The Glock Cleaning FAQ

version 1.0, 28 May 1998
Steve Silverman (


Micro Mano's Rotating GlockThe Glock Cleaning FAQ

  1. Field Stripping

  2. Cleaning

  3. Safety Checks

  4. Lubricating Your Glock

  5. Reassembling Your Glock

  6. Maintenance of Your Glock

Field Stripping


  1. Unload the pistol by removing the magazine and racking the slide manually a minimum of 3 times. Make sure that the pistol is pointed in a safe direction and that you keep your finger OFF the trigger.

  2. Confirm that the pistol is unloaded by visually inspecting the chamber and the magazine well.

  3. After confirming that the pistol is unloaded (more than once), point the pistol in a safe direction and pull the trigger.

  4. There are several ways to perform this step, select the way that works best for you. Below, I have described the two easiest. All directions below are written for a right-handed person, reverse if you are left-handed.

    1. With your right hand, grasp the pistol by placing your fingers over the slide (from the right side) at the rear of the pistol. Your thumb then wraps around the top of the grip. (Figure A) Exert forward pressure with your thumb, causing the slide to retract slightly. Do not move the slide more than (approximately) 1/10th inch/2.5mm. If you pull the slide back far enough to reset the trigger, you have gone too far. Go back to Step 3. Bring your left hand under the pistol (thumb on left side, fingers on right side) and using your thumb and index finger pull down and hold both sides of the slide lock. (Figure B) Release your right hand. The slide can now be slid off the front of the receiver.

    2. Grasp the pistol in your right hand, holding it as you would to shoot. Finger remains off the trigger. Place the muzzle against a hard, flat surface. Push down on the pistol. Bring your left hand under the pistol (thumb on left side, fingers on right side) and using your thumb and index finger pull down and hold both sides of the slide lock. Release the pressure exerted by your right hand. The slide can now be slid off the front of the receiver.

  5. Push the recoil spring guide ( located in the slide) forward and up. You do not need to use a great deal of force to accomplish this step. Caution: If your pistol is equipped with a non-captive recoil spring, be careful to not let the recoil spring guide loose until the spring tension is lessened.

  6. Grasp the barrel lug and pull up and back, removing the barrel from the slide.

The pistol is now field stripped and ready for cleaning. This is as far as the pistol was designed to be field stripped.


Cleaning the Glock pistol is no different than cleaning any other semi-automatic handgun.

  1. Cleaning the Barrel:

    1. Use a cleaning rod, bore brush and solvent. Work the wet brush through the barrel, inserting the brush through the chamber. This step is to loosen the residue in the barrel. Depending on the condition of your pistol, you may need to work the brush back and forth numerous times.

    2. Replace the brush with a jag. Using wet patches, work the rod and jag back and forth through the barrel, again starting from the chamber.

    3. Using dry patches, work the rod and jag back and forth through the barrel until the patches come out clean.

    4. Using a solvent soaked rag, wipe the exterior surface of the barrel, to include the muzzle, feed ramp and barrel hood. If there is any residue remaining (especially on the feed ramp and barrel hood), a toothbrush soaked in solvent should do the trick.

    5. Make certain the barrel is clean and dry (especially inside).

  2. Cleaning the Slide:

  3. Using a solvent soaked rag, toothbrush and Q-tips, clean the underside of the slide. Caution: Do not insert solvent (or oil) into the firing pin channel (the hole opposite the firing pin safety) (Figure C - #1). A good way to keep solvent from getting into this channel is to keep the slide pointed muzzle down while performing this step.

  4. Using a clean, dry rag, wipe the underside of the slide completely. Make sure the slide rail cuts, the breech face and the area under the extractor claw are clean and dry.

  5. Wipe the top of the slide with your solvent rag and dry with clean rag.

  6. Cleaning the receiver:

  7. Using a rag, lightly dampened with solvent, wipe the inside of the receiver. Important areas to wipe are the locking block, ejector, connector and cruciform.

Safety Checks

While you have the gun apart and clean, now is a good time to check the internal safeties in your pistol.

  1. Trigger safety:

    1. Push forward on the vertical extension of the trigger bar. The trigger safety should engage. DO NOT pull the trigger at this point. To release the trigger at this point, push the vertical extension as far forward as it will go and while maintaining this forward extension, pull the trigger

  2. Firing pin safety:

  3. Shake the slide vigorously with the muzzle pointed down. Look at the firing pin hole in the breech face. The firing pin should not be protruding from this hole.

  4. With the slide still muzzle down, depress the firing pin safety. The firing pin should now be protruding through the hole. Pull the firing pin lug (Figure C - #2) to the rear to retract the firing pin.

Lubricating Your Glock

The absolute easiest way to cause your Glock pistol to fail is to over lubricate it. You should use EXACTLY 5 (FIVE!) drops of oil.

  1. Place 1 drop on the left rear slide rail. With your finger, wipe off the excess and wipe it on the left front slide rail.

  2. Place 1 drop on the right rear slide rail. With your finger, wipe off the excess and wipe it on the right front slide rail.

  3. This is the most important drop! Place 1 drop where the connector meets the trigger bar. (Figure D)

  4. Place 1 drop on the rear side of the barrel lug.

    Reassemble the pistol (see next section)

  5. Lock slide to the rear. Place 1 drop of oil on the top of the barrel, near the muzzle where the slide and barrel contact. Because the slide contact the barrel all the way around, with your finger, wipe the excess around the barrel. Drop the slide. Wipe any remaining oil (left on your finger) where the barrel hood meets the slide.

Reassembling Your Glock

  1. Replace barrel into slide. Make sure the barrel hood is flush with the top of the slide. (slide is in battery)

  2. Replace recoil spring and guide. Make certain the guide is seated in the lower, semi-circular notch.

  3. Place rear of slide rail cuts (slide) on front slide rails (receiver) and pull the slide to the rear of the receiver. Make certain that the slide rail cuts engage the rear slide rails. The pistol should now be reassembled.

  4. Pull slide to rear and release. The trigger should have reset to the forward position.

  5. Pointing the pistol in a safe direction, pull the trigger. The pistol should function properly.

Maintenance of Your Glock

Your Glock pistol is well designed and manufactured. However, like any piece of machinery, it can break or fail. Fortunately, failures in Glock pistols are few and far between.

Each time you field strip your pistol, visually inspect it. You are looking for cracked, chipped or broken parts. Specifically, your inspection should include the ejector, the locking block, the firing pin, the connector and the extractor.

Glock recommends that police guns are detail stripped, cleaned and inspected annually (at a minimum) by a certified armorer. I think that this is reasonable and prudent for pistols used as personal defense weapons.



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