The Best Fishing Reel Oil AND Best Fishing Reel Grease
Maintaining your fishing reels and keeping them clean and well lubricated not only gives your reel a longer life, but it can also mean the difference between landing that monster fish or not. I’ve neglected reels in the past, and they’ve seized up on me in the middle of the fight.
With frequent care and maintenance, you’ll be very happy with the difference it makes to the overall longevity and most of all, performance of your fishing reel.
Many folks, myself included, have neglected our fishing reels. We use them and abuse them, then throw them in the corner of the garage until our next fishing trip. Then we have the nerve to expect the reel to work just as well as when we threw it in the corner. Truth is, this is the reality for many anglers, and many reels have suffered a slow painful death at our hands.
Want to know what happened to my Pflueger President fishing reel when I used it in saltwater without doing any maintenance on it at all? You can hear all about that painful experience right here. Hint...it wasn’t a happy ending for that reel.
The question is, with so many fishing reel lubricants out there, which is the best fishing reel grease?
In this article, I aim to answer that question and more. I’ll not only share with you what I’ve found to be the best fishing reel grease and fishing reel oil, but I’ll explain the difference between grease and oil. Then I’ll help you decide which is the best one for you.
First, lets go over what I’ve found to be the best fishing reel grease and oil.
Product Review Quick List
1.YamaLube Multi-Purpose Grease (Top Pick)
Yamalube grease is one of the best fishing reel greases on the market. And in my opinion is the best fishing reel grease for the money. Yamalube multipurpose grease is an Aluminum Complex grease that contains a PAO synthetic oil, which is very similar to Mobil 1.
I prefer Aluminum Complex grease because it carries with it the highest percentage of oil per unit volume of any other kind of fishing reel grease. It won’t bleed out, has excellent corrosion properties with respect to Aluminum, Bronze, and steel and has excellent thermal stability.
Yamalube multipurpose grease provides superior lubrication in many applications, including inside the gears of your fishing reel. Because it’s and aluminum complex grease, it’s highly resistant to water, including saltwater. This is going to help protect those fishing reel gears from corrosion that saltwater is so good at doing.
This grease is nice and thick, which helps it adhere to the gears and any other surface where friction occurs. The grease is blue in color so you can easily see where you’ve applied fresh grease.
It’s for these reasons that I really like Yamalube and consider it the best fishing reel grease money can buy. And for the price that you can get a tube of this grease, it’s something every angler can afford.
If an oil that doesn’t drip or stain is what you’re looking for, whether it’s for your fishing reel or another item around the house, then take a look at Fin Super by Interflon.
Fin Super is an incredibly clean general lubricant that not only lubricates, but penetrates, cleans and protects those intricate parts of your fishing gear. It does a great job of repelling dust, dirt and moisture. And it actually has proven to protect against rust and corrosion. Those are some pretty important things to consider for those of us that fish in saltwater.
Fin Super is a true multi-purpose, dry lubricating spray that any other penetrating oil that you might be accustomed to using. In addition to using this great product on your fishing reel, you can use it to clean and lubricate your firearms, hand tools, bicycles, and essentially anything else that has moving parts.
To learn about even more uses for Interflon Fin Super, check out my post, 9 Ways Fin Super Protects and Enhances Fishing Gear.
Ardent Reel Butter Grease makes the best of list because it’s a high performance synthetic product that’s specifically designed for lubricating our fishing reels. As a high quality fishing reel grease should do, it prevents corrosion while easily bonding to all the working parts of any of your fishing reels.
One of the things I really like about this grease is its viscosity. Since it’s specifically designed to be used on fishing reels, it shouldn’t be a surprise that it is almost an exact match to the kind of grease that’s inside the reel when it comes from the factory. This ‘perfect’ viscosity that I like so much makes it so Ardent Reel Butter stays exactly where it’s supposed to...and that’s the brass, steel and plastic parts of the reels gear housing.
Another things that make this one of the best fishing reel greases is that it’s 100% full synthetic and acts as a rust and corrosion inhibitor, which is great for those of us that enjoy saltwater fishing. This grease works excellent on both freshwater reels and saltwater fishing reels.
It’s always a good idea to take a little bit of time after a few fishing trips to properly lube your fishing reel. As I mentioned earlier, you want to grease the parts that require grease, such as the gears. And you want to oil the parts that require oil.
That's why the PENN Reel Oil And Lube Angler Pack comes in so handy. You need both the grease and the oil, and PENN has put both of them together in a single package for us. Included in the combo pack is a .5-ounce bottle of oil and a 1-ounce tube of grease. And even though these containers may seem small, they’ll last a very long time. Because when it comes to lubricating fishing reels, a little goes a long way.
Simply follow the instructions on how to oil your reel to get started. One thing you can do is go to the website of the fishing reel manufacturer and print out the reel parts manual if you no longer have the one that came with your reel.
Corrosion X Reel X Lubricant is a very popular hi-tech, extreme-pressure lubricant that’s sole purpose to exist is to stop and prevent wear, corrosion and rusting inside and outside of our fishing reels. Even though Reel X can be used on any kind of fishing reel, it’s really great for spinning reels, making it one of the best lubricants for spinning reels.
There’s no need to worry about Reel X gumming up the inside of your fishing reel either, because it doesn’t contain wax, tar, silicone or any other solids that some of the other lower quality fishing reel lubricants contain.
If you use monofilament line, you may be concerned about the oil damaging the fishing line. Not with Reel X. Reel X doesn’t contain any compounds that might damage your mono line.
6. Interflon Fin Grease (Aerosol) (Best Fishing Reel Grease)
“It sprays out as a liquid but expands to a grease.”
Interflon Fin Grease is formulated to form a tough durable film that prevents metal-to-metal contact and seal out water and contaminants to lubricate even under the most demanding conditions.
The thing that I like the most about Interflon Fin Grease is that it sprays onto whatever surface you’re greasing as a liquid, then eventually expands into a grease. So you can imagine how helpful this is to us when we’re wanting to apply grease to the hard to reach areas of our fishing reels.
Once applied and it makes it way into the hardest to reach areas of the fishing reel, Interflon Super Grease starts to do its most important job of providing significant reduction of friction and wear. Fin Grease does an excellent job of doing just this.
Advantages To Using Fin Grease
A few advantages to using Interflon Fin Grease are:
- Fin grease has excellent penetrating properties which get into those hard to reach areas of our fishing reels and other fishing gear.
- Fin Grease is transparent and therefore doesn’t stain.
- Once Fin Grease is applied to the gears and other moving parts of your fishing reel, it will actually expels water and dirt.
Difference Between Fishing Reel Grease And Fishing Reel Oil
In short, an oil is a liquid and grease is more thick and messy. And with fishing reels, each one serves its own unique purpose.
Both Oil and Grease are lubricants. But they lubricate in different ways. While both reduce friction on the moving parts of fishing reels, each is used for certain applications.
Oil for the most part is used in the tighter, hard to reach areas because it is thinner and is able to make its way into those small crevices like on the bail mechanism or the crank handle.
Grease on the other hand is much heavier and more sticky. It clings very well to almost anything where oil would run or drip off. Grease is used, for the most part, on the inside of the reel to keep the gears well lubed and free of friction.
For example, grease is thicker and more viscous of a lubricant, so it’s applications on fishing reels are generally limited to the gears.
Fishing reel grease is made out of both oil and soap. The oil is what does the actual lubricating while the soap is the “carrier” that holds the oil in place. And the grease you choose for your fishing reel should ultimately be decided off of the environment you plan on fishing in.
What To Look For In A High Quality Fishing Reel Grease
1. Good lubricating properties. Since the oil does the lubricating, look for a grease that contains a soap that holds the highest percentage of oil as possible. This amount is usually measured per ml of grease.
2. Low separation rates of the oil from the soap. The old school style of Lithium soap grease will eventually bleed out all the oil while the soap can harden up in position if allowed to sit without frequent use.
3. Good corrosion inhibiting properties. Fishing takes place in a wet environment where corrosion is always a possibility. This is especially true for saltwater anglers. Salt is extremely corrosive and can wreak havoc on our fishing reels if not properly cared for.
4. Water resistance. You want a fishing reel grease that will stay in its place even when introduced to water. Quality grease will not be easily washed away.
5. Thermal stability. Warm water anglers don’t necessarily have to worry about this one, but for anglers who fish during the winter, you don’t want to use a grease that will harden in the cold. Regardless of the weather outside, all of us want a nice free running fishing reel.
Fishing Reel Grease Don’ts
Always follow these rules concerning fishing reel grease :
1. Never mix different types of grease, especially Aluminum Complex grease. The reason is because the soaps that make up the grease will react with each other and . When this happens, the grease can harden up or even cause the metal parts of the fishing reel to corrode.
2. Don’t use silicone grease or oil. Silicones are designed to be used in highly corrosive environments and they don’t have the lubricating properties of a PAO synthetic or even mineral oil. They’re simply just not the best for fishing reel lubrication and best to just stay away from silicones.
3. Don’t use greases fortified with TFE. In my opinion TFE greases are a waste of money and are prone to solidifying and causing the components inside your reel to gum up.
Oil is thinner and runnier than the thick grease we use on gears. Instead, fishing reel oil is used to lubricate:
- sleeve bearings
- sliding mechanisms
- Any rolling element bearings
What To Look For In The Best Fishing Reel Oil
The best fishing reel oil will be made from a high quality grade pure light machine oil. Even an automotive PAO synthetic oil like Mobil 1 can be used as a good fishing reel oil.
NOTE: Never use any kind of oil that’s known to contain TFE. TFE is a solid and it’ll solidify inside your moving reel parts and eventually gum up your fishing reel.
- Singer All Purpose Machine Oil, that is made for sewing machines
- Mobil 1 is one of the best synthetic oils money can buy and is compatible with all natural machine oils.
- NEVER use oils that contain TFE. TFE is a solid and will eventually gum up your reel.
Corrosion protectants are exactly what the name sounds like. You can apply a very light coat of corrosion protectant to all of the internal parts of your fishing reel while you’re doing maintenance on it.
You’ve probably heard of WD-40, which is great for a lot of things, but not so great for fishing reels. As a matter of fact, I would stay away from using WD-40 on any of your fishing reel parts. WD-40 will dry over time and has a nasty tendency to collect dust.
A better product that you can use as a fishing reel protectant is CorrosionX or ReelX which are manufactured by Corrosion Technologies Corp. These two products are similar to WD-40 but have very low volatile organic compounds and will virtually never dry up.
For the outside surfaces of your fishing reel, Real Magic is an excellent product and works very well. Reel Works will eventually dry, leaving a thin protective film over the parts where it was applied.
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If you’re serious about cleaning and maintaining your fishing reels, then you might be interested in this complete fishing reel cleaning kit.
The kit has everything you would need to keep all your fishing gear in top performing condition and can be used on all kinds of fishing reels including baitcasters, spinning reels, trolling reels and fly fishing reels
Everything you need comes in a durable box that’ll help keep your cleaning kit together and organized. Included in the Ardent fishing reel cleaning kit is:
Ardent's industry leading Reel Butter Oil
Reel Butter Grease
Reel Kleaner reel cleaner
a multi purpose brush
a two-headed (philips and flathead) screwdriver
The key to applying lube to your fishing reel, whether its grease or oil, or both, is to make sure the reel is absolutely clean and free of any other types of lubricant. The truth is that there's no special magic grease or oil that is perfect for all situations. As a matter of fact, individiual brand is secondary to good over all fishing reel maintenance. Any of the products that are discussed or mentioned in this post will work on your fishing reel.
If you found this article helpful, and think one of your fishing buddies might benefit from it, please do me a favor and share it with them!
Good luck with your fishing reel maintenance, and hope you get back out on the water soon!