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Old 10-03-2016, 02:00 PM   #11
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Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 10
I have used dielectric grease for everything outside in the weather except battery posts. If you can't make an electrical connection when using dielectric the terminals are shy of the spring pressure needed to scrape the grease clean of the contact surfaces. Or the contact surfaces are corroded from weathering without grease. Don't use regular grease as it conducts and can cross-feed current between contacts and cause real havoc, especially with LED tailights. Regular grease is OK with battery posts because you want conduction between the post and clamp.

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Old 10-03-2016, 07:25 PM   #12
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Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 114
On the other hand.....
I had a problem with spiders nesting in the female end of the 7 pin connector. Dielectric grease solved the problem.

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Old 10-03-2016, 07:33 PM   #13
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Escondido, CA
Posts: 70
Dielectric grease

f5moab had the best answer in my opinion.
Dielectric grease is an insulator and not a conductor. If there is not enough contact force to squeeze out all of the grease out and cut through the oxide layer to allow metal to metal contact, then it will cause contact problems. Oxide layer is just "rust" on copper/tin.
Bi-metal galvanic corrosion is usually not an issue as most connectors use copper/tin on both sides. Copper to aluminum contacts is not good and will always corrode over time.

The best way to clean electrical connectors is with a spray can of electrical contact cleaner that you can buy at any auto parts store.
Also make sure that your connector terminals have good spring force to create good metal to metal contact and a good "wipe" action when the connectors are pushed into each other.
Good contact force with good wiping action will solve most contact issues except for heavy corrosion/oxide build up. Then you need to clean with 150 grit or higher sand paper, but be gentle to be sure to not sand away the copper/tin plating on the contact.

Yes, if you have good contact force like Molex connectors have or if your 7 pin round connector has good contact force, then the "wipe" will cut through di-electric grease. But with all things equal... di-electric grease will never improve electrical contact. It will prevent oxide build up because it seals the contact from the oxygen in the air. WD40 is not good for electrical contact either, but it is thinner than grease and it does provide lubrication that can help improve the contact force so it can help sometimes, but be sure to clean it off later with the spray contact cleaner. Clean contacts and good contact force is the best way to provide good electrical connections.

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Old 10-03-2016, 07:49 PM   #14
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Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Near Selma, Alabama
Posts: 80
If you don't use dielectric grease, be sure to use something else to protect the metal terminals from corrosion. It is so much easier to protect than to sand or file the terminals later. I have used dielectric grease in my auto repair business for many years with NO PROBLEMS. I keep a tube in my truck tool box and another in the camper.

Happy Camping!
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Old 10-04-2016, 04:55 PM   #15
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Posts: 799
Thanks for the feedback. In retrospect, as mentioned I believe I started using it after some oxidation had already occurred and the extra lubrication and non conductive nature of the grease prevented a good connection. Also as mentioned, my 7 pin connector does not feel very tight. I don't think it's wiping the grease off as it goes in.

It's interesting that sometimes something that seems so simple can present a problem when you least expect it. But all is good, I got it cleaned up and we are on location after an uneventful trip. Thanks for the help. I just keep on learning.

Rockwood 2104S, 2014 Ram 2500 Diesel.
USMC 68 -70
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