7 Step Guide To Cleaning Your Concealed Carry Gun

7 Step Guide To Cleaning Your Concealed Carry Gun

Learning how to clean your concealed carry gun can be easy with the right guide and tools. We have designed this guide for both newcomers and experienced gun owners, providing a walk through on cleaning your firearm as well as essential tips for keeping it in top condition.

With the right approach, cleaning your gun not only extends its life but also ensures it’s ready when you need it most. Let’s dive into the essentials of gun cleaning and see what it is going to take to keep your EDC pistol running at a high performance.

What You Need To Clean Your Gun

Before you embark on the journey of cleaning your concealed carry pistol, assembling the right tools is crucial. You don’t need an arsenal of gadgets—just a few essentials will do the trick. Here is what I would use since it comes with everything you will need.

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However, it is also smart to have some of the following to help in the cleaning process. You may not need all of these, but each provides an added touch to cleaning your carry gun.

Gun Cleaning Tool Checklist

  1. Cleaning Solvent: This is the magic potion that dissolves the gunk and grime. A good quality solvent will break down the residues without harming your gun’s finish.
  2. Lubricant: After cleaning, a lubricant is your gun’s best friend. It reduces friction, protects against rust, and keeps your firearm operating smoothly. Remember, a little goes a long way.
  3. Cleaning Rod: A sturdy rod helps you clean the barrel from the inside out. Attachments like a bore brush or a patch holder at the end make the job easier and more effective.
  4. Bore Snake / Bore Brush: Tailored to your gun’s caliber, a bore brush or bore snake effectively cleans the barrel’s interior. The bore brush aggressively scrubs away stubborn deposits, while the bore snake offers a quick, one-pass cleaning solution—perfect for those who appreciate efficiency. I really like the Breakthrough Clean Battle Rope 2.0!
  5. Patches and Patch Holder: Patches, usually made of cotton, are used with a patch holder to apply solvent and oil inside the barrel and to wipe surfaces clean. They’re the unsung heroes of gun cleaning, absorbing dirt and residue.
  6. Microfiber Cloth: For all external surfaces, a microfiber cloth will remove fingerprints, dust, and leftover solvent without scratching your gun’s finish.
  7. Cleaning Mat: Optional but highly recommended, a cleaning mat provides a designated space for disassembly, keeping parts organized and protecting surfaces from spills and scratches.
  8. Cleaning Wipes: These All-In-One wipes are great for doing a quick clean. They provide a fast wipe down with the all in one cleaner/lubricant already on the cloth. These are very handy!

With these tools at your disposal, you’re ready to tackle gun cleaning like a pro. Remember, investing in quality cleaning supplies not only makes the process easier but also helps ensure your concealed carry remains reliable and ready for action.

How To Clean Your Concealed Carry Gun

How To Clean Your Concealed Carry Gun

Cleaning your concealed carry pistol is a straightforward process that, when done regularly, ensures your firearm operates safely and effectively. Follow these steps to keep your gun in top condition:

1. Safety

  • Unload your gun. Ensure there’s no ammunition in the gun. Remove the magazine and check the chamber to make sure it’s empty.
  • Clear your workspace. Make sure you’re in a well-ventilated area, free from distractions, and have a clean surface to work on.

2. Disassembly

  • Refer to the manufacturer’s instructions. Field strip your gun according to the guidelines provided by the manufacturer. Typically, this involves removing the slide, barrel, and guide rod.
  • Keep track of all parts. Lay out the components on your cleaning mat to avoid losing any small pieces.

3. Cleaning the Barrel

  • Apply cleaning solvent. Dampen a patch with solvent and use your cleaning rod to push it through the barrel. This loosens the buildup.
  • Scrub the barrel. Attach the bore brush to the rod and run it through the barrel several times. For a quicker clean, pull a solvent-soaked bore snake through the barrel.

4. Cleaning the Frame and Slide

  • Wipe down surfaces. Use a microfiber cloth to remove dust and debris from the frame and slide.
  • Apply solvent. With a small brush or a patch, apply solvent to the slide, frame, and other metal parts, focusing on areas with visible buildup.

5. Lubrication

  • Apply lubricant sparingly. After cleaning, apply a few drops of lubricant to moving parts and areas prone to friction. Use a clean patch or cloth to spread it evenly.
  • Avoid over-lubrication. Excess oil can attract dirt and affect the gun’s function.

6. Reassembly

  • Follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Carefully reassemble your gun, ensuring each part fits back into its proper place.
  • Check for smooth operation. Once reassembled, cycle the action to ensure everything moves smoothly without unnecessary resistance or noise.

7. Function Check

  • Perform a safety check. With the gun unloaded, check the trigger, safety, and slide operation to ensure all mechanisms are functioning correctly.
  • Dry fire if applicable. If your gun manufacturer allows it, a controlled dry fire can help verify the proper reassembly and function.

By following these steps, you’ll maintain the reliability, safety, and longevity of your concealed carry gun. Regular cleaning is not just about upkeep; it’s an investment in your safety and the performance of your firearm.

Why Cleaning Your Concealed Carry Gun is Essential

Why Cleaning Your Concealed Carry Gun is Essential

Regular cleaning of your concealed carry gun isn’t just about keeping it looking good; it’s a fundamental aspect of firearm maintenance that ensures reliability, safety, and longevity. Here’s why making cleaning a regular part of your gun care routine is non-negotiable:

  1. Prevents Malfunctions: Dirt, residue, and buildup can lead to jams, misfires, and other malfunctions. Keeping your gun clean ensures smoother operation and reduces the likelihood of these potentially dangerous incidents.
  2. Preserves Accuracy: A dirty barrel can affect bullet trajectory and precision. Regular cleaning maintains the integrity of the barrel’s interior, ensuring that each shot is as accurate as the last.
  3. Extends Lifespan: Just like any well-maintained machine, a clean gun lasts longer. Corrosion and rust are real threats, especially in concealed carry firearms exposed to sweat and moisture. Proper cleaning and lubrication protect the metal components from degradation.
  4. Enhances Safety: Regular cleaning gives you the opportunity to inspect your firearm for wear and tear, broken parts, or other issues that could lead to unsafe conditions. Detecting problems early can prevent accidents.
  5. Maintains Value: A well-cared-for gun retains its value better over time. Whether you see your firearm as an investment or a potential heirloom, regular cleaning is key to preserving its worth.

In essence, cleaning your gun is as vital as practicing your shooting skills. It’s part of being a responsible gun owner, ensuring that your firearm functions safely and effectively when you need it most. So, embrace the ritual of cleaning—it’s the foundation of good gun ownership.

How Often Should You Clean Your Concealed Carry Gun

How Often Should You Clean Your Concealed Carry Gun

The frequency of cleaning your concealed carry gun is a topic of much debate among gun owners, but the consensus leans towards a simple principle: regular maintenance tailored to your gun’s usage and exposure. Here are some guidelines to help you determine how often you should clean your firearm:

  1. After Every Use: If you’ve fired your gun, give it a thorough cleaning afterward. Residue from shooting can build up quickly, affecting performance and reliability.
  2. Regular Maintenance: Even if you haven’t fired your gun, it’s wise to perform a routine cleaning every month. This is especially important for concealed carry guns, as they’re exposed to body sweat, moisture, and everyday dust and dirt, which can lead to corrosion and buildup.
  3. Environmental Exposure: If your gun has been exposed to adverse conditions such as rain, snow, or extreme humidity, clean it as soon as possible. Environmental factors can accelerate the need for maintenance.
  4. Storage: Before storing your gun for an extended period, give it a comprehensive clean and lubrication to protect it from rust and corrosion. Check on it periodically during storage to ensure it remains in good condition.
  5. Signs of Wear: Pay attention to the performance of your gun. If you notice any irregularities, such as difficulty ejecting shells or a sticky trigger, it may be time for a cleaning, even if it hasn’t been used extensively since the last maintenance.

Remember, these guidelines are not hard and fast rules but starting points. The key is to understand your gun and its needs. A well-maintained firearm is a reliable one, so erring on the side of caution with regular cleaning is always a good practice. Ultimately, the care you put into maintaining your gun reflects your commitment to safety and preparedness.

Gun Cleaning FAQ

Q: How do I know if I’ve used too much lubricant?
A: If you notice excess oil dripping from your gun or accumulating dust and lint easily, you’ve likely applied too much. A light coating is all that’s needed; any excess should be gently wiped away with a clean cloth.

Q: Is it possible to clean my gun too often?
A: While regular cleaning is essential, over-cleaning can be unnecessary and, in rare cases, may lead to wear. Focus on cleaning your gun according to the guidelines provided, after use, or when exposed to adverse conditions.

Q: Can I use household cleaners on my gun?
A: It’s not recommended. Many household cleaners contain chemicals that can be too harsh for firearm materials, potentially damaging the finish or internal components. Stick to cleaners specifically designed for guns.

Q: Do I need to disassemble my gun completely for every cleaning?
A: No, a full disassembly, or detail strip, is not necessary for routine cleaning and should only be done if you’re familiar with the process or under the guidance of a professional. A field strip, removing major components like the slide, barrel, and magazine, is usually sufficient for regular maintenance.

Q: How should I dispose of used cleaning supplies?
A: Dispose of used patches, cloths, and any other materials soaked with solvent or oil in accordance with local regulations, as these can be flammable and hazardous. Do not throw them in regular trash without ensuring they are fully dried out and safe.

Q: Can cleaning my gun affect its accuracy?
A: Proper cleaning maintains or can even improve your gun’s accuracy by removing obstructions and buildup in the barrel. Incorrect reassembly after cleaning, however, can affect performance, so always double-check your work.


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Cleanliness of your firearm isn’t just about aesthetics; it’s a critical component of its functionality, reliability, and safety. Regular cleaning ensures that your gun is always ready to perform when you need it most, extending its lifespan and maintaining its value.

Remember, a well-maintained gun is a reflection of a responsible gun owner. By dedicating time to clean your firearm, you’re not just taking care of a tool; you’re upholding a commitment to safety and preparedness. So, whether you’re a seasoned gun enthusiast or new to the concealed carry community, let the practice of cleaning your gun become as natural and regular as carrying it. After all, the peace of mind that comes from knowing your firearm is in top working order is invaluable.

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