Vinyl windows are easy to clean, weather resistant, inexpensive, and attractive options for the home. However, a fairly common complaint is that despite being advertised as ‘self lubricating’, they’re often prone to becoming difficult to open and close easily, and when it’s time to wipe the windows down, a stuck window pane is frustrating and time consuming. We’ve taken a look at a few products being offered by a variety of manufacturers of home goods and supplies to find the best lubricant for vinyl windows.
The Best Lubricant for Vinyl Windows FAQ
Before we get to finding the best lubricant for vinyl windows, here are the answers to a few questions you might have about the purpose and use of a vinyl window lubricant.
What Is Vinyl Window Lubricant?
Vinyl windows are more often than not advertised as ‘self-lubricating’, but what can be done whenever no amount of maintenance reduces the amount of friction when opening and closing the window? That’s where a vinyl window lubricant comes in. As with most industrial lubricants, it’s a chemical compound designed specifically to reduce the amount of sliding friction between two surfaces, usually of a specific material. In this case, we’re looking at lubricants for vinyl surfaces.
When Is It Time to Begin Looking for the Best Lubricant for Vinyl Windows?
Often, issues of uneven opening and shutting of vinyl windows can be solved simply with a routine cleaning. However, there comes a time in the lifespan of most vinyl windows when no amount of cleaning will reduce the amount of drag when opening. Over the course of months of home maintenance, the frustration of a window that just won’t open cleanly and effortlessly can build up. This is when the best lubricant for vinyl windows would certainly come in handy.
How do I apply a Lubricant to my Window?
Thankfully, as many of these products come with convenient applicators, it’s not a very difficult process. Start as you would when cleaning the window and remove both window sashes from the window frame. Then, wipe the tracks of the window down with a dry rag, or in the case of dirt buildup, with a solution of warm dish soap and water before drying. After the window’s tracks are cleaned, simply spray lubricant on a dry cloth and wipe down both vinyl liner tracks, as well as the window sashes. Spray more lubricant as necessary onto the cloth, but never spray lubricant directly onto the parts themselves. Lastly, reinstall the window, opening and closing it several times to distribute the lubricant evenly across areas of friction, completing the process.
Are Window Lubricants Safe With Children or Pets?
Because windows are often in close proximity to children and pets, it’s important to make note of the chemical components of the lubricant you choose to use should this be a concern. Many lubricating formulas are available which make use of non-toxic, food safe, or otherwise harmless materials that are more than safe around children and pets.
Will Lubrication Stain or Leave a Residue on the Window?
This, too, is highly dependent on the formulation of the product. Some lubricants go on clear and dry clear, others go on opaque and dry clear, others go on clear and dry white, etc. The choice lays largely in the realm of personal taste, but it’s certain no one would want to use a lubricant that leaves a sticky or unpleasant residue. Fortunately, these high quality lubricants do not leave a sticky residue on the surfaces to which they are applied, and many formulations actually dry to a matte, powdered finish.
How We Reviewed
In searching for the best lubricant for vinyl windows, we’ve compared the pros, cons, and feature sets of these products, with a specific eye towards value for price. Elements such as volume for price, friction reduction, as well as safety for use in the home have all been considered, as the best lubricant for vinyl windows should provide all of the above qualities in spades without costing an arm and a leg.
What We Reviewed
- DuPont Teflon Non-Stick Dry-Film Lubricant
- LiquiFix Lubricant
- B'laster 16-SL Industrial Strength Silicone Lubricant
- Prime-Line Products RZ 50-2AB12
- CRC 05074 Heavy Duty Silicone Lubricant
- LUBE-ALL Multipurpose Household Lubricant
- Sliding Door Lubricant - Mineral Based Zero-VOC Unscented
- Liquid Wrench M914 Silicone Spray
- WD-40 Specialist Water Resistant Silicone Lubricant Spray
- Permatex 80070 Silicone Spray Lubricant
- Unique 100% dry-film Teflon coating and lubricant
- Clean, long-lasting micro-thin, dirt-resistant coating effective from -100F to +500F
- Uses proprietary resin-bonding technology for tight tolerance, metal-on-metal applications
- Creates a thin, dirt-repelling, chemical-resistant coating
- Safe for all surfaces does not contain silicone
This product comes from a manufacturer specializing in technologically advanced lubricants. The product that would make for the best lubricant for vinyl windows is the non-stick dry-film formulation. It creates a micro-thin and long-lasting dry film on surfaces, which keeps the area clean as well as reducing friction, and goes on wet for easy application. It is safe for all surfaces and contains no silicone. It is effective at temperatures from -100F to +500F.
- THE GREEN lubricant for use anywhere - safe, clean, and effective
- SAFE around food, people, and pets
- ECO-FRIENDLY, Green, Odorless, Non-Toxic, emits no VOCs
- INSTANTLY EFFECTIVE and long lasting
- 8.5oz spray bottle
This product is a long lasting and safe lubrication option, which ships in a spray bottle. As a generally eco-friendly option, it contains no volatile organic compounds, is odorless, and is safe around children and pets. No ventilation is required during or after application, and it is also safe around electrical connections. It does not conduct static electricity, which prevents the build-up of grime, and does not evaporate into the air which extends its effectiveness 2-3 times longer than most other lubricants. It is effective at temperatures ranging from -3.2F to +275F.
This product is available at a price point of roughly $.
This product contains 8.5oz. of product per container.
- ENHANCE PERFORMANCE - B'laster Silicone Lubricant contains a higher concentration of silicone than competitor brands, which provides longer-lasting lubrication. Formulated with Teflon Fluoropolymer to enhance performance.
- NO STAIN - Its clear, non-evaporating formula eliminates wear from constant friction and is safe and non-staining.
- NO DIRT - Dust and dirt won't be a problem because B'laster silicone lubricant leaves a no-track film that won't accumulate dust and dirt.
- PRESERVE - Lubricates and protects elastomers, metal, plastic, wood, rubber, vinyl, and leather.
This teflon fluoropolymer lubricant enhances performance and offers long-lasting lubrication without accumulating dust and dirt with its silicone composition. Ventilation is required during and after application, as well as suitable protective clothing. Although it’s an excellent solution for industrial situations, it might not be suitable for all home environments given it is most certainly unsafe around children or pets.
- Dry Film Lubricant is designed for the everyday uses around the home, office and garage
- Can be used in any situation where smooth, repeated, surface-to-surface sliding movement is essential
- Can be used on rubber, wood, metal, nylon, epoxy, polypropylene, acrylic and phenolic resin surfaces
- Use on sliding windows and drawer tracks to safely lubricate without fear of damaging surfaces
- Odorless once dry and does not attract dust
This dry film lubricant is highly effective and safe around the home, and works to both reduce friction and repel moisture. It sprays on and dries clear, and is permanent or lasts up to three years, depending on the level of application. It is safe to use on electrical connections and does not leave a potentially damaging sticky residue. It is generally highly effective, but this effectiveness comes at a markedly increased price for the amount of product provided. It leaves no scent after application, keeping your home from smelling like industrial chemicals, and does not attract dust.
This product is available at a price point of roughly $.
This product contains 2.75oz. of product per container.
- Lubricates and eliminates squeaking and binding caused by friction.
- Film is clean and highly resistant to water.
- Use on nylon, rubber, metal and non-metal surfaces.
- Perfect for applications exposed to the elements
- Multi-Use Silicone Spray
This silicone lubricant is highly water resistant, and offers extreme weather protection, making it an excellent choice for lubricating windows. The product itself is clear upon application, and is odorless. Its functional temperature is from -40F to +400F. This product’s water resistant nature makes it a good choice for basements or for use in geographical areas prone to heavy weather. It also prevents rust, which is excellent for the same conditions it works best in.
- Multi-use household lubricant for EVERYTHING around your house! It's the NEW WAY to keep your home running smoothly!
- LUBRICATES: Squeaky doors, stubborn windows. Auto/RV/Boat: battery terminals, gaskets, sunroofs, tow hitches. Plumbing: O-rings, faucets, shower door. Bicycles, guns, fishing gear, exercise equip, gears, garden tools, etc.
- FORMULA: Premium, synthetic lube with PTFE. It's safe, non-toxic (NSF H-1 rated), odorless, waterproof, non-flammable, non-corrosive, and dielectric. Won't drip, dry out or evaporate. Outlasts most aerosol spray lubes without the mess. Temp range: -40 to 450F.
- COMPATIBLE with most plastics, metals, rubber, wood, leather, painted surfaces, etc.
- TOOLBOX SIZE: 1oz tube fits perfectly in toolbox, tool drawer, glove box, RV, boat, workbench, ATV, work truck or shop.
This lubricant ships in a two pack, but the quantity per each individual unit is quite small despite the relatively high price. Nonetheless, it offers a high amount of performance in its small albeit pricy package. The formula is a synthetic lubricant, and is safe for children and pets, as well as non-toxic if consumed. It is odorless, non-toxic, electrically safe, and non-flammable. It is effective within a temperature range of -40F to +450F. Although the container is small, it does make it portable and easily insertable into any drawer or toolbox.
- NO MORE TOUGH STICKING SLIDING GLASS DOORS with just a few sprays
- INSTANTLY EFFECTIVE in smoothing motion of sliding glass doors of all styles and sizes
- POWERFUL PERFORMANCE in temperatures from -35 F to 180 F for year round protection
- PROTECTS FROM RUST with added rust inhibitor to keep your sliding doors operating and looking like new
- NON TOXIC mineral-based ingredients are pharmaceutical grade and emit zero VOCs
This mineral-based lubricant is designed for sliding doors, but works just as well for vinyl windows. Its easy to use spray-on applicator is specifically designed for usage in tight areas, to get the product only where it is needed. It functions in temperatures ranging from -35F to +180F, and is made using non-toxic mineral based ingredients safe for kids and pets, emitting zero volatile organic compounds. It protects from rust, which keeps the surfaces it’s applied to looking brand new. It is unscented and nearly odorless.
- LIQUID WRENCH is a local family owned company based out of Charlotte, NC. For more than 75 years, LIQUID WRENCH products, developed by the people who use them, has earned the trust of hard-working tradesment and the active DIYer through consistent, superior performance and a commitment to innovation.LIQUID WRENCH
This lubricant is a silicone spray, offering friction reduction with waterproofing functionality and rust inhibiting properties, contributing to an increased lifespan of metal surfaces. It’s long lasting, highly durable, and safe on most surfaces. However, it is highly flammable and toxic if swallowed or inhaled, and isn’t safe for use around children or pets. Although this model is effective, it’s slightly more difficult to recommend for home use due to its caustic nature.
- Silicone lubricant provides a protective, waterproof, and low-friction coating to surfaces
- Quick-drying formula cures into a clear, stain-resistant hard film
- Lubricant can be applied to metal, rubber, and plastic
- Permanently attached, hinged straw offers the option of a precision stream or fan-shaped spray
- Protects a range of products, including cables, pulleys, valves, hinges, and locks
This silicone lubricant provides friction reduction as well as waterproofing, with a quick-drying formula which dries into a clear, stain-resistant micro-layer. It is effective in temperatures ranging from -100F to +500F. It doesn’t attract dirt and doesn’t leave a sticky residue upon drying. This extremely strong and versatile option has been tested and perfected for maximum effectiveness. However, it is flammable, poisonous, and not safe for use on electrical components.
- Will not mar paint, rubber or plastic surfaces
- Electrically insulates, lubricates and waterproofs all types of mechanical equipment
- Coats hinges and channels, preventing locks, doors and windows from binding and squeaking
- High silicone formula does not attract dust or dirt
- Protects and renews rubber mountings, bushings and weather stripping
This silicone lubricant is safe on paint and electrically insulates and waterproofs all surfaces. As a silicone lubricant, it is highly dust and weather resistant. However, it is unsafe for use around flames and is hazardous if inhaled or ingested.
The best lubricant for vinyl windows offers the best value for its price, without a doubt. However, what that value may be, depends on the scale of your lubricant, as well as the actual composition of the lubricant itself. If you’re unsure about leaving a mess around the application area, looking into a lubrication that dries clear and without a sticky residue is a must. If you live in a particularly weather-heavy geographical area, or are planning to lubricate a tough-to-open window in a basement, cellar, or garage, a waterproof or weatherproof option is a must. Ecologically conscious consumers may want to skip the chemicals altogether and opt for a mineral-based solution.
If you happen to have children or pets, it’s essential to choose a model that won’t pose a threat to curious kids and kittens alike. The potential toxicity of the product itself can also pose a danger to the user, and if lack of ventilation during or after application or perhaps proximity to electrical components or sockets is a concern, formulations exist which are safe to use under such circumstances. Additionally, many lubricants are designed with additional functionality in mind, such as the prevention of rust formation or dust buildup.
With such a wide variety of lubricants to choose from, it may not seem important to study the options closely. However, the perfect lubricant for your vinyl windows will not only make your windows easier to open, shut, and clean, it will make many instances of future maintenance much more manageable and convenient, if not fully avoidable. The perfect lubricant will make your life so much easier. We hope that by taking a look at what we’ve found to be the Top 10, you’ve gained a better understanding of which option to go with when choosing the best lubricant for vinyl windows of your own.