Proper maintenance of your firearm is crucial for its longevity and performance. One common question among gun owners is whether they should oil the inside of their gun barrels. This article synthesizes information from various sources to provide a comprehensive guide on gun barrel oiling.

Why It’s Important to Oil the Barrel

Oiling the inside of a gun barrel is not primarily for lubrication but to prevent corrosion. When a bullet moves through a rifled barrel, it exposes fresh metal, which can rust if left unprotected. Moisture and other environmental factors can negatively impact the gun's durability over time.  Gun barrel oiling is an absolute necessity!

How to: Gun Barrel Oiling

Materials Needed

  • Preferred gun oil
  • Bore brush
  • Gun solvent
  • Dry patches

Steps to Oil the Barrel

  1. Ensure Safety: Check, double-check, triple-check that the firearm is unloaded.
  2. Disassemble the Gun: Follow your firearm’s manual to disassemble it safely.
  3. Clean the Barrel: Apply a gun solvent to a bore brush and clean the inside of the barrel.
  4. Dry the Barrel: Use a dry patch to remove any remaining solvent.
  5. Apply Oil: Apply a couple of drops of gun oil to a bore brush and run it through the barrel. Ensure only a light coat is applied to prevent obstructions.
  6. Run a Dry Patch: Follow up with a dry patch to remove any excess oil.

Gun barrel oiling is an important maintenance task

How Often to Oil Your Gun Barrel

  • After Every Cleaning: Solvents are designed to remove everything, including oil.  You should lightly oil the barrel after cleaning it with solvents.
  • Before Long-term Storage: Apply a light coat of oil before storing your firearm for extended periods.
  • Regular Maintenance: Check your firearm periodically and oil if needed, even if it hasn’t been used recently.

Choosing the Right Oil

Selecting the appropriate oil for your gun barrel is crucial for effective maintenance. Here’s what to consider:

Types of Gun Oils

  1. Traditional Gun Oils: These are petroleum-based oils that provide good lubrication and rust prevention. Examples include Hoppes No. 9 and Rem Oil.
  2. Synthetic Gun Oils: These oils offer superior performance in extreme temperatures and conditions. They are less likely to gum up and provide consistent protection. Examples include Break-Free CLP and Slip 2000.
  3. CLP (Cleaner, Lubricant, Protectant): These multi-purpose products clean, lubricate, and protect the firearm in one step. They are convenient but may not excel in any single function compared to dedicated products. Examples include Break-Free CLP and Ballistol.

Factors to Consider

  1. Climate: Choose an oil that suits your environment. In humid areas, rust prevention is crucial, while in dry areas, the focus may be on lubrication.
  2. Usage Frequency: If you use your firearm frequently, choose an oil that provides good lubrication and can handle high temperatures. For long-term storage, an oil with excellent rust prevention is ideal.
  3. Compatibility: Ensure the oil is compatible with all parts of your firearm, including synthetic materials.

Popular Gun Oils

  • Hoppes No. 9: A traditional gun oil known for its excellent rust prevention and cleaning properties.
  • Break-Free CLP: A synthetic oil that offers cleaning, lubrication, and protection, making it ideal for all-around use.
  • Ballistol: Known for its versatility, it can be used on metal, wood, and leather, and it provides good lubrication and protection.
  • Slip 2000: A synthetic oil that excels in lubrication and protection, especially in extreme conditions.

Check out our article on The Top 6 Firearms Lubricants for Peak Performance and Reliability

What Does Carry Texas Use?

Spartan Accuracy Oil!

Modern Spartan Systems- Accuracy Oil 16oz

Improves accuracy and tightens shot groups about 90% of the time

Super smooth action

Dramatically improve reliability - virtually eliminates friction related malfunctions

Cuts cleaning time by 50-75%

Environmentally and people friendly

View on Amazon

Expert Opinions and Community Insights

Opinions on gun forums vary, but the consensus is to use a light coat of oil in the barrel to prevent rust. Many experienced gun owners and experts recommend running a dry patch through the barrel before shooting to ensure no obstructions and to verify the barrel is clean.

Random Internet Tips

  • "Oil it and always run a dry patch through before shooting to ensure the barrel is free of obstructions."
  • "No lube inside the tube, a little won't hurt, but too much could potentially bulge your barrel."
  • "After cleaning, I put a light coat of Hoppes gun oil on the inside of the barrel using a properly sized mop."


Oiling the inside of your gun barrel is a vital part of firearm maintenance that helps prevent rust and ensures your firearm remains in good working condition. Always use a light coat of gun-specific oil, and run a dry patch through the barrel before shooting. Regular maintenance, proper storage, and the right products are key to prolonging the life of your firearm - that includes gun barrel oiling!

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