How to Clean a Firearm’S Extractor Spring?

To clean a firearm’s extractor spring, disassemble the extractor and use an appropriate cleaner and lubricant. Maintaining your firearm is critical to its longevity and efficiency.

Cleaning the extractor spring of a firearm is essential to keep it in good working order. The extractor is a vital component of any firearm, and the spring keeps it tense and functioning correctly. If the extractor spring gets dirty or rusty, it can cause jams, misfires, or other malfunctions.

Cleaning the extractor spring should be a part of your regular firearms maintenance. In this article, we’ll give you some tips on how to clean your firearm’s extractor spring correctly.

How to Clean a Firearm'S Extractor Spring?


Understanding The Extractor Spring

What Is The Extractor Spring And How Does It Function?

The extractor spring is a critical component of a firearm’s extractor. This spring is responsible for extracting the spent cartridge from the firearm’s chamber and ejecting it. The extractor spring pushes the extractor rod that exerts pressure on the cartridge’s rim to extract it from the chamber.

This spring plays a crucial role in ensuring that your firearm operates smoothly, improving your shooting accuracy.

Here are some key points to understand how the extractor spring functions:

  • The extractor spring is made of strong steel and has a specific length and tension that ensures proper function.
  • Pressure from the firing pin strikes the primer of a live bullet, creating a gas explosion that propels the bullet out of the firearm.
  • The extractor claw grips the rim (the edge) of the fired cartridge, pulls it back, and begins the ejection process.
  • Without the extractor spring, the extractor cannot perform its job, and the firearm will not operate correctly.

Why Is It Important To Clean The Extractor Spring Regularly?

Cleaning the extractor spring is an essential part of firearm maintenance. The buildup of dirt, carbon, and gunpowder residue can affect the spring’s tension, reduce its effectiveness, and cause malfunctions. Properly cleaning the extractor spring will enhance its longevity, ensuring that your firearm operates correctly during use.

Here are some reasons why it’s important to clean the extractor spring regularly:

  • Regular cleaning improves your firearm’s performance and dependability, ensuring accuracy and safety.
  • Buildup of dirt, carbon, and gunpowder residue can cause extractor malfunctions, resulting in firearm malfunction or misfire, which is dangerous.
  • Regular cleaning prolongs the life of the extractor spring by removing corrosive buildup, which can lead to breakage.

Signs That Your Extractor Spring Is Dirty And Needs Cleaning

Signs that your firearm’s extractor spring needs cleaning are relatively easy to recognize. You need to check your firearm after each use to determine whether it has the following signs:

  • Difficulty extracting shells from the chamber – a clean extractor spring applies proper tension to the extractor rod, ensuring efficient removal of shells from the chamber. A dirty spring can cause difficulty extracting shells or shells getting stuck in the chamber.
  • Failure to eject – a dirty extractor spring can affect the spring’s tension and cause the extractor to slip or fail to eject the shell from the chamber properly.
  • Fte (failure to extract) – this occurs when the extractor fails to grip the rim adequately, resulting in the spent cartridge remaining in the chamber. The buildup of dirt, carbon, and gunpowder residue can adversely affect the extractor’s performance.

Properly cleaning the extractor spring is critical to achieve optimal firearm performance. By following these simple instructions, you’ll maintain the reliability, safety, and accuracy of your firearm.

Tools And Materials Needed For Cleaning

How To Clean A Firearm’S Extractor Spring?

Cleaning a firearm’s extractor spring may seem like a daunting task, but it is important to keep your firearm in good working condition. A dirty or malfunctioning extractor spring can cause misfires, failures to eject, and other issues that can be dangerous.

In this section, we will discuss the tools and materials needed for cleaning, recommended cleaning solvents and lubricants, and safety precautions to observe during cleaning.

List Of Necessary Tools And Materials

Before you begin cleaning your firearm’s extractor spring, it is essential to have the right tools and materials on hand. Here are the items you will need:

  • Cleaning rod
  • Bore brush
  • Nylon bristle brush
  • Cleaning patches
  • Gun oil
  • Solvent

Recommended Cleaning Solvents And Lubricants

When it comes to cleaning solvents and lubricants, there are many different products on the market. However, not all of them are created equal. Here are some recommended solvents and lubricants for cleaning your firearm’s extractor spring:

  • Hoppes no. 9 solvent: This is a popular cleaning solvent that is known for its ability to dissolve powder residue, lead, and copper fouling.
  • Break-free clp: This is a versatile product that cleans, lubricates, and protects your firearm.
  • Mobile 1 synthetic grease: This high-performance grease is perfect for lubricating your firearm’s extractor spring.

Safety Precautions To Observe During Cleaning

Cleaning a firearm can be hazardous if you do not observe the proper safety precautions. Here are some key safety tips to keep in mind:

  • Always ensure that your firearm is unloaded before beginning the cleaning process.
  • Wear eye protection and gloves to protect yourself from solvents and other cleaning chemicals.
  • Work in a well-ventilated area to avoid inhaling fumes.
  • Keep all cleaning chemicals out of reach of children and pets.
  • Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for all cleaning solvents and lubricants.

Step-By-Step Cleaning Guide

Detailed Guide On How To Clean The Extractor Spring

Cleaning your firearm’s extractor spring is essential in ensuring that your firearm functions correctly. A dirty or clogged extractor spring can cause misfires, failure-to-eject, or other malfunctions. In this step-by-step cleaning guide, we’ll show you how to clean your extractor spring properly.

Preparing The Firearm For Cleaning

  • First, ensure your firearm is unloaded by removing any ammunition and checking the barrel’s chamber.
  • Disassemble your firearm as per the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Remember to work in a well-lit and well-ventilated area. Wear safety glasses and gloves if necessary for your safety.

Removing The Extractor Spring From The Firearm

  • Locate the extractor on your firearm.
  • Use a proper tool, such as a small screwdriver or punch, to push the extractor pin out of its position.
  • Remove the extractor and the spring.

Cleaning And Lubricating The Extractor Spring

  • Use a cleaning solvent to remove any buildup or debris on the extractor spring. Be sure to follow the solvent’s manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Use a clean cloth to dry and remove any excess solvent.
  • Apply a small amount of oil to the extractor spring and distribute it evenly with a clean cloth.
  • Be mindful not to apply too much oil as it can attract dust and other debris.

Reassembling The Firearm And Performing Function Check

  • Reassemble the firearm in the reverse order.
  • Perform a function check to ensure that the firearm functions correctly by cycling blank rounds through the firearm.
  • If there are any issues, disassemble the firearm, and check for any mistakes or damage.

Keep in mind that proper maintenance of your firearm’s extractor spring is essential to maintain its proper and safe function. Regular cleaning and lubrication can help prevent malfunctions. We hope this step-by-step guide helps you clean your firearm’s extractor spring efficiently and safely.

Pro Tips For Optimal Cleaning

Cleaning your firearm’s extractor spring is crucial for maintaining its longevity and optimal functionality. Here are some pro tips for cleaning the extractor spring.

Best Practices For Cleaning The Extractor Spring

When it comes to cleaning the extractor spring, here are some best practices to follow:

  • Have all the necessary tools ready before starting the cleaning process, such as cleaning solvent, a cleaning brush, and clean towels.
  • Put on gloves to protect your hands from any chemicals or debris.
  • Ensure the firearm is unloaded before beginning the cleaning process.
  • Remove the extractor spring from the firearm and set it aside.
  • Soak the extractor spring in cleaning solvent.
  • Use a cleaning brush to gently remove any debris or buildup on the spring.
  • Rinse the extractor spring with water and dry it thoroughly with clean towels.
  • Reinstall the extractor spring back into your firearm.

How Often To Clean The Extractor Spring

Cleaning the extractor spring should be done regularly to ensure optimal performance. Here is a general guideline for how often to clean the extractor spring:

  • For firearms that are used frequently, clean the extractor spring every 500 to 1000 rounds fired.
  • For firearms that are not used as frequently, you can clean the extractor spring every three to six months.

Preventative Measures To Keep The Extractor Spring Clean And Functioning Smoothly

To prevent buildup and debris from accumulating on the extractor spring, here are some preventative measures to keep it clean and functioning smoothly:

  • Ensure that your ammunition is clean and properly lubricated.
  • Keep your firearm properly lubricated.
  • Store your firearm in a dry, secure location to prevent exposure to moisture, dust, and debris.
  • Avoid using low-quality or dirty ammunition.
  • Avoid touching the extractor spring with your bare hands as much as possible.

Cleaning and maintaining your firearm’s extractor spring is a crucial part of firearm ownership. By following these pro tips for cleaning, you can ensure that your extractor spring lasts for years to come and performs optimally.

Frequently Asked Questions Of How To Clean A Firearm’S Extractor Spring?

How Often Should You Clean Your Firearm’S Extractor Spring?

It is recommended to clean your firearm’s extractor spring after every use. However, if you use your gun frequently, you may want to clean it after every few rounds.

What Is The Best Way To Clean A Firearm’S Extractor Spring?

The best way to clean a firearm’s extractor spring is to use a cleaning solution and a brush. Remove the spring from the firearm, dip it into the cleaning solution, and use the brush to scrub away any dirt or grime.

Can You Lubricate A Firearm’S Extractor Spring?

Yes, you can lubricate a firearm’s extractor spring. Apply a small amount of lubricant to the spring, making sure to not overdo it. This will help the spring function properly and prevent wear and tear.

What Happens If A Firearm’S Extractor Spring Is Not Cleaned?

If a firearm’s extractor spring is not cleaned regularly, it can become clogged with dirt, grime, and debris. This can cause the spring to malfunction, affecting the gun’s overall performance and reliability.

Should You Replace A Firearm’S Extractor Spring Periodically?

Yes, it is recommended to replace your firearm’s extractor spring periodically, especially if you use your gun frequently. Over time, the spring can become worn or damaged, which can affect the gun’s performance and reliability.


Ensuring that your firearm is in top working condition is not just a safety concern but also a responsibility for every gun owner. Keeping the extractor spring clean is crucial to maintaining your firearm’s reliability. Following the steps outlined in this post, you will be able to clean the extractor spring quickly and efficiently.

It’s essential to be cautious when disassembling the firearm and to avoid damaging any parts. Before cleaning the extractor spring, it’s always recommended to test fire your firearm with a few rounds to verify that the extractor is functioning correctly.

As with any firearm maintenance, regular cleaning of the extractor spring will extend the firearm’s longevity and ensure its optimal performance. Remember to always use proper safety procedures when handling firearms. We hope that this post helps you keep your firearm’s extractor springs clean and functional for many years to come.






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