The “Clearing a Malfunction Drill” is an important skill for any firearm owner to master. Malfunctions can happen in real-life scenarios, and knowing how to quickly and effectively clear them is crucial for firearm safety and functionality. Here’s a breakdown of the drill:

Clearing a Malfunction Drill:

  1. Get into the ready position.
  2. Eject the magazine: Remove the magazine from the firearm to ensure that no additional rounds are fed into the chamber.
  3. Clear the malfunction: Depending on the type of malfunction, you may need to perform different actions. Common malfunctions include failure to feed, failure to eject, and stovepipe jams. To clear the malfunction, perform the following steps:
    • Keep the ejection port facing downward to allow gravity to assist in clearing the malfunction.
    • Manually cycle the action (rack the slide or bolt) multiple times to clear any obstructions or faulty rounds.
    • Visually inspect the chamber and ejection port to ensure that the malfunction is completely cleared.
  4. Reload and chamber a round: After clearing the malfunction, reinsert a loaded magazine into the firearm and rack the slide to chamber a new round.
  5. Fire a shot at the target: Once the firearm is back in a functional state, engage the target with a shot.


The goal is to complete this drill in five seconds or less, which emphasizes the importance of practicing this skill until you can do it quickly and effectively.

A few additional points to consider:

  • Safety: Always follow firearm safety rules during this drill. Keep the firearm pointed in a safe direction, keep your finger off the trigger until you’re ready to shoot, and treat every gun as if it’s loaded.

  • Training: Seek professional training and guidance from certified instructors to ensure you’re performing this drill correctly and safely.

  • Types of Malfunctions: Be familiar with different types of malfunctions and their respective clearing procedures. Different malfunctions may require slightly different actions.

  • Regular Maintenance: Proper firearm maintenance, including cleaning and lubrication, can help reduce the occurrence of malfunctions.

  • Practice: Regular practice is essential to build muscle memory and confidence in clearing malfunctions efficiently.


Clearing malfunctions quickly and effectively can be a life-saving skill in self-defense situations. Always prioritize safety and responsible firearm ownership when practicing and handling firearms