How to Remove Rust from a Gun & Stop Corrosion

How to remove rust from a gunAlthough we try it as much as we can, sometimes, keeping the guns rust-free is quite complicated.

We all know how dangerous rusted firearms can be, which is why keeping them in good shape is an everyday task we should follow.

Here, we’ll talk about different methods to remove rust from guns, and how to prevent it from happening in the first place. Let’s continue reading to find out more.

Preparations before the Maintenance

It goes without saying that, before you start with the maintenance on any firearm, you must unload them first. Even if you think you’ve done it previously, you should check once again. Security should always be your first concern, and you shouldn’t take it for granted. PREPARE YOUR ITEMS

Steel Wool

Gun Cleaning Oil

A Dremel Kit

Remove Rust Using a Steel Wool

Abrasive materials can leave unpleasant damage on the surface of the guns; use them wrong, and the firearm will no longer have that appealing finish it once had. That’s why the steel wool pad is an incredible rust remover. There are machines for cleaning ultrasonically but that isn’t what we’re trying to do here with the steel wool.

Besides the steel wool, you’ll need lubrication too. Fortunately, most oils will do the trick. As a recommendation, a 3-in-1 oil would be a good choice. Additionally, grab some spare napkins or old newspapers that you have. Now, let’s get to work.

  • Find a comfortable work area with no items getting in the way. If necessary, use the napkins or newspaper to clean the surface as well as the firearm.
  • Then, make sure the gun rests over the surface steadily, with no movement that could interrupt the maintenance.
  • Next, grab the oil, and use it to wet the rusted areas of the gun. Don’t overextend; a small amount is more than enough.
  • The steel wool comes into play here, working as an abrasive material. Use it to rub over the rusted surface at a slow pace, without applying too much pressure. Again, don’t go too harsh over the firearm, or you may ruin it.
  • Lastly, pour some gun cleaner on the steel wool, and use it to slightly rub over the rusted surface. Once you finish, get the napkins and clean it thoroughly.

If, by any chance, the rust is still in place, repeat the process a couple of times. It will come off eventually.

Dealing with Heavy Rust? Perhaps a Dremel is Your Solution!

In our next method, we’ll try something specifically for those guns suffering from a heavy case of rust over their surface. It is a little bit more expensive because you’ll need to use a power tool and several accessories that require an investment. We’re talking about the dremel.

The Dremel is a rotary tool that works with small abrasive wheels ideal for fighting off rust over different surfaces. These wheels, made of silicon carbide, are versatile tools that will help you with other tasks too, such as getting rid of trigger serrations or create round edges.

CRATEX has an incredible selection of these abrasive wheels, which you can check out at their website.

After getting your tools ready, here’s how you remove rust from the guns using the Dremel.

  • Use a piece of cloth to remove dust or debris off the gun.
  • Then, find a comfortable working spot where no one will be interrupting you as you maintain the gun.
  • Start the Dremel, and pass over the rusted surface. If necessary, pour some oil before this step.
  • After each pass, use a napkin to get rid of the rusted particles left over the surface of the gun. You need to have complete vision over how much rust remains on your firearm.

And that’s pretty much it. Repeat the process as many times as needed until you remove all that rust. Lastly, use a dry cotton cloth to leave the perfect finish.

How to Prevent Rust on the Gun

It is better to be safe than sorry. That’s why putting up prevention measures will always be the best course of action when it comes to maintaining your gun. The next tips we’ll share will help you keep the rust away even before it starts to show.

Wipe the Gun Using a Dry Cloth

As you know, moisture is the most important element responsible for rust. Hence, to keep the rust away, you have to take care of the moisture before it turns into a deteriorative state. To do it, you’ll need nothing more than dry cloth and a couple of minutes.

Use the dry cloth to wipe the moisture away from the surface of every one of your guns. When the gun is dry, the risk of catching rust is less, naturally. You can also place the gun alongside a desiccant in your preferred storage place.

Regular maintenance once or twice a month should keep the gun dry, and therefore, rust-free. Using the dry cloth works, and it requires barely any effort on your part.

Where to Store the Gun

The proper place would be in a cool, dry environment. If we follow the NRA standards, the guns should be in a 70-degree location, with 50 to 55% of humidity in the air.

Of course, not everyone can afford such specific conditions, which is why you have to do your best to store the guns in a dry location.

However, you should avoid putting the firearm in the attic or garage. The case isn’t a good option either, as it often traps moisture, creating a perfect condition for the development of rust.


As you can see, there are multiple methods you can follow to keep your guns in perfect conditions. The best part is that you don’t have to spend much money unless you want to, because there are ways to remove the rust without expensive tools.

We’ve just covered a couple of these methods. If they don’t work out for you, don’t give up that easily; continue trying until you find your perfect solution. Keeping the gun in good condition is essential to prevent malfunctions or, worse yet, accidents while using them.

Joseph Fox

Joseph Fox

Joseph Fox writes on a variety of topics ranging from reloading ammunition to gun cleaning. He has been featured on various publications like thetruthaboutguns, Sofrep & many more. Joseph is also the founder of Gunloading, where he reviews different types of reloading & firearm products available on the market.