How to Clean a Paintball Gun?

How to Clean a Paintball Gun?

Does cleaning your paintball marker seem to you like the most boring and daunting part of paintballing? It might be, but do not ignore the task. Maintaining your gun determines its lifespan and how well it performs on the field.

If you allow your gun to go for several days without cleaning, severe damage can occur especially when paintballs break inside the barrel. Don’t wait until it is too late and you have to buy new parts or another gun. Avoid the cost by giving your marker justifiable care.

No one wants a team-mate whose gun constantly jams or is inaccurate. It kills the morale of other players on the field. Fortunately, you can make your gun perform optimally and accurately just by keeping it clean.

However, it matters how you clean your paintball marker. This is because every marker is different and requires its own specific method or supplies to do the cleaning properly. Fortunately, the process is simple and very easy to follow and the materials are readily available.

Remember that chemical cleansers, soap, and abrasive washcloths can damage for your paintball gun. To get the best results, you need the following:

  • Your marker’s schematic
  • Pull through squeegees
  • Toothbrush/swabs
  • Oil and lube for lubrication
  • Paper towels
  • Tools for disassembly (like Allen keys)
  • Warm water

Once you have these tools, you’re ready to go. Follow the following steps carefully:

  • De-gas your marker. Your first priority while cleaning a marker is safety. It doesn’t matter how careful you are or believe to be, accidents can happen unexpectedly. So, remove the CO2 tank or fuel canister before starting to clean. This prevents accidental fires and damages or injuries. Most guns have an easy-to-use de-gas function. If you ignore to remove the air tank, disaster could occur, causing serious injury to yourself and anyone nearby.
  • Disassemble the marker. To avoid improper removal and reassembling of the parts of your gun, always refer to its owner’s manual for the schematics. Visit the manufacturer’s website if you’ve misplaced the document. If in doubt, do a simple Google search and your answer could come in seconds. Unless you’ve disassembled the gun severally, do not assume that you know how to do it properly. Once the schematic is ready, you can now disassemble your marker. Follow the instructions carefully if you’re not yet used to the process. Begin by removing the barrel, then the hopper, grip frame, bolt, and hammer. Place those parts close together, in an organized manner, and on a working table. For instance, placing fasteners or screws next to the parts they belong to help in remembering where they should go. This makes reassembling easier and faster and ensures that you do not lose any part.

How to Clean a Paintball Gun Barrel?

After you have disassembled all the parts of your gun, it’s now time to clean the barrel. This is usually the first and easiest step of cleaning your marker. There’s nothing as frustrating and annoying as a jammed barrel, and that’s why you should do a thorough job here.

One important tool you need for cleaning your barrel thoroughly is a squeegee. Most guns come with it. If yours didn’t, it’s easy to acquire one online or at a retail paintball shop. Clean your barrel by running the squeeze through it several times ensuring that you wipe the squeegee every time it comes out.

Thoroughly clean out any excess paint residue from the barrel that may cause jamming and decrease accuracy with the squeegee. After finishing cleaning, wipe down the barrel using hot water and paper. Then, dry it with a dry paper towel to prevent corrosion.  

Here’s an idea:

How to Clean Paintball Barrel Without Squeegee?

What if you don’t have a squeegee and would like to save that money instead of buying one? There’s a pretty simple way of making one for very little or nothing at all. You’ll need the following supplies or tools to do the right job:

  • Pneumatic tubing
  • An old piece of cloth
  • A duct tape
  • A small wire
  • A xacto wife
  • A pair of scissors
  • Wire cutters

Here is the procedure:

  1. Cut a piece of tubing to be about 6” longer than the barrel using a xacto knife
  2. Cut two square holes near the end about 180 degrees apart
  3. Cut an 8 by 8 piece of cloth
  4. Place the center of the cloth next to your tube
  5. Put the thin wire through the holes and wrap it around your cloth several times
  6. Tape the wire around so it won’t scratch the barrel
  7. Use the resulting “squeegee” to clean the barrel just as you would with a real one.

How Often to Clean Paintball Gun?

It is never a pleasant exercise to clean your paintball marker after a long day’s play. The temptation is always to postpone the job to the next day. However, leaving your gun this way can quickly lead to serious problems that might compromise its performance and limit its lifespan.

It is a good practice to clean your paintball marker after every game. You only need to wipe down your gun’s outside after gameplay in order to remove the paint. It can be hard to clean it if the dye dries on the gun. You may also need to wipe the outside of your marker prior to every game to ensure it works properly.

You may want to remove the barrel occasionally to clean the inside with water and a squeegee. Too much buildup of paint, dirt, and oil pose problems to your marker. However, do not disassemble your marker more often than is necessary as you may likely lose, incorrectly assemble, or strip out bolts with your Allen key.

This is why you should be very careful when playing in muddy or wet conditions. Try as much as possible to prevent mud or water from contacting your marker. If it does often, you’ll have to disassemble and clean it frequently, exposing it to risks.

However, there are times that you can’t avoid cleaning your gun every so often because of the nature of the game. For instance, if you’ve been crawling around the whole day for all week, then it’s possible that dirt is getting into your marker and you must disassemble it.

How to Clean the Outside of a Paintball Gun?

Now that you have removed all the inside parts, it’s time to focus on the gun’s outside. Check out from the manual to see if you should use a squeegee to clean your gun’s body. If it is, then do so. Follow up with a Q tip or toothbrush to ensure that you’ve cleaned the whole body to prevent any jamming.

The squeegee is too large to get into the crannies and nooks. That’s why some people choose to use cotton swabs or old toothbrushes to clean those small crevices. You also need warm water to break down hardened residue.

First, dip the toothbrush in warm water and use it to scrub through all the hard-to-reach places. Brush your marker thoroughly, ensuring that you do not miss any spot. It’s important to clean leftovers that could result in future jamming. After finishing the cleaning, wipe the body with a paper towel, making sure that it’s entirely dry.

Moving on to the grip frame, be sure to clean out dried paint, if any, and other substances. This is usually the part that requires thorough cleaning the most. This is because the grip frame is where plenty of excess paint remains after the game. A small brush with warm water can do the perfect job to give it an intense scrubbing.

Whether your paintball marker is designed to stand a rough cleaning or not, never rush the grip frame. Be meticulous and very thorough with it to ensure that your gun is free from any dirt or debris that could cause clogging and other malfunctions. There shouldn’t be left-overs from your previous paintball games sticking on the marker.

It is very important that you do not disassemble the trigger, no matter what. This is because its re-assembling process is extremely complicated and if you do it wrong, you’ll mess up your paintball marker. After cleaning the frame up, dry it and check for any sign of damages.

Once you’ve cleaned the entire marker, it’s time to oil it. Remember to only use paintball gun oil for lubrication. Other types of oils can pose safety issues or seriously damage your marker. Apart from this, using a different type of oil apart from the manufacturer’s brand may void your warranty.

After cleaning and prepping, you can now re-assemble your gun. If you’re not sure, use the schematic for the process. Never assume when you really don’t know how to do it. If you’ve lost any fasteners or screws, avoid using your marker without them as this may cause major problems. Instead, contact your manufacturer if any issue arises.


Cleaning your paintball gun after a day’s thrilling activity shouldn’t be optional even if it looks like a daunting task. You should take care of your marker by cleaning it properly and frequently. This ensures that it can serve you for a longer period and perform optimally every time. Begin practicing cleaning your paintball gun properly from today.

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