As the old saying goes, “firearms have only 2 enemies: rust and politicians.”
You will often hear gun guys talking about cleaning your gun. Cleaning your gun is short for cleaning, oiling, and inspecting your firearm.
That’s just basic maintenance to keep your critical tools in working order… something you should be doing on a regular basis.
How Often Do You Need To Clean Your Gun?
As a rule of thumb, you should clean your gun every time you use it. Have a process – every time you go to the range, clean your guns before. Or after… whatever works for you.
Cleaning before shooting has the advantage of checking your equipment before using it… always a good thing.
If it’s sitting in a safe or in a drawer, you’ll still want to take it out and clean it (clean and lube) every few months. Again, checking your tools and doing basic maintenance is a good thing.
How About Cleaning A Carry Firearm?
A carry firearm is a different thing altogether. This gun isn’t sitting in a safe or in a cool, dry comfort of a drawer… it’s not in a clean and dry holster, waiting for you to use it.
A carry firearm is subject to the surprising amounts of dust, debris, lint, sweat (especially highly corrosive sweat), and whatever else you knowingly or unknowingly come into contact throughout the day.
You can say this until you’re blue in the face, but nothing helps illustrate the point like a simple visual. 🙂
Pro tip: A good habit is to clean your carry firearm on a weekly basis. Make it a Saturday morning thing, or whatever works for you. Cleaning guns can be meditative in a way, like I hear gardening is for some folks lol – and like many things can be when you learn to live in the moment.
But make it a habit, not something you “try to find time for”. “Try” never happens.
What About Daily Maintenance Of Your Carry Firearm?
Lint and dust and such shouldn’t cause you issues on a daily basis.
However, carry firearms are often exposed to sweat… a highly corrosive substance. That means RUST…
Every night you’ll want to wipe down your firearm with a clean cloth, possibly with a drop of gun oil to protect the finish and the materials. This exact process will depend on what you use for cleaning/lubricating, what firearm you’re caring for, what materials it’s made of, etc.
I like Ballistol Multi-Purpose Gun Oil as a cleaner, lubricant, and protectant. It just seems to work and not break down as some other do over time.
It’s also non-toxic, and works on metal as well as wood, which is nice.
Then store it in a cool, dry place (not a leather holster lol). One reason I really dislike leather holsters is they get damp and stay damp. Which means that moisture is kept present on your firearm.
So whatever you do, don’t keep your firearm overnight every day in a leather holster that’s been getting sweaty throughout the day. Plastic/kydex is washable and actually dries. Or a sticky type holster like the DeSantis Nemesis.
Take care of your tools and they’ll take care of you.