Graphite in Locks? ...not good sometime

Recently had to have a key made for van door lock I had no key for. Locksmith lubed the lock and it wasn't graphite based. I asked why and he said because of the high humidity here in the mid-south graphite is NG. When combined with moisture it hardens like cement. Have to take his word for it. Well established locksmith. Not some matchbook cover graduate working out of garage and car.
What did he use? WD-40!
    ...and the WD-40 thread war is on again :-)
Just an FYI. Just a messenger here.
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Where I am (NY state, near Rochester) they salt the roads a bit too much. Drivers door locks turn to a lump of grey silver metal if not oiled once or twice a year. I use WD, or other liquid lube on drivers door locks. Actually, it's one of the very few times I use 10w30 motor oil on a lock.
I've heard from others about graphite in humid states like Texas. I've never lived there, so I can't comment.
Looks like I get to start the flame war on WD? Here goes: WD-40 is the wrong stuff for lubricating anything, and only an ignoramussy uses WD. How'd I do?
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Hmm,why not the passenger side door lock,too? ;-}

I use graphite on my outdoor mailbox lock,central Florida,and have had no problem with it.
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drivers side door gets all the crap from cars going the other way or from the same way if they drive in the slow lane on a 4-lane road. Passenger side not a problem unles driven in passing/middle lane on a 4-lane roadway
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Jim Yanik wrote:

My car, a 2007 Nissan doesn't have a passenger door lock. One of the few things that annoys me about it. They seem to assume that I will be using the fob thingie. I don't because I already have enough stuff in my pockets, I don't need any more.
Bill
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On Sat, 02 May 2009 08:15:54 -0500, against all advice, something

Neither does my Audi. But the door on the left side does, and I can use it to unlock both doors. I can also roll down both windows before getting into the car, if I want to.
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I've resolved never to buy a vehicle unless it's got passenger side locks. I'm not sure how long I will be able to keep my resolution.
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There were those that resolved:
chrome METAL trim along the door and fenders a full size spare tire chrome metal bumper vs brushed plated a metal bumper a bumper etc, etc
:-)
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BillGill wrote:

Amen to that- my 05 caravan has 5 doors and 2 locks, drivers door and hatch. Fob thingie is the head of the ignition key, about the size of a serving spoon, and 3/8" thick. Keyring loop is so tiny, that if I put it on the ring, ring won't fit in my pocket without poking me in leg. I went out and paid an absurd amount for 2 of the 'regular' security keys, which are also too thick (like all modern car keys), but at least I can carry they keyring in my pocket. A separate fob, I could almost have lived with. Now I have to remember to unlock the automagic locks when I park at a store, so I can open the offside doors to load the packages when I come back out. A real pain.
Never understood the appeal of fobs and remote locks. You are standing at the door anyway. I suppose if your arms are full, they may be handy, but unless your keys are in your hand, you have to juggle packages anyway. And every car I have ever had with electric locks (the last 5 or 6), at least one door had a solenoid crap out, so you had to lock and unlock manually anyway. This 05 was young and shiny enough when I got it, that I paid to have the malfunctioning one fixed, and it was close to $200. My previous van, a 95 (2 generations back) had a keyhole on every door. I think they were that way through 01 or 02. Definitely a poor choice of something to 'decontent' with.
-- aem sends...
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Hmm,why not the passenger side door lock,too? ;-}
CY: That took me many years to figure out. The answer is that as cars pass each other, the salt sprays up from the tires. The drivers side faces other traffic. On the passenger side, it's either parked cars, no cars, or cars moving at the same speed. So, the drivers side get much more salt.

I use graphite on my outdoor mailbox lock,central Florida,and have had no problem with it.
CY: One vote yes, graphite, from central Florida.
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Took me 10 seconds. Cheap f'rs cutting cost.
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Red Green wrote:

Graphite is absolutely not hygroscopic so it doesn't "combine with moisture" at all. Anyone can demonstrate this by attempting to mix graphite with water.
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Red Green wrote:

And NEVER squirt graphite into an older GM car's ignition lock, the ones where the ignition key has a resistor set into it's shank.
DAMHIKT, but I did fix that screwup with liberal injections of denatured alcohol followed by compressed air. <G>
Jeff
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Someone, possibly yourself, mentioned that. But, it's a good reminder. Thank you.
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Your locksmith probably used spray dry teflon lube. It sprays as a liquid, then dries to a teflon powder. The advantage in locks is that the dry teflon doesn't attract or hold dirt like oil does.
wrote:

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The big problem with graphite in locks is that people use too darn much of it and it just gets packed into the lock. I ve seen people put half of one of those squeeze tubes in a lock. Also people use graphite when lubrication is not the problem. Their are graphite bearing aresols that are very good for locks but you can overuse those too. Often all you need to do is run a pencil lead (graphite) on your key if there is a lubrication problem.
JImmie
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I recommend against using pencil lead as a lubricant. It *does* contain graphite, but it also contains clay. (The amount of clay is what determines the hardness.) The clay is abrasive and will not do good things to the lock.
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Don't know if it's still sold. Used to be, you could buy blue and yellow cans of "Lock Ease, graphited lock fluid". I hate that stuff. Gets sticky and messy. Well, it did make me a lot of money at a motel near me that used it every couple weeks on all their room locks.
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Red Green wrote:

Master recommends light oil for padlocks. After all, the usual problem is corrosion. The argument against oil is that dirt can stick to it. If you oil your lock, your key may get oily. You drop your key, and it picks up dirt which ends up in the lock.
Wiping the key could help. Why doesn't somebody invent light oil mixed with solvent in an aerosol can with a plastic straw? You could use it to flush dirt out of a lock.
Master says graphite can jam padlocks. I've found that to be true if you use a pencil to lubricate a car lock and the tip breaks off. I was glad my neighbors didn't know who had done it. I considered it a learning experience and used oil on my own car.
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