A grease gun can turn out to be extremely helpful in your household, workshop or garage. As its name says, you can use such a tool to add lubricant to any opening, and it comes with a cartridge that you can refill as you need. A significant advantage of the grease gun is that you will be able to apply the lubricant only in the area you need to, without getting your hands or equipment dirty. But if you own such a tool, you know that storing it the right way is essential.
Storing your grease gun the right way is vital for the quality of the lubricant as well as for the good functioning of the grease gun itself.
How to store a grease gun correctly
The most recommended way to store a grease gun is to hang it horizontally in a tidy room that is not too hot or cold. Make sure that its plunger is disengaged from the tube to reduce any pressure on its mechanism.
Keep it in a horizontal position
Storing your grease gun horizontally will help you prevent time damage which can happen easily if you store it vertically. Plus, if you place your gun in a horizontal position, it will not leak or get unwanted contaminants inside of it either.
As you place your grease gun in a horizontal position, make sure to reduce any pressure that might be on the plunger or spring. These two parts are most prone to wear if you don’t store your tool correctly. You want to maintain the grease amount your gun exerts during a normal use unchanged by poor storing conditions.
Hang the grease gun
Another important aspect that will help you maintain your grease gun in optimum storage conditions when you are not using the tool is hanging it. If you place it on a flat surface, you risk exposing it to damage over time due to dirt and there will be no pressure on either part of the tool either. Plus, if you hang your grease gun, it will keep your workplace cleaner and more organized.
Store your grease gun in proper conditions
The place you store your grease gun is just as important as its position. The general rule says you should store your grease guns in a cool and dry room. You can choose a cabinet or a container where you know that the temperature stays constant. You want to keep your grease gun and the accessories that such a tool comes with at a temperature that doesn’t exceed 70 degrees F. Keep in mind that you don’t want any moisture in the location where you store your grease gun either. Moisture can make your grease gun deteriorate a lot faster as well as the lubricants. So, in order to eliminate any risk of oxidation, you want to keep both heat and humidity under control in the location where you are storing your grease gun.
Organize your lubricants and other accessories
Your grease gun is just the main tool you use to add lubricant in the areas you need, but there will be other accessories you want to consider, such as the grease cartridges. You want all of these stored in proper conditions so they can work great together because nothing is more frustrating than to discover that a tube of lubricant is dried or contaminated due to poor storage conditions.
To avoid such hazards, make sure to label all your tubes and cabinets properly. Write on each label the type of lubricant or product it is and the model or product name. Doing so will help you find what you need faster and maintain your workplace organized at all times. Plus, if you need to replace a piece of your grease gun, you will know exactly where to look for it.
Properly storing your grease cartridges implies checking that they are closed with an airtight lid, so no moisture gets inside of them or the tubes don’t dry out.
Keeping things well-organized becomes that much more important if you have several grease guns of different models in your workplace.
Can you leave grease in a grease gun?
A common question asked by amateurs as well as experts is whether one can leave grease in the grease gun after use? After all, cleaning it every time after use is a tedious process.
One shouldn’t leave grease inside a grease gun for long periods because this can cause the grease gun to leak, and it is not easy to clean old grease from the gun. The grease can also go well past its expiry date, making it useless. However, it is alright to store grease inside the gun for a few days.
Let us see in detail why leaving grease inside a grease gun is a bad idea;
Your oil and other additives will separate from grease
If you leave your grease inside your grease gun, you take the risk of oils and additives inside of it separating from the grease. While on a short period, these compounds could get remixed as you get back to using your grease gun, they will reach a point where they simply don’t mix together, making the grease inside your gun useless.
It will be harder to clean your grease gun if you store it with grease in it
Your grease will change its consistency over time if you store it inside the grease gun. So, you will find it more challenging to clean your gun if the lubricant sat in it for several months. Not to mention that grease can easily attract contaminants and bacteria if it is stored inside a grease gun and not in its containers that are sealed correctly.
Leaks could happen as well
If you don’t store your grease gun with grease in it correctly or if there is any kind of opening that facilitates the grease to get out of the gun, you might deal with leaks. These leaks can be frustrating to clean and they can compromise your bacteria-free workplace as well.
What do experts recommend: Lock the spring of the grease gun in the compressed position. To do that you will need to draw the handle back and eliminate the pressure created by the grease. Clean your grease gun after every usage and keep in mind to add as little grease as you need for each job so you reduce the risk of having extra material inside your gun.
Maintaining your grease gun at the best parameters will help you not only prolong its lifespan but also make sure that it satisfies your needs every time you have to use it. You will have to pay the same attention to your lubricant tubes and containers and it is recommended to store all these accessories along with your grease gun. Doing so will help you find everything you need easier and with less hassle. Plus, you will save significant investments in tools if you take care of them as the specialists recommend. You will also find instructions on each grease gun and on each grease tube, regarding usage and storage norms that you will want to respect.