Remington 870 is the most dependable shotgun in the world but it also can have malfunctions. The faster you fix malfunctions the better. This is extremely important in home defense situation when every moment can cost a life.

Knowing and being familiar with common Remington 870 malfunctions is priceless and extremely important. This post will help you understand what can happen with your shotgun and will help you fix malfunctions fast.

Stove pipe

Remington 870 Stove Ppipe
Remington 870 Stove Ppipe
When you rack the shotgun after the shot, empty shell hangs from the ejection window.

Here is video which shows how to fix that:

Double feed

It’s not a common problem. This happens when shell latch allows two shells to come out of the magazine tube and you have two shells stuck on a carrier.

When you see two shells on a carrier like this:

Remington 870 Double Feed
Remington 870 Double Feed

It is easy to fix this. You just need to take one of the shot shells out. You can do it with your hand or use simple method:

1. Turn Remington 870 upside down, so that shotshell will fall off under its weight when unblocked.
2. Push the forend forward. This will push one of the shells into the magazine a little.
3. Pinch the carrier down to block one of the the shells inside of the magazine tube.
4. Pull the forend back while holding the carrier. This will free one of the shells while second will be held in place by carrier.
5. Let one of the shells to fall off from the receiver. You don’t even need to actually take it out, it will go off the receiver when you rotate shotgun.
6. Release the pinch pressure on the carrier to free the second shell and load it into a chamber.

This may sound complicated but this is really easy when you try it several times. I will record a video to show you how to do this asap.

Fail to extract

When you try to reload a shotgun after the shot, you cannot do this beacuse fired shell was not extracted.

Here is video which shows failure to extract problem and how I cleared it during competition:

What you need to do when you see that shotgun fails to extract:
1. Push down the carrier.
2. Take out the shot shell from carrier.
3. Try racking shotgun again.

Usually that helps.

Fail to extract and rim of the shell is ripped

Remington 870 - Shell Stuck in a Barrel
Remington 870 - Shell Stuck in a Barrel

This failure to extract is worse than the previous one because you cannot fix it racking a shotgun. You need to use knife or something to take it out of the chamber.

Fail to feed

When you try to fire you hear click but nothing happens. That means that you could have just short stroked a shotgun (if you are sure that there are shot shells in a magazine) or magazine is empty.

You can just cycle a shotgun again if you are sure that you still have shotshells inside the magazien tube.

Extractor stuck

It will look like extractor pushed down inside of the bolt. One of the worst problems because you cannot fix that racking a shotgun; Fortunately, this is very rare problem and happened to me only once in 4 years and thousands of rounds fired.

You need something to pull up the extractor. During the competition (if tools are not allowed) you can just unload a shotgun and try racking shotgun several times.

Broken ejector

Broken Remington 870 Ejector Spring
Broken Remington 870 Ejector Spring

This is very serious problem. I hope that you will never have it in home defense situation.

This cannot be fixed without gunsmithing. But you can still fire a shotgun understanding that you will have to extract shot shells manually.

More information: Remington 870 Broken Ejector Spring Replacement

Light primer strike

Light Primer Strike on Shotgun
Light Primer Strike on Shotgun

When you pull a trigger you hear a click but nothing happens. When you extract shell you will see light primer strike as on picture above. This can happen if something is wrong with the firing pin spring.

You will have to replace the firing pin spring to fix this.

WARNING! Don’t touch shot shell after the ligth primer strike for some time beacause it may detonate.

Do you know any other common malfunctions? Have you ever experienced one of the above? Please leave a comment.

5 comments

  1. Grossfater Muller

    Чтобы был стабильный выброс – окно надо растачивать до прямоугольной формы в передней части. У меня в жэжэшке об этом есть, глянь по тэгу.

    1. Спасибо, обязательно гляну. Я давно хочу сделать такую операцию, но все никак не найду время.

      Translation:
      Grossfater Muller: You need to modify front part of the ejection port and make it rectangular to have stable ejection. I have such info in my blog, you can find that by tag.

      Vitaly: Thanks, I’ll check that. I plan to make such modification but haven’t found time for this yet.

  2. Виктор

    Коллеги, у меня рем870 отказывается перезаряжать. Описано тут под заголовком “fail to feed”, но причин не описано. Иногда надо передернуть 6-7 раз, прежде чем патрон зайдет, при том, что патроны в магазине есть. Сталкивались с таким? Мне кажется-это не нормальное поведение оружия. Почему так происходит-понять не могу. Буду рад помощи.

  3. Bcantey

    I’ve recently had an issue with my 870 express super mag, where after I shoot and try to pull “the pump” to extract the shell, the pump hangs. Ill have to put the buttstock on my thigh and pull down as hard as I can for the action to operate. Ever experienced this issue? Any idea what may be causing it? Love my 870 and in the market for a home defense shotgun, hoping this is a rare issue that doesn’t come up with a self defense gun. Thanks in advance.

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