TikTok's Hack For Squeaky Door Hinges Might Work, But It's Not The Most Sanitary

Noisy door hinges are annoying to deal with, especially in places around your house that you frequent a lot. Luckily, this is a pretty straightforward problem to fix as the likely cause is a lack of lubrication. WD-40 and silicone sprays are the standard go-to products, but a recent TikTok shows that you can also use spreadable butter. This hack comes with various issues, however, as it can cause bad smells and attract flies.

In the video, the creator takes a small tub of Challenge butter and uses a knife to spread it over the hinges. He checks the door after and the squeaking is gone. While this does work, however, you will have to deal with an unpleasant odor after a while because butter gets rancid when left out in the open air and light. This can then bring in flies which create an unsanitary environment. There are better alternatives, even if you're in a bind, that can lubricate your hinges without these extra issues.

It smells and attracts flies

The first issue with applying butter to your door hinges is the smell. "Fats and oils that are in contact with moist air at room temperature eventually undergo oxidation and hydrolysis reactions that cause them to turn rancid, acquiring a characteristic disagreeable odor... Butter, for example, releases foul-smelling butyric, caprylic, and capric acids," explains the University of South Carolina Upstate textbook titled 'Chemistry of Living Things' (via Chemistry LibreTexts). Other oils like olive oil and cooking oil also have the same issue so always be wary of using those on your hinges.

According to Utah State University, the rancid smell of butter can attract flies, so this is the other problem. Flies in the home create an unsanitary environment because they carry and transport harmful bacteria. By leaving butter out on the hinges, you give room for the smell to develop and invite flies, opening up the home to the many diseases they carry.

Better alternatives

The best options for lubricating squeaky door hinges are specialized lubricants designed for metal mechanisms, as mentioned above. If you're looking for easy solutions that are already in your home, reach for hair spray, petroleum jelly, bar soap, or dish soap. These are temporary fixes though, so use them until you can get a proper product.

As mentioned, WD-40 is commonly used, but it isn't effective for squeaky door hinges because it is too thick; silicone sprays are better. Super Tech Silicone Lubricant is also sold by Walmart and costs $5.58 for the 12-ounce can. Before applying any lubricant, it helps to clean the hinges first with a cloth to take off any dirt and dust. Next, apply the substance evenly with a cloth or brush, open and close the door so it can get into all the parts, and then wipe off any excess buildup because you only need a little bit.