures in ANY good tune-up includes the cleaning of the battery terminals.

    Given the number of tune-ups I have done in my time, I have cleaned - and observed - literally thousands of battery terminal connections.....in ALL conditions.


    Most DIY maintenance books have been written by people who have more writing skills - and, more importantly, the ability to "sell" the book to a publisher - than hands-on automotive service and repair skills.

    Some of the best technicians would be hard-pressed to explain what they do in writing......which could easily explain why most of them are busy working on cars - not writing about them.

    It's just like the concept of adding weight to the trunk of a RWD for "winter traction."

    One writer writes it, everybody else treats it as gospel, and repeats it - even though it has been shown that any weight placed behind the axle creates a pendulum effect which actually causes cars to spin out on slippery roads.....effectively making the car more dangerous in snowy conditions!

    An opinion was solicited, and I gave mine - based on more than 40 years of professional experience as a technician and 10 years experience as a vocational automotive technician instructor.

    Nobody - including you - has been forced into accepting my opinions.

    You also gave your opinion.

    Your experience has been different, and that's fine. I have no explanation for it, and really couldn't care less.

    If you believe petroleum jelly works for you, then, by all means, continue to use it.

    Some people still believe in and use methanol or ethanol-based "dry gas" - even though most gasoline - especially in the winter climates - is now 10 percent alcohol as it exits the pump nozzle.

    I am sure your opinion will be considered by the OP.....

    ....but, given the number of blackened battery connections I have observed with ANY sort of grease smeared on the connection, I would not do it to my personal car OR a customer's car for the reasons I originally stated.

    You, on the other hand, WOULD apparently continue to do it.....which provides the OP with more than one opinion to consider.
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