How to Lube Keyboard Switches: A Fast and Simple Way

How to Lube Keyboard Switches

Do you wanna get rid of the scratching sort of plastic sound and pinging of spring coming from your mechanical keyboard?

If yes you need to lube the mechanical switches of the keyboard. You need to lube the switches to improve the acoustics, feel, actuation performance, and speed of the keyboard.

If you wonder how to lube keyboard switches, take a look at this guide. I’ve composed a step-by-step guide to help you to lube mechanical switches in the best possible way.

How To Lube Keyboard Switches

In this guide, we will discuss how to lube keyboard switches in detail but before knowing that, You have to know why you need to lube keyboard switches.

Why Do I Need To Lube Keyboard Switches?

Lubing the switches is a time-intensive activity and therefore this is the very first question that comes to your mind. Lubing is one of the best ways through which you can improve your experience with the keyboard. Bottoming out, irritating sounds, and higher than desired bump or resistance are the most common issues that mechanical keyboard users face.

Adding lube to the key inside the switch can help you get rid of all these issues instantly. Most people lube the mechanical keyboard switches to make them sound better. Mechanical keyboards produce an echoey spring sound when you hit the bottom with a keystroke. Lubing the switches also reduces the spring friction and reduces the irritating echoing sound. Linear switches are used in pro gaming keyboards. Gamers lube switches for fun and to enhance the therapeutic feeling of the board.

Also lubing the switches speeds up the actuation process and reduces the response time of the mechanical switches, helping them slide over all kinds of surfaces and offer an ultra-smooth buttery field. Clicky switches are not preferred for a shared work environment as they offer loud clicky feedback. However, you can significantly reduce noise by adding a lube between the keys and switches.

Types Of Keyboard Lube

Mechanical keyboard lubricants are mainly divided into two groups: oil lubes and grease lubes. Both lubes types differ in terms of viscosity, potential performance, ease of application, and longevity.

Oil-Based Lubes

Oil-based lubes are less viscous or less thick than their grease-based counterparts. Low viscosity and a thin profile make them pretty easy to apply. You can lube the switch springs by putting them in a plastic bag along with the oil lube and shaking them together. The viscosity of the lubricants is usually graded with a number. The lower the number the less viscous the lube. Oil-based lubes are graded 10X and these are mostly preferred for tactile and clicky switches.

Grease Lubes

Grease lubes are thicker and more viscous than oil-based lubes. The lubes are more long-lasting than oil lubes. However, you need a brush to add grease lube to the mechanical switch of the keyboard. The application process of grease lubes a little trickier and more time-consuming than grease lubes. Lubes with 20X grading is grease based and if you want to lube linear switches or other keyboard components like stabilizers, you need to buy a 20x grading lubricant.

Remember not all grease based lubes have the same viscosity. Some grease lubes are thicker than another grease lubes. The same goes for oil-based lubes. Depending upon your personal preference and type of keyboard you can use any lube that suits best your needs. Many people also mix up the grease and oil lube to achieve the desired viscosity and consistency.

Things You Need To Lube Mechanical Switches

Before knowing how to lube keyboard switches, here is a list of all the tools and essentials that you must have in hand before you know how to lube keyboard switches.


Picking the right and best lube for your keyboard switch is the hardest part of the process. It is your switch type that determines which lube will work best. If you are doing it for the first time, you may find it a little hard to choose the best lube so here is my recommendation for mechanical switch lubes:

For Linear Switches

As I have already mentioned you need grease lube for linear switches. Krytox 205G is the best lube for a linear switch that you can buy today. This is a high-viscosity lube that is formulated with the needs of linear speed switches. Linear Switches are ultra quiet but the bottoming out is the biggest concern associated with them. Linear switches bottom out just above 60g. Krytox 205 g features the desired consistency and significantly reduces the bottoming out giving you a smooth and long-lasting experience.

For Tactile Switches

Most people prefer less viscous lubes for tactile switches. Krytox 203 and Tribosys 3203 are highly recommended for tactile switches.

For Clicky Switches

A low-viscosity lube works best for clicky switches. Krytox 105G is a good option for clicky switches. An oil lube reduces the noise level and dampens the clicky feedback of the board. If you use a higher-viscosity lube, you may lose the distinctive clicky feedback of the keyboard.

Switch Puller Or Soldering Tool

To pull out the keys for a keyboard you either need a switch puller or soldering iron. If you own a keyboard with a hot-swappable keyboard, you can use a switch puller to pry the keys out of the keyboard. On the other hand, a soldering iron is used to pull the switches that have been soldered on the PCB. If you try to pull these switches with a switch puller, you may damage the switches and the PCB circuits.

Switch Opener

After pulling the keys you need to open the switches to get access to the springs and stabilizers. A switch opener is a safest and handiest tool you can use to open the switches. If you don’t have a switch opener you can also use a flathead screwdriver.

A Small Paintbrush

The best way to add lube between the key, switches, and springs is by using a brush. A small paintbrush helps you access all the areas that you want to lubricate in between the switches. You can apply less viscous or oil-based lubes without a brush also. For grease lubes you need a size 2 paintbrush. This is a perfect size that helps you go through all the nooks and crannies in between the switches.


When you open the switch, you will see multiple small and sensitive components. You can’t pick up these components with your hands. A tweezer is a handy tool that will help you pick up the small parts and keep your hands safe from grease.

Components Of Keyboard Switches

It is important to know all the components of the keyboard switch, before knowing how to lube keyboard switches. It is crucial for a perfect and damage-free lubing process. It will help you disassemble all the parts and put them back safely.

Upper Housing

Housing is the topmost covering of the switches. It is a part of the switch into which all other components are integrated. This part guides the forces through the stem to the actuation point.


The stem is part of a mechanical switch that connects the keycap with actuation or crosspoint contact. This is an elongated structure that holds the keycaps on the opposite side of the switches. The stem carries the actuation force from the top to the actuation point. The feel and feedback of the keyboard depend upon the size and structure of the stem.

Crosspoint Contact

Coressopoint contact or actuation point is that registers the keystroke. It is a metallic part consisting of two leaves that closes when the stem hits it. In this way, it registers the keystroke and passes the signal.

Coil Spring

Coil springs are placed at the bottom of the mechanical switches. The required actuation force of the switch depends upon the hardness of these springs. The springs regularize the actuation force required to register a keystroke.

Bottom Housing

The bottom housing of the switch is similar to the top housing. It holds all the components together and provides a solid base for the whole structure.

How To Lube Keyboard Switches – The Steps

I have created this 7-step guide on how to lube keyboard switches. In the first step, you need to take out the switches from the keyboard. This is a challenging process if you don’t have a hot-swappable keyboard. Follow these steps to de-solder the switch:

Step 1: Taking Out The Switch

  • To desolder your keyboard first pull the keycaps using a keycap puller.
  • Use a screwdriver to take out the screw at the bottom of the keyboard case.
  • Since we are using soldering iron it is crucial to place everything on a heat-insulated surface. Place your PCB on a heat-insulated surface or heat-insulated mat.
  • Now heat up your soldering iron. The recommended temperature for mechanical keyboard switches is between 350-380 degree Celsius. However, some keyboards with more solid soldering may require even higher temperatures.
  • Once you have achieved the desired temperature, press the tip of the iron on the pad. Apply gentle pressure and hold it there for 2-3 seconds. Grab your spring sucker and use it to pick the switch as soon as the soldering melts.
  • If you have a hot-swappable keyboard the process is very simple. Just remove the keycap and pull out the switch using a switch puller.

Step 2: Pull Apart The Switch

Now it’s time to open the switches. For this, you need a flathead screwdriver or switch opening tool. There are 4 clips that hold the top and bottom housing of the switch together. Try to loosen the clips one by one. Place your nail in between the top and bottom housing once you have loosened one clip. It prevents it from snapping back when you are working on other clips.

Step 3: Lube The Lower Housing

It is advised to start lubing from the bottom housing. Apply the lube on the inner corners of the housing. Also, apply the lube on the part where the stem hits. However, do not apply lube to metallic parts.

Step 4: Lube The Stem

Apply the lube on the rails and legs of the spring. Rails are a part of the stem that comes in contact with the actuation point. If you don’t want to reduce the tactile bump and feel of the switch do not apply lube on the legs of the stem.

Step 5: Lube The Springs

This is probably the most crucial part of the process you need to apply lube. In the case of thick lubricants, you will need a paintbrush to apply a healthy amount of lube on the spring. Make sure you apply lube on every part of the spring. If you are using a low-viscosity lube, pull all the springs in a plastic bag, add some lube and shake them well.

Step 6: Lube The Upper Housing

A paintbrush is the best tool to apply lube to the upper housing. Apply the lube on the part of the housing where the stem comes in contact with it. Also, apply lube in all nooks and corners of the housing.

Step 7: Putting Everything Back

It’s time to put everything back. Be careful while reassembling the spring and actuation points. Make sure you’re placing them the same way as they were before lubrication. It is advised to see the user manual while assembling the switches. Reinstall the switches in the keyboard using a soldering iron.

If you want to know more about cleaning our keyboard switches, read our detailed 9 steps guide on How to clean mechanical keyboard switches.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Can You Use to Lube Switches?

You can use oil lube to lube the tactile or clicky switches. For linear switches, you can use a high-consistency grease lube.

What Lube Can I Use for Mechanical Switches?

For mechanical switches, you can use both oil-based and grease-based lubes. Krytox 205 g, Krytox 203g, and Krytox 103 are the best lubes you can buy for mechanical switches.

Can I Use Vaseline to Lube Switches?

It is not recommended to use vaseline to lube the switches. Petroleum jelly tends to degrade the plastic and it will damage the switches of the keyboard. Therefore it is not recommended to use Vaseline to lube the switches.

How to Lube Keyboard Switches?

Read my 7-step guide on how to lube keyboard switches in the blog post.

Wrapping Up

I’m hopeful that this guide on how to lube keyboard switches will help you lube mechanical keyboard switches. After lubrication, you may feel your keys a little gushy and draggy. It means you have applied excessive lube to the keys. In that case, you need to wipe out extra lube to remove the original feel of the keys.

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