This Is What Happened When A Group Of Teens Used WD-40 As Engine Oil
There's a lot of handy multi-purpose products that are a staple of cupboards around the world. Whether it's vinegar, bleach, or the immortal WD-40. If you've got a squeaky door hinge that needs silencing or rusty bike chain that needs loosening up, WD-40 has your back. However, until now (as far as I'm aware), no one has tried to test this handy staple to its absolute limit.
But that's all changed thanks to a group of teenagers who visited Home Depot with this very goal in mind. Walking through the hardware-laden aisles, one of the teens said to his friend, "Dude, they have no shortage of what we need here." And, obviously, he was referring to WD-40. "We gotta test the theory,” one said, implying that their plan had been in the works for a while.
The boys walked through the aisles searching for the jumbo-sized WD-40 bottles. Once they found them, they read the back in search of more information about the product and discovered something that would make their mission a lot easier.
The back of the bottle said "engine" and it was then that they knew they'd be able to use it on one of their cars.
After leaving Home Depot armed with an ample amount of WD-40, the teenagers were ready to begin their mission.
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Despite the fact that there was a very high risk of things going wrong, one of them offered up their car to be experimented on. However, before they could pour WD-40 into it, they had to drain its engine of the oil that was already inside it.
"We'll drain all of this outta here," said one of the excited teens. Once this had happened, they began to fill up the car.
As the WD-40 was pouring inside, one of the teens said, "that definitely smells like WD-40." He touched the product, describing it as "slippery". Then, referring to what they were doing, he said, "it says on the can that it will definitely do engines."
Another teen read off the can, "lubricates to smooth operation."
Once the engine had finally been filled up with WD-40, the teens began to predict what would happen next. One said, "I think it's gonna run fine." Whereas another speculated, "We've got five minutes before it blows."
Whereas a third teen named Chau predicted that the car would only be able to run on WD-40 for an hour. To complete the speculations, the teen filming the event said, "Maybe we might even be able to drive it before it pops."
After this, they turned on the engine, and, much to their surprise, it didn't "sound bad". The teen who had predicted that the car would run fine said "No, it's fine. It's a lubricant." However, their experiment was far from over.
The teens then got into the car, and after a few minutes of driving around, the one in the passenger seat said, "Dude, it's fine. The car literally does not care." He then asked, "What happens if we do this for like two hours and it does not blow up?"
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In response to this, his friend bluntly said that if that happens, it's proof that "you can use WD-40 as engine oil."
However, what started out as a smooth ride eventually took a turn for the worst when they heard a groaning sound from the engine. "Oh, she's struggling," said the driver. The backseat rider added, "It's starting to smell weird."
Then, as this picture below demonstrates, smoke began to billow out of the engine.
The teens began to scream - not because they were scared, but because they had no idea what to do next.
They then decided to do the unthinkable and drive the car erratically, doing a number of turns and reversals before pulling over when the smoke appeared. But instead of stopping for their own safety, they turned things up a notch.
After pulling over, the teens got out of the car and put a long, led pipe on the gas pedal so that the car would drive itself. The teens then turned the engine on again to test the ability of WD-40, keeping the car parked to avoid an accident.
Related: Although, something things you find at your local hardware store can have many other practical uses:
It was at this point that the teens began their second round of predictions. "This is it, this is where she meets her end," the cameraman said. If true, this begged the second question, how long was it going to take?
One speculated, "Dude, I think it's gonna last like ten minutes." Another said two minutes. And they set a timer to find out...
Because the group was destroying a car for the sake of an experiment, they invited a few more people along to watch and explained what had happened so far. One of them was surprised that the car had lasted as long as it had.
Once the engine was turned back on, the group ran away from the car. Immediately, they were struck by how loud it was. For a while, it looked like nothing major was going to happen, but that didn't last for long and things soon started to heat up...
Surprisingly, however, it was not the engine which succumbed first to WD-40.
It was one of the car's back tires!
At this point, the group reacted to the fire by screaming before exclaiming "Oh my God! Oh my God" as they pointed at the tires.
Shortly after this fire started, another much larger blaze broke out on the car's bonnet.
While most people might be lamenting the loss of a car at this point, the group of teens went wild with excitement and began to jump up and down as the vehicle slowly but surely met its demise.
Incredibly, even though the front of the car was on fire at this point, the engine was still running - a testament to the power of WD-40. However, after putting up a good fight, the engine eventually succumbed to defeat.
According to the timer, the engine had lasted for an impressive three minutes and 25 seconds.
And this little snippet of information was enough to distract the group from what became the climax of their endeavors - the car exploding. As the picture below demonstrates, this was no small boom either, but a seriously scary and loud one.
Once the flames had been extinguished, the teens had to get rid of the car, which was now nothing more than scrap metal, by towing it on the back of one of their other vehicles. As they drove away, they repeatedly said phrases like "that was intense," and "that was dope," and "it exploded!" - clearly, it was going to take a while for the group's adrenaline levels to go down.
So, which member of the group got it right when it came to predicting how long the engine would last for?
It was the guy who'd predicted two minutes. The one who'd said ten minutes then admitted that he'd overshot the mark.
It was then that the cameraman finally revealed himself and gave his recommendations on testing WD-40 to its absolute limit. He began by saying that the purpose of the experiment was to find out if it could be used as engine oil.
"Sorta. Kinda. Not really. Wouldn't recommend it," he said.
However, this was just one man's opinion, and as anyone who has taken a high school science class knows, theories have to be tested multiple times and in various situations before any definitive conclusions can be reached.
The cameraman then revealed that on top of conducting this exciting experiment, that he had a special gift to give everyone on top of the excitement of getting to watch a car be destroyed by WD-40. He was giving away a Mazda RX-7 FD.
Clearly, this guy had more than one car to spare, which is why he and his friends were able to offer one up to the experiment.
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The Mazda RX-7 FD is a classic car from the 90s, and if they so desired, viewers could enter a raffle to win it.
So who exactly is this guy? It turns out that he's a pretty big deal on YouTube. His name is Orion Dajnowicz, and his YouTube channel "Life OD" has a whopping 465k subscribers - and many of them were less than impressed with the experiment.
One commenter on YouTube wrote, "I think it would have blown under that abuse with any engine oil." Another added, "So it overheated and caught on fire, just like it would have if it was normal oil."
So, as far as these men were concerned, it wasn't the WD-40 that caused the car to explode, but how the teens treated the car.
One commenter said that the teens had completely misunderstood the purpose of WD-40. He pointed out that the "WD" stands for "Water Displacement" and that it's to be used to "clean the individual parts of the engine upon assembly."
Technicalities aside, another commenter slammed the teens for their actions by writing that they were incredibly dangerous as WD-40 is not formulated to be used at high temperatures. Instead, it's a "Penetrating Oil" for freeing up frozen parts.
This person added that WD-40 could be used as engine oil, but only if it was done reasonably and not to the extreme like this.
If the YouTube comments alone were anything to by, the teens in the video had a lot of questions to answer. Why didn't they do more research? Did they realize how dangerous their actions were? Well, it's because they know a fair bit about cars already.
Remember Orion Dajnowicz? The guy who owns the YouTube channel? He knows so much about cars that his entire channel is dedicated to them and that's why it's safe to say that he wouldn't have conducted the experiment unless he knew it was safe.
In addition to knowing a lot about cars, Orion races them professionally. While he's yet to compete on some of the world's well-known tracks, it's safe to say that he's a rising star because of the number of trophies he's won.
What's more is that Orion did not recommend that anyone experiment with WD-40 and said, "Don't try this at home, kids."
One thing's for sure - although it's safe to say that WD-40 wasn't exactly a successful replacement for engine oil, the fact that the car was able to run on it, albeit for a short time, is a testament to how powerful this everyday staple is.