We have a padlock on our main gate and there have been a couple of times it got a bit sticky.
In the early days, I used graphite. Very messy and didn't seem to do well when subjected to a lot of rain or freezing.
Then somebody else LOVED using wd-40. That was spotty. We even had some in a jar where we could soak a lock. But I always thought that wd-40 was more about getting past the rust and any lube effect would just be temporary.
So, I spent about four hours researching about two years ago and found a really great web page by a locksmith comparing about eight different things. In the end, the locksmith suggested a product called "houdini". We tried that and it seems to be okay - but there still seems to be room for improvement.
Today I was looking for the article, but couldn't find it. I did find this video. The guy makes it clear which product he likes, but I haven't been able to find it:
So, I'm starting this thread to see if there are other schools of thought, or maybe somebody can find that article I mention above.
How about a nice piece of innertube to give watershed to the lock? A friend lavished on his wife and built her a lovely chicken coop complete with an egg snitching door and a shelter for the layena feeder with a lid/umbrella/cover that raised and lowered with a winch. He made the control water resistant with a chunk of tire inner tube very firmly fastened to the wiring cord and hung it on the fence. He made it so you could look/check for unwanted arachnids or wasps up there before you reached for the buttons...
The lock for the gate is pretty protected from the elements, but natural condensation from morning dew to cold temperatures will have their way with most locks. Seems to me the best solution is to let Paul, Jocelyn or Fred know if you are having issues with lock so maintenance can be done when needed.
A rubber flap to shield rain and dew. Split open a cheap carpenters pencil and grind up the graphite rod. Into dust. Work the dust into every moving parts you can find. you write underwater on slate, with a normal pencil. So think of how it could stand up to a little condensation.
I have used breakfree clp for years, including 2 years on outdoor connex containers in wyoming. Never a problem, also used it on cardboard bailers and forklift. And numerous other power equipment. I have used it on black powder rifles and pistols. It deactivates the acid in the black powder, cleans and lubes is non gumming doesn't freeze even in -40 plus. It's a bit expensive but works so well, and it also is available at most sporting goods stores and Walmart.
Still use this on anything on the homestead that doesn't get grease. The other lube I use but is hard to find is 3 in 1 teflon. I only use this in very specific places it is a dry film lube. Works great on indoor locks and items prone to dust and sand. But must be protected and clean first.
Great thing about breakfree clp is you don't have to even pre-clean. I used it to lube and clean chains, padlocks, hinges, fittings, bicycle, and guns. Freed up a guys ar-15 this winter at the range, wouldn't work at the cold temp. Couple squirts and it was running like a champ. I also use it on all moving surface's on the truck and tractor. It has breathed new life into old bearings and frozen bearings on hand trucks.