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Old 02-15-2013, 05:59 PM   #1
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Sticky tank valves

I have three valve stems on my trailer: Black/Grey/Galley. One Valve is getting hard to pull and push in. Is there something I can put on the stem that will loosen it up a bit without damaging the valve itself? Thanks guy
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Old 02-15-2013, 06:23 PM   #2
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I would start with silicone spray.

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Old 02-15-2013, 10:46 PM   #3
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Every so often I spray a product like PB Blaster into the cable sheath as much as possible, and work the handle until the penetrating oil works its way back the wire. Remember your bicycle cables, and how they rusted over time; they had to be lubricated fairly often to prevent them from rusting in place. They were plated when new, but it wore off and the rusting began.
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Old 02-16-2013, 08:55 AM   #4
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I've wondered about motorcycle chain lube for that task. It has a carrying agent that doesn't drip.
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Old 02-17-2013, 01:12 PM   #5
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I lube mine with WD 40 every couple of times I use them. I keep a can of it in my pickup tool box and I just spray the shaft where it slides in and out. It helps a LOT. Silicone spray would probley be better though.
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Old 02-17-2013, 02:23 PM   #6
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I lube mine with WD 40 every couple of times I use them. I keep a can of it in my pickup tool box and I just spray the shaft where it slides in and out. It helps a LOT. Silicone spray would probley be better though.
Good old WD40. Is this safe to use? The outside of my valves are plastic with what looks like an aluminum shaft. The WD 40 won't harm the plastic?
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Old 02-17-2013, 02:42 PM   #7
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Every so often I spray a product like PB Blaster into the cable sheath as much as possible, and work the handle until the penetrating oil works its way back the wire. Remember your bicycle cables, and how they rusted over time; they had to be lubricated fairly often to prevent them from rusting in place. They were plated when new, but it wore off and the rusting began.
GREAT ADVICE !!!! And don't forget to give the stems a squirt !
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Old 02-17-2013, 03:34 PM   #8
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WD 40 is good stuff, but not long lasting in a water environment. I use this:

0.5 oz. Silicone Faucet Grease-88693 at The Home Depot

It's made for this application and doesn't harm plastic.
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Old 02-17-2013, 05:22 PM   #9
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I'am not sure using WD-40 close to rubber seal ??? Silicone grease for me
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Old 02-17-2013, 05:35 PM   #10
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From my experance it is the rubber seals on the knife blade inside that is getting sticky and hard to work more so than the stem, but a shot on it also helps. I am not sure how to lube those up inside the piping?
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Old 02-17-2013, 05:38 PM   #11
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I went to the PB Blaster website and read this:

"Use caution when using PB on: plastics, paint, rubber*, fiberglass, belting and similar materials. Always apply to an inconspicuous area before proceeding with application as PB may stain such surfaces.

*The petroleum solvents in PB will impregnate common black butyl rubber. If left in contact with these materials for extended periods of time they will begin to swell and deteriorate. However, these solvents evaporate and are not typically on applied surfaces for long periods. Components such as O-rings, control bushings, and gaskets, made from these materials get dry and hard after years of use. The penetrating/impregnating qualities of PB Blaster can restore some of the elasticity and softness to these old hardened components."


The valves on dump tanks are made of plastic and have rubber O rings. I wouldn't recommend it. Silicone spray or silicone grease would be best.
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Old 02-17-2013, 07:47 PM   #12
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Is this about knife valves on cables or just the short solid shaft?
Rig 1 had cables, and I pulled them apart and vasalined the bajeebers out of them.
Rigs 2 and 3 have the solid shafts. No troubled.
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Old 02-17-2013, 10:48 PM   #13
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I went to the PB Blaster website and read this:

"Use caution when using PB on: plastics, paint, rubber*, fiberglass, belting and similar materials. Always apply to an inconspicuous area before proceeding with application as PB may stain such surfaces.

*The petroleum solvents in PB will impregnate common black butyl rubber. If left in contact with these materials for extended periods of time they will begin to swell and deteriorate. However, these solvents evaporate and are not typically on applied surfaces for long periods. Components such as O-rings, control bushings, and gaskets, made from these materials get dry and hard after years of use. The penetrating/impregnating qualities of PB Blaster can restore some of the elasticity and softness to these old hardened components."


The valves on dump tanks are made of plastic and have rubber O rings. I wouldn't recommend it. Silicone spray or silicone grease would be best.
I'd better clarify things. My valves and tanks are totally enclosed, the handles are attached to long cables, which is where I use a penetrating oil. I sure hope PB blaster doesn't harm the handles, I've been using it since 05, when we bought the 5er. Whatever you use, it must be thin enough to flow through the cable sheathing by itself, otherwise how would one lube the cable and sheath, disassemble the totally enclosed cable? That would require removing the belly pan and the insulation in the belly.
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Old 02-18-2013, 07:41 AM   #14
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Good old WD40. Is this safe to use? The outside of my valves are plastic with what looks like an aluminum shaft. The WD 40 won't harm the plastic?

It probley won't harm the plastic. But, it could be bad for the O-ring. First off let me say I have an older TT with non-remote valves. I don't spray inside the valve where the big main seal is. I just spray a little WD 40 on the shaft near the handle. There is a O-ring around the shaft but, on my valves if that O-ring goes bad it can be changed by removing the handle and a small collar. Still, as others have stated WD 40 is bad for this O-ring and something different like silicone spray is probely a better product to use. I just didn't have any in my pickup and so I did the WD 40 trick out of desperation one day when it was so sticky and it worked so I kept doing it. I'm probley making the situation worse but, it works for me.
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