Leaf springs play an essential role in your car’s suspension system. Therefore, they should be maintained regularly so that they can function optimally. One way you can maintain leaf springs is through lubrication.
Lubricating a leaf spring minimizes the friction that can lead to wear. Also, lubrication prevents the squeaking of leaf springs. Many lubricants can be used on leaf springs.
One of the most popular options is white lithium grease. In this post, we will discuss whether it’s okay to use white lithium grease on leaf springs, its effectiveness, its drawbacks, and additional information.
Table of Contents
- Is White Lithium Grease a Suitable Lubricant for Leaf Springs?
- What is White Lithium Grease?
- Are There Any Drawbacks to Using White Lithium Grease on Leaf Springs?
- What’s Better than White Lithium Grease?
- Using White Lithium Grease vs Cleaning Leaf Springs
- How Long Can White Lithium Grease Last on Leaf Springs?
- Is White Lithium Grease the Only Fix for Squeaky Leaf Springs?
- What’s So Special about White Lithium Grease?
- How to Spray White Lithium Grease on Leaf Springs?
- Will White Lithium Grease Damage Leaf Springs?
- Should You Drive with a Squeaky Leaf Spring?
- Can White Lithium Grease Be Used on Other Suspension Parts?
Is White Lithium Grease a Suitable Lubricant for Leaf Springs?
Many experts in the auto industry use white lithium grease to lubricate their vehicle suspension including leaf springs.
Even though modern vehicles don’t require oil lubrication, white lithium grease can eliminate squeaking produced by leaf springs. Therefore, white lithium grease is suitable for use on leaf springs.
Please note that there are many types of lubricants, including those made out of silicone. The lubricant you should use on your leaf springs will depend on preferences and previous experiences.
What is White Lithium Grease?
Before going much further with our review on whether you can use white lithium grease on leaf springs, we need to introduce this lubricant.
White lithium grease is a heavy-duty lubricant that can be used on a wide range of surfaces. It is available in a spray can, which makes the application pretty straightforward. White lithium grease is an excellent lubricant for metal-to-metal applications such as leaf springs.
Lithium, the key ingredient, acts as a thickener that holds the oil in place while releasing small amounts when needed. Many brands make white lithium grease. WD40 is a good example.
Some of the key properties of white lithium grease are that its water resistant and can withstand temperatures up to 130 degrees Celsius. It offers long-term lubrication and is highly viscous, meaning it will not run.
Are There Any Drawbacks to Using White Lithium Grease on Leaf Springs?
White lithium grease on leaf springs can eliminate squeaks and annoying sounds since it’s a great lubricant. However, one main drawback of using this lubricant is that it attracts more dust.
Considering where leaf springs are located, they are exposed to a lot of dirt daily. The white lithium grease formula is designed to attract dust. When that happens, you will only benefit from a temporary fix to your squeaky leaf springs.
What’s Better than White Lithium Grease?
Even though white lithium grease is effective in dealing with squeaky leaf springs, the fact that it attracts dust disqualifies it as the best solution.
If you want an alternative that won’t attract dust, kindly go for dry lube. One of the perks of using dry lube is that they do not attract dust or dirt. That means it will lubricate your leaf springs, and you will never have to worry about dust interfering.
Using White Lithium Grease vs Cleaning Leaf Springs
If you often drive on muddy or sandy roads, your leaf springs can become squeaky over time. That’s because of the sand and dried mud particles.
To deal with this squeakiness, some car owners recommend cleaning the leaf springs. Others will tell you to spray them with some white lithium grease. Both options play a critical role; instead of comparing them, they should be used together.
You can’t spray white lithium grease on a dirty leaf spring. First, it must be cleaned thoroughly. You can use a pressure washer and let it dry. If you are in a hurry, you can use a pressurized air sprayer and apply the white lithium grease.
When you just clean the leaf springs and fail to lubricate them, they will get dirty. This is why they should be cleaned and lubricated. Unfortunately, white lithium grease attracts more dust which isn’t ideal for your leaf springs.
How Long Can White Lithium Grease Last on Leaf Springs?
That depends on the type of terrain you frequently drive your car in. If you are an off-roader, white lithium grease will have attracted and bonded to a lot of dust within three months.
You will only get temporary relief from white lithium grease if you are using it to deal with a squeaky leaf spring. It’s advisable to use a lubricant that repels instead of attracts dust. That will ensure you get a permanent solution for squeaky leaf springs.
Is White Lithium Grease the Only Fix for Squeaky Leaf Springs?
Besides squeaks caused by friction in the leaf springs, there are two other causes of noisy leaf springs. The first culprit is shackle bolts that have been tightened too tight. That can be avoided by gently screwing the bolts without tightening them.
The other cause is loose U-bolts. The opposite of the shackle bolt. This needs to be firmly tightened, and you will have gotten rid of any squeaks.
If squeaks are still being produced and you have correctly tightened the shackle bolts, and U-bolts, and lubricated, then the squeaks are coming from elsewhere.
You need to understand that the leaf springs aren’t the only mechanical part that can produce squeaks. Also, there are many lubricants on the market. Deciding to use white lithium grease is more of a personal decision. You can use silicone or other alternatives.
What’s So Special about White Lithium Grease?
People use white lithium grease on leaf springs for a couple of reasons. The first is because of its lubricating properties.
White lithium grease will lubricate and prevent any squeaks on your leaf springs that are being produced when the metals rub against one another.
The other reason you should use white lithium grease is its ability to penetrate crevices in the leaf springs. When sprayed, it flows into hard-to-reach areas and lubricates those parts.
Besides the above, white lithium grease prevents rust and creates a protective coating that prolongs the life of your leaf springs.
Unfortunately, white lithium grease attracts dust. If it didn’t, it would be the best lubricant for your leaf springs.
How to Spray White Lithium Grease on Leaf Springs?
Most white lithium grease products are sold in an aerosol spray can. The perk of storing such a liquid in a spray can is that it makes application relatively easy. As you can already anticipate, spraying white lithium grease on leaf springs is relatively easy.
The first step is to clean the dirt and dust on the leaf springs. You don’t need to look closely to see how dirty leaf springs are. Even though a good number of people skip this step and spray the white lithium grease directly. That’s not advisable.
Cleaning is crucial as it makes the work of the white lithium grease much easier. To kick things off, begin by blasting the dirty leaf springs with a pressure washer. Let it dry, and then proceed to spray the white lithium grease.
You don’t need to take apart the leaf spring. Get under your truck, locate the leaf springs, and start spraying. Don’t worry about hard-to-reach areas.
Thanks to the white lithium grease formula, it will penetrate any crevices and lubricate. After spraying the white lithium grease, give it some time to settle and then you can test and check whether you can hear some squeaking.
Will White Lithium Grease Damage Leaf Springs?
Understandably, as a car owner, you are reluctant about what products you should or shouldn’t use. You don’t have to worry about white lithium grease damaging or negatively affecting your leaf springs.
On the contrary, white lithium grease does the exact opposite. It lubricates the leaf springs for better performance and also protects against corrosion. You, therefore, don’t have to be afraid of spraying white lithium grease on your leaf springs.
Should You Drive with a Squeaky Leaf Spring?
Squeaky leaf springs can be very annoying to both drivers and passengers. But besides being annoying, squeaks can signal a more serious problem. It’s why they have to be dealt with as soon as possible.
A squeaky leaf spring could be due to excess wear. If you ignore the squeak, the wear can spread to other parts of the suspension, leading to expensive repairs.
It’s always important to check the source of the squeak on your springs. If it’s due to friction, lubricants such as white lithium grease can help. If it’s the bolts that need tightening, please do that. It’s in your best interest that you should fix squeaky leaf springs.
Can White Lithium Grease Be Used on Other Suspension Parts?
Your leaf springs aren’t the only part that can benefit from white lithium grease. Other parts of your suspension can also be lubricated using white lithium grease. The steering system can also be lubricated with white lithium grease.
Since this lubricant has a wide range of applications, you should always do more research before using it on a car part.