How to properly clean a shotgun

Cleaning any gun is a very integral part to it working and firing properly. In order to perform at the most optimal level when shooting a gun, there are steps you can take to ensure that a sufficient cleaning has been given to your firearm.

Shotguns, especially, should be cleaned frequently if they are being used for hunting or skeet shooting competitions.

cleaning shotgunFirst, you’ll want to do a partial tear down of the gun. Depending on what kind of shotgun you use, tear it down into its primary parts. Generally clean out any areas that can cause build up, but don’t remove any small parts from inside the action. Next, you’ll want to use a degreaser specifically designed for firearms in order to clean the areas with heavy buildup. Try to avoid any areas with small springs or pieces when spraying the de-greaser as it can push these out of whack.

Always make sure you swab the barrel and clean it out as well. A lot of times, people will forget this step or skip over it thinking they can get away with it but it is just as important as the others. Grab a brass brush, spray some solvent on it and start scrubbing the chokes. This step generally shouldn’t take too long, but you’ll want to make sure you scrub enough to effectively clean the chokes.

Finally, you’ll want to clean the lube and action sparingly. The reason for this is because getting oils or cleaning solutions in some areas can attract dust or powders that will result in causing problems. Using cotton swabs, rags or brushes will help clean some of the filth away from any moving parts. Once you’re finished cleaning the gun, reassemble it and give it a final inspection to make sure that everything looks good, operational and most importantly, clean.

One reply on “How to properly clean a shotgun

  • James S. Mulkey

    I’m always happy to see the process and, reasons that others have, regarding the best way to clean their shotguns and, why this is so important!
    All too often, I see people jokingly post…what is this shotgun cleaning you’re talking about.
    I’m in agreement….that a clean gun, is like a clean car…it looks better, shoots better, and, is a direct reflection of the owner!

    Thanks for sharing this and, have a wonderful day!


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