How to Clear a Plugged Grease Fitting


Grease fittings, or zerk fittings, provide a way to lubricate a sealed joint. A grease gun attaches to the top and grease is injected through the fitting. They are found on most mechanical equipment that has moving parts, including hydraulic machinery, automobile suspensions and aircraft. A clogged grease fitting means the joint will wear quicker, leading to mechanical damage that can be very expensive to repair. Clean grease fittings regularly to keep equipment in top shape.

Things You'll Need

  • Spray degreaser
  • Lint-free rag
  • Grease gun
  • Heat gun
  • Wrench
  • Coat the grease fitting with degreaser and let it set for a few seconds. Wipe thoroughly with a lint-free rag. Twist part of the rag into a small point to clean the inside of the fitting head.

  • Attach the grease gun and test the fitting.

  • Heat the grease fitting with a heat gun so that the metal is very warm. Immediately attach the grease gun and use it. The warm grease may be soft enough for the grease gun to push it through.

  • Remove the grease fitting with a wrench. Spray the bottom of the grease fitting thoroughly with degreaser and wipe it with a lint-free rage.

  • Clean the grease fitting hole with a rag. Wipe out from the center of the hole to prevent debris from getting pushed further in.

  • Replace the grease fitting with a wrench so that it is snug. Test the grease fitting with a grease gun.

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