What kind of grease to use for Fishing reels (Complete Guide)

what kind of grease for fishing reels
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What Kind of Grease for Fishing Reels is the Best Lubricants?

When did you last undertake maintenance for your fishing reels? How frequently should you clean and grease your fishing reels? What kind of spinning reel grease should you use? Are you sure you did it properly? If you have been wondering about these and more questions, you are at the right place.

The condition of fishing reels is crucial to your fishing experience.

It is a component with moving parts, so every little maintenance you can get in goes a long way in preventing damage and poor performance.

This guide seeks to answer the most vital questions on taking care of your fishing reels.

There are instructions to follow when lubricating spinning reels and the kind of fishing grease and oil to use, among other things. We also give you tips on how to pick the right greasing oil depending on your reel ad drag washers.

If you are in A hurry! check the below Quick Summary of Our Favorite Picks of spinning reel lubricants

Quick Comparison

Preview
Best Choice
Ardent Reel Care 3 Step Pack for Complete Fishing Reel Maintenance
Top-rated
PENN Reel Oil and Lube Angler Pack Clear, .5 oz
Best price
Super Lube 51004 Synthetic Oil with PTFE, High Viscosity, 4 oz...
Title
Ardent Reel Care 3 Step Pack for Complete Fishing Reel Maintenance
PENN Reel Oil and Lube Angler Pack Clear, .5 oz
Super Lube 51004 Synthetic Oil with PTFE, High Viscosity, 4 oz...
Item Weight
0.25 Pounds
0.5-ounce bottle of oil and 1-ounce tub of grease
Comes in 4-ounces
Prime Status
-
Special features
Complete maintenance kit includes: Reel Kleen cleaner, Reel Butter Oil, Reel Butter Grease, Line Butter, and 2 synthetic-tipped swabs
This reel grease features superior lubricity, water stability, load-carrying capacity and rust protection over other conventional greases
Quality craftsmanship and materials make this product a must have for any fisherman
Price
$22.70
$15.49
$4.53
Best Choice
Preview
Ardent Reel Care 3 Step Pack for Complete Fishing Reel Maintenance
Title
Ardent Reel Care 3 Step Pack for Complete Fishing Reel Maintenance
Item Weight
0.25 Pounds
Prime Status
Special features
Complete maintenance kit includes: Reel Kleen cleaner, Reel Butter Oil, Reel Butter Grease, Line Butter, and 2 synthetic-tipped swabs
Price
$22.70
Details
Top-rated
Preview
PENN Reel Oil and Lube Angler Pack Clear, .5 oz
Title
PENN Reel Oil and Lube Angler Pack Clear, .5 oz
Item Weight
0.5-ounce bottle of oil and 1-ounce tub of grease
Prime Status
-
Special features
This reel grease features superior lubricity, water stability, load-carrying capacity and rust protection over other conventional greases
Price
$15.49
Details
Best price
Preview
Super Lube 51004 Synthetic Oil with PTFE, High Viscosity, 4 oz...
Title
Super Lube 51004 Synthetic Oil with PTFE, High Viscosity, 4 oz...
Item Weight
Comes in 4-ounces
Prime Status
Special features
Quality craftsmanship and materials make this product a must have for any fisherman
Price
$4.53
Details

How Often Do You Clean Your Reels?

The first step before lubricating is cleaning the reels. How often you clean the reels comes down to the kind of water you fish in and how often you do it. If you fish in saltwater, you have no option but to clean your reel after every trip.

Even when you are using a saltwater fishing reel, you should clean it up once you are back from fishing.

If you fish in freshwater, you have more room and may have to clean once after every five trips.

The reason for this is the harm saltwater has on your reels. It is more corrosive on different parts of the reel and affects the ball bearings too. If you leave the saltwater to create a residue, it also causes the reel to lose smoothness and consistency.

Can you use any grease on fishing reels?

No, you cannot use any grease for your fishing reels. First, do not use silicone-based grease. Silicon grease, while being excellent for highly corrosive environments, lacks the film strength of a lubricating grease suitable for fishing reels.

It is also not wise to invest in TFE fortified grease. They are expensive without offering any extra advantage and instead can cause gumming complications.

You should not mix different greases since it will have a negative effect as they will react and harden up while corroding the metal. Wherever possible, it is a good idea to use the grease a fishing reel came with.

What is the best grease for fishing reels?

Grease consists of oil and soap. The oil is what does the lubricating while the soap keeps the oil in position. When picking the right grease, consider the environment the grease will be working in and observe the following factors;

  • Excellent lubricating properties. With the oil in the grease being responsible for lubrication, the best grease will have a soap that can hold more oil percentage per ml of grease.
  • It should have low oil and soap separation rates; otherwise, the grease will bleed out, leaving the soil sitting without the use and thus harden. Old lithium greases had this problem.
  • Consider the viscosity. Lighter grease will easily travel to all components and can get into the hard-to-reach areas. Gears, on the other hand, need heavier grease, which requires infrequent replacement.
  • The grease should also have excellent corrosion inhibiting properties, especially if you are fishing in saltwater. Synthetic greases are excellent in preventing rust.
  • The grease should have excellent water-resistant abilities. While all greases have a level of water resistance, the best one can stay in place longer, protecting your reel.
  • Thermal stability is essential, primarily if you work in cold environments. Greases with excellent thermal stability will stay liquefied and facilitate the smooth running of your reels.
  • You may also have to choose the color of the grease. It does not impact performance, but some prefer to have bright colored grease to indicate where they have already applied grease. Others prefer clear greases since they do not stain clothes.
SaleBestseller No. 1
CPLUS Fishing Reel Maintenance Kit-10 in 1, Including 100ML Cleaner,...
  • 10 in 1 | Marine grade cleaner, lubricant and rust protection!...
  • All conditions | Rpels debris and will not get "gummy" Or...
  • Low viscosity | Enhances free rotation and greatly reduces noise.
  • Superior lubricity | Water stability, load-carrying capacity and...
Bestseller No. 2
Clenzoil Marine & Tackle Fishing Reel Oil, Bearing Oil Cleaner &...
  • COMBO | Includes 1 oz. Needle Oiler, 2 oz. Pump Sprayer,...
  • PUMP SPRAYER | Clean, Lubricate, & Protect All Parts & Components...
  • NEEDLE OILER | Precision Bearing Oil Applicator w/ Steel Tip...
  • REEL GREASE | Synthetic Grease Doesn't Wash Out & Continues to...
Bestseller No. 3
2 - Lucas Fishing Reel Oil 10690
  • 2 - 1oz Needle Oiler Bottles
  • Convenient bottle for the tackle box
  • 1 oz. bottles
  • Made in USA
Bestseller No. 4
Ardent Freshwater Reel Care 3 Pack / Fishing Reel Cleaner Lubricator &...
  • COMPLETE FISHING LINE AND REEL MAINTENANCE: Includes everything...
  • 3 EASY STEPS: Ardent makes it fast and easy to clean, lubricate,...
  • REEL KLEEN CLEANER: Reel Kleen cleans all reel components by...
  • REEL BUTTER & GREASE: compatible with all materials. Grease...
Bestseller No. 5
PENN Reel Oil and Lube Angler Pack Clear, .5 oz
  • Used by professionals worldwide
  • Made using only the highest quality components
  • Tested for quality and durability
  • This reel grease features superior lubricity, water stability,...
Bestseller No. 6
Extant Labs Reel Care Combo: Fishing Reel Oil and Grease Kit, 2X 10ml...
  • Using Starcaster on reel spool bearings, lowers friction allowing...
  • Starcaster also contains potent and durable corrosion inhibitors...
  • Apply Reel Defense to your drag washers for smooth, consistent...
  • Starcaster and Reel Defense are formulated for consistent...
Bestseller No. 7
Ardent Reel Butter Lubrication 3 Pack
  • Applying Reel Butter Grease to gears, worm shafts, and plastic...
  • Ardent Reel Butter Oil is a 100% fully synthetic product with...
  • Ardent Reel Butter Bearing Lube penetrates deep into ball...
Bestseller No. 8
Ardent Saltwater Reel Care 3 Pack/Fishing Reel Cleaner Lubricator &...
  • COMPLETE FISHING LINE AND REEL MAINTENANCE: Includes everything...
  • 3 EASY STEPS: Ardent makes it fast and easy to clean, lubricate,...
  • REEL KLEEN CLEANER: Reel Kleen cleans all reel components by...
  • REEL BUTTER GREASE: compatible with all materials. Grease...
Bestseller No. 9
Fishing Reel Grease, Fishing Reel lubricating Oil Fishing Reel...
  • Suitable for spinning reel, low-profile reel
  • The grease can lubricating gears and linings to reduce noise and...
  • This kit has good and anti-rust effect on fishing reel
  • The oil can decrease the abrasion of bearing to lengthen the...
Bestseller No. 10
Clenzoil Marine & Tackle Rust Prevention Spray Lubricant & Corrosion...
  • 3 in 1 | Marine grade cleaner, lubricant and rust protection!...
  • Do no harm | safe on all fishing line, electrical contacts, and...
  • All conditions | repels debris and will not get "gummy" Or...
  • All-american brand | veteran founded & veteran owned, Clenzoil is...

How to Grease a Fishing Reel?

Greasing a fishing reel is a straightforward process. You only need screwdrivers, a penknife, and pliers. Follow these steps.

1.   Remove the line spool from the reel since certain lubricants may damage the monofilament.

2.   Follow instructions in your user manual to disassemble the reel. You can disassemble most reels by removing the reel cover followed by the crank using anti-clockwise turns.

3.   Apply the lubricants in small droplets from the gear drag mechanism to the ball bearings and crank assembly. Little is more when it comes to greasing reels.

4.   Reassemble the reel following a reversed order of how you did the initial disassemble.

5.   Attach the spool line back and then test for the fluidity of the movement.

Should You Grease Drag Washers?

The general wisdom has been to leave drag washers dry for fear of damaging them. Presently though, that is not a blanket rule.

There are several drag washers that manufacturers have designed to work with grease or oil. So currently, the answer on whether to lube or not depends on the make of drag washers.

Generally, though, leave all non-carbon washers should dry unless their kit states differently. As for carbon kits, there are few products in the market which are specialized for carbon kits. Be careful not to use grease where the instructions call for oil.

Fishing Reel Lubricant Alternatives

In several sections and even usual talk, you will hear of fishing reel lubricant alternatives. These are basically substances you can use in place of specifically formulated grease for reels.

They include WD40, 3-in-1 oil, common machine oils, and even petroleum jelly. All these alternatives are nothing beyond last resort options.

They offer minimal protection and do not have the characteristics of greases tailored for use in fishing conditions. Continuous use will only cause irreversible damage to your fishing reels.

Best Fishing Reel Grease and Oil in 2021

So, what is fishing reel grease should you be going for? Here is an overview of the best products in the market.

·       Shimano reel grease

Shimano is one of the premium names in the reel grease niche. The brand has several products, including both oils and greases, and suiting different kinds of fishing reels.

The best one is the Shimano Dura-Ace reel grease. It has the right viscosity to sick in place but easy to apply.

It offers waterproofing properties to your reel parts and while preventing build-up or rust and corrosion.

The Shimano grease comes with a thin finish, which is convenient for the smooth running of the reel. It is available in different sizes and works with most fishing reels, even saltwater ones. The only letdown may be its price.

·       Penn Fishing Reel Grease

The Penn fishing reel grease is another reputable brand, and it comes in a generous one-pound bottle.

Its formula allows it to be both a lubricant and corrosion inhibitor. It is resistant to water, rust, and dirt and offers protection against wearing.

You can use the Penn grease on all parts of the reel, including the principal and crank gears and bushings. The grease also has a high load-carrying capacity while having high thermal and oxidation resistance.

·       Daiwa Reel Grease

Daiwa Reel Grease offers an excellent way to protect the various parts of your reels on a budget.

You can use it on most parts of the reel, including bearings, washers, and gears. It comes in a compact size applicator that can fit a fishing kit easily.

It also has a narrow nozzle for easy application.

The grease itself has excellent thermal stability that allows it to work in all climates. It will not thicken in the cold or bleed in hot temperatures. It offers noise reduction, and it is impervious to corrosion.

The lubricant serves both salt and freshwater fishing reels.

·       Lithium Grease for fishing reels

Several guides warn against using lithium grease mainly because lithium is a thickener, and this kind of grease can solidify, affecting the moving parts of the reel.

However, if you go for white lithium grease, especially those meant for fishing reels, there are several advantages.

In this case, you want white lithium grease from a tube, or a container, not in an aerosol or spray can. The latter options contain acetone or aerosol, which is harmful to your reel.

The tube white lithium grease for fishing reels offers the same advantages as most premium reel greases. It has the advantage of providing better protection against oxidization, especially in salty waters.

It has a low separation rate sticking where you apply it. It is, however, not suitable for spool bearings as it will slow the free spooling.

·       Fishing reel grease Vaseline

Reel grease Vaseline is quite a contentious topic among most fishermen who have different experiences. Whether or not to use Vaseline as grease is answered by its characteristics. It is quite thick yet has a low thermal resistance.

It does not offer protection against salt, and it will quickly melt when in outdoor use. Vaseline, like other reel grease alternatives, should only be used as a last option.

However, Vaseline works well if you plan to store your reel indoors for a long time. It will preserve the reel parts in good soft conditions. It is also a good option for drag washers keeping them soft and pliable.

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