Whether you’re a competitive shooter, a hunting enthusiast, or a range hobbyist, you know that keeping your weapon clean is essential for great performance. We reviewed dozens of options to come up with the best gun cleaning kit on the market. Read on to discover our six top picks.
With so many options on the market, it can take days, or even weeks, of careful reviewing before you finally find the right kit for you. We’ve done the work for you so that you can quickly assess the options and get what you need.
Our Rigorous Review Process
Anyone can take a look at Amazon reviews and decide to purchase a gun cleaning kit based on a few quick searches. What we’ve done is far more rigorous. We spend hours considering the features of hundreds of the best gun cleaning kits out there until we’re positive that we’re recommending the absolute best choices.
Best Gun Cleaning Kits at a Glance
|Product Name||Image||Features||Overall Rating||Details|
|Allen Ultimate Gun Cleaning Kit, 65 Pieces||This kit includes a locking lunch-box style container that is easy to carry and secure. Each brush is marked so you always know what to use at a glance, and it includes a three-piece brush and pick The separate holding compartments keep everything organized.||9.5||Check price|
|DAC Winchester Super Deluxe Soft Sided Gun Care Case (68-piece)||One of the most popular kits we reviewed, this kit includes everything you need to clean just about every type of firearm on the market. The included brushes to cover 14 different calibers, all marked for easy and fast identification. The kit also includes brass rods for a variety of barrel lengths.||9.5||Check price|
|Remington Hunting Cleaning and Maintenance Kit||This kit is made for any gun from a 22 caliber to a 12-gauge and has a threaded revolver adapter – making it perfect for the hobbyist with several different interests. The soft-sided case is easy to tuck in with your other gear and includes a machine-washable pad. Also included is the fan-favorite Remington Squeeg-E, which gives you a perfectly cleaned barrel in just a single pass.||9||Check price|
|GLORYFIRE Universal Gun Cleaning Kit||Featuring 159 different tools all in a compact kit, this is truly the universal gun cleaning kit for the hobbyist with every type of firearm. The plastic carrying case is tough and keeps everything organized. It’s also one of the more affordable universal kits on the market.||9||Check price|
|Otis Elite Cleaning System with Optics Cleaning Gear||Made in the USA, this cleaning system has everything you need to clean rifles, pistols, and muzzleloaders. It includes optics cleaning gear as well, and a nylon-coated memory-flex There is also an easy-to-reference firearm maintenance guide, making this kit perfect for beginners.||8.5||Check price|
|Real Avid .223/5.56 Pro Pack - Premium 223 556 MSR Cleaning and Maintenance Tool Kit||This compact kit is one of the best gun cleaning kits for the 5.56 and .223 AR rifles. It includes everything you need for fast field rifle cleaning, with high-end components and tools that will last. Durability and easy use are the key features of this premium kit, which features materials like ballistic nylon and heavy-duty brass.||8.5||Check price|
The 30-Second Review
Gun cleaning kits are hard to narrow down to a single best product because each offer something for a different type of shooter.
However, in our search for the best, we considered several key factors. Durability and universal tools for multiple types of firearms were at the top of our list of must-haves. The six final kits that made the cut are outstanding in both those areas, as well as other features that real users in the field found intelligent and useful.
Buyer’s Guide: What You Need to Know About the Best Gun Cleaning Kit
Gun safety is about much more than just shooting in the right direction. A gun is only a precise, useful tool when it is properly cared for. A gun cleaning kit is just as important as the gun itself, which is why it’s so important to choose the right one.
High-quality tools that are manufactured to meet extremely rigorous standards, as well as tools that can be used on a variety of gun types, barrel lengths, and so on, are the most important features in any gun cleaning kit. However, there are other things to look for in a great kit as well, including a quality case to keep the tools organized, cleaners, and solvents.
There are two main types of gun cleaning kits:
- The large, fully-stocked kit you’ll use at home when you want to give your gun a thorough cleaning.
- And the field kit, which is an abbreviated version meant to get your gun in shape quickly when out and about.
Both types of kits are good to have, as both serve a different purpose. One allows you to maintain your weapons longer, while the other allows you to continue shooting accurately in the moment. Within both of these types, you’ll find kits made for specific gun types (pistols, shotguns, rifles, etc.), as well as kits made with universal components and adapters you can use with all gun types.
Choosing the right kit for your needs will depend entirely on what type of shooting you do, what types of guns you own, and whether you’re looking for a comprehensive kit or a field kit. However, there are four main areas to consider with any gun kit:
Expert Tips for Choosing the Right Gun Cleaning Tips
Knowing what makes up a great gun cleaning kit, and knowing how to choose from the many options out there, are two different things. Finding the right gear doesn’t have to be tricky, however, you should take the time to consider the choice carefully to ensure your firearm gets the attention it needs.
- Affordability: It’s very important to remember you get what you pay for when it comes to gun cleaning kits. High-quality components are extremely important for something as crucial as cleaning your firearm. A poorly cleaned firearm can be dangerous. However, the six best kits we reviewed in this article range in price from top of the line, to extremely affordable. It’s possible to find a great gun cleaning kit without spending a fortune. Identify the four components listed above and ensure they’re of good quality. Any other features are extraneous and can be limited to keep the price low if your budget requires an affordable kit.
- Content: Not every gun cleaning kit out there has the same accessories. For example, brushes, solvent, and lubricant are typically in all gun cleaning kits. But not every kit has a supply of patches included, and some do not include a variety of brush sizes for multiple barrel lengths and types. Some kits do not include a solvent, while others include a variety of adapters to make brushes work for different barrels. Before you’re overwhelmed with all the choices, make a list of exactly what you need from your kit, and eliminate any choices that don’t include the content you want.
- Durability: Cleaning any gun is a very demanding activity, and you’ll put all those cleaning brushes to hard work before long. You’ll also be dragging the cleaning kit around with you everywhere you go, whether that’s out in the field or to the range. So it’s important all the components, including the carrying case, are very durable. You don’t want to buy a gun cleaning kit that won’t last more than a few months. Always look for materials like brass, ballistic nylon, and sturdy plastics or tough fabric for the carrying case.
- Efficiency vs. Universal Use: Here’s an area where you’ll have to weigh what it is you need from your gun cleaning kit. Some users need their kit to be as efficient as possible. That means having only what they need, clearly marked, and easy to just grab and go. You don’t want to have to worry about adapters, choosing the right brush, or mistaking one tool for another – you just want to be confident in your kit. However, other users have more than one type of gun and prefer their gun cleaning kit offer them as many options as possible. For that type of user, you’re looking for something that’s well-organized and full of as many adapters and brushes as possible to meet all your needs. It’s possible to find a compromise between the two needs, so again, watch for what it is you need, and ignore anything that doesn’t offer you enough.
Gun Cleaning Safety Concerns
When choosing your gun cleaning kit, you’ll also want to think about safety. Of course, every person who uses a gun knows it’s vital to double or triple-check that a gun is completely unloaded before cleaning it. Following the PROVE rule from SafeWise is a good way to ensure your gun is totally empty before you begin cleaning:
But now that you have fully checked the gun for any ammunition, cleaning still needs to be done in a safe fashion.
Most manufacturers agree that it’s best to only disassemble the gun as much as is necessary to clean it. And you always want to clean your weapon from the bore to the muzzle, in the direction of the bullet’s path.
One reason to choose a quality gun kit is to ensure that you’re getting a quality solvent. You do not want to have to oversaturate your patch with a solvent to get the barrel clean. A poorly made solvent won’t do the trick. Be sure that you clean the barrel until the patch comes out totally clean at the muzzle.
Choosing the right cleaning brushes are another important factor when choosing what gun cleaning kit is right for you. You need to be sure they don’t scrape the inside of the barrel. This means you need the right size brush, and that it’s made of a quality material that won’t damage the interior of the gun.
Don’t pump this brush as you clean, but rather push it in one smooth motion from back to front.
Finally, a quality lubricant is very important when choosing your gun kit. Once again, some guns will prefer more lubricant than others. But for the most part, it’s best to start with less lubricant, so that you don’t get any gummy residue built-up in the gun mechanisms.
Polish both the handle and the body with this lubricant. The reason you want to polish the handle is that natural body oils from your hands can cause rust, so you want to take care of the part you touch the most as well.
The 6 Best Gun Cleaning Kits We Tested
At the very top of our list is the Allen Ultimate Gun Cleaning Kit, a professional grade kit that met all our criteria for a great kit. We found the Allen Ultimate to be made of high-quality materials that offered exceptional durability. Another thing we liked about this kit is that it can be used on more than one type of gun. We found that versatility makes it ideal for serious hobbyists or professionals. It’s also one of the most affordable kits on our list and comes in a locking case that keeps everything organized and safe.
This kit comes with bronze brushes, brass jags, cotton patches, brass slotted tips, brass adapters, muzzle guards, cleaning brushes, pick, cleaning rods, and cotton swabs. All of these include options for standard rifle calibers, standard pistol calibers, 12 gauge, 20 gauge, and .410 bore shotguns. The kit has an average rating of 4.5 stars across all review sites, and our testing would easily give it a similar rating.
However, the fact it doesn’t include solvents or oils is the only downside we found, but this can be easily remedied.
- Bronze and brass brushes, jags, slotted tips, and adapters
- Muzzle guards, pick, cleaning rods, and multiple cotton patches and swabs
- Adapters include options for five different gun types
- Average rating 4.5 stars
- 65 different tools to clean and maintain everything from rifles to handguns
- Durable case with organization slots to keep everything neat
- Professional-grade materials
- No solvents or oils are included in this kit
This is one of the most popular gun cleaning kits out there which made it a top choice for us to give it a hands-on review. In fact, as one of the highest rated cleaning kits by reviewers, we’d being doing you a disservice had we overlooked it. Most owners of this gun kit we spoke with gave it 5-stars—we can see why. This gun cleaning kit is great for those who want just what they need, at a very affordable cost. Coming in at under $50, this kit includes high-quality components that can work for rifles, shotguns, pistols, and muzzleloaders.
This kit includes tools for up to 16 different calibers. The tools include brushes, patches, adaptors, rods, picks, slot-tips, and utility part brushes. The entire kit fits inside a very durable, soft case, and weighs less than 4-pounds, making it perfect for carrying on longer treks. On our field testing, we never experienced any fatigue from carrying this kit around with us.
The reason we didn’t rank this one first on our list of choice gun cleaning kits is it’s just a bit limited as to who it will appeal to. While it offers plenty of versatility for many types of guns, most reviewers agree that this is a solid gun cleaning kit for hobbyists or beginners – but not for professionals. It lacks a few of the more precise cleaning tools that would make it more useful – but for the price, we still consider this an outstanding buy.
- Cleaning brushes, adapters, rods, picks, and slot-tips
- Cleaning patches
- Durable carrying case
- Very versatile range of caliber accommodation
- High-quality case gets marks for durability
- Excellent value for a low price
- No solvents or oils included
- Only offers the basics
We found this to be a unique gun cleaning kit because it replaces the standard cotton wipes with Remington’s patented Squeeg-E system. This was our first time testing out the Squeeg-E system and was a bit skeptical at first. However, we were pleasantly surprised with the results–it really did make for an efficient cleaning process both in time and quality of cleaning.
Although, it did leave a little to be desired.
This Remington gun cleaning kit includes Sqeeg-Es and brushes to clean everything from a .22 to a 12 gauge shotguns. Trek Warrior rated it an excellent option for shotgun enthusiasts, and we don’t disagree. But it is not meant for anything other than shotguns, causing it to rank a little lower in our review. That and it didn’t quite meet all our criteria for high-grade materials and durability for the cleaning tools themselves. Especially compared to some of the other products we tried.
That being said, the carrying case that ships with this kit are extremely well-made. We especially appreciated that it includes space for ammunition and extra supplies. We also put the shoulder strap to the test, which indeed made for easier carrying during our field trials.
This kit includes machine-washable cleaning pads, cleaning rods, cleaning brushes, brush revolver adapters, and a gun cloth, as well as bore cleaner solvent. It is not the most affordable option on our list, but the durable carrying case and Remington’s patented Squeeg-E system that makes cleaning so much faster is well worth the price tag, which still comes in under $100. This kit covers shotguns from .22 to .50 caliber, as well as .410 and 12 gauge shotguns.
- Brushes, rods, and revolver adapters
- Machine-washable cleaning pads
- Cleaning solvent included
- Durable carrying case
- Durable carrying case with extra room for supplies
- Included bore cleaner solvent
- Coated cleaning rods protect your barrel
- One-pass Squeeg-E system is more efficient
- Does not offer universal adaptability for other gun types
- More expensive than other options
- No gun oil or lubricant included
Out of all the kits we got our hands on, the GLORYFIRE Universal kit has the most tools to take care of shotguns, handguns, and rifles. With 160 tools included, including an extremely tough plastic carrying case, this kit tops the list for usability. This kit includes six brass rods, nine mops, 12 jags including a black powder jag, 14 brushes, three muzzle guards, multiple patch loops, and much more. There is also oil and polishing cloths, as well as different-sized patches.
We tried out every piece this kit shipped to us with and, once we were finished, we found ourselves largely agreeing with the sterling review experts gave it. There’s no surprise the owners of this Gloryfire gun cleaning kit we talked to give it 4.5 stars.
On top of that, it’s also extremely affordable.
The protective case is very well organized and pleases users who aren’t fond of the soft cases found with a lot of other kits. All of the parts are made of high-quality nylon and brass, with the exception of the durable plastic carrying case.
While we did find this kit includes items that are missing from a lot of other kits, such as gun oil for that final step, we also found the sheer quantity to be overwhelming for many users. If you are looking for a basic, simple gun cleaning kit, you may want to look into some of the other options listed here.
- Brass rods and jags
- Mops, brushes, muzzle guards, patch loops
- Gun oil and polishing cloths
- Organized, hard protective case
- Lightweight case is still very durable
- High-quality materials at an extremely affordable price
- Included gun oil
- Large variety of tools for all types of guns
- Does not include solvent
The Otis Elite system is one of the most comprehensive cleaning kits out there according to expert opinion and is definitely the most comprehensive on our list. Our research proved that it can easily replace any other cleaning kit you may have. It includes components for all your firearms, from rifles to muzzleloaders.
This cleaning kit includes 16 brushes that are marked so you can tell at a glance which you need. These include .17, .22 limited breech, .22/.223, .243-.260, .270/7mm, .30-06/.300/30-30/.308, .338-.35, .357-38cal/9mm, .40/10mm, .44/.45, .50cal, .410ga, 28ga, 20ga, 16ga, and 12/10ga cleaning brushes. There are also three memory-flex cables in different lengths for breech-to-muzzle cleaning, as well as a pin pinch, straight pick, locking lug scraper, and other tools made for very precise cleaning. The lens tissue, spray, and brush will clean any optics, and Otis also offers a very generous warranty on their kits.
Given the versatility, the excellent quality in all the materials, and the extra features that aren’t often included in other kits, it was hard for us to discount this gun cleaning kit as one of the best if you want an expansive kit. However, similar to the Otis Elite kit, it can quickly become too much for a lot of gun owners. We also would have liked this kit to come with a hard case instead of a soft one.
- 16 cleaning brushes
- Memory-flex cables of different lengths
- Pin punch, straight pick, lug scraper, and other precision cleaning tools
- Optics cleaning set
- Warranty on all parts
- Widest range of versatility
- Very well organized case
- Made in the USA
- Optics care equipment included
- Does not include solvents or oils
- Many users would prefer a hard case over the soft nylon case
The Real Avid Pro cleaning kit is a field kit, meaning it’s designed to go with you and offer a quick and efficient cleaning experience in the field. Which is exactly what we did.
It’s designed for 5.56 and .223 AR Rifles, and while it comes in a bit expensive for such a simple kit, the kit is surprisingly more comprehensive than you’d think. Additionally, Real Avid’s close attention to quality proved beneficial in our testing. We put this kit through some abuse when we were testing it in the field and found it was able to stand up to our demands. This kit will last you for years and years to come, a fact that earned it five stars by a lot of the consumers we interviewed.
This gun cleaning kit includes all-brass components, such as six rods, AP brush heads, bore brushes, chamber brushes, eyelets, and pins, as well as a folding scraper tool that combines a bolt carrier group, bolt, bolt cam pin, and firing pin. There are also eight chamber cleaning patches, bore illuminator, and a user guide included.
If you’re an AR owner, this is possibly the best field cleaning kit on the market. Unfortunately, we couldn’t rank it number one because of it’s limited to only AR’s. Hardly a knock, however, if that’s the only kind of gun you need to clean.
- All brass components
- Rods, brush heads, bore brushes, eyelets, pins, scraper tool with multiple capabilities
- Cleaning patches, bore illuminator
- User guide
- High-quality brass and ballistic nylon materials
- Wide assortment of tools
- Good for beginners and experts alike
- No included solvent or oil
Review in Summary
Overall, choosing the best gun cleaning kit comes down to what you need from a kit. If you need it to be light, easy to carry, and still comprehensive, there are many options out there on the market. If you need something more durable and focused on what you are shooting, you can find excellent deals on well-made kits that include just what you need and nothing more. However, all the kits we’ve reviewed are made of high-grade materials and feature the most important components for gun cleaning.
With most kits, you’ll find that you’ll need to add your own solvent and oil; however, finding kits that include other essentials can make it easier to reduce how many other items you have to purchase to get your gun cleaning setup ready to go. With this list, we’ve found a variety of options for each type of specific gun user. Our suggestions based on the reviews above are:
- For the hobbyist who likes to try many different types of guns: Choose the GLORYFIRE Universal Gun Cleaning Kit
- For the AR enthusiast: Choose the Real Avid .223/5.56 Pro Pack
- For the serious professional: Choose the Otis Elite Cleaning system
- For the beginner: Choose the DAC Winchester Super Deluxe kit
- For the outdoorsman who wants durability above all else: Choose the Allen Ultimate Gun Cleaning Kit
- For the gun user who wants cleanup to be fast and easy: Choose the Remington Hunting Cleaning and Maintenance Kit
These are some of the most commonly asked questions about gun cleaning, and gun cleaning kits. Understanding these common problems can help you discover what you need to know about buying the right kit.
Is it possible to damage a barrel during cleaning?
Yes. It is very possible, and even likely, that the barrel of a gun can be damaged during cleaning. You can nick or scratch the bore if you don’t use a bore guide to prevent damage, for example. This is why it’s very important to have the right size brush. It is also possible to damage the crown with the cleaning rod if the wrong size is being used. You can also damage the barrel from over-cleaning with solvent. Only use the solvent as directed by the bottle.
What is fouling, and what causes it?
One of the things that many new gun users do not understand is what they are cleaning out of the barrel. Inside the barrel after shooting, there is a substance called fouling, which needs to be cleaned out for the gun to work as efficiently as it was designed to. There are several reasons that fouling is caused. Those include the finish of the bore, the roughness of the throat, the quality of the bullet jacket, and pressure. Some barrels are just more prone to fouling than others and need to be cleaned more often.
What kind of bore cleaner (solvent) should I use?
Any name-brand solvent can work just fine on your gun. The most important thing is to choose a solvent that’s designed for what you are doing. For example, choose a solvent that is meant for removing copper solvent if that is what you are doing. The next most important thing is to follow the instructions on the bottle, especially when it comes to how often you use the solvent.
Why should I use a nylon brush rather than a phosphor bronze brush?
If you are graduating to a newer model cleaning kit from a much older kit, you may be alarmed by the idea of a tough nylon brush. However, the reason that the industry has shifted to these from the older bronze brushes is due to the way solvents have changed. Today’s solvents are very aggressive, and will actually dissolve the traditional bronze brushes. Nylon brushes are not designed to scratch the bore, but to deliver the solvent without damage to the brush itself.
What about stainless-steel brushes?
There are bore brushes made from stainless steel, and while these are good for cleaning out old, neglected firearms, they are not recommended for everyday use. They are simply too aggressive and can scratch a bore if you aren’t careful.
How often should I be cleaning a gun?
This answer really does depend. Some professionals suggest giving your gun a thorough cleaning after every shooting session. Others suggest that you can just do a quick clean after each session, with a more thorough cleaning once every few sessions. The true answer likely depends on what you need your gun for. If you need it for life-threatening situations, you’ll want to have it perfectly clean at all times for complete accuracy. This means doing a full disassemble after each firing session. If you are a hobbyist, you can likely get away with a quick clean with a bore snake after each use, and a more thorough clean every few sessions.
If I have to choose an affordable gun cleaning kit, which parts should I never compromise on?
There are definitely certain components of a gun cleaning kit that are more important than others. If you must choose a kit that meets your budget rather than all your needs, do not compromise on the cleaning rods. These are the most important tools in the kit. They need to be made out of brass, which does not scratch the inside of the barrel but is also durable.
The next most important element is the array of cleaning brushes. Bronze brushes are for deep cleaning, while nylon brushes are for the quick-clean up at the end. You truly need both, but you can get away with just a bronze brush if necessary. Finally, jags and loops are the third most important components of a cleaning kit. If you must choose a very bare kit, you can get away with using Q-tips or washcloths to polish up your gun instead of these parts.
What happens if guns don’t get cleaned?
The biggest worry when guns don’t get cleaned is rust. Metal can get eaten away, and the gun will simply stop firing. However, another big safety concern is build-up that can cause the gun to misfire. This can be very dangerous for you and anyone around you should the gun misfire at the range. It’s a good idea to inspect your gun once a year for rust, even if you clean it regularly.
Should I take any safety precautions when cleaning a gun?
In addition to checking that the gun is fully unloaded (remember to PROVE), you should also wear protective gloves and eyewear when cleaning your gun. This is mostly because gun solvents are harsh chemicals that can burn your skin and eyes should they splash onto you.
Can I clean my gun too often?
Many users say that cleaning your gun too often is a good way to get scratches on the bore. However, it is hard to say what is “too often”. Police officers, for example, clean their guns after every visit to the range, and members of the military are often trained to clean their guns daily. Most pros, agree that it is more important to clean your gun carefully and to never over-oil than it is to stick to any specific cleaning schedule.
Gun Safety Is No Laughing Matter
One last thing we think deserves some attention: gun safety.
It’s so important.
Practicing proper safety measures while cleaning your gun is necessary. Just as essential keeping yourself safe when shooting your guns. For example, have you read our review of all the different plate carriers out there?
These armored vests are literally lifesavers.
Once you’ve cleaned and polished up your guns, be sure to inform yourself on the benefits a using a plate carrier.
Whether you have owned guns for years and years, or are a brand new gun owner, choosing the right cleaning kit can still be a bit of a hassle. But our selection of the six best gun cleaning kits can help you narrow it down easily.
For overall use that covers just about any type of gun user out there, our final recommendation is the Allen Ultimate Gun Cleaning Kit. This affordable kit includes a variety of tools for different gun types, has a sturdy lockable carrying container, and is so well organized that even a beginner can simply open the box and get started. If we had to choose just one, we’d go with this one for our own needs.
However, we know that every gun owner is different, and we’d love to hear your thoughts! Let us know which of these gun cleaning kits you prefer – or if we missed the mark entirely. What kits do you prefer, and why? What features have we missed that make a gun cleaning kit worth a few extra bucks to you? Let us know in the comments below.