Types of Handgun Malfunctions; Types, Causes, What to Do & How to Fix a Gun Jam

Anyone that has had the opportunity to shoot their firearms, whether it is recreational, on the job or at the shooting range, have likely experienced your firearm jamming, as it is fairly common. On the range, a “jam” is broad term frequently used to refer to several different firearms malfunctions people encounter. Poor technique, faulty rounds, and mechanical problems lead to a number of reasons as to why the gun got jammed. You can reduce the odds of having your weapon jam by routinely cleaning your firearm. Jams however, can happen at any given time and even those who use firearms in their career can have their weapon jam when it matters most. Most professionals are trained on how to quickly handle when their firearm jams. To ensure your safety on the range, understanding the common jams can help as well as help people to improve their shooting skills. Today, we at Shooting Range Industries would like to share common jamming problems.

Types of Gun Jams

  • Misfire or Hang Fire: A misfire and a hang fire are 2 separate failings that have distinct differences as to why they occurred, however, it leads to the same result; the trigger is pulled, and nothing happens. A hang fire is a delay, where though initially happens after pulling the trigger, the round fires after a short delay. A misfire, on the other hand, is when the weapon doesn’t fire at all. It is important to remain in your firing stance, with the weapon pointing down range for a solid minute to eliminate the possibility of a delay, or a hang fire. Once it is safely labeled a misfire after allowing enough time to lapse, remove the round and examine it. To check the primer, look for an indentation on the back of the round. In the event the center was struck, it is likely a bad round. Solicit the range safety officer to help you dispose of the faulty round safely. However, if the round was struck off center or not at all, the mechanism is likely at fault.
  • Failure to Eject: Ejection failure is when the casing of a round exits the chamber but gets stuck in the ejection port. This jam is sometimes referenced as “stovepipes” because it is common that the casing often sticks out perpendicular to the slide like a stovepipe hat. The failure eject is typically due to poor firing technique as the shooter is using a weak grip when the shot is fired.
  • Failure to Feed: Failure to feed is when a following round does not get fed into the chamber. This jamming issue is also typically the result of shooter is not having a firm grip on the firearm while firing; which prevents the next round to feed into the jam. Without a firm grip the whole weapon recoils as opposed to only the slide recycling when it is properly gripped. Should your weapon fail to feed, you will likely need to rectify the issue by clearing the chamber and perhaps dropping the magazine.

Custom Shooting Ranges Designed, Manufactured & Assembled in the USA

Should you frequently experience jamming problems while firing your weapon due to poor application, consider taking a shooting class to learn how to better grip your weapon along with other fundamentals. Avoiding jams is essential for your safety and the safety of others. Shooting Range Industries makes it really easy to practice and train with your firearms. Contact us to learn more about our custom shooting ranges that can be housed on your property!