• When you click on links to various merchants on this site and make a purchase, this can result in this site earning a commission. Affiliate programs and affiliations include, but are not limited to, the eBay Partner Network.

Seafoam, but not that Seafoam

Detective D

Well-Known Member
Local time
12:32 AM
Mar 3, 2021
Reaction score
Specifically: Seafoam penetrating oil.

My recent plenum gasket repair on my Dakota required some broken bolt extraction. I discovered the 4 cans of various penetrating oil I have had laying around for 20 years were finally used up. I had:
PB Blaster
3-in-1 Penetrating Oil(not just 3-in-1, this was specific)
A can from the 1980's of some John Deere spray we bought at the dealer for the farm.

PB Blaster is fancy WD-40. Which is why the can I had lasted so long. I don't like it. It is half-*** good at multiple things and not really good at anything.

Dura-lube was discontinued 10 years ago. I kept it around to use on battery terminals, best anti corrosion/electrical connection protector I have ever used. All they make is snake oil gasoline additives etc. now. Company was bought some time back.

3-In-1 was surprisingly good. Worked as advertised. Had a spray can. Local stores didn't have any, this is what I went to town to find. Grainger has a squeeze bottle. Not sure if it is the same.

The John Deere stuff...... Black label can with the yellow JD writing. Old school, not splashed with giant logos. 1980's. Came out an amber/orange, foamed up mint green. This stuff was either enchanted by mystic arts, or dropped by a traveler from the future and made of technology we have not discovered yet. This got things to move that had rights to ever move again, and I am talking on the dairy farm, not a stuck bolt in a garage. I treasured this stuff, saved it for the most dire of needs, but all things come to an end......

So anyway, as the only thing on any shelf in town was useless PB Blaster, I had to choose another.
I bought a can of "Free All" as it had rave reviews and has been established for a long while. I have not tried it yet, I had to pick one so this will get a try next time.
I bought a can of Seafoam Penetrating oil. Brought it home, soaked the broken off bolts , waited a minute, did it again, minute, again.... then left it sit for an hour. Soaked it once more, another hour. Pizza and beer was good.
Removed broken off bolts with a vice grips. I mean not just any vice grips, a true USA old school vice grips I reserve for things like this. But a Vice grips none the less.

In any case, EZPZ the stuff WORKS. Little bit of back and forth, bolts came loose without any drama, soaked them once more and watched the threads drink the stuff right down, wait 30 seconds, spun them out. No damage.

Result: HIGHLY RECOMMEND. If you have been using WD-40 or PB Blaster as a go to, you are missing out big time. This stuff is ten times what PB Blaster could hope to be. Not magic John Deere from 40 years ago probably from the future good, but exceeded my expectations.
If it doesn't smell like pb blaster i'll give it a try.
If it doesn't smell like pb blaster i'll give it a try.
Another reason I didn't like PB. I sometimes wonder if they didn't make it raunchy on purpose to make people think it does more.
I'm not sure there is any magic penetrating oil, or other physics-defying lubricant, to help with a broken off bolt.

If I could foretell the future, and know ahead of time a bolt was restricted, rusty, and resistant to removal ahead of time, and would break off as it heated, softened, and broke during removal, I would use one of many lubricating products preemptively.

But after it's broke (presuming I read the OP post correctly) the oil wont help much, in my opinion. Depending on WHICH bolt has broken, another manifold may be way, way easier to work than one with broken bolts.

On the topic of WD-40, I think WD-40 is a paraffin-type wax, combined with a softener (which evaporates after application) and a propellant (to squirt). I do not believe it is particularly penetrating, like a gear oil, transmission fluid and/or a kerosene/diesel fuel.

Once the bolts is broken, if you cannot back it out manually, you are faced with an easy-out scenario, drilling, tapping and helicoid result. For this reason, replacing the item (intake from a junk yard motor) can often be, less work, than repairing the original.
I tried a can of that “Free All”, it was ok.

I like WD40 for wiping on black plastics, chrome stuff like trim rings, but it’s not my go to for freeing rusted bolts

I don’t do PB for the above mentioned reasons, it stinks.

Lately I’ve been using Sliick50 One Lube, it works pretty good, it was recommended by Real Time Engineering as the only lube you can use for the mechanism of the old tachometers

I’m going to take the OP’s advise and try this Seafoam penetrant, it sounds promising.
JB-80 was dads go to. I haven’t seen a can in decades. Seemec to work pretty good, didn’t stink like PB.
I've never been defeated by this combination (I may have given up but I don't remember.)

Seafoam Deep Creep + Kroil. Deep creep is a spray and Kroil is a can like the 3-in-1. Time, patience and leverage is the key.
I've never been defeated by this combination (I may have given up but I don't remember.)

Seafoam Deep Creep + Kroil. Deep creep is a spray and Kroil is a can like the 3-in-1. Time, patience and leverage is the key.
I had to go look, but the "deep creep" is what I bought. Kroil has gotten expensive, I have never tried it.
We used to order (Rusty ) penetrating oil spray from Kent industries.
Seemed to work pretty well.
Most the time I have no patience for rust and fire the rosebud up or braze tip for that fine work :drinks:
I have multiple brands on my shelf as I suspect many of you do.
WD-40, Thrust, Kroil, PB Blaster and few "one off" brands. I think I even have a can of old Mopar rust penetrant IIRC from 20-25 years ago.
None drastically differ in "magic" over another in 40+ years in my experience.
Get the bolt/nut to turn and then any of those oils assist in running out the rest of the thread.
That initial "breaking it free" depends on accessibility, leverage and grip.
Heat has been my best friend in the most challenging of "nut-busting" experiences.
I have found the spray does not work as well.
How can that be? It's the exact same stuff. Sure smells the same anyway.
Kroil is expensive to purchase but cheap to use. I bought an 8 oz can probably 20 years ago and still have plenty left, and I have spilled some of it. I use it literally a couple drops at a time. I just used it (with deep creep) to loosen my lawn mower blades and swap them out for next spring.
Liquid Wrench out performs all of the above. Look on You Tube for some major testing results.
Auto Transport Service