Guide On How To Clean A Gun

Owning a gun is a huge responsibility, but people should know that it is more than just keeping your weapons away from unauthorized access. Any gun owner should know the right way to maintain the smooth function and adequately clean their guns. For an added means of protection for your small arm, the use of this product called gun safe is recommended. 

Besides that, regular gun cleaning ensures availability, giving you the chance to use it anytime and anywhere. Dirty weapons are unreliable and dangerous, so always keep your guns clean and good as brand new. In this article, we will show you how to clean a weapon in simple and easy steps. 

How To Clean A Gun - The Essentials

The following are the essential equipment that you need to clean your firearm. Whether it’s basic firearms like hunting rifles, semi-automatic rifles, and handguns, the items below are also used for more advanced weapons like shotguns. These can ultimately help in cleaning all types of firearms.

Bore Guide

Though this item is not an everyday necessity it can help you in two ways, first, it enables you to keep the rod in the center in a rifle’s bore which can help prevent damaging the rifling. Next, it helps the bore avoid cleaning solvents from dripping into the receiver of a gun.

Firearm cleaning mat

If you are handling firearms that consist of several advanced parts that need disassembly and reassembly frequently, using this product can help you with that problem. It provides several benefits by giving you an ideal work surface, keeping your weapon’s parts intact and in place. 

Most firearm mats come with printed diagrams of your chosen weapon, guiding you quickly and lets you place every part correctly. It has a high resistance to harmful chemicals.

Muzzle Guard

Rod damage happens often, and the most seasoned firearm owners are aware of this. You can add this specialized essential product, effectively protecting the muzzle crown of the weapon from unwanted damages. It helps the center of the cleaning rod maintain its unstained state, and it is composed of copper and other metal alloys.

Wool mops

This item is an excellent alternative for the standard patches used for firearms; decent wool mops provide you with the best choice for applying the lubricant (oil) on the barrel after the swabbing and scrubbing process is finished. These are sized for specific caliber barrels, helping you apply light coats on the barrels.


These are small attachments that are placed on the end of the cleaning rod, successfully holding the patch in place while pushing the rode through the gun’s bore, keeping the material dormant while you push through. 

Luster cloth

This product is a specialized cloth that is treated with a silicone lubricant. It makes it the perfect material when wiping down the outside portion of the weapon, and oil is recommended to be added on the luster cloth in the final stage of this task, which is the polishing process.

Why Should You Keep Your Guns Clean?

We have established that the cleaner the gun is, the safer it is. You should wash and polish your firearms because once it gets filthy, it can be dangerous for yourself and everyone around you. An unwanted shooting incident may happen if a gun is left uncleaned for a long time.

The general advice of most experts in the field is the weapon’s barrels should be scrubbed and polished after each time you fire it, meaning used weapons require higher maintenance. Incorporating the field strip method is much more comfortable in the whole swabbing, scrubbing, and polishing process. Always clean a firearm within days of shooting it.

Multiple firings can affect the action and barrel of the metal weapon since the powder residue, grime, and gases usually build up over time. It ultimately affects the overall performance of the firearm, which turns it into an unpredictable and unreliable weapon in terms of performance. That is why you must make sure that you keep your gun clean.

Gun Safety Before Cleaning

Before beginning the process of cleaning your gun, always keep in mind that reading the owner’s manual beforehand is essential since it will help you and give you a thorough guide on disassembling your firearm before washing and polishing it.

Giving you the right overview of handling it properly and where you can store these weapons and what best car gun safe, best modular gun safe, or best truck gun safe (for drivers) can be used. If an owner’s manual is not available, order one from the weapon’s manufacturer or get a reliable source and read the weapon’s manual online.

Besides that, take your time and familiarize yourself with the parts and overall structure of your weapon. Certain parts of these firearms need the right materials and lubrication for disassembly. Remembering this information is crucial because handling any type of gun with little knowledge can damage the weapon or injure the people around you. 

Working in a well-ventilated room is also required because you will be handling harmful chemicals. That’s why wearing appropriate goggles and work safety gloves is implemented, helping you lower the chances of being exposed to these toxic substances. Next, the proper and well equipped absorbent surface area is needed in helping you throw away these chemicals after scrubbing your metal weapon with ease. 

  • Get a tarp or plastic bag and cover your work area with multiple layers of it.
  • Put layers of newspaper or paper towels above it for better protection.

Finally, ensure that the firearm is unloaded and is facing a direction that is far away from anyone before cleaning it, and always separate the ammo from the gun oil and solvents. If you are often traveling with a firearm, you should get the best truck gun racks because these might trigger misfire when left alone. These precautionary measures can help you prevent unfortunate accidents and make sure your safety is secured.

Cleaning Tools and Equipment

Any investment deserves proper protection, and those valued firearms placed in your gun safe are no exceptions. Rookies and experts alike, every weapon owner needs a good stock or collection of swabbing, scrubbing, polishing materials, and maintenance parts readily available. Now you know the drill before gun cleaning, here are some of the standard materials you need to get started:

  • Unstained cotton patches
  • Patch holder
  • Nylon brush
  • Bore brush
  • Cleaning solvent
  • Gun oil
  • Cleaning rod
  • Cotton swabs
  • Luster cloth
  • Powder fouling
  • Small-bore flashlight


In addition to these materials, gun safe is also a crucial safety product that should be considered since it serves as the storage area of your firearms that’s why it is recommended to buy a gun safe

Earlier, we have mentioned that lubrication is an essential aspect of polishing your firearm like with most items, you should only utilize the best of the best. That is why the best gun oil is recommended, ensuring the maximum safety and use of the item.

What can I use to clean my gun?

Letting your firearm be cleaned in a service center is what newbies often do, but what most owners do is do the cleaning of the weapon at home. You can utilize items from a firearm kit or simply make sure that you have the standard questions needed for swabbing, scrubbing, and polishing of the gun, these consist of a dry patch, oil, rod, gun cleaner solvent, and a bore brush. 

You can use transmission oil or kerosene as an alternative for the traditional oils for guns, a regular and plain washing cloth can also replace these patches, and a thin stick can be used as a rod. Cheap mineral spirits can also be used as an alternative. It helps in dissolving the oil properly. 

Most firearm owners also use vinegar since it can effectively clean even the rusty and old barrels. Because it is acidic, it also has deoxidizing properties that help in melting and fixing the formed rust on the weapon.

How to use gun cleaning patches

Running an unsullied patch through the bore of the gun every pass of the cleaning rod is vital, a used patch is not recommended since it will only swirl the dirt around the parts of the metal weapon. Here is the process where you can use perfect patches for guns with a smaller caliber:

  1. Attach the patch on the cable (feed the tip through a slot in the patch).
  2. Pinch near the tip and feed it back through the slotted tip and pull it back on itself.
  3. You can pull it through the weapon’s bore.

You may remove the patch and utilize the other side of it, maximizing its use, for larger caliber firearms, repeat the process with the addition of using a patch saver over the tip.

How to use a bore cleaner

A bore is found inside the barrel of a firearm. It takes up most of the portion of the length of the barrel. Here is a quick guide on utilizing a bore brush.

  1. Make sure the weapon is safe and unloaded.
  2. Clean the weapon with the solvent of your choice.
  3. Take the end of the bore brush and put it in the barrel until the solvent and bristles make contact.
  4. Pull the brush with little force since upon contact of the solvent and bristles produce resistance.
  5. The bore brush will easily remove carbon residue.
  6. Check the inside of the barrel, and it should look like a polished mirror.

This item is usually made of wool and brass bristles embedded into its fabric, ensuring the muzzle of your bore is perfectly polished. Its brass weight allows the option of having less hassle in your work in inserting it in the barrel with ease.

Gun cleaning how to

These metal mechanical devices demand proper and regular maintenance. All firearms need a good washing, scrubbing, and lubrication, keeping their optimal operational performances for any scenario that puts a hunter in a predicament that requires them to shoot. Here is a quick guide on general weapon swabbing, polishing and the process in doing it the sure way:

  1. Unload the weapon and remove the bolt.
  2. Get the solvent of your choice then swab the bore. 
  3. Scrub the bore with a brush.
  4. Get a dry patch and run it through the bore.
  5. Apply lubrication with the oil of your liking.


These are the steps in helping you clean your guns properly, ultimately helping you prepare for any situation. Determining if your weapon is showing signs of rusting is crucial. An early warning of this can allow you to act quickly and not let it spread on the metal surface, effectively maintaining the weapon’s integrity and ensuring long-lasting service.

How to clean a handgun

After acquiring the right tools for maintaining the integrity and safety of your firearms, you can start the task. Here are the steps in maintaining and adequately polishing a handgun.

  1. Put enough solvent inside the bore brush by applying it in a back and forth direction. (For better results, make sure you put a lot of solutions since most weapons require more lube in maximizing its lifespan).
  2. After the bore is thoroughly scrubbed, remove the brush from the cleaning rod and place a patch holder, keeping the unstained patches in place for better results.
  3. Run the patch inside the gun’s barrel in a back and forth motion continuously.
  4. Keep swabbing until the barrel is free of debris.
  5. Use a small-bore flashlight, and look for any signs of residue, repeat the processes mentioned above until the weapon is swabbed, scrubbed, and polished.
  6. Apply a generous amount of oil (gun oil or transmission oil), clean a patch, and use it in oil the bore.
  7. Since we’re talking about handguns and everything related, a revolver applying oil for every chamber is recommended.
  8. Put the solvent in the bristles of the nylon brush and rub the brush in the outer areas of the whole weapon.
  9. Wipe off excess solvent and residue using an ugly rag.

You must remember that all types of guns have their respective lubrication areas. Always be sure that you are doing it correctly. Get an owner’s manual guide for your own weapons, and take the time to familiarize yourself with these areas beforehand.

How to clean a pistol Safely and Efficiently

Cleaning a pistol may be a more natural process because of its smaller size. Since these defensive handguns are known as rugged and reliable machines, they should be adequately maintained for more extended service. To clean a pistol safely and efficiently, you must take precautionary measures beforehand.

  • Take Safety Precautions – Spend quality time reviewing an owner’s manual, since these firearms require some disassembly for cleaning. 
  • Use proper protection – Wear protective gloves and safety glasses, successfully reducing the risk of exposure with harmful substances.
  • Utilize the right materials – The right set of tools and equipment is needed to properly clean your weapons, a kit includes powder fouling, lubricant (oil), bore brush, patches, patch holders, solvents, and a cleaning rod.
  • The correct work area – Work at a site that is suitable for the task at hand, ensuring that air can easily flow and pass through outdoors. The harmful chemicals that come with the materials of the process should be handled with care.
  • Unloading – Ensure the weapon is unloaded and pointed at a direction where no one can get hurt in the process.


Be sure that you understand the structure and parts of your pistol for easier disassembly, reassembly, and identification of the elements that should be oiled and lubricated by following the previously mentioned guide of swabbing, scrubbing, and polishing weapons. The addition of taking these extra precautionary measures can help you clean any type of firearm, safer and faster.

How to clean a 9mm Before Long Storage

These steps are specific in maintaining a 9mm Glock 34 (Gen 4) through a thorough process, ensuring its maintenance and safety are met.

  • Gather supplies – Save time and gather your supplies beforehand, for newbies a cleaning kit is recommended for the maintenance of your weapon.
  • Safety check – Do standard firearm safety checks, and confirm that the 9mm is not loaded.
  • Wipe and disassemble – Using a plain dry cloth, wipe the weapon down and get rid of all the loose dirt. Next, with the guidance of an owner’s manual, disassemble the 9 millimeters.
  • Soak the barrel – Another way of ensuring the overall cleanliness of the barrel is by soaking the inside of this part and let it sit while working with the rest of the weapon so the solvents used can break down the fouling present in the barrel. 
  • The rest of the parts – Using a brush, clean the pieces with a visible buildup of carbon. When it has been thoroughly scrubbed and swabbed, use a cloth in wiping the excess dirt down.
  • The barrel’s return – Utilize rods attached with a bore brush and clean it in one smooth motion by running it through the chamber side and pulling it back through until polished.
  • Lube it up – Place two drops on the guides, frame, and inside of the slide. Never put too much lube since it can attract more dirt.
  • Reassemble – Build the weapon in the opposite order when it was disassembled, when finished run a function test and see if everything is working correctly. Check if the chamber is unloaded, cycle the slide, remove the safety, point it in a safe direction, and pull its trigger (the weapon should click at this point).


The lubrication of a firearm depends on its type, and some may work with just lubricating is the main friction points. In contrast, others should be well-oiled for the optimal results, always read your respective owner’s manual or consult with an expert for your knowledge if your 9mm prefers being run as not as wet or completely wet.

Keeping Your Handgun Safe

After this whole work process of ensuring the weapon’s integrity and maintenance is kept, through being cleaned, spreading more oil or lubricant throughout the gun is recommended for better circulation. You should also know the process of reassembling it, helping you avoid unnecessary damages, so always read an instruction manual beforehand.

This method is a good practice to gain experience and knowledge for additional safety. Keep your firearm in a high-quality handgun safe, without any bullets. Keeping the clip inside the safe is recommended, while the bullets should be placed in separate storage space.

This task should only take a few minutes of every firearm owner’s time. While this routine is fast and straightforward, it gives your weapon a longer lifespan by protecting it from detrimental damages and giving it a longer-lasting effect. 

Now that you finally know the basics of cleaning a handgun, always follow the extra safety precautions we have highlighted throughout this guide, helping you avoid unwanted accidents and acquiring fatal injuries. You can always ask for assistance and comments from experts and professionals for further clarification about this process.