How To Clean A Rifle At Home

A rifle is a type of firearm that has been used for centuries for hunting and combat. Rifles are often considered the most accurate firearms, but they can seem difficult to clean properly. If you don't know how to clean your rifle, it will quickly become dirty and may even jam when firing or cause other problems.

How to clean a rifle is an essential aspect that all gun owners need to learn. Whether you are cleaning your rifle for the first time or want a refresher, you are at the right place! We will review the cleaning process and provide tips on how to get it done right. A dirty gun can be dangerous and even deadly if used in an inappropriate situation. Many people assume that the best way to clean a rifle is by removing all parts and scrubbing it with soap, but this is not true. This article will teach you how to clean your rifle easily while still maintaining its original quality. 

How To Clean A Rifle

Cleaning a rifle is not as daunting a task as it may seem. With just the right materials and some time, your rifle will be looking and functioning like new in no time. Before you start, make sure you have an appropriate workspace with plenty of light. The necessary tools for cleaning, a clean towel or cloth for wiping down your garage workbench, and safety glasses to protect your eyes from any debris or dust that may be created during the cleaning process. When learning how to clean a rifle, there are specific questions that you need to ask yourself. These questions are:-

  • What are the steps for cleaning a rifle?
  • What materials are needed, and why are they necessary?
  • How do you make sure your barrel doesn't get scratched?
  • What tools can be used for different parts of the gun?

Once you find answers to these questions, you can now clean your hunting rifle by removing copper and accumulated dirt. Below we shall discuss in depth the six main steps that you need to follow.

Step 1: Dismantle the bolt action Rifle

The bolt action rifle is a firearm that fires rounds by means of energy from the cartridge in its chamber. Knowing how to dismantle the hunting rifle is important. Take a few minutes to triple-check if your rifle is unloaded while facing it in a safe direction. For deep cleaning, first, you need a cleaning rod and some patches. It is recommended that you clean your barrel before dismantling it because it will make things easier later on in the process by not having dirt or other contaminants inside it.

To dismantle this weapon, you will need to unscrew and unclip the firing pin assembly, insert your finger into both side springs on either handle, and pull them outwards simultaneously. Once removed, it should look like two long metal rods facing each other with an opening at one end. Next, remove three screws holding the trigger assembly near the barrel lug nut located behind the magazine. Lift the bottom section of the platform piece until all bolts are loose enough for removal.

Step 2: Collect the Cleaning Supplies

You will want to collect the right tools first: an oil-grease solvent/ bore solvent, rags, and patches for dry lubricants, cotton swabs, or a lint-free clean patch in various sizes. A cleaning rod, bore brush, and a gunsmith's tweezers with tips. These might also come as part of your cleaning kit, but it is always better safe than sorry.

Extra pieces from any set should go straight back because they could have been contaminated by previous use. The process begins by removing all ammunition rounds then wiping down both sides using a rag or paper towel soaked in a cleaning solvent while removing the copper fouling without scratching the metal parts. 

Step 3: Cleaning the Rifle Bore 

The rifle bore is one of those parts that will see a lot more gunk than any other part, so it needs to be cared for and cleaned as often. You want to avoid letting too much build-up in there because if you do, you will risk having malfunctions with your firearm or even rusting them before they can be used again. When cleaning, you should follow the following steps:-

  • Use a cleaning rod with an attached rifle bore brush on one end or patch adapter.
  • Dip the other end into a solvent (gun oil).
  • Insert it down the barrel until you feel resistance, then pull the cleaning rod back while spinning it around 360 degrees.
  • Dip your fingers into the gun oil before lifting out patches soaked in clean water, which will now contain fouling debris that can be dumped onto paper towels for disposal.

Step 4: Clean the Chamber and bolt Action

The rifle has two parts: the chamber and bolt action. The general idea is to clean both of them and to get into all those nooks and crannies. A good scrubbing brush comes in handy! Using your bore guides, you need to remove any gun grease from these areas with a cloth dipped in solvent or mineral spirits. Then thoroughly dry off the entire area using an air compressor before applying lubricant using a dry patch.

The lubricant acts as a rust protector. Now it's time for some real cleaning fun! Use an old toothbrush to clean out debris at the breech end of your barrel. Move down inside your bolt/trigger mechanism, using cleaning patches as needed until they come back free of fouling material that can lead to corrosion problems over time. 

Step 5: Clean the rifle Stock and Barrel

The gun Stock and Barrel of a rifle should be cleaned after every use. This is because dirt, debris, or gunpowder can get trapped inside the barrel during firing that would make it difficult to fire accurately again until you clean them out. To do this job efficiently, you need some cleaning supplies like an oiled rag to wipe the metal parts and rifle barrel down. Ensure that you apply a light coating of the gun storage oil by using only a few drops of it. Wipe any excess gun oil before you store the rifle. Close the action and drop the pin safely before storing it in a gun safe or any other long term storage place.

Step 6: Store in a Dry Safe Place

Storing a rifle is an essential aspect of gun safety. It is not uncommon to find rifles in homes, which can lead to accidents if they are improperly stored and end up being handled by the wrong people, such as children or burglars breaking into your home. There are many ways that you can store a caliber rifle so it will be out of reach for anyone who doesn't have clearance but also won't get damaged from rough handling during transportation.

Rifles should be stored in gun cases or with other firearms. Avoid storing them loose on shelves or leaning against walls as it can damage the stock and make dust enter into delicate parts of rifles like scope mounts and triggers, which are easily damaged by dirt buildup too! 

Gun Cleaning Supplies

Gun cleaning supplies are a must-have for any gun owner. Without them, your guns will not be functioning properly, and you'll spend more time dealing with malfunctions than rifle shooting. Having the best tools to maintain your firearms is vital, or else they may jam up in a critical situation when you need them most - like at work!

The time-consuming task of gun cleaning can be made easier by using the right supplies. Gun vise, oils, solvents, and lubricants are necessary for maintaining a clean firearm in a good working order. The best way to keep your gun's new or old in a pristine condition may just depend on what type you use, but as long as it is stored properly, these supplies should last indefinitely!

Below are the roles played by each cleaning tool:-

  • Cleaning Patches

There are three main functions of a cleaning patch:

  • It serves as an absorbent material for the liquid and powder residue left behind after scrubbing your weapon clean using solvents or lubricants.
  • When used again with the more solvent-based cleaner to lube up all the metal parts in preparation for reassembly, they help dissolve any leftover grease.
  • They get in between tight spaces where barrels fit together snugly.
  • A cleaning patch also serves another purpose by acting as sweat-absorbing agents too! 
  • Rifle Bore Snakes

The rifle bore snake is a long, flexible cord that's usually inserted into the barrel of a non-rifled weapon. During the barrel cleaning, the user then pulls it through the barrel from the muzzle end until there are no more obstructions inside. A bore guide will come in handy to show you how the cleaning should be done. 

  • Solvents

A solvent is a liquid that dissolves other substances. Gun cleaning solvents are the liquids used to dissolve gunpowder and carbon fouling on guns and lubricating oils for hand weapons such as knives or swords. To clean up dirty firearms, you need something stronger than just water or rubbing alcohol. You will need what some people call "the universal cleaner." A small number of these industrial-strength cleaners have been found in everyday household items like turpentine (a type of paint thinner), acetone (nail polish remover), and mineral spirits (paint brush cleaner).

How to clean a handgun

Cleaning a handgun is an essential task that many people do not know how to handle. A bore guide will explain how to clean a handgun, its bolt face, and barrel with a bore snake, brush, and other cleaning supplies. Cleaning the barrel of your pistol or revolver should be done after every use with just one solvent and cleaning brush, and not any other kind of solvents, as this can damage both metal surfaces and rubber parts alike.

Generally, you will need cotton swabs for some hard-to-reach areas in the trigger guard or action area. Handles take up more time and require attention; therefore, spraying the cleaning solvent between the spaces will make your work easier. Barrels are typically cleaned by pushing out all debris from inside because it will get much more complicated later on when pieces get stuck together. After the previous step, you can clean your firearm again thoroughly before wiping down the outside surface until it is shiny once more! 

Rifle Cleaning

Keeping a gun in good condition is not just crucial for safety, but it also extends the life of your favorite pistol. Keeping a rifle clean and taking care of it to avoid corrosion can save you some money down the road by avoiding expensive repairs or replacement costs that may be inevitable if left unattended.

Rifle cleaning can be very daunting at first because there are so many different pieces on an AR-15 rifle to clean: barrel, chamber, bolt carrier group, charging handle assembly, etc. However, with regular cleaning, lubrication, and safe storing, it will guarantee a longer life to your rifle. You can follow the following steps:-

  • Complete field striping using parts of the cleaning kit.
  • Clean inside the barrel using a cleaning rod.
  • Thoroughly dry all metal surfaces with a dry patch or clean rag. 
  •  Lubricate appropriately.
  • Store properly. 

Pistol Cleaning

Pistols are not pets. They don't need to be pampered and indulged with special care, but now and again, they do need a bit of extra attention beyond the basic bronze brushes-and-bore snake routine of regular maintenance. For example, if you live in an area where it snows during the winter months. Your pistol can accumulate rust from moisture that gets trapped by salt on roads or sidewalks when temperatures drop below the freezing level at night. Some pistols (like Glocks) require disassembly and pistol cleaning after firing each round, so carbon residue doesn't build up inside them.


Cleaning a rifle may seem like a complicated task, but it isn’t. It is essential to follow the proper steps. With these tips, you can be sure that your weapon will always function properly and stay in good condition. We hope this article has been helpful for you! Now go out there and clean those rifles with confidence.

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