How To Use A Gun Cleaning Kit

What do you do now that you’ve purchased your new gun cleaning kit? If you’re a beginner, the first thing you should do is watch a few YouTube videos and follow the instructions.

When it comes to cleaning, each gun is a little different, so make sure you read and re-read the owner’s manual for yours.

What You’ll Need

Nylon Brush

The nylon brush is the tool to use if you want to clean regions of your rifle that are more delicate. A nylon brush can also be used to avoid scratches on the frame of polymer weapons.

Bronze Barrel Brush

Bronze gun cleaning brushes will help you get rid of stubborn residue from your firearm. These brushes are excellent for cleaning your gun’s chamber and barrel, removing debris as you swipe.

With a bronze brush, you don’t have to be concerned about damaging the rifling or scratching the barrel; just make sure the bronze brushes included in the gun cleaning package are appropriate with your caliber.

Cleaning Jags

Cleaning jags are thin rods made of plastic, brass, or nickel that are used for cleaning. Cleaning jags and cleaning patches should be used at the end of your gun cleaning operation. The reason behind this is that the cleaning jags will absorb any remaining dirt or oil. Make sure that you clean your gun using cleaning jags every time you clean it.

Cleaning Swabs

Cleaning swabs will allow you to reach areas that might otherwise go unnoticed. Cleaning swabs can be used to clean your gun’s barrel by inserting these cotton bits into the cleaning jags.

Even though the cleaning kit you’re going to buy comes with a couple of cleaning swabs, keep in mind that you’ll probably need to buy more in the future.

Bore Mops

Bore mops can assist you remove any leftover oil or residue from the chamber and barrel. Bore mops are available in a variety of sizes to match the caliber of your pistol. If you want to extend the life of your bore mop, make sure to clean it after cleaning your pistol.

Cleaning Solvents

Debris from the slide components and the barrel can be difficult to remove. In this case, a cleaning solution can be really beneficial. Cleaning solvents formulated expressly to remove powder residue from weapons are available, and many gun cleaning packages include them. To find out which are the best options on the market please check out our review on the best rated gun cleaning solvents.


You’ll need to grease your gun when you’ve finished cleaning it. These lubricants will keep the mechanical parts of your gun smooth and oiled, reducing the likelihood of misfires, loading issues, and friction.

How To Use A Gun Cleaning Kit

Wash Your Hands (Or Wear Some Gloves)

Before you do anything, make sure you wash your hands. This will assist keep lubricants from getting on your gun’s outside and inner surfaces. To prevent oil from soaking into the skin, most individuals, including me, use gloves when cleaning our guns.

If you’ve been cleaning weapons for a long time, the risk of getting some of these solvents on your skin isn’t worth it. A favorite among many are the disposable black nitrile gloves.


Ensure that the ammunition is out of reach. If your gun is loaded, there’s a chance you’ll accidently discharge it while cleaning it. There’s also a potential you’ll accidentally blast a box of ammo, so double-check this step.

This is the moment to utilize your pistol cleaning pad if you have one. I strongly advise you to use a surface protector to protect your surfaces from solvents and scratches.

Get Your Bore Snake

You can use a bore snake instead of cleaning rods to save time. This will get rid of some of the muck in about 10 seconds. Bore snakes can help you save a lot of time.


Read your instructions and disassemble everything as instructed. If you don’t have an owner’s handbook, you can typically obtain one on the manufacturer’s website or, better yet, watch a YouTube video and follow along.

If you have a gun cleaning vise, be sure it’s well secured. A gun vise is fantastic for keeping your gun steady, and it works wonders with long guns. To find out which are the best options on the market please check out our review on the best gunsmithing vise.

Use Your Cleaning Rods

Assemble your cleaning rods and select an appropriate brush size. Begin by cleaning your gun using a bronze cleaning brush and your preferred gun cleaning solvent.

Make a point of pulling the brush through 5-10 times. Make sure to only pull and not push.

The barrel will last longer if the bore brush is only used in the same direction as the bullet travels.

To find out which are the best options on the market please check out our review on the best pistol cleaning rod.

Get Your Cleaning Patches

The idea is for the cleaning patches to come out completely white. Until this happens, you can use 10-20 cleaning patches, which are inexpensive.

If your cleaning patches are black when you remove them, you’ll need to run your brushes through your rifle again.

Get Rid Of Solvents

Dry cleaning patches and a gun mop attachment should be used for this. After you’ve used up all of the cleaning solvent, you’ll want to apply some lubricant.

Clean The Exterior

This step can be done with a double-sided wire toothbrush. Simply apply a small amount of CLP to the brush and scrape away any places that require cleaning.

Around the mechanics, you want to be a tiny bit of lubrication. Look for any small rust spots as well. Rust often starts out as a small speck, and if it isn’t seen straight away, it can quickly spread.

Wash Your Hands (Again)

After you’ve washed your hands again, dab a little oil on them to erase any fingerprints that may have gotten on your pistol throughout the cleaning process.

Assemble Your Gun

You’re almost done at this point. Make sure your hands are lubricated with your lubricant before reassembling the weapon.

Cleaning A New Gun?

Nearly every single new pistol comes with a layer of grease and a sticky solvent. This prevents them from rusting when sitting on a shelf for months or years.

Because the lubricant they applied is not a shooting lubricant, you should remove it and thoroughly clean your new pistol.

This is something you should always do because you never know how something works unless you take it apart.

Before shooting a new gun, you should always inspect it for worn components, broken or small particles of sawdust, and other debris. 

If you are interested you can also check our articles regarding other gun cleaning accessories such as pistol cleaning mat.

Leave a Comment