Most mechanics will tell you that keeping your air tools (grinders, impact wrenches, drills, sanders, …) well lubricated will improve the performance and lifespan of your air tools. And it really doesn’t take much time to keep them well lubricated.
Your air tool has a motor with machine polished surfaces much like the cylinders in your car’s engine. Contaminants like water and dirt can quickly destroy those surfaces causing premature wear to the motor. While there are many things you can do to reduce the risk of these contaminates, like draining and purging your entire air system to simply never connecting a work or dirty hose coupler to your tool, you’ll never completely eliminate them from entering the system. Lubrication is important to reducing the damage that any contaminants will cause and protecting your tool from the natural effects of friction and water condensation that will occur.
First off, follow your manufacturers instructions on how to care for your tool. They will know best how to care for their tool and of course it will be important to do so if a situation with a in warranty repair that may occur.
Secondly, be sure to store your tool in a dry, enclosed space while not in use. This will help prevent water condensation that can cause rust issues.
Thirdly, lubricate your tool regularly. Many use the rule of “feed your tool, like you’d feed yourself.” For a tool that is used frequently throughout the day, lubricate in the morning before use, partway through the day (it needs “lunch” to help it run efficiently through the afternoon) and then in the evening before you leave for the day. This end of day lubrication is important as it will help prevent condensation (which will cause rust) as it sits overnight.
AMSOIL recently introduced it’s Synthetic Air Tool Oil. AMSOIL’s product lubricates the motor and bearings and manages moisture and helps to condition rubber and plastic seals and O-rings.
Take care of your air tools and they’ll continue to work for many years or even generations. I’ve got air tools that my father has used for over 50 years and with proper care, I don’t doubt they’ll continue to run well for many years to come.