If you want your paintball marker to perform consistently and last for a reasonable amount of time, you will need to ensure you are regularly cleaning it. Performing some basic maintenance to your paintball gun will not only keep it looking its best, it will also ensure the firing mechanisms continue to perform efficiently.
How to Clean a Paintball Gun
One of the biggest things you will need to keep on top of us paint residue from broken paintballs. These can result in clogs within the barrel, preventing fresh rounds from firing smoothly. Thankfully, cleaning a paintball gun is relatively simple.
The first thing you need to do when cleaning a paintball marker is to de-gas it. You should make sure there is no residual gas in any part of the paintball marker and its mechanisms. If your marker includes a gas canister, use the ASA lever to ensure the marker is properly de-gasses. Some guns do not include an ASA lever as standard however. In this case, be sure to consult the instructional manual that came with your gun for specific guidance on how to de-gas it.
You can now move onto disassembling your paintball gun. Begin by removing the hopper from the main body of the gun. You can then remove the bolt, the hammer, the barrel, as well as the grip frame. Carefully place each component aside so you can remain organised and reassemble it more easily.
Carrying Out Cleaning
Some paintball guns require you to use a squeegee in order to clean the interior of the body. To check whether you need to be using a squeegee, consult the instruction manual that came with your gun. If required, run the squeegee through the body of your gun before moving onto surface cleaning. A damp toothbrush or small brush with firm bristles will prove very effective at removing debris from the surface of your paintball gun. For those smaller stains, use a damp cotton bud to lift stubborn debris. Finally, wipe down the surface of the gun body and set it down on paper towels to ensure it dries thoroughly.
Cleaning the Barrel, Hammer & Bolt
You will need to ensure your barrel is completely cleaned of any paint residue. A pull-through squeegee is very effective at ensuring paint debris is cleaned away from the interior of your barrel. Once you have taken care of the interior, wipe down the exterior using damp paper and make sure it has been left to dry.
The hammer and bolt also require attention. Absorbent paper towels are very good at cleaning the bolt and hammer. You will also want to assess smaller components, such as the O-Rings, for wear and tear. If these parts look like they need replacing, switch them out for new ones.
Use the same cleaning tools to ensure your grip frame is freed of any paint residue and other debris. However, avoid removing the trigger assembly when cleaning your grip frame. If you are very familiar with the inner workings of your gun, you can remove the trigger assembly, but bear in mind this component can be tricky to refit.
Once all the individual elements of your paintball gun have been cleaned and left to dry thoroughly, you can lightly lubricate them. Use a genuine paintball lubrication oil that has been specially designed for use with paintball markers. A light coat of oil is all you need.
Reassembling Paintball Guns
Once you have cleaned, lubricated and inspected all components of your paintball gun, you can turn your attentions to reassembly. If you are new to paintball gun maintenance, use the schematic diagrams that came along with your marker when you first bought it. Make sure you are reinserting screws in the right place, and used to suitably sized tools and fasteners to minimise the chance of damaging screw heads and threads.