WD-40 can, spraying on tile surface by a female

Can I Put WD40 on My Car Brakes

As car owners, we want to do everything in our power to keep our vehicles running safely and efficiently. When it comes to maintenance, it can be tempting to use a quick fix for problems that arise. However, some solutions can do more harm than good.

Using WD-40 on brakes is not recommended. You should use a brake lubricant or brake cleaner for your brakes.

In this article, I will explain how I stop the squeaky noise of brakes without using WD-40 and explore why using WD-40 on brakes is a recipe for disaster. So, buckle up, and let’s find out!

Why Squeaky Noise in Brakes?

Reason for Brake Noise Solution
Worn-out brake padsReplace the brake pads
Low-quality brake padsUse high-quality brake pads with anti-squeal shims
Worn-out brake hardwareReplace the brake hardware
Lack of lubricationLubricate the brake pads and hardware
Warped or damaged rotorReplace or resurface the rotor
Caliper issuesInspect and repair/replace as necessary
Suspension issuesInspect and repair/replace as necessary

What is WD-40?

WD-40 is a household name for lubrication and rust prevention. It was invented to protect missiles from rusting! In 1953, Norm Larson realized the profound effect of moisture on rust and decided to create something that would displace moisture and also work as a solvent degreaser.

Then he partnered with two others to start the Rocket Chemical Company. Next, they began experimenting with different chemical formulas to find the perfect one.

Meaning of the word WD-40

After 37 attempts, they finally came up with the 40th formula, which they called WD-40, short for “Water Displacement 40th Formula.” Originally meant for the aerospace industry. But employees began sneaking it home for personal use, and the rest is history.

Today, WD-40 is a staple in households around the world, but the question remains: can it be used on car brakes?

What Are the Uses of WD-40 on Vehicles?

  1. Lubricating door locks and ignition switches to prevent problems.
  2. Dissipating water and restoring electronic parts that have been affected by moisture.
  3. Loosening rusted or stuck bolts and nuts on wheels and brake drums.
  4. Protecting the mating surfaces of wheels and brake drums from getting stuck together.
  5. Polishing car paint to make it shiny for a short period.

Why Can’t You Put WD-40 on Brakes?

Brake disk, wheel has been removed, brake caliper is clearly visible, shock absorber is visible

WD40 is an all-purpose lubricant suitable for household use. However, the petroleum distillates in it could damage the rubber used in car brakes. Nevertheless, light WD40 usage is not likely to result in significant harm.

How Did I Remove Rust from Brake Disks to Stop Squeaky Noise?

First, I rinsed the brake drum with water to remove any loose dirt and debris.

Then I mixed dish soap and water in a bucket.

After that, I scrubbed the brake drum with a metal scrubber and a plastic scrubber to remove any remaining dirt and rust.

Then, I rinsed the brake drum again with water and dried it with a clean cloth.

Next, I used wet sandpaper with 80 grits to sand down the rusty sections of the brake drum.

By using a dry sandpaper with 80 grits, I sanded the brake drum until the surface was smooth and rust-free.

Finally, I wiped down the brake drum with a microfiber towel to remove any remaining debris and rust.

It’s essential to note that brake drums that are too damaged, excessively corroded, or have deep rust may not be safe to use, and it’s recommended to replace them with new ones.

Where To Apply Lubricant on Brakes?

Every location in the braking system where parts move or slide should be lubricated with brake fluid. When lubricating disc brakes, be sure to lubricate the following areas:

  1. Caliper slides, pins, and bushings.
  2. Self-adjusting features on locking caliper rear disc brakes.
  3. Contact points inside the caliper housing where the pads slide.
  4. Cable and linkage for the parking brake.

Note: Never use any lubrication on a brake lining’s friction surface. The brakes may not operate properly if these areas are lubricated.

How To Select Suitable Lubricant for Brakes?

Here are 3 main tips to select appropriate lubricant for brakes.

  • Make sure the package clearly states that it is a brake lubricant. If it is not, do not use it. Despite some lubricants’ claims to be silicone-based, they might not have been specifically designed to function on brakes.
  • The lubricant’s effective temperature range should be checked. Brake lubricants must, at the very least, be able to withstand temperatures of up to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Check the lubricant’s components. Look at the brake lubricant to see if it contains petroleum distillates or other substances that could damage soft brake components.


Do car warranties cover brakes?

Brake pads may be covered under warranty, depending on the manufacturer and type of warranty provided. Typically, warranties cover defects in components and workmanship for a certain period of time.

However, it’s important to note that there are certain situations where a warranty claim may be denied. For instance, anything consumable or made to break down, like brake pads, wiper blades, or floor mats, typically isn’t covered by a warranty.

So, it’s important to carefully review the terms and conditions of the warranty to understand what is and is not covered.

Do motorcycles brake faster than cars?

A black car and a black motorbike parked on a road

The braking performance of a vehicle depends on various factors such as weight, speed, and road conditions. While motorcycles may have a slight advantage in stopping distances at lower speeds, cars may be more effective in emergency braking situations at high speeds.

So, it’s crucial to practice safe driving habits and maintain a safe distance from other vehicles.

How hot do car brakes get?

The temperature that car brakes can reach depends on a variety of factors, including driving conditions, the weight of the vehicle, and the type of brake system. Brake rotor and pad temperatures generally won’t rise above 200 degrees Celsius during routine street use.

However, during high-performance driving or track days where the brakes are continuously burdened, temperatures can exceed 500 degrees Celsius (932 degrees Fahrenheit) or higher.

It’s important to note that the brake fluid can also get hot, which is why it’s designed to have a boiling point of over 200 degrees Celsius. Regular maintenance and changing of brake fluid can help prevent brake fade and ensure safe driving conditions.

How much brake fluid does a car take?

The majority of vehicles that use DOT-4 take up about 1 liter of brake fluid. However, see your vehicle’s manual for the correct information based on the make and model of your car to determine the amount of brake fluid needed for your vehicle.


I hope you understand why you can’t put WD-40 on your car brakes and how to easily remove squeaky noises without using WD-40.

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