How to lubricate the battery terminals so as not to oxidize

Terminal oxidation is a problem for most motorists. The terminals covered with a white plaque interfere with correct work of joint stock bank. If oxidation occurs intensively and accumulated a lot of plaque - this will lead to the fact that the car will not start. In order to prevent this phenomenon, you should periodically view and clean contacts. However, it is better to immediately look for the cause, since simply clearing the terminals from the plaque will not solve the problem itself. If you are faced with a similar problem, then first of all you need to determine why the battery terminals are oxidized.

How to grease the battery terminals, so as not to oxidize

Plus terminal


  • 1 Causes of contact oxidation
  • 2 Problem Identification
  • 3 Clearing the terminals from deposits
  • 4 Recommendations
  • 5 Methods to combat oxidation
  • 6 Select grease for battery terminals

Causes of contact oxidation

There may be several:

  1. Electrolyte leakage. It occurs most often. Since the electrolyte is an acid, then upon contact with the contacts the reaction eventually results in oxidation. Since the battery is constantly experiencing vibrations, there is a gap between the contacts through which the acid passes to the surface of the terminals. On the battery of a new sample, problems of this nature are not common, because the batteries are closed. The electrolyte is located in a sealed cell, where it evaporates and precipitates. But there are situations when the battery in the process of operation gets damaged and through the microcracks electrolyte emerges in a vapor form, which sitting on the terminals causes a reaction. Also, the electrolyte can leak with an increased battery charge if there are problems in the electrical circuit. Acid leakage is possible if the standard ventilation openings are clogged.
  2. Electrolyte with invalid density readings. To avoid such situations, it is necessary to use a ready-made composition when replacing it, and not to measure the components to the required proportions on their own.
  3. Actual battery lifewhen the rods of the seals cracked.
  4. Terminal tightening. The situation happens when the driver, putting the terminal on the electrode and not fixing it, starts to drive with bolts. Loose attachment gives poor contact and causes a reaction. You can rectify the situation by cleaning the terminal and the electrode, and then returning everything to the places and tighten it tightly, but do not overdo it, otherwise you can break the fasteners. Drivers with experience more than once faced with the problem of oxidation, so they can easily explain why the positive terminal of the battery or the negative terminal is oxidized.

    What to do if the battery terminals are oxidized

    Flight at the terminals

Identify the problem

Why is the oxidation of the terminals disassembled, now determine whether there is damage by the signs:

  1. When the ignition key is turned, the starter does not seize from several attempts or turns the crankshaft off hard, as if the battery did not have enough charge, although it was recently charged and filled with electrolyte.
  2. Side lights and headlights shine dimly.

Terminal cleaning

If the positive or negative battery terminal is oxidized to remove plaque from them in several ways. If we recall the course of chemistry, then the antagonist of acidic media is an alkaline medium. Therefore, you can clean off the plaque using a simple soda. If a thick layer of plaque has formed on the protective rubber casing of the contact, then it is better to replace the elastic band, since it has lost its former elasticity.

Why are the battery terminals oxidized?

A white bloom appeared on the battery

Cleaning is best done after removing the battery, so that the soda solution does not get onto other objects.


  1. Stop the engine so that the wiring does not close.
  2. Examine battery pinouts. Some may be on the sides of the battery, for their removal you will need a key for 8. Other terminals are located on the top of the battery, they need a key for 10 or 13.
  3. Loosen the negative terminal of the wiring and remove it from the battery terminal. Also do with a positive terminal.
  4. Check the device for defects. When they are, the battery needs to be changed.
  5. Examine the wires and terminals for signs of physical deterioration. When defects are necessary to replace parts.
  6. Before you begin to eliminate plaque, wear rubber gloves, they will protect your skin from contact with aggressive media.
  7. Prepare a soda solution. One tablespoon (30 g) of soda mix in a glass (250 ml) of water. Use a toothbrush as a brush.
  8. Wipe the deposited deposits on the terminals. You can also dip the ends of the cables in the soda to remove education on them.
  9. After washing the windings and terminals of the battery with cold water. Wash up to the moment until all soda is washed off. Wipe the terminals with a cloth.
  10. Treat all exposed metal parts of the wiring and terminals with technical petroleum jelly. You can replace petroleum jelly with a special grease spray terminal.
  11. Next, connect the positive terminal to the appropriate battery terminal. Tighten the nut with the key. Do the same with the negative terminal.

    Battery plus terminal is oxidized

    Cleaning battery terminals

If soda did not manage to remove the bloom or it partially tears, then you can use a knife or sandpaper. Care should be taken not to damage the insulating sheath of the wire. You should also eliminate oxidation under the hood. The following method acts as an emergency cleaning:

  1. Wear gloves and locking nuts at both terminals; loosen the wiring with a wrench. The terminals themselves are left in place.
  2. Pour Coke on top of the battery.
  3. Allow it to stand for a few minutes and then flush the battery with water.
  4. Wipe the device dry, then tighten the terminals and try to start the motor. On the Internet you can find a way to clean contacts with gasoline. This is far from safe, as a combustible material can easily damage rubber and plastic. It is best to prevent oxidation immediately, rather than constantly removing electrolyte from the terminals. The sooner you identify the problem, the less harm the vehicle will receive.


  • remove jewelry from hands before cleaning, as they can short-circuit terminals or get into moving parts of the motor;
  • so that there is no short circuit, you must first remove the negative terminal, and at the time of putting it on fasten it last;
  • when plaque is stable and not affected by a toothbrush, it can be replaced with a wire brush;
  • auto shops have a variety of spray cleaners and greases. Many of them have an acid indicator. It will be much faster and more effective to eliminate plaque with such means, but before starting work it is necessary to familiarize yourself with the instructions, since the methods of application are different for all means. If we talk about sprays - cleaners, they are inferior to grease in the strength of the coating. Unlike sprayers, lubricants create a “long-lasting” insulating coating that does not respond to detergents and has a bright color to control the application of consistency.

    How to grease the battery terminals, so as not to oxidize

    Cleaning the battery with soda solution

Methods of dealing with oxidation

We continue to sort out the question of what to do if the battery terminals are oxidized? It should be understood that even a new battery can evaporate a little acid. To somehow deal with this need to pay attention to the tightness of the connection. When the terminals are cleaned and securely fixed back, a special protective coating must be applied. Here are a few methods to protect contacts from the onset of acid plaque:

  1. Oil and felt. This method has long been stretched, it is reliable and time tested. Many drivers, therefore, prefer to use it to them. Oil lined with engine oil is applied to the terminals to minimize the effects of electrolyte vapors and other external factors. To do this, make a circle with a hole in the middle. Impregnated with oil and attached to the contact of the battery. Then put on the contact terminal of the vehicle electrical system, for lighting, put on top of the second felt felt oil-soaked.
  2. Felt washers. The fastening process is similar to a felt lining.
  3. Technical petrolatum, Solid oil, varnish. You can take other compounds that are well insulated and difficult to wash off. A good option is silicone grease, as it does not absorb pollution, unlike other materials.
  4. Special grease (anti-grease). You can get it in the car shop. The mixture has anti-corrosion properties, it is an aerosol, which pollinate the terminals.

    How to grease the battery terminals, so as not to oxidize

    Oiled positive terminal

Select grease for battery terminals

If you do not know how to lubricate the battery terminals so as not to oxidize, then use the following tips. Since the restoration of the battery costs a lot of money, then it is worth taking the choice of money seriously. Opinions on the choice of grease for the terminals always diverge. Some remain adherents of the grandfather’s methods, while others prefer technical innovations. On this occasion, it is worth making out the arguments for and against.

The most common lubricant remains grease. After cleaning and tightening the terminals, it is applied with a thin layer, it will help to forget about the problem for almost half a year, provided that everything is tight and the battery is not damaged. His minus can be called the fact that over time he begins to coke, that is, to roll into lumps, which is not the case with petroleum jelly. Vaseline is considered to be the next not less popular remedy. Both pharmacy and technical can be used. Although it perfectly protects the battery from moisture and soldering, but it has poor conductivity. To fix this you need to mix petroleum jelly with graphite grease.

Old remedies can be attributed to Litol. Only he is inferior to all modern means of protection in terms of effectiveness, as it can be washed off with shampoo. He has a loose, loose structure, where there are no additives and additives, no dyes. Until now, many manufacturers have not repudiated this type of lubricant, and recommend them in the instructions for the battery.

What to do if the battery terminals are oxidized

Contact Cleaner

If we consider modern tools, we can distinguish Molykote HSC Plus lubricant, it was created specifically for FIAMM batteries, although it is also used on other battery models. Its electrical conductivity is at a height, and its technical characteristics are unchanged when temperature fluctuates from -30 to +1100 ° C. Then you can select the German grease sprays that do not create a transient resistance, but provide a stable voltage. The most acceptable at the price can be cited as an example means "Tsiatim", however, its disadvantage is poor conductivity.

But what about the fact that for some battery models it is impossible to make oil-soaked die pads? Probably the best way out of the situation would be to create a common defense - like a boot. For example, you can use linoleum or a rug from the "classics". Even if it does not look aesthetic from the outside, it will at least somehow protect the battery from the penetration of dust and dirt.