If you have a firearm, it is your responsibility to keep it safe, clean and functional. According to the American "Rifleman Creed," the owner of a rifle must take care of it as if it is their life. The owner must keep their rifle clean and the owner must master their rifle as they master their life. It is important to keep firearms well maintained in order to make it functional. Many bad things can happen if a firearm is not taken care of. Imagine if you have the shot on a target for only a second, you squeeze your trigger but the bullet won't fly away to your target. This is what happens if the firearm is not taken care of. Sometimes it gets even more deadly if the firearm blow apart in your hand.
When you draw your firearm out from its storage, the most first thing you must do when you receive a firearm is safety precaution of the firearm. Make sure it is not loaded and test its function. Then field strip the major part and oil all the moving parts in the firearm. The critical part such as the barrel and the bolt must be oiled. This is important before a gun is fired. After that you are good to go.
In the field, never think that the firearm that you carry is tough enough to fit in the environment. During this it is more prevention than maintenance. First, never field strip the firearm in the field because if you do that, unwanted elements may enter cavities in the firearm such as sand in the barrel, dust stuck on the bolt, etc. These elements are the enemy of the firearm because it makes the firearm not function well. Avoid having your firearm buried in sand. As stated, sand is the number one enemy of the firearm. Don't get the firearm in mud. Sometimes in operations soldiers can't avoid the firearm from being submerged in water. This is very dangerous -- especially if the firearm is an M16. Tests conducted by Heckler & Koch, a firearm developer, showed what happens to a submerged M16 when fired. The rifle exploded in the gunman's hand. So when in the field, take care of your firearm as if it were your baby.
Before returning the firearm to its storage, take time to clean the firearm with a DETAILED approach. After a firearm if fired, a lot of carbon can get stuck inside it. When you look through a used barrel, you can see spots of carbon along the barrel wall. Every firearm comes with its own cleaning kit. Field strip the firearm -- every single part that is involved during shooting such as the bolt, gas cylinder, and barrel. Using the cleaning kits provided with the firearm, remove all the carbon inside the firearm with a dry cloth. Focus your cleaning in the barrel, bolt and gas cylinder because most of the carbon gets stuck there. After all the carbon has been removed and you're satisfied, again oil the bolt, barrel and all the moving parts. Other parts that are made of steel or anything that can corrode also must be oiled. This is important to prevent the firearm from corrosion because oil can seal the metal from moisture. After all parts are oiled, reassemble all the parts together -- DON'T MISS EVEN ONE PART -- and the firearm is ready to be stored.
When in storage, first make sure the firearm is unloaded. This will make it safe. Make sure the storage is moist free. Keep the storage room at a low temperature. And the most important thing, make sure the storage is safe and firearms that are brought into the home or camp must be properly stored to reduce the risk of injury to children or others. Store firearms and ammunition separately and keep both of them locked.