CLEANING / LUBRICATION / RUST & CORROSION PREVENTION
All Leatherman products are manufactured from 100% high-grade stainless steel (exception: screw bits for the tool adapter are made of tool steel). Stainless steel is not rust-proof; it is corrosion-resistant. Depending on the mix of metal alloys, stainless steels may be highly corrosion-resistant and relatively soft (like kitchen flatware), or they may be somewhat corrosion-resistant and quite hard. Our products are fabricated from the latter type, so your tool components are strong, and the knives retain a sharp cutting edge.
Depending on what your Leatherman has been exposed to, there are several cleaning methods to consider.
- Cleaning can be done with a low viscosity oil (e.g. WD-40, Liquid Wrench, CRC 3-36), which helps force out moisture trapped in the joints.
- Buff stained surfaces with a polishing cloth or non-metallic abrasive (e.g., Scotchbrite pad or soft bristle brush).
- For pivoting or wear areas, use a PTFE / Teflon-based lubricant to make your tool function as smoothly as possible.
- If debris or sticky substances have accumulated between the blades, your Leatherman may also be cleaned in a mild solution of detergent and water.
- To remove tar and similar substances, clean your Leatherman with turpentine or other mineral spirits. Warning: acetone or brake cleaners may damage plastic components.
- Corrosion can occur in the absence of proper maintenance. Your Leatherman product should be cleaned, dried, and re-lubricated periodically to inhibit rust and corrosion. This is especially true if your Leatherman has been exposed to saltwater or marine environments. If so, rinse in fresh water, dry, and lubricate it with a light oil.