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Top 5 Best Lube For AR 15 In 2020 Reviews

Likely, everyone reading this article knows that an AR15-type firearm platform must be correctly and regularly lubed. That’s why AR15 owners are always looking for the best lube products to keep their expensive firearms in excellent running order.

AR15-type weapons need lubrication for several reasons. Most lube products are also formulated to clean a weapon after use, removing lead and carbon fouling. We also use lube products to displace and remove moisture and prevent oxidation (rust!). Rust affects the looks, function and even the value of the gun. But the main reasons for lubrication is to keep the rifle cycling properly and reduce wear. There are several moving components that, when dry, would move metal-on-metal. This causes friction and heat, and eventually will cause even the most expensive rifles to fail and greatly increases wear.

The AR15/M4 is an excellent and proven platform – and usually vary reliable. But, ironically, it is especially susceptible to failure when not lubed correctly. That is why it is crucial to keep your AR15 clean and lubed.

So, what is the best lube for the AR15? That is the question we are answering with this post, and to find the best lube, we have reviewed 5 products. The products we reviewed are:

Best Lube for AR 15
Photo by Ryo

Top 5 Best Lube for AR 15 For The Money 2020 Reviews

ModelRatingCLPEco-FriendlyValue
4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)
CLP
CLP
Eco-Friendly
Yes
Value
$$
4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)
CLP
LP
Eco-Friendly
No
Value
$
4.6 out of 5 stars (4.6 / 5)
CLP
CLP
Eco-Friendly
Yes
Value
$$$$
4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)
CLP
CLP
Eco-Friendly
Yes
Value
$
4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)
CLP
LP
Eco-Friendly
No
Value
$

1 Grizzly Grease Non-Toxic CLP

As the name makes clear, this is a gun grease and not a gun oil. That’s why it is more appropriate to call this article Best Lubes. There are a few types of lubes these days, including oils, dry lubes and gun grease.

Grizzly Grease CLP is an excellent product offered by Grizzly Gun Care. It is a CLP-type, which means it is designed for cleaning, lubricating and protecting your AR15. That means that this can serve as an all-in-one product; the only product you need to purchase to keep your AR15 cleaned and lubricated.

As mentioned, it is a grease which means it is much thicker than light machine oils (like some of the other lubes we are reviewing). That can make it a challenge to work into small parts (like the cam pin). Care also needs to be taken with gun grease in very cold climates (sub-zero F), as the cold makes this grease even thicker. But for most environments – even in cold climates – this grease will function perfectly.

Grizzly Grease Non-Toxic CLP
Our rating:4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)

Pros
  • A superior-quality lube
  • Very viscous
  • Long-lasting performance
  • Non-toxic and not harmful to the environment
Cons
  • More expensive than some lubes
  • Sometimes difficult to apply, especially into small parts
  • Not the most ideal for extreme-cold climates

2 Hoppe’s M-Pro 7

Hoppe’s is a well-known name in the gun lube game (we are reviewing two Hoppe’s products in this post!). It is likely the oil your grandfather applied to his M1 Garand. And there is good reason for this: Hoppe’s produces top-rate firearm oils.

And the M-Pro 7 is no exception. It is an LP, and not a CLP. This means that it more intended for lubricating and protecting than it is for cleaning. So if you’re looking for an all-in-one product this one might not be for you.

Plenty of firearm owners like to use more than one product, though, and this would be a good second-stage product for your AR15 care. The bottle is also the applicator, so you can apply M-Pro 7 directly to the bolt and carrier group, the cam pin, and even into the fire-pin hole, without additional tools.

While we found that the bottle worked well as an applicator, we also noticed some leakage after use, particularly when the bottle was on its side. This can make for a messy cleaning kit if you aren’t careful.

This oil is medium viscosity. It is not as light as some of the other products, but far more so than the gun grease previously mentioned. If you are a dripping-wet-action kind of guy (not something we necessarily recommend!), it would be better to use a product like M-Pro 7 rather than the lighter-weight oils.

All gun lubes have an odor to them. We noticed that the M-Pro 7 is especially strong in that area. Its not something we mind, but your mileage might vary. It also tends to smoke/and off-gas when very hot. But this is a small quibble – only after a few mag-dumps on a hot summer day would you even notice it.

Hoppe's M-Pro 7
Our rating:4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)

Pros
  • A medium weight oil
  • Inexpensive compared to some other lubes
  • Works well in very cold temperatures
Cons
  • Bottle can leak when on its side
  • Some will not like the odor
  • Not designed as an all-in-one solution

3 CLP by Sage & Braker

We found the CLP by Sage & Braker to be an excellent all-around product. It is intended for use as a cleaner (removes carbon and lead fouling like a champ!), a lubricant and a protectant. It does all of those tasks extremely well. It leaves a slight film on the bolt and carrier group that doesn’t dry and doesn’t seem to be a magnet for dust and debris. It lasts a long time before needing another coat. I can’t imagine oxidation winning a battle with your gun when this CLP is on it!

Two minor quibbles: first, the spray is a little broad and there is no straw. That will make it a challenge to get the product into small spaces tucked away deep in your AR15’s action. That means some parts – unless you lay it on really thick – might go without lube.

The answer, of course, is to spray a lot on and wipe away the excess with a gun rag. However, that might not be ideal because of my second quibble. This is the most expensive CLP we have tried. There is part of me that smiles with satisfaction, knowing that you really do get what you pay for. There is another part of me that keeps a blank face and wonders why this oil costs so much.

It is safe for the environment, won’t harm the finish on your rifle and it is non-toxic in case you accidentally spray it into your mouth (please don’t do that!). If you have the coin, this might be the product for you.

CLP by Sage & Braker
Our rating:4.6 out of 5 stars (4.6 / 5)

Pros
  • A CLP, so an all-in-one product
  • Non-toxic and not harmful to the environment
  • Excellent performance and longevity
Cons
  • Bottle sprays a little broad, so precise application is difficult
  • More expensive than other lubes

4 F W Klever GmbH Ballistol

Ballistol is an interesting and useful product. It is the only gun lube that we are reviewing here that isn’t actually a gun lube. It can be used as a gun lube though, and it is marketed for such right on the can! This product was developed for the German Army. They were looking for an oil that was truly all-in-one.

One that not only cleaned, lubricated and protected the firearm’s metal parts, but also the wooden or plastic stock, the leather strap, etc. Ballistol is their answer. And it is truly a handy oil. You can use to it to keep the door hinges from squeaking as you clean your AR15 with it.

It works. We will say that much. This light oil displaces moisture, but, like WD-40 it leaves a film that will cause build up over time. Thus, we suggest that Ballistol is better suited as a field-use or range-use CLP. When you get your AR15 home and do a thorough clean and lube, you might want to reach for other products. But we would happily carry a small can of this in our range bag.

We liked that it is biodegradable, eco-friendly, non-toxic, non-corrosive and slightly alkaline (excellent to neutralize our slightly acidic sweat on hot days at the range). There also aren’t any known carcinogens in this product. That’s nice, as most of us want to keep shooting into old age.

F W Klever GmbH Ballistol
Our rating:4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)

Pros
  • A truly multi-purpose light oil
  • Inexpensive and handy
  • Eco and health-friendly
  • Can even use on leather!
Cons
  • Aerosol can with no straw – difficult to apply precisely
  • Shorter effective use, and can cause build up

5 Hoppe’s No. 9 Synthetic

We said before that Hoppe’s is probably the oil your grandfather used on his firearms. And if he did, he probably used No. 9. No. 9 is a tried and true gun oil, well-loved and trusted for generations. But with the risk of sounding contradictory (and a little cheesy): this is not your grandfather’s No. 9. This is a new twist on an old product. This No. 9 is synthetic!

This advancement is welcomed for us, because we believe modern firearms should have modern lube solutions. We like the applicator-bottle, and we are used to using this type to get the oil into the tightest of spots (think firing pin hole). It is designed for lubrication and protection – so it is an LP. And while you can clean with an LP, you’re always better off with the right product for the right job. So use No. 9 as a lube and protectant and another Hoppe’s product for cleaning.

This is a light machine oil, and many would say it is the best light machine oil on the market. We wouldn’t go that far, but we would trust this oil to keep our AR15’s running smoothly.  It is tested to the highest standards and it is even made in the USA! You can’t go wrong with No. 9 Synthetic.

Hoppe's No. 9 Synthetic
Our rating:4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)

Pros
  • One of the most trusted oils on the market
  • Advanced synthetic formula
  • Made in the USA
Cons
  • Not intended as an all-in-one CLP
  • Not eco-friendly

Best Lube for AR 15 Buyer’s Guide

So which lube should you buy your AR15? There are several factors to consider:

 

Best Lube for AR 15 Buyer’s Guide
Photo by Zero7One
  • Do you prefer thicker or thinner lube? If thicker, go with Grizzly Grease. If thinner, one of the lighter oils like Hoppe’s No. 9 Synthetic.
  • Is the applicator important to you? If so, you aren’t going to like Grizzly Grease CLP. But the Hoppe’s No. 9 Synthetic or CLP by Sage and Braker or Hoppe’s M-Pro 7 are all good options.
  • Is cost a significant factor F W Klever GmbH Ballistol, Hoppe’s M-Pro 7 and No. 9 Synthetic are all good options.
  • Do you want an all-in-one solution? Make sure you buy one marked CLP. The F W Klever GmbH Ballistol is the all-in-one of all all-in-one’s, even though it has some disadvantages (see review above).
  • If you prefer task specific products, you might be happier with Hoppe’s No. 9 Synthetic.
  • If quality is your highest priority, even over cost, then the best CLP on the marker (in our opinion) is the CLP by Sage and Braker.

Conclusion

At the end of the day, we want our AR15’s to run well and stay rust free and enjoy a nice long life with slow wear. And that means we need to keep them well cleaned and lubed. And for that we need quality products.

Which lube did we consider the best?

It came down to two products for us. We think the very best quality CLP is the CLP by Sage and Braker, and we think it is worth every penny. Nothing seemed as smooth and as refined as this CLP.

So for our money, we would go with that product. But if the budget got a little tight, we would have no problem going with the tried and true Hoppe’s No. 9. In its own right (even without cost considerations) it is an excellent lube. I like a smooth ending to a lube article, and nothing is smoother than a tie. We recommend CLP by Sage and Braker and Hoppe’s No.9.

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