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Best Types of Hydraulic Fluid for Barber Chair

Hydraulic Fluid for Barber Chair

Do you own a barber chair and you are considering what type of hydraulic fluid to buy? If YES, here are the best hydraulic fluids for barber chair.

Most barber chairs come with a hydraulic system that needs hydraulic fluid. The design allows the hairstylist to move the chair upwards and downs to create an ideal height. Basically, there is a spring coiled inside of a gas cylinder. It opens a valve when you press the button.

If you’re sitting on the chair, it lets air out of the cylinder that is why chair goes on lower. If you’re not sitting on the chair, the spring expands the cylinder that is why chair comes upwards.

Indeed the design and make of these hydraulic chairs happen to be why they are popular in many salons and barbershops across the world. Besides that, these chairs are comfortable and elegant. However, the lifting system usually fails after some time due to decreased hydraulic fluid.

It is imperative for salon owners and employees to know how to put hydraulic fluid in a salon chair. Note that it will help cut down on the cost of buying a new chair or hiring a professional for assistance.

The best type of hydraulic fluid for a barber chair is hydraulic jack oil. The hydraulic jack oil is a low viscosity, non-compressible fluid which is responsible for moving the piston in a hydraulic machinery. Hydraulic fluid can be mineral-based or synthetic.

Best Hydraulic Fluid for Barber Chair

Some of the best products in the market are: SO 150 and AW32 Hydraulic jack oil. These oils are certified by ISO and they have a high ranking. The viscosity of these products is 10W which is the recommended viscosity for hydraulic jack oil.

They operate at a temperature range of -300C (-220F) and 1400C (2840F), meaning they can perform effectively in any circumstances.

Also note that machine oil or lightweight motor oil of 10/20W can also be used as a substitute for hydraulic fluid. Automatic transmission fluid can function as hydraulic fluid. However, you are advised to only use it if you are stuck and do not have the oil recommended by the manufacturer.

There are a few vegetable seed oils that can be commercially used as hydraulic fluids. They include oils extracted from sunflower, soy, and Canola seeds. The performance of these oils vary with the type of additives and base oil chosen.

Notably, vegetable seed oil has many benefits over their mineral counterparts when used as hydraulic fluid. The benefits include higher flashpoints of 3200C; they are non-toxic, higher lubricity, and biodegradable. Some of the limitations of vegetable oils include low oxidation resistance and poor performance in low temperature. In addition, vegetable oil is quite expensive.

You have to be very careful when searching for substitutes for hydraulic fluid. If you use the wrong fluid, the seals can swell or break. So, do not substitute unless you are very sure of what you are doing. Fluids for hydraulic jack are measured differently and they function uniquely.

Hydraulic jack oil grade refers to the ISO viscosity. They are measured using the ISO scale, and not the SAE scale. ISO grades hydraulic fluid by measuring the viscosity at 400C (1040F).

For instance, ISO 32 fluid will flow quickly than ISO 68. You can see the numbers as, the lower the value, the thinner the fluid. Temperature affects the viscosity of the oil. As temperature rises, the oil becomes thinner. The opposite is also true.

How to Put Hydraulic Fluid in Salon Chair

Refilling the hydraulic system with hydraulic fluid is quite simple and easy. There is no need to hire an expert to offer assistance. Below are the steps to take:

  1. Put the Chair in the Lowest Position

Putting the beauty salon chair in the lowest position is a very important factor. This is done by pressing the foot button downwards.

Apply pressure until the barber chair resists further downwards movement. If the chair is lifted to full height, it will not be possible to remove the fill nut when you want to add more hydraulic fluid. Once the chair is in the lowest position, you should be able to remove the fill nut using a wrench.

  1. Carefully Unscrew the Fill Nut

Find the nut at the bottom of the hydraulic chair. Use an Alexa wrench to unscrew the hydraulic fill nut. It is advisable you read the chair manual if you are finding it hard to locate the fill nut.

  1. Fill the Salon Chair with Hydraulic Fluid

Consider putting the hydraulic fluid in a spray bottle or use a funnel to fill the chair. Note that this is only applicable after removing the fill nut. Always remember that the chair will need two to three quartz of the fluid. Make sure that you are using the right type of oil to refill your hydraulic system.

It is suggested that you use hydraulic jack oil that comes from an auto manufacturer. This will ensure that the oil is of high quality and will improve the function of the hydraulic salon chair.

  1. Replace the Fill Nut

Use a simple wrench to tighten the hydraulic fill nut until it gets snug in position. It is advisable to replace the old fill nut with a new one to avoid any chances of fluid leaking. Make sure to fill the hydraulic fluid to the marked fill line. Be sure that you do not go over this line, because this will only make it more difficult to replace the fill nut.

  1. Test the Salon Chair

You then need to make sure that all of the excess air is out of the hydraulic system. This can be done effectively by lifting the chair up and lowering it down a few times right after you have filled the hydraulic fluid. You should notice right away that the salon chair is much easier to move up or down. If the chair continues to make irritating noise, then repeat the procedures.


Hydraulic barber chairs are fitted with a hydraulic system. The control system depends on the foot pump and hydraulic fluid to enhance its functionality.

Note that filling a salon chair with hydraulic fluid is a simple task. The speed of performing the task can be increased if you have all the necessary tools like wrench, funnel, and fluid. These steps outlined above have been tested and proven suitable when dealing with either hydraulic barber chair or salon chair.

However, it is advisable you consult the chair manual since it helps to locate vital components. Each chair brand has a unique arrangement of the hydraulic system.