5 Most Common Springfield XD Problems And How To Fix Them

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I’ve had the opportunity to test the Springfield XD series in real-world conditions. My hands-on experience revealed a few common snags that users might encounter. 

In My journey with the Springfield XD, I encountered various Springfield XD Problems, from stubborn striker retainer pins and slides refusing to return to battery to grip safety and magazine troubles. Interaction complications within the firearm’s internals also caught My attention. Each of these hurdles has a story to tell and a solution to offer.

This article aims to guide you through these common issues, laying them bare and offering field-tested remedies. By the end, I hope to leave you better prepared to tackle these challenges, ensuring you get the best out of your Springfield XD. Let’s get started, shall we?

Overview of the Problems & their Solutions

Striker Retainer Pin ProblemContact Springfield via email to request replacement retainer pins free of charge.
Not Returning to BatteryAdjust the extractor tension to help the slide return to battery reliably.
Interaction ComplicationsReach out to Springfield Armory (SA) for support; they’re often willing to offer repairs.
Grip Safety IssueImprove grip through practice, and take the gun to a gunsmith if the grip safety breaks.
Magazine ProblemsKeep a spare magazine on hand, and be gentler during training to prevent damage.

Top 5 Springfield XD Problems & Solutions

1. Striker Retainer Pin Problem

Here’s the thing: when the Striker Retainer Pin works right, it’s as smooth as silk. But boy, when it starts to go, the troubles it brings! It’s a sneaky little beast that loves to break, often at the worst times. 

Not to put too fine a point on it, but in the time I’ve owned this pistol, I’’ve replaced the retainer pin no less than seven times. I can’t help but wince every time it snaps, locking up the striker and rendering the pistol useless. 

It’s a bit like getting a flat tire in the middle of nowhere. You’re just stuck, and you cannot do much about it.


Don’t lose hope. There’s always a silver lining, right? In this case, the solution is as simple as it is effective: reach out to Springfield. Yep, you heard that right. 

The first time it happened to me, I sent them an email explaining the issue, and guess what? They sent me new retainer pins free of charge.

Just replace the pin, and you’re back in action, good as new. And the best part? They ditched the pin in their single-stack XD-S series. So maybe, just maybe, they’ll do the same with this one someday. Let’s keep My fingers crossed.

2. Not Returning to Battery

Okay, here’s a predicament. The slide. It’s got a mind of its own. It just loves to stay out of battery, just when you need it to behave.

Apply even the slightest pressure to the front of the gun, maybe while holstering, and boom! The slide decides it’s time for a break. 

And not just that, it’s stubborn too. It needs a good, forceful rack to get back into action. it can actually be a serious safety issue, especially in a self-defense situation.


But don’t despair. After dealing with this issue a few times, I found a trick that works like a charm. All it needs is a small tweak, nothing major. The magic lies in adjusting the extractor tension. 

Yep, that’s it. It might sound like a minor change, but trust me, it makes a world of difference. 

After the adjustment, the slide behaved just like it was supposed to, returning to the battery like a pro. It was a relief, really. So, if you find your XD giving you the same grief, give this solution a shot. You’ll thank me later.

3. Interaction Complications

Oh, boy, where do I start? There’s a host of strange happenings inside the XD series that leave you scratching your head. Call them interaction complications, if you will. 

You can feel it when you push the magazine release, and there’s an odd trigger creep. Or when the magazine decides to do a quick rendezvous with the rear of the slide.

And who could forget the dry-firing ordeal? Do it a few times without a snap cap, and the firing pin wears down. 


It sounds grim, I know. But hang in there; it’s not all bad news. If your XD starts giving you these complications, there’s a simple first step. Just shoot an email over to SA. They’re pretty good with this stuff.

I did the same when I faced these issues, and they offered to repair it for me. It was a bit of a relief, to be honest. 

4. Grip Safety Issue

The grip safety is a feature that’s supposed to be safe. But with the XD series, it’s more of a safety hazard than anything. Unlike the reliable grip safeties on other designs like the 1911s, the XD’s grip safety is oddly narrow. 

It doesn’t cover the entire backstrap but rests smack dab in the middle. A little pressure here and there doesn’t cut it; you need a perfect grip to deactivate it.

The XD’s design makes it almost impossible to use with your non-dominant hand. 

If the grip safety breaks, it can trap a live round in the gun.And since the slide can’t move without the grip safety engaged, the slide locks in place, rendering the gun unusable.


If you find yourself dealing with this issue, the first thing to do is work on that grip. Yes, it’s tricky, but you can nail it with practice. 

And if the grip safety breaks, off to the gunsmith it goes. No other options.

5. Magazine Problems

Now, I’ve noticed a frustrating pattern with the magazine of the XD series. The magazine is crafted from thin sheet metal. Sounds fine, right? Wrong.

This material is a nightmare because it bends easily, especially the feed lips. This causes a string of issues like the dreaded failure-to-feed and improper seating.

Imagine training, needing to drop magazines, only to remember that these magazines can’t handle it. They’re just too fragile. And let’s not forget about the herculean effort needed to seat these magazines properly. 


Now, you may wonder what I did about this issue. Not much, I’m afraid. 

These magazines are as brittle as they come. The only practical solution I could find was to keep a spare magazine on hand. 

After all, they can malfunction when you least expect it. I also took a gentler approach during training to avoid any unnecessary damage.


Despite all the problems, I’ve got to say the Springfield XD has its own charm. Sure, it’s not perfect. With the sneaky striker retainer pin that loves to break, the slide is not returning to battery, and those pesky interaction complications, it’s got its share of problems. And let’s not even get started on the grip safety issue and the fragile magazine.

However, every problem it presents is accompanied by a solution. Remember, every firearm has its strengths and weaknesses. The Springfield XD is no exception. You must weigh the pros and cons to see if it fits your needs. So, is it worth it? Well, that’s for you to decide.


What Springfield Armory XD is on recall? 

The Springfield Armory XD that was recalled is the 3.3 XD-S™. The recall was due to rare circumstances of unintended discharges or double-fires.

Are Springfield guns reliable? 

In general, Springfield guns are known to be reliable and accurate. However, like any firearm, they may not be a perfect fit for everyone.

Can I dry fire Springfield XD?

Yes, it is possible to dry fire a Springfield XD. You can practice this with a DryFireMag, but remember it isn’t compatible with firing pin activated laser cartridges.

Is Springfield XD discontinued? 

The XD-M® series of handguns by Springfield XD has been discontinued.

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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.

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