How To Maintain Your Shotgun has the tips you need to know when cleaning and maintaining your shotgun.  Weather you need to clean an antique beauty, or it’s time to clean the one you fire near daily; The Gun Source has you covered.

Shotgun Cleaning and Maintenence

Regular cleaning and maintenance of your shotgun can make it last for generations. It’s true that many shooters get away without regularly cleaning their firearm and may claim that it still functions normally every time they use it. Let’s assume that you want your shotgun to stay in tip-top shape for as long as possible, so you’re not willing to take any risks by neglecting its maintenance. You may even enjoy the act of cleaning your firearm because it brings you peace of mind, much like a car enthusiast enjoys cleaning a classic hotrod.

There are certain essential supplies that come handy when cleaning your shotgun. A thorough cleaning regimen will use some combination of gun oil, polish/wax, solvents, lubricant, brushes, cleaning rods, patches, cloth etc. There are many gun cleaning kits you can order online that provide everything you possibly need to clean, polish, and protect your shotgun.


The main priority of cleaning is to eliminate moisture and remove dirt and debris. Moisture will cause wood to crack and steel to rust. Dirt and debris will foul and lock up critical parts, reduce accuracy, and contribute to rusting.

Dismantle your shotgun before a thorough cleaning. Important note: read the manual to learn how to dismantle your firearm and to know which parts that shouldn’t be cleaned.

First wipe and clean off all the dirt, debris, carbon dust, and residue that collects on the surface of the shotgun parts with a cloth rag or napkins. Use special cleaning solvents to remove dirt and residue that’s stuck on the metal parts. Anti-rust solvents can be used to scrub off rust with a very fine steel wool. Use gun oil to wipe down metal parts and something like furniture polish or wax to clean the wooden stock and forearm. A basic wipedown can be done with simple cloth.

Now you can clean the interior parts of even the best shotguns. Never forget to clean the choke and barrel. Lots of grime will collect in the choke. This is when bore brushes and cleaning rods come in handy. Special solvents are used to clean the choke and inside of the barrel which will dissolve all unwanted material. Clean out the threads. Apply lubricant or gun oil to the choke tube before screwing it back on. Also use gun oil for the other small and intricate parts of the shotgun if you decide to clean those.


Store your shotgun with its barrel/muzzle facing down after cleaning to let any oil or fluids drain out onto an exterior surface. Use a moisture-proof case when traveling. It’s very important that the case be breathable because this is where rusting is likely to occur.

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If your shotgun is wet, wipe it off with cloth and air-dry it in a warm room before storing it in a case. You don’t always have to store your shotgun in a case, and for long periods of internal storage it’s probably best if you don’t use a case (unless the case is absolutely dry and in good condition).

Periodic Maintenance

It’s a good idea to periodically clean and inspect your shotgun after every use, or at least every 250 rounds or so. A properly cleaned shotgun will stay rust-free while in storage. At a minimum, you can wipe down your firearm with an oily rag. Barrels and bores should be cleaned out regularly too, along with choke tightening. Depending on your type of shotgun, style of shooting, ammo, and environment, you may need to inspect and clean the magazine/ejection port, action springs, and gas system.

Basically, remember to gently wipe down your shotgun after each use, keep it dry, remove rust, and apply protective gun oil to metal parts and hard wax wood polish to the stock and forend to recapture shine. You should periodically strip off old lubricant and grease before applying new applications.

Watch out for dark rings and barrel bulges over time. Having your firearm periodically inspected by a gunsmith is not a bad idea, and above all else, remember gun safety.

Helpful Shotgun Maintenence Tools

Allen Company Universal Gun Cleaning Kit, 65-Pieces Set for Handgun, Rifle and Shotgun (70540) - USA Based Since 1971
  • Professional grade cleaning kit in a tool box for storage
  • Includes components for standard rifle/pistol calibers plus 12 gauge, 20 gauge, and . 410 bore shotguns
  • Components include bronze brushes, brass jags, cotton swabs, brass slotted tips, brass adapters, muzzle guards, cleaning rods, pick, cleaning brushes, and cotton patches
  • 65 cleaning tools/supplies - see details in product description below
  • 15" x 10" x 8. 75" tool box with dual latches

Gun Cleaning Kits by Sage & Braker. Detachable Bronze Brush Makes for The Fastest, cleanest and Easiest Way to Clean Your Shotgun, Rifle and Handgun’s bore. (16 Gauge)
  • SUPERIOR INNOVATION // While other bore snakes are made of cheap materials, fewer bristles weakly woven into the rope, sloppy stitching, thin pull cords that do not pass through your gun’s bore correctly or worst of all, brake and damage your bore, but NOT with Sage & Braker. Our bore cleaning kits are made with the highest quality materials, use a full bronze brush for superior cleaning, offer a detachable buffing rope and properly fit each caliber and gauge to ensure the best clean.
  • TIME SAVER // 15 SECONDS...That’s all it takes to clean your bore with Sage & Braker’s gun cleaning kit. Let’s be honest, we all love shooting our firearms, but cleaning them can be a hassle. Just a couple sprays of our CLP and a mighty pull of one of our bore cleaning kits and your firearm is ready to go for your next time out! Get a deeper clean in a fraction of the time.
  • A BETTER CLEAN // You like the ease of a bore snake but the cleaning power of the traditional rod and brush, right? We give you the best of both worlds with our bore cleaning kit. Unlike the competition’s product that adds a few bronze bristles to their cleaning rope, our kit gives you a full bronze brush and a fully detachable, longer buffing rope that gives you a deeper, faster clean.
  • WHAT WE STAND FOR // Sage & Braker was born out of a need to create the finest gun cleaning supplies on the market as well as give back to the hunting, firearms and outdoor community. We are a Life Member with Backcountry Hunters & Anglers and work with various other conservation groups to protect the legacy of our lands for generations to come.
  • PRESERVING YOUR LEGACY // Your firearms are an investment, a tool, memories passed down through the generations and your legacy. We know as much as you the importance of protecting such legacies from rust, corrosion and performance failures caused by a dirty gun. To do so requires the best products the market. Sage & Braker is your answer. We are your headquarters to help care for your firearm’s legacy. We cut no corners in our products and we will cut no corners in our support to you.

HITAIM Gun Cleaning Kit for All Guns Hunting Rifle Handgun Shotgun Cleaning Kit Universal Supplies with Carrying Case
  • Universal Design: We provide a durable cleaning kit that can be used to clean all types of shotguns, rifles and pistols, our kit contains all the tools you need. It is a great choice for you and keep your guns in great condition. No matter you are a beginner or a professional shooter, this cleaning kit is perfect for you.
  • High Quality: The jags and slotted tips are made of high-quality plastic materials, can clean pipes of various caliber. The gun cleaning rods and accessory adapters are made of brass, can prevent damage to the inside of your gun's barrel. This gun cleaning kit makes the cleaning process quicker and more efficient.
  • Portable Carrying Case: Packed in a plastic carrying box, all gun cleaning accessories are neatly organized in their own compartments and right at your fingertips. You can take it with you wherever you go.
  • Details in the case: 3 solid brass rods for .17-.270 caliber rifles; 3 solid brass rods for 30 caliber rifles, pistols, shotguns; 14 bronze brushes; 12 spear-pointed jags; 1 black powder jag; 9 mops; 4 slotted patch loops; 3 utility brushes; 3 muzzle guards; 3 accessory adapters; 4 polishing clothes; 50 cleaning patches; 2 oil bottles(empty).
  • Some of the accessories are consumable, so we prepare multiple accessories in our California warehouse. If you have any problems while using, please contact us, we'll be glad to help you.