I have noted same thing on actuator seals at rod exit . Although you have to be very careful not to get it on hands and thus paint, silicone grease (Dow Corning, green tube, sometimes called stopcock grease) is great to put on the rod with a very small brush or medical wad. Rubber LOVES silicone , it seals up nicely, lubes the rubber and makes rod slippery. Although they are surprisingly powerful when working right. . but easy to ‘git silicone on ya”.
WD 40 is essentially petroleum solvents, it eats rubber --if not neoprene etc--- not sure what we have, probably junk plain rubber.. WD 40 might turn it to black goop.
Good experience with the grease got me to chase down silicone oil, it has applications where rubber and motion is involved. Probably not much different than silicone brake fluid, but thicker on purpose.. Was like 40 weight.
What is no good for anything is white lube or lubriplate . turns solid, yet I know many use it. Often the reason door locks do not work. Front end grease much better.
Anecdotally, I looked at relatively new JEEP actuators (02 grand Cherokee, you have to pull whole dash, steering wheel, console to get at 70$ AC evaporator,(like --made of aluminum foil,--- they all fail)--- they should hang that AC design guy from a pole in front of Toledo ..2 days of work , ---before you know IF it works..(it did) , thought car itself might never work again, 100 wires hanging out, whole dash , steering column on the floor next to car. . But noticed some of the vacuum actuators looked like they could be adapted to 300, with only some clever brackets etc ; some actuators are electric, but others vacuum. Smaller can.
Maybe one day…have to start thinking this way as cars approach 60 years old. Rubber diaphragms go bad. Advance ones too. Vacuum system leaks are behind probably half of Mercedes of last century being junked, been there on that one too; all their little rubber joints ,tees and crosses in the nylon tubes dry up and crack. All over the car body, hidden Maybe 100 of them. arrgh
Shooting up with WD-40 was worth a shot, but that seems to be proven inappropriate. I can see the naphtha and other solvents breaking down the sliding cards and making the ends mushy. Just hope the solvents have not damaged the plastic housing.
I’m wondering how the mechanic applied the WD-40? If the whole control unit was out, it would have been a good opportunity to send the unit off to have the fiber plates replaced with new modern plastic. Grady Research did a great job on mine. If the mechanic was able to remove and replace the rubber socket from the plastic tubes, the tubes could have been broken.
As I removed and checked each of the four actuators, I found most leaked where the rubber grommet around the push rod met the hole in the rod side of the actuator can. I couldn’t figure out how to get the grommets off—even if I could find new ones. So, I added weatherstrip cement around the edges and now all seem to hold. The rod slips through the grommet, so I polished the rod and added a little (you guessed it) WD-40 to the rods. I did buy a vacuum gun kit from Harbor Freight and used it to test each actuator for leakage and operation before I put them back in the car.
Best wishes, winter is almost here, and you might need the heater.
Hi group, my mechanic sprayed WD40 into the heat defrost AC controls that were real stiff, now there easy to use but they do not work, should I rebuild the control or do I have a vacuum leak. Before the WD40 the controls hardly worked for AC, defrost, air flow.
Harry in Portland OR
Posted by: "John Grady" <jkg@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
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