Top 6 Smith and Wesson Bodyguard 380 Problems And How To Fix Them

Last Update:

I’ve had the chance to put the Smith and Wesson Bodyguard 380 through its paces out in the field. Don’t get me wrong, this is a fine little pistol for concealed carry. But I’ve run into some common problems while using this firearm that you should know about.

The issues are more or less what you’d expect from a compact carry weapon: things like trigger pull issues, slide lock problems, and even some light primer strikes. 

So, yeah, a handful of Smith and Wesson Bodyguard 380 Problems could give you pause. But fear not, I’ve got your back. I’m gonna dive deep into these issues, share my experiences, and most importantly, give you some handy solutions to keep that Bodyguard 380 in top shape.

Overview of Smith and Wesson Bodyguard 380 Problems & their Fix

Slide not returning properlyClean the gun and try different magazines
Unsecured magazineAdjust grip and use a different magazine
Light primer strikeClean firing pin and spring, use thin oil
Inability to extract while firingRegular cleaning, polish feed ramp, try different ammo
Firing IssueThorough cleaning, check ammo and internal components

Top 6 Problems & Solutions of Smith and Wesson Bodyguard 380

1. Trigger Pull Issue

Let’s dive right into the first issue: the trigger pull. Man, I must tell you, this thing has a long trigger pull. 

The downside? Your shots over distance can go a bit haywire. Trust me, when I first took this gun out to the field, nailing those long-range targets was a challenge.

In a high-pressure situation, this could really mess things up. A long trigger pull might make you hesitate or miss your shot.


Now, how to fix it? I’ve got two words for you: practice and customization. First off, get some range time and work on getting used to that pull. 

After a while, it’ll start to feel second nature. But if that’s not cutting it for you, consider a trip to a reliable gunsmith. I did that, and it made a world of difference. 

Last resort? Ship it back to Smith and Wesson for a fix. Sometimes, going to the source is your best bet.

2. Slide Lock Problem

Ah, the slide lock issue. Been there, done that. Look, you’re out on the field, you fire a few rounds, and bam—the slide just doesn’t return to its original spot. It sticks, and let me tell you, it’s annoying. 

When this happened to me, I thought of a million possible reasons. 

Could it be bad ammo? Is it a lack of lubrication? Or maybe my grip was off? Whatever it is, it’s a problem that can throw you off big time, especially in situations where every second counts.


So, how did I tackle this? First off, I cleaned the gun thoroughly. Don’t underestimate the power of a good cleaning session; it works wonders. 

Next, I swapped out the magazine. Yep, tried a couple of different ones, and guess what? The slide started behaving. 

If you’ve got slide lock issues, start with a good clean and experiment with different magazines. Trust me, sometimes the simplest solutions are the most effective.

3. Problem with the Magazine Drop

So, let’s chat about another issue that could give you a headache: the magazine dropping. You 

read that right. You’re firing away, and suddenly, the magazine decides to part ways with the gun. Happened to me more than once. 

At first, I thought it was the magazine’s fault. But then I realized my grip was also a culprit. Because of the recoil, my thumb was accidentally hitting the release, making the magazine drop. 

Seriously, it’s a problem you don’t want to deal with when you’re relying on your Bodyguard 380.


Alright, here’s how I got around this pesky issue. I switched to a different magazine specifically designed to fit the Bodyguard 380 better. That helped a ton. Secondly, I took a closer look at my grip and made some adjustments. 

Spent some time at the range, ensuring my finger stayed clear of that magazine release. It’s all about the grip, folks. 

A few tweaks here and there, and you’ll prevent that magazine from dropping when you least expect it.

4. Light Primer Strikes

Okay, let’s tackle another issue that you might encounter: light primer strikes. Oh boy, did I get a surprise the first time this happened? I was out shooting, and I had this gnarly misfire. 

Yep, the firing pin wasn’t hitting the primer hard enough. It’s an issue that can create a frustrating hang-fire situation. 

Basically, it’s a mess that can be attributed to faulty firing pins, springs, or even too much oil or grime. Trust me, you don’t want to experience this in a high-stakes moment.


So, how did I get rid of this problem? First things first, I checked the firing pin and the spring. I wanted to make sure they were clean and not slathered in too much lubricant. I even replaced them to be on the safe side. 

Word to the wise, these components need only a teeny amount of super-thin oil. Made sure the firing pin passage was clear, too. And voila, the light primer strikes were history. 

Sometimes, a bit of simple maintenance can save the day.

5. Extraction Failure

Alright, time to chat about another hiccup you might run into: extraction failure. That’s right, you fire, and the spent casing just doesn’t want to leave the gun. Talk about awkward! I’ve had this happen, and I’ve got to say, it’s a concern. You’re not just dealing with a malfunction; this could be downright dangerous. It’s often down to either the wrong ammo or the recoil spring having too much tension. Trust me, you want to nip this issue in the bud.


So, how did I tackle this? Well, for starters, I gave the gun a good clean. Then, I took some sandpaper and polished the feed ramp. Didn’t take long, but made a difference. Next up, I switched the ammo. 

Yep, sometimes the brand of ammunition can be the bad guy. Tried a couple of different kinds and found one that the gun liked. If you’re on a budget, don’t worry; plenty of affordable ammo options still do the job. 

All these steps helped me get rid of the extraction issue. It’s really about understanding your gun and treating it right.

6. Firing Issue

Okay, let’s dive into another headache: firing issues. Man, nothing’s worse than pulling the trigger and not getting the bang you expected. 

I found myself in that exact situation more than once while out in the field. It’s frustrating, and not to mention, it can be dangerous. A faulty firing mechanism or a malfunction in the gun’s internal components could be the root cause. 

You don’t want to find yourself in a bind with an unpredictable gun when it comes to firing.


What did I do to tackle this? First thing, I made sure to give the gun a thorough cleaning. Grime and dust can mess with the firing mechanisms big time. Next, I double-checked the ammo; sometimes, that’s the issue. 

And for good measure, I even inspected the gun’s internal components for wear and tear. A simple spring replacement or tightening of a loose screw can do wonders. These steps helped me troubleshoot the firing issue. 

Proactive maintenance and the willingness to double-check things can make all the difference.

Final Verdict

Look, no piece of gear is perfect, and firearms are no exception. After putting this gun through its paces, I’ve found it to be quite reliable, but not without its issues. 

Sure, I’ve had my moments of frustration, especially with firing inconsistencies and grip adjustments. But here’s the good news: These problems are fixable. A little elbow grease in the cleaning department and mindful practice can go a long way. 

This gun offers a good balance of size and functionality, making it a strong choice for concealed carry. It can serve you well in most situations if you’re willing to spend some time familiarizing yourself with it and addressing its minor faults.


Is the S&W Bodyguard 380 reliable?

Yes, highly reliable with proper care.

Is the Bodyguard 380 drop safe?

Yes, designed to be drop safe.

How far is 380 bodyguard accurate?

It is accurate up to 7 yards for man-sized targets.

Which is better Ruger LCP vs S&W bodyguard?

Bodyguard has more features and a longer grip.

One Request?

I worked hard on this post to help the shooters community. it would help me a lot if you consider sharing it on social media network

BecauseSharing Is Caring..

Because Sharing Is Caring..

Photo of author


I'm Micheal, an avid shooter and hunting enthusiast from Texas. I'm a recreational shooter who loves to spend time at the range and enjoy learning about new firearms and gears. I love to write about guns and share my passion for shooting with others.

2 thoughts on “Top 6 Smith and Wesson Bodyguard 380 Problems And How To Fix Them”

  1. My S&W BODYGARD 380 has a safety latch problem. It is too difficult to switch off and on. Is there any simple solution for this? I have tried cleaning and oiling the pin, but it makes on difference in the operation. Are there any suggestions?

    • It sounds like you’ve already tried the basics with cleaning and oiling. If that hasn’t made a difference, it might be a mechanical issue rather than just a maintenance one.

      One possible solution could be to check if the safety latch spring is too stiff or if there’s any misalignment causing the latch to be overly tight. Sometimes, springs can be a bit too robust right out of the factory. A gunsmith might be able to adjust or replace the spring with something that gives a smoother operation.

      Another thing you could consider is whether the safety mechanism has worn down unevenly or not. If it’s still under warranty, reaching out to Smith and Wesson for a professional look or potential replacement could be another route to explore.


Leave a Comment