Best Lubricants For Skateboard Bearings [2023 Tried & Tested]

Best Lubricants For Skateboard Bearings [2023 Tried & Tested]

What To Wear When Skateboarding Reading Best Lubricants For Skateboard Bearings [2023 Tried & Tested] 15 minutes Next How To Skateboard Uphill [A Total Guide]

There are a few things to keep in mind when choosing the best way to lube your skateboard bearings. Lubricating your bearings regularly helps increase their longevity and keeps your skateboard rolling smoothly. Let’s get started with our tried and tested guide to the best lubricants for skateboard bearings.

  • 1

    Bones Speed Cream
  • Why it's rad: It's the most popular on the market for all-round skating
  • ✅ Affordable
  • ✅ Small, easy to pocket
  • ✅ Great brand name
  • ⛔ Mediocre in our test
  • Buy at Stoked Buy at Amazon

  • 2

    Oust Met Ol
  • Why it's rad: Premium lube designed for speed with thin metal drip nozzle
  • ✅ Affordable
  • ✅ Small, easy to pocket
  • ✅ Excellent dripper
  • ⛔ Mediocre in our test
  • Buy at Stoked Buy at Amazon

  • 3

    Archoil 9100
  • Why it's rad: We found this to outperform everything else on the market
  • ✅ Best test performance
  • ✅ Best per ounce price
  • ⛔ Large bottle only
  • Buy at Amazon

[Learn about skateboard hardware.]

What is a lubricant?

A substance, such as oil or grease, used for minimizing friction, especially in an engine or component.

Basically, it is the substance inside the bearing that helps it to spin. It helps eliminate friction and therefore increase performance when in use.

Pre-Purchase: What to Consider

The first thing to consider is your type of bearing. There are 2 main types of bearings. Let's call them fixed seal and unfixed seal.

  1. Fixed Seal: Sealed bearings are factory-sealed with metal shields and, unfortunately, you're going to have to replace the whole bearing.
  2. Unfixed Seal: A bearing with a seal that can be taken off. This is most common on skateboard bearings as non-contact rubber seals. We recommend opting for bearings with these kinds of removable seals as they allow you to regularly clean and lubricate them for optimal performance.

The second thing to consider is where you'll be riding your skateboard. For example, if you're solely on pavement and looking to go AFAP (as fast as possible. obviously) and break the sound barrier, and oil-based lubricant is going to be best suited. If you are looking to do minimal maintenance, skate the boardwalk and cruise around, a grease lubricant is best suited.

best skateboard bearing lubricants

3 Best Skateboard Bearing Lubricants

Now that you know what to look for in a lubricant, let's take a look at some of the best options on the market. We have ACTUALLY tested these products on numerous occasions. We have also sacrificed multiple bearings to put these through an extreme test to truly determine which is the best once and for all.

Notes About WD-40

One popular lubricant among skateboarders is WD-40. It's common around the house, so a lot of skaters have used it. However, we do not recommend WD-40 in skateboard bearings because it evaporates quickly. The WD-40 will make your balls feel good at first (because it's wet) but then dry out and give you sticky ball bearings.

There are some formulations of WD-40 that claim to work, including this one that contains PTFE, but in our experience it works best on small 608 sized skateboard bearings to use a light oil or grease that is not evaporate. Your bearings should be sealed, so the benefits of the dry lubrication are not really worth it.

Recommended Lubes

Ok, now onto the 3 best lubricants we have found for skateboard bearings:

  1. Bones Speed Cream
  2. Oust Met Ol
  3. Archoil AR9100

  • 3

    Archoil 9100
  • Why it's rad: We found this to outperform everything else on the market
  • Buy at Amazon

1. Bones Speed Cream

This is by far the most popular skateboard bearing lubricant for your bearings. But is it the best?

It's a synthetic low viscosity lubricant to withstand higher temperatures. After cleaning and lubing our bearings with Speed Cream we felt smooth and quick from the start. We liked the small bottle and nib applicator which allowed for accurate application. 3 or 4 drops should do the trick for most of your cruising and street skating needs.

0.5 oz will set you back around $7.95

Shop here

2. Oust Met Ol

A fast favorite from the Southern California brand Oust. A lot of R&D went into creating this premium lube. It is a special blend of of high and low molecular weight carbon, which is designed to be re-applied every 6 hours to keep your board performing to the maximum.

Applying this every 6 hours provded to be a little annoying for most skateboard bearings, but if you use the Oust Street MOC 5s, you can actually re-lube the bearings without taking off the shields! Just stick the needle nose through a tiny, purpose made, hole in the shield. Boom.

0.5 oz will cost you around $9.95

Shop Here

3. Archoil AR9100

This isn't your typical branded skate lubricant. This is actually a friction modifier oil additive. So why is this on the list? As we mentioned, we have actually tested these lubes as we wanted to truly see which was the best. This not only gives you smooth and fast bearings, but it protects against internal corrosion from skating in the salty beach air, or similar.

No disrespect to the Oust or Bones formula, but we actually found this to work more effectively than both. We were so surprised that we created an extreme test to test all three side by side. More on that below.

The downside is that it only comes in a 16oz bottle. But 16oz for $45 works out at under $1.5 for the same 0.5oz size as Oust & Bones Bearings formulas, so if you're in it for the long run, this is our pick.

Shop Here

[Need the best cheap skate shoes?]


The Brutal Bearing Lubricant Test

By now you are wondering what exactly this test is. As we mentioned we were so surprised by what we found with Archoil, that we concocted a neat little experiment to further test this. Just to note, this is an extreme case scenario, designed to really test the limits of the bearings.

What we did:

We wanted to speed up the corrosion process to allow us to test each bearing lube over time. To do this we made a solution comprised of Hydrogen Peroxide, White Vinegar and Sea Salt. Let's call it solution X.

We then de-shielded and thoroughly cleaned all existing lubricant from the bearings (using Oust's Cleaning Kit), rinsed them and let them dry.

Each bearing was fully submerged into solution X and left for 5 minutes to express the corrosion of the bearing, before being lightly towel dried. For half of the bearings we added 3 drops of lubricant, spun to allow the lube to coat the balls. The other half were left un-lubricated.

What we found:

🕛 After 20 minutes...

  • Bones Speed Cream - balls look like they are starting to corrode. Spins but crunchy
  • Oust Met Ol - balls look like they are starting to corrode. Spins but cruncy. Better than Bones.
  • Archoil - seems to self lubricate. Looks clean, but when you spin the bearing a white-ish coating covers the balls. Spins pretty freely with some resistance (which is a good thing for skateboarding)

🕒 After 3 hours...

  • Bones Speed Cream - seized completely
  • Oust Met Ol - seized completely
  • Archoil - a tiny bit crunchy, but spins fairly freely

🕘 After 48 hours...

  • Bones Speed Cream - seized completely
  • Oust Met Ol - seized completely
  • Archoil - mostly seized, but moves with force

Why this happened:

After doing more research and speaking to professionals in the field, we determined that Archoil has an additional additive to stop corrosion that the other lubricants do not.


How often you should lubricate your bearings depends on how frequently you skate. If you skate regularly, it's a good idea to lubricate your bearings every few weeks. If you don't skate often, you can get away with lubricating them once a month or so. If you are bombing the hills with your Oust Met Ol, they recommend every 6 hours of skating.

It's important to note that these are not hard rules. If you start to notice that your skate bearings are making more noise than usual or feel less smooth, that's a sign that they need to be lubricated. You can use one of our recommended oils, above, or grease from Super Lube, but be sure to clean the bearings correctly first.

To clean your bearings, you'll need to remove the wheels from your skateboard. Once the wheels are off, rock the bearing back and forth. to pry out the bearings. Soak the bearings in a bowl of solvent for a few minutes, then use a brush to remove any dirt or old grease.

Once your bearings are clean, dry them off and add a small amount of new oil grease. Replace the bearings in the wheels and put them back onto the axle.

Here's a quick video to get your bearings out without any tools:

Frequently Asked Questions:

There are a few different things that you can use to lubricate your skateboard bearings, but the most common and effective option is to use bearing oil. You can find bearing oil at most skate shops, or online.

To apply the oil, start by removing your bearings from the wheels, and popping off the bearing shields. You should really clean bearings at this point - here is a handy guide on how to clean your skateboard bearings correctly from our friends at Fireball Supply Co.

Check out this handy visual guide on how to clean your skateboard bearings correctly from our friends at Fireball Supply Co.

Skateboard bearings require lubrication in order to keep them spinning smoothly. Without proper lubrication, the bearings will eventually seize up and cause the skateboard to stop working, resulting in purchasing new bearings. Bearing lubricant also helps to protect the bearings from corrosion and wear, and it can also help to reduce friction and increase speed.

[What to wear when skateboarding]

We cover this above! In summary, Bones Speed Cream, Met Ol by Oust or Archol 9100 are our recs. Liberty oil Synthetic Lubricant is another alternative.

If you're really stuck, you *could* use motor oil. Although it certainly is not the best, it's better than running your bearings dry.

DO NOT use olive oil, as we have seen suggested online. Bearings are not edible, so why would you do this? You need a specilist lube that can handle the high temperatures from skating.


For some reason a lot of mis-informtion is spread around the interweb. Here is what you absolutely should not use on your skate bearings: WD40, White lithium grease, olive oil, other vegetable oils, dry lubricant, teflon based lubricants. We will update this as we find more misinformation spreading.

es. WD40 will dry out your bearings and thus aid in their breakdown.

[Have you seen the best skateboard pants?]

Skateboard bearings play a very important role in the performance of a skateboard. They are responsible for the roll - the smoothness and speed of the board - and can make a big difference in how well it performs. There are a few things to keep in mind when choosing good bearings:

Size is one important consideration when choosing skateboard bearings. Luckily skate bearings are mostly standardized, and you'll likely want an 8mm bearing (608). This 8mm measurement refers to the size of the axle the bearing sits on. That said, some (mostly inline) do need 7mm bearings (627), so do make sure to double check your axle size, or look on your bearing shield as manufacturers often add the size here.

Material is also an important consideration when choosing skateboard bearings. The most common materials are ceramic and steel. Technically these are 'hybrid' bearings as it is just the internal ball bearings that these terms refer to. Ceramic bearings are more expensive, but they offer a smoother ride and higher performance through reduced friction. Standard steel bearings are less expensive and still provide a good ride, but they may not last as long as ceramic bearings.

Brand is another important consideration when choosing skateboard bearings. Some of the most popular brands include Bones, Fireball Supply Co, and Bronson. It's important to choose a brand that offers high quality bearings that will last a long time. Bones & Fireball, for example, come with lifetime guarantee! Explore our bearing range and pick up a new set here.

[How to skateboard uphill.]

There is no definitive answer to how much you should spend on skateboard bearings. However, there are a few factors to consider that can help you make a decision.

The first factor is the quality of the bearings. Skateboard bearings come in different levels of quality, from budget to high-end. The better the quality, the higher the price. But keep in mind that higher quality doesn't necessarily mean better performance. It's important to try different types of bearings and see what works best for you.

Another factor to consider is how often you skate. If you're a casual skater who only rides occasionally, you may not need to invest in the highest quality bearings. On the other hand, if you're a professional skater or roller hockey player, who skates every day, you'll want to make sure you have bearings that can stand up to the wear and tear.

You'll also need to consider your budget. Obviously, you'll need to spend more money if you want high-end ceramic bearings over steel. But don't forget that you can find good quality bearings at a variety of price points.

As a general rule of thumb, brands that mention 'ABEC XYZ' should be avoided. Yes the ABEC system is a real measure of tolerance, but it only applies to industry application and not for skating. If a brand is actively promoting their bearings as ABEC 7 or the like, it's pretty clear to us that they are either purposely deciving customers, or they don't know much about the product they sell. If you wish to read more about this, check out this guide to why ABEC ratings are worthless.

Check out our guide to the best skateboard bearings

If you have a longboard, or you need to improve the ride on your skateboard wheels, you’ll want the best lubricants. Amazon has a number of great options, as will your local skate shop.

Clean skateboard bearings will improve your ride, and the high performance of longboard bearings is equally unbeatable. Skate bearing lubricant usually doesn’t cost much, so there is really no excuse to not have your bearings properly cleaned and lubed up.

There are also a ton of great YouTube tutorials, which make it easy to lube up your bearings. Beginners may not be worried about their bearings right away, but they are important.

Stoked Ride Shop may earn a commission if you purchase a product through one of our links.

The opinions and views expressed in this work are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions or views of Stoked Ride Shop. The author makes no representations or warranties with respect to the accuracy or completeness of the contents of this work and specifically disclaims any implied warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose. The author shall not be liable for any damages, including, but not limited to, direct, indirect, incidental, punitive, special, consequential, or exemplary damages, even if Stoked Ride Shop has been advised of the possibility of such damages. Ride at your own risk and within your own limits.

1 comment


WD-40 isn’t made to clean rust and grime its made to displace water from components that would be negatively affected by water like spark plugs. Thats where they get the WD from Water Displacement. WD-40 also evaporates so the likelihood of it damaging anything over time is very slim the fact it evaporates is actually the primary reason it is a poor choice for a lubricant.

WD-40 isn’t made to clean rust and grime its made to displace water from components that would be negatively affected by water like spark plugs. Thats where they get the WD from Water Displacement. WD-40 also evaporates so the likelihood of it damaging anything over time is very slim the fact it evaporates is actually the primary reason it is a poor choice for a lubricant.

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