You may not realise how important it is to keep your airsoft gun clean and properly maintained.
Not only will a dirty rifle affect how well it shoots, but bacteria can also develop on the internals of the barrel if left unchecked for too long.
Luckily, anyone can use simple tricks to clean their airsoft guns from home!
Every 2,000 - 3,000 rounds of BBs is a good start.
There will be microscopic traces of plastic left in your barrel and internals as you shoot BBs.
You won't be able to see this buildup, but if you notice your gun's performance isn't as good as it used to be, it could need a clean.
(Depending on the quality of your BBs and type of gun, this number could be more/less.)
You run the risk of accumulation of dirt, poor accuracy and, potential damage to your gun's internals.
If you only play once a month, then once every three or four months should be fine.
However, if you are playing regularly (at least once a week or every other weekend), then you'll need to clean it at least once a fortnight.
Taking proper care of your AEG with basic maintenance and cleaning will save you money and keep your gun performing properly.
The barrel is an essential part of your rifle to clean.
Not only does it affect how accurately your gun shoots, but bacteria can also develop on the internals of the barrel if left unchecked for too long.
Luckily, cleaning your barrel is easy and requires very little materials to get the job done.
Follow these simple steps:
Now that the barrel is clean, it's time to move onto the body of your rifle.
The best way to clean your airsoft gun is with a simple cloth (or soft-bristled brush) and some soapy water.
The aim here is to remove any rust, grit, and dust from the railings, mounts, and other accessible parts.
Note: do not use a hard-bristled brush or anything too abrasive. You'll likely scratch the gun and, we don't want you crying to us once that happens.
Next up, the internals of your gun.
Cleaning the internals will require a little more work as you'll need to take some components apart.
If you're new to airsoft or you're not comfortable taking apart your gun and putting it back together again, we recommend you let a professional clean it.
Your local airsoft shops likely offer a maintenance or cleaning service.
Note: To avoid damaging the internals of your gun, we recommend you don't try and open your weapon without the proper knowledge or tools.
However, if you're confident you know how the internal mechanisms of your gun work, then all you need is a set of Allen keys and an airsoft gun cleaning kit.
Here's how to do it (simple top-level version):
You could likely clean the internals of your AEG or GBB in less than an hour. It's a simple job once you know your way around the gun.
One of the most critical aspects of airsoft gun maintenance is ensuring that your weapon is well-lubricated
Lubricating your gun will help keep everything running smoothly and, it'll also protect your gun from any dirt or dust buildup.
The type of lubricant you choose is up to you, but we recommend using silicone oil as it's non-toxic, doesn't evaporate quickly, and won't damage plastic parts.
Lubricating your gearbox can be fiddly. If you're able to locate a small hole on the bottom of your gearbox, spray a few drops in, leave it to soak and, you're done.
It would be best if you didn't use WD-40 on airsoft guns. It will damage the seals and bearings.
WD-40 is a water-based lubricant designed to act as a penetrating oil to loosen things like frozen bolts.
You've likely used WD-40 on squeaky hinges or your bike chain. That's fine. But don't spray the internals of your airsoft gun with WD-40 at all.
Ever. Even if there's a fire.
Airsoft gun magazines need regular cleaning and maintenance, just like your airsoft gun.
Maintaining your magazines will help to keep them in good condition and prevent any jams or misfeeds from happening.
To clean your magazine:
This will keep the moving parts in good condition.
We'd also recommend that you empty your magazines after game day. Emptying your magazines helps ease the tension on the follower and spring inside.
And, even though airsoft magazines are cheap, doing this will significantly increase the longevity of your mags.
You'll need to give it a little more TLC if you're using gas magazines.
You'll want to keep a small amount of gas in your magazine to keep it pressurized. You'll also want to lubricate the internals.
A drop of silicone (we mean a drop) should keep your O-ring protected and make your magazine useful for longer.
When you think about how many rounds a gun fires in one day, it's easy to see why airsoft guns need regular cleaning and maintenance.
It's something that most airsoft players can learn themselves.
It doesn't have to be complicated or a long process.
Airsoft gun care will be crucial to how effective you are on the airsoft field. Do you want somebody else to be more accurate than you? Do you want your gun to last much longer?
That's what we thought!
Take some time to learn and love your gun. After all, it's your rifle. There are others like it, but this one is yours.
Any questions? Any additional gun cleaning tips? Let us know in the comments below!