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Stores Logos Stores Logos
  • 1800 SW Teton Avenue
  • Tualatin, OR 97062
  • Phone: 503-682-1966
  • Toll Free: 800-325-2891
  • Fax: 503-682-7168
  • kaiusa.com

Product Care & Maintenance

Maintaining your ZTs with these simple routines will help ensure a lifetime of service from your knives.

Cleaning & Oiling

Always keep your knife clean. Wipe away debris and, if needed, wash with a mild detergent and dry thoroughly. Do not let your knives sit in water. Due to the high carbon content of the quality steel in our blades, the blade may corrode if not properly cared for. Wiping a light coating of oil on the blade and hinge before storage is also important for keeping your investment in proper working order. Most household oils, WD40, 3-in-1 oil, or gun oil will work just fine for maintaining your ZT. We recommend using Kershaw Knife Oil.

Cleaning and wiping off blade Cleaning and wiping off blade

Removing Light Rust

If your knife does develop rust spots, you can remove them by using a light abrasive, such as Flitz metal polish or Bon Ami cleanser made into a paste with a little water. Use an absorbent soft cloth to apply the cleanser. If the rust is more than just surface, try naval jelly or WD-40.

Cleaning and wiping off handleCleaning and wiping off handle

Blade and Handle Coatings

The technologically advanced coatings on the blades and handles of some ZT knives are designed to add beauty to the products and to enhance specific performance features. Although ZT coatings are designed to stand up to continual knife use, in time, all coatings will show some wear. Scratches and other signs of wear should be expected and considered normal.

Black knife blade with carbon fiber handleBlack knife blade with carbon fiber handle

Adjusting Screws

Most Zero Tolerance knives require a Torx bit #6, Torx bit #8, or Torx bit #10 to fit into the head of the screws. The Torx #6 fits the pocketclip screws and the Torx #8 fits the handle screws on most current model Zero Tolerance knives. The Torx #8 fits most pivot screws though some models require a 3/8-inch hex socket. 

Please be sure to use a Torx bit and not an Allen bit, this is a common error. The slight difference in shape will strip the heads of the screws. Torx tools are usually available for purchase at both online and brick-and-mortar hardware retailers at relatively inexpensive prices. It may be a good idea to have your knife with you when you are shopping to ensure you purchase the correct size bit/s. We offer bit sizes #6, #8, and #10 in our TX Tool.

If screws on your knife are coming loose frequently or you think the holes may be stripped, try using some blue Loctite and let the Loctite set up for 24 hours before using your knife. Please feel free to contact Zero Tolerance Warranty Service if you have any questions.

Adjusting pivot screwAdjusting pivot screw


Your knife comes with FREE lifetime sharpening. Just send the knife in to our Tualatin, Oregon facility, we’ll sharpen it and return it to you. You can also sharpen your knife with the Kershaw Ultra-Tek Sharpener.

Hold the blade against the Ultra-Tek at the original sharpened angle of 18°–22°.

Beginning at the base of the blade and tip of the sharpener, pull the blade down and toward you across the top of the sharpener in a slight arc as shown in the illustration. Do the same thing across the bottom of the sharpener as shown. This sharpens the top of your blade.

Repeat this “over and under” motion approximately three to five times on each side to fully sharpen your knife.

It is critical to maintain the correct blade angle of 18° to 22° while sharpening the blade.

Sharpening knife bladeSharpening knife blade

If your ZT knife needs repair, please see information about the Limited Lifetime Warranty.