How To Clean A Handgun

Gun cleaning procedures vary from person to person, and opinions on how frequently people should clean their weapons differ.

Some people like to clean their firearms at the start of each hunting season and again at the conclusion.

How to Clean a Handgun

Sometimes people clean their gun after each use, such as after-range shooting. But one thing is certain. Before long the handgun will need to be cleaned and there are a lot of reasons why you should clean it.

Why You Should Clean Your Handgun?

There are several reasons to clean your firearm. One of the most significant benefits will be a greater grasp of how your gun works and what the inner components perform when the trigger is pulled.

A gun is a machine, and all of its elements work together to achieve the ultimate purpose of firing around.

However, because it seems to be a single unit from the outside, it is not always visible in motion.

Here are other reasons why you should clean your handgun. 

Increase The Lifespan

Handguns may endure anywhere from a few years to many generations, depending on how well they are maintained. A basic maintenance program may dramatically extend the life of your firearm.

The regularity with which you use it will decide how frequently you should clean it, but even performing the bare minimum will have a major influence.

Some owners clean their guns after each usage, while others clean them every few months. It all depends on how you want to use your pistol and how long you anticipate it to endure.

Keeps Them Safe And Reliable

Regular and thorough maintenance keeps your gun in excellent functioning shape. Cleaning removes any crud or buildup from use and ensures that your firearm operates at peak functionality.

If you rely on your weapon for home protection, it’s critical that you maintain it on a regular basis to ensure that it works properly when you need it most.

Lubricant, residue, dirt, and debris can accumulate in the barrel and internal systems during firing sessions.

When you shoot, residual fouling sticks in the barrel, consisting of bullet particles and scorched gunpowder.

Prevents Major Problems

By cleaning your pistol on a regular basis, you may avoid several problems that could harm your gun or perhaps you.

One of these items has rusted. Rusting in pistols can be caused by a variety of catalysts.

It can begin internally, such as in the barrel, or externally, but by the time you detect it on the outside, it is almost certainly also within the pistol.

You may also significantly reduce the likelihood of your pistol jamming, as well as failures in firing, ejecting, and feeding, which can be highly inconvenient and time-consuming to repair.

How to Clean a Handgun (1)

How To Clean A Handgun

Here is a step-by-step guide on how to clean your handgun. Make sure that you take your time and be careful!

Take It Apart

Before you begin, we recommend that you put on a pair of nitrile or latex gloves to protect your skin from chemicals or poisons.

Lead exposure is a problem when working with any weapon, so be sure you’re doing all possible to reduce it.

Once you’ve put on your gloves, ensure sure your rifle is empty. Before commencing disassembly, verify the chamber and magazine to ensure they are empty.

You can start disassembling the pistol after you’re certain it’s empty. You don’t have to disassemble the pistol completely for routine cleanings.

Clean The Barrel

When cleaning a pistol, the barrel is arguably the most crucial component to examine.

When your barrel is unclean or clogged with residue, it can hinder movement, reducing accuracy and causing catastrophic accidents. As a result, it is critical that you pay special attention to your barrel.

Remove Debris

Before applying any solvent, use a microfiber cloth or rag to remove surface dirt from the firearm’s parts, and recesses.

Examine the spring and any other minor parts carefully, removing surface dirt with a dry brush or an old toothbrush. This will remove the loose fouling, allowing your cleaners to work less hard.

If you find any major, obstinate residue, spritz a dab of solvent onto a cotton swab and pay special care to the region.

Some individuals believe that utilizing compressed air is an effective approach to removing any stubborn dirt and debris from the springs and other tiny compartments.

Simply use caution and keep the pressure modest.


The final step before reassembly is to apply lubrication. Lubricant is an oily material that allows the parts of your weapon to contact each other with little friction.

Without oil, the components of your gun will rub together, causing wear and tear.

Don’t put too much on, and don’t put lubrication directly on your rifle. Wipe it on the slide rails, barrel, recoil spring, and any other gaps using a cotton swab or a dry towel.

Put It Back Together

When you’re certain that your weapon is clean and completely dried, reassemble the components.

After reassembling your unloaded rifle, give it a few tests to ensure that you didn’t knock anything out of place while cleaning.

Store It Properly

As well as cleaning it properly, another key to keeping your handgun in top condition is storing it correctly.

The best gun cases include foam inside because they cradle your guns in a layer of protection, ensuring they are never damaged or scratched.

This component of gun storage is critical for both storage and transportation. The robust shell protects your firearms from damage and weather, making it ideal for use in harsh conditions.


Now that you know how important it is that you clean your handgun regularly, you are probably very happy to know that the steps in how you do it is pretty straightforward. 

Just remember to be careful when handling your gun and double-check that it is not loaded before you do any cleaning whatsoever.

Matthew Osborn

Matt is an entrepreneur who has created and successfully exited multiple companies and brands. Now, he dedicates his time to Legionary, where he produces content on guns, family, and freedom.

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