3-in-1 multi-purpose oil - safe on rubber/plastic?

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3
Location
British Columbia, Canada
Thread starter
I know that non-synthetic dino grease can destroy or at least be hard on some rubber materials. I'm wondering if 3-in-1 multi-purpose oil will also adversely effect rubber? Looking at the SDS for the oil: - 97% - Severely Hydrotreated Heavy Naphthenic Oil - 2% - Naphtha, petroleum I don't know a lot about this stuff, so guessing: Naptha is made from crude, so non-synthetic oil. So I'm assuming it won't play well with rubber?? ---Why am I asking? So I have a set of studded (Nokian) winter tires sitting around, and noticed that the studs are heavily rusted. Would rather have the studs not rust and become useless during storage, so was gonna put a drop of oil on each. Was about to reach for the 3-in-1 when I realized I might actually damage the rubber (at least enough for the studs to become loose and fall out). I'm guessing I'm better off using a silicone-based oil?
 
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1,728
Location
Cincinnati, USA
1) No, it's not necessarily a matter of synthetic vs non-synthetic. 2) It depends on the specific rubber formulation, assuming it is not natural rubber. You ID that and use a chemical compatibility chart. If in doubt, or it cannot be determined, assume a petroleum/like oil is not compatible. The reason you should not oil your studs is that is nuts. You don't want any sort of lube, anywhere near your tire treads. Self-defeating, rusty studs grip better than oiled treads do. Clean the rust off and store them in air tight bags. If it is humid when you pack them away, throw a sock full of dry rice in with them to absorb the moisture if you don't want to pay more for a fancier way to do it. You should rinse (and dry) any salty residue off your tires before storage, but a little surface rust is not a problem.
 
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2,339
Location
Pennsylvania
I have noted on here before....most lubricating oils will swell a lot of different rubbers particularly EPDM and related elastomers. This type of rubber is frequently used in tires and rubber foam seals. Nitrile rubber is rather oil resistent in some forms and is used where contact with oil may occur (cork rubber gaskets or rubber gaskets for valve covers, for example). One of the ways of quantifying crosslink density in cured elastomers is to soak them in various solvents or oils and measure the amount of swelling. So you can see that oil is not a friend of certain rubber materials. Silicone based fluids or greases are much better around rubber. I use a silicone grease on my ddor seals to keep them soft and pliable. I doubt that the studs will have a problem if you just took a hose and washed off the tire and allowed it to dry. After all, those tires sit in salt all winter and survive
 
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