A handgun is like anything else you own in that it needs to be taken care of and maintained to function as intended. One way to do this with any handgun you own is to get into the habit of cleaning it regularly. As for how often you should do this, the firearms safety education professionals from LTC Austin, your premier choice for Austin LTC online training, suggest some things you’ll want to keep in mind.
Lighter vs. Deeper Handgun Cleanings
Any time you have a practice session or use your handgun in a similar way, it’s recommended you do a light cleaning. This simply means wiping the gun down and doing a visual inspection to see if anything else needs to be cleaned. It’s also a good idea to do a deeper handgun cleaning a few times a year. Do this more often if you regularly practice every weekend or if you compete in various competitions throughout the year.
A deeper handgun cleaning is typically done by:
• Placing a towel down so you don’t lose any parts
• Making sure your handgun is completely free of ammunition
• Disassembling or dismantling your handgun per manufacturer’s instructions
- Placing a cleaning rod dipped in a solvent onto a bore brush to clean the inside of the barrel
• Rotating the brush to completely remove any residue from past firings
• Removing the cleaning rod and attaching a patch holder to clean the barrel more thoroughly
• Using a nylon brush dipped in solvent to clean the other parts/areas of your handgun
• Adding gun oil to any areas where there’s visible evidence of rubbing or wear
• Reassembling your handgun and double-checking it to make sure everything is ready for the next use
A “deep” cleaning doesn’t necessarily have to mean fully taking apart your handgun each time a more thorough cleaning is done. For instance, you could do semi-deep cleanings that include everything mentioned above with your handgun still assembled but also safely and fully unloaded.
Purchase or Put Together a Handgun Cleaning Kit
You’ll be more likely to clean your handgun as necessary if you have a kit handy with everything you need. One way to do this is to purchase a premade kit that has all the basic cleaning tools and products mentioned above. Another option is to put together your own kit based on what’s most appropriate and useful for your type of handgun.
Don’t Forget Handguns You Don’t Use or Ones Not Often Used
If you have other handguns usually stored away and only taken out or used occasionally, you’ll still need to clean them. Dust and debris gather in various parts and affect usability or accelerate wear. With handguns of this nature, you should be fine with a thorough cleaning once or twice a year.
You Can’t Really Overclean a Handgun
There’s really no such thing as cleaning your handgun too much. However, you could damage it if you’re not doing the cleaning process correctly. Improper cleanings can contribute to rust or accelerated deterioration, which could make your handgun useless or unsafe to use. Also, make sure you’re using the correct oil for your handgun.
If you own a handgun, it’s essential to know how to use and clean it safely. LTC Austin is dedicated to providing the finest firearms training available. Whether you simply need to learn how to handle your gun and shoot safely or you want to take an Austin license to carry online class, LTC Austin has what you need. Give us a call today at 512-766-3039.