Is It Okay to Use WD-40 on a Gun?

For many people, WD-40 is a household essential that fixes everything from creaky doors to rusted bolts. If you’re dealing with gun issues, there’s a chance you might be looking at your WD-40 can and wondering if you can clean your gun with it. However, spraying WD-40 on a gun isn’t a foolproof solution. If you’re new to gun ownership, the ideal first step is to take a gun safety class to learn how to handle your firearm safely, including the proper ways to clean it. Here are some things to know about how WD-40 will affect your gun.

The Difference between WD-40 & Gun Oil

At a glance, WD-40 might seem like it has a similar texture and purpose as gun oil. However, on a chemical level, these two items are very different. Therefore, they have vastly different effects on a gun. Gun oil cleans, lubricates, and protects your gun. While WD-40 is often confused with lubricants and cleaners, it isn’t actually a cleaner. WD-40 is made of a mixture of mineral oil, water repellents, and solvents that aren’t directly harmful to a gun. However, WD-40 evaporates quickly, so it doesn’t lubricate moving parts or prevent your gun from accumulating more grime.

The Problem with Regularly Using WD-40

As you can see, WD-40 is useless if you want to lubricate your gun or protect it from more dirt. It does have some very limited uses as a cleaner, but in most cases, cleaning your gun with WD-40 isn’t recommended because of the way the WD-40 solvent works. When applied to a gun, it will briefly dissolve gunk, but the aerosol applicator will blow all the grime inside the gun’s crevices. 

When WD-40 Is Helpful

Did you know the “WD” in WD-40 stands for “water displacement”? This substance quickly removes water and dries up moisture. Therefore, WD-40 can be useful in emergencies when your gun gets wet. For example, if you accidentally drop your gun in a lake while hunting, a quick spray of WD-40 can dry it off quickly before more damage can be done. Likewise, it can displace water if you’re doing a deep cleaning of a gun that contains some extra moisture.

How to Use WD-40 on a Gun Correctly

Ultimately, WD-40 is fine to use on guns as long as you don’t make a habit out of it. When you need to get rid of some moisture or are out of your favorite cleaner, WD-40 can remove grime and dry out your gun. However, it’s important to use an actual gun cleaner to clean away the coating left behind by WD-40 as soon as you can. Furthermore, make sure you’re not trying to use WD-40 as a gun oil. For the best results, apply a manufacturer-recommended lubricant and protectant to your gun on a regular basis. 

If you own a firearm, it’s essential to make sure you learn how to clean it correctly, and a high-quality gun safety class can teach you how to do that and much more. Gun Safety Training Pros is committed to providing the finest gun safety course online. If you want to learn more about the crucial aspects of safe firearms ownership and gun handling, contact us today at [email protected].

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