Step-By-Step Guide for AR-15 Cleaning Maintenance
As firearm enthusiasts, we know that proper firearm cleaning and maintenance is key to keeping our firearms in top condition. This ensures that our weapons function flawlessly, but it also helps preserve their resale value down the road.
A proper firearm cleaning kit can make the process much easier and ensure that your rifle is in good working condition when you need it.
This guide will discuss the step-by-step process of effectively cleaning an AR-15 rifle. We’ll also provide some tips on keeping it in good condition for years to enjoy the full potential of your AR-15 firearm.
Stepwise Guide on Cleaning an AR-15 Firearm
Both beginners and experts struggle at one point to clean their AR-15 rifles. The cleaning process shouldn’t be challenging if you take the time. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to clean your AR-15 firearm.
Step One: Assemble the Necessary Tools
Start by assembling all the necessary tools such as gun cleaning solution, firearm oil, rags, cotton swabs, and a bore brush. You will also need a set of Allen wrenches to remove some of the smaller parts from the gun.
You can buy each piece separately, especially if you own other firearms, or buy an AR-15 cleaning kit with everything you need to clean your AR-15 firearm.
Step Two: Prep the Cleaning Area
Once you have all the necessary tools, prep your cleaning area by spreading out a mat or some old towels; this will help protect your surfaces and make cleanup much easier. You’ll also want to put on gloves to protect your skin from the irritation caused by some of the chemicals you’ll be using to clean your firearm.
Step Three: Take Down the AR-15 Rifle
The next step is to strip down or disassemble your AR-15 rifle—this will make it easier to access all the parts that need cleaning.
To do this, start by removing the bolt carrier group. Then, proceed to remove the handguard and remove the stock.
To remove the bolt carrier group, you’ll need to:
- Make sure the firearm is unloaded.
- Locate the charging handle and pull it back until it locks into place.
- Press down on the two takedown pins located on the upper receiver (these are usually located at the front and rear of the gun).
- Once the pins are disengaged, pull the upper receiver away from the lower receiver.
The bolt carrier group will now be exposed – you can remove it by simply pulling it out.
To remove the handguard, start unscrewing any screws or bolts holding it in place. Once these are removed, the handguard should come right off.
First, take off the buttpad by unscrewing it to remove the stock. With the buttpad removed, you should see a screw or bolt holding the stock in place – remove this, and the stock should come right off.
With the stock removed, you should now have full access to the inside of the gun.
Step Four: Clean the Barrel
Use a bore brush dipped in the gun cleaning solution to scrub any dirt, debris, or carbon buildup in the barrel. Be sure to rotate the brush several times and clean from back to front to ensure that you are getting a thorough clean.
Once you are finished, use a clean rag to wipe down the inside of the barrel to make sure every particle of dirt is driven out.
Step Five: Clean the Bolt Carrier Group
The bolt carrier group is one of the essential parts of the AR-15, so it is necessary to clean it regularly. Use a brush and gun cleaning solution to scrub the bolt carrier group. You can spray the various parts of the bolt carrier group with the solvent and brush them down gently to eliminate the debris.
You can use a .45 caliber nylon brush to clean out the debris from the inside parts. Please pay special attention to the gas key, firing pin, and bolt carrier itself, as these areas are prone to carbon buildup and are always more challenging to clean.
Once you are finished, use a clean rag to wipe down the bolt carrier group. Also, inspect the bolt carrier group parts before reassembling them to ensure they’re not deformed or cracked.
Step Six: Clean the Lower Receiver
Use a degreaser and scrub the inside of the lower receiver. You can use an old toothbrush to reach all the problematic areas. Once you are finished, use compressed air to remove any leftover particles from the receiver.
Step Seven: Clean the Buffer Assembly
The buffer assembly is what helps to cycle the action of the AR-15. It is located in the buttstock of the rifle. You will need a cleaning rod, a cotton swab, a cleaning solvent, and lubricating oil to clean it.
Start by disassembling the buffer assembly. Take out the buffer, the buffer spring, and the action spring.
Then, take your cleaning rod and run it through the inside of the buffer tube to clean out any debris that may have accumulated. Be sure to also clean the threads on the outside of the tube.
Once you have done that, soak the cotton swab in cleaning solvent and run it through the buffer assembly to remove any residue.
Finally, lubricate the buffer assembly with a light coat of oil and reassemble it.
Step Eight: Assemble the AR-15
Now that everything is clean, you can start reassembling your AR-15.
Begin by attaching the lower receiver to the upper receiver. Then, insert the bolt carrier group and charging handle.
Next, install the hand guards and the gas tube. Once you’re done with that, you can attach the muzzle device of your choice. Finally, install the buttstock, and you are good to go!
Cleaning and maintaining your AR-15 is not as difficult as it may seem. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can keep your rifle in top condition and ensure that it will be ready to perform when you need it most.
A well-maintained AR-15 is a reliable and accurate weapon; be sure to take good care of it.