A grease gun is very useful for lubricating hard to reach areas. It definitely makes the job of lubrication easier and and less messier. However, unfortunately, the grease runs out and you might have to load a new reservoir in the grease gun. Possibly, in the middle of a project.
Knowing how to load a grease gun properly will help you avoid unwanted mishaps such as leaks and malfunctions. Which is why today, we will be featuring an easy step by step guide on how to load a grease gun.
Things You Will Be Needing
Loading a grease gun can be pretty simple if you know the proper way to do it and the best method for you. It can be done more efficiently with bulk grease, usually in large containers.
However, there are two different methods of loading a grease gun that we will be discussing. But before you start experimenting on your grease gun to reload a new reservoir, here are some things you might need first:
- Bulk Grease Containers - these are more efficient to use and are easily available.Gloves - this is very important in order to not smear grease all over the place and your clothes.
- Cartridge - this is for cartridge grease guns (optional, depending on the method you will choose/type of grease gun).
- Apron/Overall Covers
Method 1: For Reservoir Grease Guns
Step 1: Dettach the grease gun head from the barrel
Before anything else, you have to separate the grease gun head from the barrel first. To do this, simply unscrew the head to separate it from the cap. Remember, the part with the handle is the grease gun head along with the attached applicator tube.
The handle of the piston rod (this is the one located at the back of the barrel) should be fully pressed into the barrel. This will keep it from sucking grease accidentally through the gun.
Step 2: Fill the barrel
With the cartridge or a bulk grease container (which you can usually find in your local hardware or auto parts stores), fill the barrel slowly. To do this, simply hold the barrel down into the container, with the open end facing the container.
Slowly and carefully pull back the plunger rod (like a syringe pump) to fill the reservoir. This will pull the grease back to the barrel.
Step 3: Again, separate the barrel from the grease container
Remember, after having the plunger rod fully withdrawn, it is time to remove the barrel from the grease. Simply lift the barrel’s open end and pull it out of the grease container. Grease might cling/adhere to the barrel.
So make sure to to rotate the barrel a few times to break it free. Do not forget to wipe off any excess grease from the end of the barrel with a clean cloth or rag.
Step 4: Reattach the barrel to the head again then test if it works
Different types of grease gun work differently. Some need the nozzle and some need the end cap. Whichever your grease gun needs, make sure to reattach the barrel to the grease gun head again.
Make sure that you engage threads and that the joint is actually fully seated snug. Finally, test the grease gun by pressing on the handle of the piston rod and squeezing the trigger.
Method 2: For Cartridge Grease Guns
Step 1: Remove the cartridge
Similar to the first method, you have to remove the cartridge first. To unscrew the cap and remove the cartridge, you have to turn the cartridge cap clockwise while turning the dispenser nozzle in the opposite direction (counter clockwise).
If you find the screw or cap a little too tight, it is okay to use some elbow grease.
Step 2: Fully withdraw the plunger rod from the barrel
Before everything else, make sure that the plunger rod is secured in its place, not moving. There is a slot where you can move the plunger rod to to keep it from moving or sometimes, it even latches into a fully retracted position.
Opposite the grease gun’s nozzle, is the plunger rod which forces out the grease from the cartridge. Make sure to pull the plunger rod until it is fully withdrawn from the barrel. If you’re having a hard time pulling it up, it might be because of the gunk of grease build up.
However, again, take note of your grease gun’s model or type. Some grease guns automatically ejects the cartridge.
Step 3: Insert the new cartridge into the grease gun barrel
Before inserting the new cartridge, it is ideal to clean up the grease gun first with a clean cloth or rag. When the gun is ready, unscrew the cap from one end of the new cartridge. This is where the grease will flow out from.
Insert first the end of the cartridge with the cap on. Fully push it in and make sure that it is completely sealed with the end of the barrel. After doing so, remove the metal seal which you will see from the end of the cartridge (the exposed end).
Step 4: Reattach the barrel and the head then test
Again, similar to the last step in Method 1, re-attach the barrel and head of the grease gun. Carefully remove the piston rod from its retracted position or lock in position to release it. Push it back to the barrel all while pumping the nozzle’s handle.
Then, after everything has been returned to their positions again, test the grease gun.
At The End Of The Day
At the end of the day, the task of loading a grease gun can actually be very simple and methodical. Even first timers might get the hang of it in a few tries. However, remember to identify first what type of grease gun will you be reloading.
After all, there are different types of grease gun as well as different methods on how to load them. Choose the one that’s best for you and your grease gun.
Thomas Roberge is a Pro himself, who has been in the business of home renovation and construction, working with various tools. He used to be the owner of 2 local construction companies with over 18 years experience. His works also include writing inspiring Do IT Yourself Tips and Tricks.