67 reasons everyone needs a can of WD-40 in their life

If you’re too worried about failure to get started on your startup, here’s a good story.

The inventors of WD-40, the universal spray that fixes everything in your shed, failed 39 times in the early 1950s before getting the formula right. That’s why it’s called WD-40 – “Water Displacement, 40 times”.

By 1958, the product was on shelves in the San Diego area. Four years later, in 1973, it went public and now the company has a $US1.3 billion valuation.

If you don’t have a can of WD-40 in your shed, you’re not a proper dad, even if you don’t know what it’s for or where to stick the skinny red tube.

But this might help – there’s also a hefty online document that lists 2000 uses for WD-40. We’ve weeded out anything to do with the big three – rustproofing, lubricating and getting engines started – and found a heap of other uses you might not have thought, but someone else did, somehow.

Get through this, and you might feel the need to buy several cans.


  • Keeps snow, clay and heavy dirt from sticking to shovels. And concrete, apparently.
    And pizza dough. Picture: Universal
  • Penetrates to help open stuck paint can lids
  • Removes Liquid Nails from fingers
  • Improves cutting time for drill bits


  • Spray lightly over stagnant water to keep mosquito eggs from hatching
  • Spray top of bird feeder to make squirrels slide off (assume this applies to all rodents)
  • Spray on trees to prevent beavers from chewing on them
  • Coat wire tomato plant cages to keep insects away
  • Spray around flower beds gently to keep cats out


  • Spray chalk lines drawn on asphalt to keep them from washing away in the rain
  • Picture: Fox
  • Keeps flower pots from sticking together when stacked in storage
  • Spray around bottom of garbage cans to prevent animals from getting in
  • Helps keep wooden handles on garden tools from splintering
  • Spray in cracks to prevent weeds from growing in them


  • Restores transparency of plastic shoes
  • Cleans dog poo from tennis shoes
  • Removes tomato stains from clothes
  • Cleans peanut butter from shoestrings

Sports and Recreation

Picture: 20th Century Fox
  • Frees stuck zipper on wetsuit
  • Removes athletic tape from ankles
  • Removes deep stains from basketballs
  • Keeps tap shoes working smoothly
  • Spray on to make smoother fingers for finger-spinning freestyle Frisbee players
  • Rub into hands before touching fishing lures or bait to disguise human scent
  • Removes barnacles from bottom of boats
  • Spray on Twister game for more fun
  • Lubricates bed wheels for more speed while bed racing


  • Helps separate dual layer projection TV screen so that outer screen can be replaced without damaging the inner screen
  • Keeps wicker chairs from squeaking
  • Lubricates vinyl records to prevent skipping
  • Spray on tips of dead ballpoint pens to bring them back alive
  • Removes fingerprints from glossy covers of magazines and book covers
  • Cleans connections on old Nintendo cartridges
  • Spray on bathroom mirror to keep it from fogging
  • Displaces moisture from wet mobile phones
  • Spray on glass objects that are stuck together to separate without breaking
  • Unkinks gold chains
  • Lubricates wheels of homemade monorail systems
  • Keeps VCR tapes from sticking in VCRs
  • Frees stuck Lego blocks
  • Loosens hard to open jar lids


  • Eases removal of solidified spitballs
  • Removes crayon from walls (and clothes-dryers, carpets, chalkboards and pretty much everything else)
  • Removes lipstick from fabric
  • Removes tape marks from walls where posters hung
  • Removes ink from carpet
  • Removes stickers from glass and crystal
  • Cleans black streaks from hardwood floors
  • Polishes away scratches on countertops

Pets and farm animals

  • Removes snarls from horse hair and manes
  • Spray on cable and telephone lines to keep puppies from chewing them
  • Cleans gum from chicken feathers
  • Keeps kitty-doo from sticking to electric cat-box rakes

Deportment and Grooming

  • Removes stubborn stuck-on leg wax
  • Picture: Universal Pictures
  • Spray sewing thread to prevent breakage
  • Removes play-dough and extension glue from hair
  • Spray on watch band to keep it from pulling out your arm hairs
  • Spray on disposable razor blades to make them function longer
  • Removes stubborn temporary tattoos


  • Cleans and protects automatic weapons
  • Keeps prison cell doors from squeaking
  • Lubricates bone joints of skeletons in laboratories
  • Use bottom of can to draw perfect circles. Use cap for smaller circles
  • Lubricates fingers stuck in hole
  • Keep snake and reptile skins pliable in taxidermy
  • Frees stuck escape slides located at bottom of entry doors on planes

Bonus use

  • Opening other cans of WD-40
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