A Beginner’s Guide to Gun Maintenance

Basic Gun Maintenance
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A Beginner’s Guide to Gun Maintenance

Properly maintaining your firearm is an essential part of gun ownership

Gun maintenance is critical for a firearm owner because it keeps the weapon in working order.

Failing to maintain your firearms could cause issues when you attempt to use them, making them less effective whether you’re going target shooting, hunting, or need to protect your home.

Most gun maintenance comes down to keeping the weapon clean.

It's important to remember that every firearm is different, so read your operator's manual to ensure you understand the gun's unique characteristics.

However, every new gun owner should also follow some general tips to keep their firearms on the right track.

Here's a look at eight firearm maintenance tips for new gun owners. 

Key Takeaways

  • Gun maintenance is essential
  • Cleaning the firearm is a significant part of this maintenance
  • Following the manufacturer’s instructions is important
  • There are some general tips to consider, too

1. Stay safe

Before all else, you must have a safety-first approach when cleaning your firearm.

The first rule is always to treat your gun like it's loaded, even if you're 100% sure it isn't.

Gun accidents happen during regular maintenance activities every year, so turning these safety precautions into a habit will help keep you and your family safe.

Never do anything with your gun that you wouldn't do with a loaded weapon, including putting your finger over the trigger or in the trigger guard while cleaning the firearm.

You should also avoid pointing your gun at anyone or waving it around in a dangerous manner.

2. Give yourself room

You don't want to feel cramped while cleaning your gun, so make sure you have enough space.

It's also crucial that you don't mix up the parts because you'll need to put everything back together exactly like it was before the cleaning.

Having a large table makes it easier to spread out and keep the gun components separate while ensuring the gun oil you're using doesn't get into areas it isn't supposed to touch.

3. Buy a care kit

Your gun might have a specific care kit designed for it.

If so, it's a good idea to purchase that rather than a generic product. The reason is that your gun has unique components that require care, and a specialized kit will have all the tools necessary to attend to it.

Basically, buying a gun-specific care kit ensures you won't have to return to the store later to buy more tools or other essentials.

4. Wipe it down

As for the actual cleaning, start by wiping the outside of the firearm as thoroughly as possible.

There's likely all kinds of debris on the gun's exterior, but a quick wipe will take care of most of it.

This step is vital because you don't want the particulates on the outside of the weapon mixing with the gun oil you'll use later and contaminating it. 

5. Disassemble the gun

Once you have your space prepared, the right kit in hand, and the outside of the firearm cleaned up, it's time to start the disassembly process.

The manufacturer will have instructions for disassembly in the manual, so have a look and follow the directions carefully.

It's also recommended that you immerse the barrel in the cleaning solution that came with your care kit at this point.

You can soak the barrel and remove any residue that has built up while you take the rest of the gun apart.

6. Focus on the moving parts

Every firearm has a series of moving parts that you'll want to clean thoroughly.

As the barrel soaks, grab a brush from your care kit and scrub each section of the gun. Use a solvent to assist with the cleaning, too.

Visually inspect the weapon for carbon buildup at this point, paying particular attention to those areas.

Components with carbon buildup could experience premature wear if you don't address them.

After you've scrubbed everything with the brush and solvent, take a lint-free cloth and wipe everything down again.

If you see dirt or debris on the fabric, it's a signal that your firearm requires more cleaning before you're ready for the next step.

7. Clean the barrel

At this point, your barrel has been soaking for a while, but it isn't spotless.

You can clean it thoroughly by rubbing a brush inside of it, scrubbing the remaining residue.

Check your progress by taking a cotton cleaning patch, which should be in your care kit, and swabbing the inside of the barrel.

If the cotton is clean, your barrel is clean. On the other hand, if the patch has residue on it, you'll want to scrub the barrel even more.

8. Lubricate it and complete the assembly

We've mentioned gun oil a couple of times in this post, and you'll finally get to use it during the reassembly process.

As you put your firearm back together, lubricate all the moving parts with gun oil throughout the process.

This oil is generally only applied to parts of the gun that aren't exposed to the elements to keep them functioning at optimal levels whenever you fire the weapon.

Remember to follow the reassembly instructions in your gun's manual to ensure you get everything back together in the proper order and lubricate all the moving parts that require it.

Learning about firearms

Education is essential before and after purchasing your first firearm.

The more you know about these weapons, the safer you’ll be as an owner. Part of your research should include looking up places to buy guns and ammo that offer the low prices and first-rate customer service necessary to make your transaction a good experience.

Ammunition Depot offers some of the best customer service and excellent prices on guns, ammo, and accessories.

Our team knows that taking home protection into your own hands is the only way to ensure your family is always safe, which is why we aim to make high-quality ammo as available as possible to the American public.

Visit Ammunition Depot's online shop for a look at what we currently have in stock.

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