20 Little-Known Ways WD-40 Can Change Your Life


Did you know that four out of every five households in the United States has at least one can of WD-40 on hand? Originally created to prevent rust from developing on a rocket in 1957, it has now become a modern household staple.

Before long, it found its way into almost every garage, cupboard, and utility closet up and down the block. Its ingredients are still a closely guarded secret, but we can say this for sure – there are unlimited uses for WD-40. Here are 20 we’re surprised to learn actually work!

1. Repel hard water stains.

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If your water is even slightly hard, keeping spots and deposits off of your glass shower doors is a part-time job. Stop worrying over spotty, stained glass and try this instead. After cleaning your glass doors, buff in a thin layer of WD-40. It’ll repel water spots, meaning you’ll have to clean it less often.

2. Slide off stuck jewelry.

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We don’t always know when slightly swollen fingers will happen. Eating too much salt, arthritis, and more can make it tough to pull off stuck rings. This is not only annoying; it can affect your circulation. Fortunately, getting those rings off is pretty easy with a squirt of WD-40. It definitely works better than regular cooking oil.

3. Spruce up fake foliage.

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Can’t keep a plant alive to save your life? There are some very impressive artificial plants out there that can improve the décor in your home or office. But if you let dust collect on these, you’re only proving you can’t take care of a fake plant, either. Shine up the leaves with a little WD-40 on a soft cloth.

4. Remove paint from hands.

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Our least favorite part of DIY-ing anything is cleaning up afterward. That goes double for paint projects, where plain hand soap or a scrub brush just doesn’t do the trick. Instead, spray WD-40 onto your hands, and rub them together. Now go to work with the soap and brush. Comes right off!

5. Keep your gardening tools clean.

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Gardening is tough work as it is. Having to hose off tools when you’re done just isn’t fair. Not to mention, if you don’t also take the time to dry them, they can begin to rust. Cut out the whole mess by spraying the business end of your tools with WD-40 before you dig in. Dirt won’t stick, making the tool even more effective.

6. Shine up your souvenir seashells.

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Keep your beach keepsakes in good condition for display. Spray a little WD-40 on a cloth and carefully polish all of your seashells. Not only will they have that fresh-from-the-sea shine, but it will help repel dust. WD-40 is shown to be better for polishing shells than any other product!

7. Remove crayon and marker from walls.

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Ah, there’s nothing like a little art installation courtesy of your little one. But exactly how much time do you have to clean this up? Before you repaint, try this. Fold up a paper towel, and spray a little WD-40 on it. Rub at the marks in brisk, circular motions. Be careful and patch test first if you plan to use on wallpaper, and wash the WD-40 off when you’re done removing the mess.

8. Make stiff leather more flexible.

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A lot of high-quality leather goods aren’t exactly ready to wear straight out of the box. If you don’t have time to break in your new leather belt, use WD-40. For baseball gloves and tool belts, nothing works faster. You’ll get the flexibility and softness that makes these items more comfortable to use.

9. Lubricate hair clippers.

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Neglect to care for your clippers, and you won’t get that close, sharp cut. While many use other types of oil, nothing glides quite like WD-40. It prevents rust and keeps the blades lubricated in one go. It’s also good for removing hair from between the teeth, where other oils can make it stick even worse.

10. Clean stainless steel sinks.

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It’s a bad idea to apply WD-40 to areas that come in contact with food, but you can still use it on sinks. Apply a fine, even layer to your stainless steel sink. Be careful; you don’t want to use so much that it runs and drips. After 10 minutes, buff with a soft cloth. You now have a shiny, spotless sink that’s resistant to water marks and corrosion.

11. Remove stains from clothing.

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This is one trick you absolutely must see to believe. Stains from hair dye, grease, and tomato sauce are apparently no match for WD-40. Use the spray as a pre-treatment prior to washing. Simply squirt it on the stain, rub well to work it in, and let it sit for 30 minutes or so. Now watch as the stains wash right out in the regular laundry cycle.

12. Discourage squirrels from cleaning out your bird feeder.

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Squirrels are cute creatures, but we really don’t want them stealing all of the bird’s food. WD-40 provides a humane solution for deterring seed theft by squirrel. Apply it to the roof, sides, or any areas a woodland creature could cling to. Now watch in the window as your little squirrel friends slide right off the bird feeder. Don’t worry, they’re nimble enough to recover.

13. Remove adhesive residue.

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There’s nothing like pulling the price sticker off of an item and seeing the gummy, gunky residue it’s left behind. This is a classic use for WD-40. Give it a shot of the good stuff, and let it sit for a few minutes. Now, take a damp rag and wipe the adhesive grime away.

14. Unstick a zipper.

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A zipper that catches and sticks is our least favorite thing about our favorite jeans. If your winter coat or go-to pants are a pain to zip up, it’s WD-40 to the rescue. Even vintage items with old, stubborn zippers can benefit from this trick. We recommend spraying the WD-40 into a dish, and carefully applying it to the zipper with a brush or cotton swab.

15. Unstick chewing gum from surfaces.

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Gum on the bottom of your shoe? Under the table? In your hair? Don’t waste your time trying to pry it off or out without the help of WD-40. Just spray the area well, wait a few minutes, and slide it off with a paper towel.

16. Protect car locks and latches from icy weather.

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Under a winter storm warning? Keep deep freezes and icy weather from ruining your mornings. The night before it freezes, shoot some WD-40 into your locks. You can also spray it into the door latch. This will keep these areas from freezing over, so you’ll have no trouble entering your car and carefully heading off.

17. Waterproof your footwear.

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There are plenty of special products to help waterproof your boots and shoes, but WD-40 works great in a pinch. Prevent snow from sticking to your shoes by spraying it on the fabric, leather, or textile part of the shoe only. This can also prevent staining and damage from rock salt. Just be aware that if your shoes are a light-colored leather, the WD-40 could darken them.

18. Unstick stuck stacks.

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Stacks of drinking glasses, toy blocks, terracotta pots, and more. When these things get stuck together, you risk breaking them or injuring yourself by prying them apart. Go easy on yourself and reach for the WD-40. Rub it all along the joins, and carefully slide the pieces apart.

19. Polish silver.

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The best thing about WD-40 is that it replaces all sorts of products we might not have on hand at the time. Including silver polish! WD-40 has the added benefit of slowing down future tarnish; something most polishes can’t claim. Just remember that it isn’t safe for food surfaces.

20. Clean your toilet.

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If it’s tough enough for rockets, of course it can handle your commode. Before your regular cleaning regimen, spray a little WD-40 inside, and let it sit for 10 minutes. Scrub well, loosening up all those stains, and then flush. You now have a squeaky clean, stain-free toilet bowl ready for disinfecting.