Advice For Looking After Your Clipper Blades

"It is essential that clipper blades should be looked after properly, as not only does it affect the life of your blades, but more costly, the life of your clipper. Proper care will help keep your clipper blades sharper for longer and will dramatically reduce wear and tear on your clipper. The cost of good quality clipper blade oil and the time it takes to care for your blades is tiny compared to the potential repair costs resulting from poor maintenance.

Effective care consists of

1. Cleaning your blades,

2. Oiling your blades

3. Storing your blades properly.

You will need:

An oil soaked cloth, clipper blade oil, 2 small containers, blade wash of some description and a washing up brush.

1. Clean Your Clipper Blades

Firstly, clipper blades need to be cleaned periodically while clipping. There is no point in lubricating a dirty, gritty blade; it will still go blunt quickly!

Take the blades off of your clipper and remove excess fur and grit from around the blade with your hand or brush. You can blow excess fur from the blade, but expect to get a fair share in your face!

Using something like blade wash. (It's not that important, washing up liquid and water will do fine) Using a small container, create a pool deep enough to immerse the blades and the brush. Give the blades a good scrub with the brush, removing any kind of grit, fur and build up from the cutting surfaces. Shake off excess blade wash.

Wipe the back of the blade with an oil soaked cloth and then follow steps below for oiling them quickly and thoroughly. As well as cleaning blades during clipping, blades should be thoroughly cleaned after clipping.

Blades used for surgery would need to be disinfected in the same way as any surgical instrument. Do not leave blades without oil after cleaning as you may return in a day or so to find specks of rust on your blades. Cleaning your blades is just the first thing to do. Clippers must be protected from rust with oil, straight after cleaning.


Oil means less friction. Less friction means less heat. Excess heat can cause clipper rash and an unhappy animal! Friction also causes blades to go blunt quicker.

Good quality clipper oil is best. Most clipper manufacturers have their own clipper blade oil, which you should use. Many people use WD-40 as a convenient alternative. As a spray, WD-40 is too thin and evaporates quickly and it gets into the mechanisms of a clipper and washes out heavy grease in time. This will eventually destroy the clipper.

Tip some oil in between the teeth and at the back of the cutter (basically wherever the two blades come in contact with each other) while the blade is running.

Dunking blades in oil is not recommended. Excess oil can be a factor in damaged clipper parts, electric shock and can have adverse effects on your horse's skin.


After being washed and lubricated for the final time before storing them, they should be wrapped in an oil soaked cloth and stored in a moisture free area. If a blade goes rusty, it will go blunt very quickly. Rust won't be any good in a surgical environment either.

Following the steps above will prolong clipper and blade life, however, it will not make them immortal! When they eventually go blunt and stop working, send your blades to be sharpened."

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