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What Oil to Use on Treadmills

author image Jeremy Hoefs
Based in Nebraska, Jeremy Hoefs began writing fitness, nutrition, outdoor and hunting articles in 2006. His articles have been published in "Star City Sports," "Hunting Fitness Magazine" and RutWear field journals, as well as on the Western Whitetail website. Hoefs graduated with a Bachelor of Science in exercise science from Nebraska Wesleyan University.
What Oil to Use on Treadmills
Using the proper oil and lubricant on a treadmill improves its performance. Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Goodshoot/Getty Images

Treadmills are specialized pieces of equipment composed of various electrical and moving components. To ensure its proper function and prolong its life, the manufacturer suggests various maintenance and lubrication tips. While you can follow a general outline for treadmill maintenance, the oil used to lubricate your treadmill must meet the specifications for your specific model.


The type of oil used to lubricate treadmills varies from model to model but typically includes a synthetic, petroleum-free compound. These oils include a paraffin wax-based or silicone-based belt lube. Certain models with shock absorbers or an incline function may also require a Teflon-based spray applied to the air shocks. One bottle of oil is typically included with the treadmill and lasts several years depending on your usage level.


Using the wrong type of oil or lubricant on your treadmill may cause serious damage to the belt, motor and other moving parts. Avoid using household oils and lubricants such as WD-40, silicone spray or oil to lubricate your treadmill. These products contain petroleum distillates that can deteriorate parts on the treadmill.

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The treadmill oil is an important component to the general maintenance of your treadmill. Some treadmill models require lubrication before the first use while other models don’t require lubrication until after several hours of usage. Always remove any dust or dirt from the parts receiving the oil to ensure the oil properly lubricates the moving parts. A general guideline for using oil during your maintenance schedule includes lubricating the treadmill every six months for light use of less than three hours per week, every three months for medium use of three to five hours per week, and every six to eight weeks for heavy use of more than five hours per week.


Every treadmill brand and model may require a specific type of oil to lubricate the moving parts. The oil is typically included in your starter kit along with general tools with specific information in your owner’s manual. Avoid using an oil or lubricant without first verifying its compatibility with your treadmill model. Contact the company for oil and lubricant application instructions.

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