Though there are debates all over the world about whether the general public should have access to guns or not, it is undebatable fact that these weapons have become daily necessities for a large group of people. Especially for the hunter population, keeping their main ingredient of hunting in a tip-top state is non-negotiable. To let you know which ones are the best gun cleaning solvents in the market right now for that job, we have compiled this list.
Sage & Braker CLP stands out as the best budget pick since it was made keeping military and hardcore hunters in mind. This 100% natural cleaner reduces static and makes the gun cleaner in every burn. It also lubricates the bore, makes operations cooler and penetrates well enough to clean even the old buildups.
Hoppe’s Elite Gun Cleaner offers the best features at an affordable price because of its odorless content which can deeply penetrate the gun surface to clean out the buildups of carbon, lead and copper. Being water-based, it is also safe for the environment and leaves no residue.
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Quick Comparison: Top 10 Best Gun Cleaning Solvents
1. Hoppe’s Elite Gun Cleaner Spray Bottle
The first one on our list is this gun cleaner from Hoppe’s – the company who has earned the title of “the gun care people” for making products like this for more than a century! All of their cleaners and lubricants contain distinctive ingredients just like this one, which is why they gained the trust of so many people over time.
It is considered to be one of the best gun cleaning solvents out there in the market right now. And the customers have pretty strong reasons to choose this one over others. For instance, it is completely odorless. Thus, the people who have a strong dislike towards any particular smell or get disturbed by fragrances can buy this Hoppe’s cleaner without a shred of doubt.
This cleaner is also water-based which means it is safer for the environment. Moreover, such cleaners are non-inflammable which means you can use it without any worries in places of high temperature.
It is also non-toxic and biodegradable. But a possible drawback is that, if it is left on the firearm for longer than necessary, rust can build upon the body. So whenever you use it, immediately dry it off to prevent situations like this.
Hoppe’s Elite Cleaner goes as deep as the molecular pores of steel to clean up the gun. It gets your firearm rid of particles like carbon, lead and copper. It also prevents further fouling of such metals. However, it leaves no residue and breaks up the powder residue too from the gun’s surface.
Each bottle contains 8 ounces and is used by even the professionals like military and law enforcement people. Using it on a regular basis can save your cleaning up time to as much as 80%! The price is pretty affordable too!
2. Break-Free CLP-2 Cleaner Lubricant Preservative Aerosol
Break-Free CLP is claimed to be the first product which succeeded in meeting the hard and fast requirements of PD-48 laid out by the US Military for weaponry. The name CLP stands for “Clean, Lubricate and Preserve” of metal. With an aim to do just that in the most effective manner, this flagship product of Break-Free was made.
It is mainly made of synthetic oils which are prepared with a unique formula. Besides, certain proprietary ingredients are also added here to achieve their goal of CLP. As a result of this specially formulated combination, it is able to penetrate and spread itself along the metal surfaces.
Every pit and opening the gun is affected by its spray. The contamination along these surfaces are also reduced and the residue particles are removed easily.
The lubricating film lasts for a long time. It keeps sticky sand, grit and similar abrasive particles away. All those have the potential to ruin the durability and performance of the gun.
Corrosion inhibitors, on the other hand, play an active role in preventing rust. The unique boundary film keeps the metal surface away from moisture and similar agents of contamination.
The best part of this cleaning solvent is that it can be used in a wide range of temperatures. It has been tested to successfully work in temperatures within -65 Fahrenheit to 475 Fahrenheit! CLP can perform well under these conditions even after going through the saltwater immersion test! Much of its credit goes to the synthetic oils which keep their viscosity intact even in extreme environments.
3. Birchwood Casey Gun Scrubber Synthetic Safe Cleaner
Birchwood Casey has been pleasing gunsmiths for a long time since 1948 to be specific. Over this period of 70 years, it has developed multiple products to help them take proper care of their treasures. Keeping up that legacy, this gun scrubber and cleaner has joined our list to prove itself as the best gun cleaning solvent.
It is mostly a favorite among people since it works very fast as soon as it is applied to the firearm. Within seconds it starts to break up the powder residue on the gun. It also makes all the dirt and dust particles go away leaving the weapon shinier than ever. The jams inside are cleaned up no matter how narrow the crevice is.
This cleaner works its magic on a lot of firearms including air rifles, shotguns and muzzle-loaders. It can help you carry out all kinds of actions including slide, lever and automatics smoothly. Although, since it cleans up every last drop of oil or grease in the gun, you will need to re-lube it after cleaning before using again.
There is 13 ounce of the cleaner in each bottle. Do not spray it on plastic, wood or rubber grips since these materials can be damaged by its chemical composition.
4. Slip 2000 Carbon Killer
This carbon killer from Slip 2000 can clean up your pistols in a matter of minutes. Apart from clearing carbon build-ups, it also has the ability to remove lead and plastic fouling of the gun on contact.
Since it is an aggressive carbon killer, it should never be used on the exterior parts of the gun. Doing so can damage the finishing or even remove it completely. It has notable demand in the market since this cleaner is one of the few reusable ones.
To make it safe for the users as well as the environment, this cleaner has been produced as non-hazardous, non-flammable and biodegradable.
Though it has been marketed to be an effective cleaner for heavy carbon build-ups, some users have expressed their dissatisfaction with the product. However, for light carbon build-ups, it works fast and with efficiency.
One bottle contains 16 ounces of the cleaning solvent. It works on many weapons including pistols, revolvers, automatic ones, semi-automatic ones, some gas guns and some machine guns.
5. Slip 2000 725 Gun Cleaner Trigger Spray
Another option from Slip 2000 for the gun-lovers is this cleaner spray. It can get your gun freedom from a number of build-ups like, grease, oil and cosmmoline from the bore. It has the power to cut through the toughest residues like these and degunk the dirtiest parts. Also, it can remove the carbon stains.
This spray has a slightly citrus smell which is a very unusual case for strong cleaners like this. This fragrance makes it easier for the users to spray it on their firearms.
It is water-based and thus makes a much more suitable option for people who are conscious about the environment. This trigger spray is biodegradable, non-flammable and non-toxic. Its non-petroleum aspect removes possibilities of fire hazards and disposal problems. You don’t have to worry about suffering from burns or corrosive reactions since it is non-caustic.
This spray can work on many kinds of metal parts of the gun including stainless steel, aluminum, magnesium and others. Its fast dissolution in warm water, ability to work in both hard and soft water – all have made it a popular choice among shooters.
6. Break-Free CLP-20 Cleaner Lubricant Preservative
Similar to the other Break-Free CLP, this one also has a number of praiseworthy qualities. Though each bottled container comes at an incredibly cheap price, it also bears very little amount of the cleaner – just 2 ounces. But due to the long-lasting effect of this CLP, it ultimately seems pretty affordable.
Instead of going through the typical three steps of clearing the crevices in your firearm, this product does it all in a single step! Polymerized synthetic oils of the highest quality are used as the basis of this CLP formula. Specialized additives which reduce friction and keep corrosion away are also included for the more durable solvent.
Corrosive inhibitors make it more sustainable by preventing rust formation and the unique boundary film protects it from contaminants. This CLP cleans off residue left in bores, moving parts, as well as the exteriors efficiently.
And of course, it can withstand almost any temperature and pressure. It can work perfectly under temperatures from -65 degrees to +475 degrees Fahrenheit! The specially formulated synthetic oils deserve the acknowledgment again. They keep the viscosity intact in these environments, which is why the cleaner can work properly.
7. Hoppe’s M-Pro 7 Copper Remover Solvent
Hoppe’s M-Pro 7 is one of the most popular and thus best gun cleaning solvents in the market. Most people tend to try it because there is no ammonia involved here and thus no crystal residue. It claims to be four times faster than standard ammonia-based cleaners and most of the users agree with that.
You can use this product on many guns and arms. It can efficiently clean up all the copper in those steel bores and that too, at a much greater pace. There is no harsh or pungent odor in this cleaner which makes the whole experience a lot more pleasant.
It is meant for internal use only and is both non-flammable and non-hazardous. So you can be sure of your safety applying this to your firearms.
8. Ballistol Multi-Purpose Aerosol Can Lubricant Cleaner Protectant
This is also a form of CLP and comes from Ballistol – a company which has been making products like this since 1904. Its products have been used by the German Army and the majority of the common people also find satisfaction in their cleaners.
It cleans up firearms and forms a protective lubricant layer on the surface of metals. Using this on a daily basis will minimize the need to brush and scrape the gun’s interior frequently. It can also seep into the smallest cracks, thus loosening the frozen nuts and bolts.
It can offer such protection only to metals, wood, plastic and smooth leathers except for suede. Contrast to most lubricants, this cleaner emulsifies with water. So when the water evaporates, it still stays there to protect the surface.
Since human sweat and skin oils have slightly acidic properties, coming into contact with them constantly can cause corrosion. To balance this reaction, the Ballistol CLP has been made slightly alkaline.
You can find it in aerosol cans of either 1.5 ounces or 6 ounces. It is non-toxic and biodegradable, which means it will not have adverse effects on the environment at any stage. This CLP can also be used to clean knives and blades in order to prevent rust, or on leather boots and shoes.
9. Sage & Braker CLP
Sage & Braker built this CLP with the American military in mind. During their service, they dealt with a lot of dust, sand and other contaminants getting into their firearms. To fight such scenarios, the company produced this cleaner made by anti-static formula. It reduces static in great amounts, which are mainly the promoters of debris, carbon and contaminants adhering to those weapons.
They also aim at making products which would satisfy the hardcore hunters and other firearm owners. This CLP is also designed such that, the gun gets a cleaner burn every time you use it to fire. It enhances each burn to create more consistent FPS and thus more accurate shots.
It puts a protective coating on the bore and other moving sections of the gun. The CLP also allows an improved heat dissipation in working parts of the weapon so that it can operate at cooler temperatures.
Your firearms can get a better protection from rust and corrosion from using this cleaning solvent. It is highly penetrating and thus will get into every part of the surface at a micro level. Thus the foulings of carbon, copper and lead are all cleaned up more deeply than most other CLPs.
The aggressive approach of its cleaning can even remove the old hidden buildups in your guns which you have neglected for years. The surprising thing is, this product does all these without the help of any harsh chemical. It is non-toxic, non-hazardous and also biodegradable. So you can be sure of the health of your loved ones as well as the environment. There is no pungent smell either in these bottles of 4 ounces.
10. FrogLube CLP Liquid Spray
It is a surprise how this 100% natural CLP can clean up harsh buildups inside the gun. The ForgLube CLP is considered to be one of the best gun cleaning solvents out there because of this reason and has gained a huge popularity over time.
Every time you use it, you will get the fresh minty smell which is very unusual for a gun cleaner. It is a refreshing change among all the CLPs with harsh and pungent odors.
It can work on semi-auto weapons like rifles and pistols. It lubricates the gunmetal which lasts for a long time. It also dries off easily and has a consistency similar to water.
They are available in a bottle of 8 ounces which come with a sprayer. Since it is non-toxic and biodegradable, you can be assured that it will not affect the environment or your loved ones negatively.
Things to Keep in Mind Before Buying
Why do we need to clean guns?
A shotgun mainly works like a heat engine. Every time the cartridge is fired, heat is generated which in turn attracts a lot of carbon and dirt particles. This residue then dries up and causes corrosion to the weapon. The main target of using a gun cleaner is keeping it away from these buildups to extend its durability.
Why are water-based solvents better?
The best gun cleaning solvents are usually water-based because some particular perks come with them, such as:
Since water – the main ingredient has no toxic properties at all, these solvents also tend to be non-toxic. Thus they are much better and safer for both humans and the environment since exposure to them for a long time will not cause any adverse effect on either.
Most of them also tend to have a higher flashpoint which means they can ignite at high-temperature settings rather than low. So unless you are operating in a place where too much heat is a concern, you can assure safety for yourself and others around you. Although some water-based solvents are completely inflammable making them even safer.
There is almost no possibility of the Environmental Protection Agency or EPA to regulate a water-based cleaner due to its aqueous base. Thus if you are used to these solvents, you don’t need to worry about changing your habits or about creating hazards to human health and environment.
They tend to be a lot less costly since water is available in plenty in nature and does not need expensive methods to procure it. So you can easily choose these solvents if you are on a budget and need a cleaner for long-term use.
How to take care of guns
Firstly, you need to clean these firearms after every use. It doesn’t have to be a rigorous cleanup but rather a quick one. This little effort will increase its lifespan and thus it can serve you a lot longer.
In semi-automatic guns, a small amount of oily cleaner wiped over the surfaces with a rag just after cleaning will keep them going for a long time. Such oils create a thin layer on the barrels which keeps them safe from the environment and also furnish them with a boundary lubrication.
Never mix up multiple cleaners for better maintenance of the gun. This can build up more grease in it and thus more dirt particles will get attracted making things worse.
So depending on what kind of weapon you have and what would be the best gun cleaning solvent for that model, choose a cleaner product you will be able to benefit from for a long time.