3 Common CZ Woodcock Problems You Must Be Aware of

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I’m here to talk about my experience with the CZ Woodcock shotgun. I’ve been testing it out in the field, and let me tell you, it’s been quite an experience. 

Don’t get me wrong; it’s a solid shotgun, but like anything else, it’s got its issues. 

I’ll dive into three common CZ Woodcock Problems: a safety issue, the occasional failure to fire, and a recoil problem. 

But hey, no need to worry! I’ll point out these issues and offer some straightforward solutions to help you get the best out of this shotgun.

Overview of CZ Woodcock Problems & their Solutions

ProblemInstruction for Solution
Safety IssueToggle the safety back and forth when unloaded to make it more responsive.
Failure to FireOpen the action fully to reset the trigger and start with the bottom barrel.
Recoil ProblemReplace the factory butt plate with a slip-on recoil pad.

Top 3 CZ Woodcock Problems & Solutions

1. Safety Issue

Alright, safety first, right? Well, with the CZ Woodcock, I stumbled upon a minor issue. When I had the top barrel selected and the safety switch moved toward the center, I couldn’t get it back into firing mode. 

I tried and tried, but it was like the safety was stuck or something. It’s a headache, let me tell you, especially when you’re out there ready to shoot, and this gets in your way. 

Safety is non-negotiable when it comes to shotguns, so this problem definitely needed a fix.


So here’s what worked for me. These safeties can be a bit stiff and take a little breaking in to get smoother. What I did was I kept toggling it back and forth when the gun was unloaded, just to get it moving more freely. 

After a while, I noticed it became more responsive. So, if you’re facing the same issue, just give it some time and gentle manipulation. Worked like a charm for me!

2. Failure To Fire

So there I was, out at the range, pumped to shoot some rounds with the CZ Woodcock. Loaded it up, aimed, pulled the trigger, and… nothing. Seriously, not a thing. 

Imagine my surprise! But then, lo and behold, I pulled the trigger again, and it fired just fine. This happened about half the time, which is way too often if you ask me. I was using the top barrel exclusively, but a 50% success rate? That’s not gonna cut it.


Here’s the kicker, and it’s simpler than you’d think. Turns out, it was all about the action. If you’re using the top barrel only, like I was, ensure you’re fully opening the action to reset the trigger. 

I realized I was only opening it enough to extract the shell from the top barrel, which wasn’t sufficient to reset the darn thing. 

When I started shooting from the bottom barrel first, the issue seemed to go away. Just remember: Open the action all the way and start with the bottom barrel. Problem solved!

3. Recoil Problem 

I had a chance to take the CZ Woodcock out, and right from the get-go, I noticed the recoil was a bit much. 

Don’t get me wrong, recoil is expected in shooting sports, but this was a bit over the top. So, I dug deeper to find out what was causing the problem.

 The soft rubber butt plate that comes standard with the Woodcock could be the main reason for the excessive recoil.


Okay, so what did I do to fix it? I swapped out the factory butt plate with a slip-on recoil pad designed to reduce felt recoil. 

And voila, the problem seemed to go away. The reduced recoil made the shooting experience much more comfortable and enjoyable. 

So, if you’re dealing with this recoil issue on your Woodcock, consider switching to a slip-on recoil pad. It’s a quick fix that could make a world of difference.


The CZ Woodcock is far from a perfect shotgun, but it’s got a lot going for it. It’s a reliable piece that’s pretty darn good for upland shooting. 

In my time with it, I encountered some problems, but I also found solutions that worked. From a stubborn safety switch to an intermittent failure to fire and a surprising amount of recoil, each problem had a straightforward fix. 

That’s why I’d still recommend it to anyone investing in a quality shotgun. It might have its drawbacks, but all things considered, the pros outweigh the cons. 

With a few tweaks here and there, you can truly make the Woodcock work for you.


Is the CZ Woodcock a good gun?

Yes, it’s a great gun with features similar to the Redhead but with a different receiver finish.

Does the CZ Woodcock have ejectors?

Yes, it comes with ejectors in 12/20-gauge and extractors in 28/.410.

Is over-under or side by side better?

Over-under is often preferred due to a “single sight plane,” making it easier for some to aim.

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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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