Smith & Wesson M&P 15-22 Rifle and Pistol Upgrades

by Ryan Cleckner

January 2, 2023



The M&P 15-22 is very popular for a few reasons:

  • It’s affordable
  • It’s a great trainer
  • It’s easy to upgrade and accessorize

In fact, we ranked the M&P 15-22 as the “Best for Training” 22 lr and second overall on our “Best 22lr Rifles” list.

In this article, we’re going to find and share the best upgrades for your M&P 15-22.

As an ar-style platform, the M&P 15-22 is available as both a rifle and a pistol and althought some of these upgrades will work for both, we’ll also segregate some upgrades specficially for pistols and rifles.

M&P 15-22 Upgrades

There are some upgrades we recomned for the Smith and Wesson MP 15-22 regardless of whether you have the rifle or the pistol version.

Here’s our list of parts and accessories to upgrade your SW MP15-22:

M&P 15-22 Trigger Pins

AR-15 Rimfire Anti-Walk Pins

The first, and we mean the VERY FIRST thing you should upgrade on any M&P 15 22lr you have are the trigger pins.

These parts aren’t just an upgrade that will improve your shooting experience, they are a safety upgrade as well!

The factory trigger pins in the M&P rimfires are polymer and they “walk” out of position during firing. This, at best, just causes the S&W M&P to stop firing. At worst, it could cause it to fire when it isn’t supposed to.

Please, if you buy no other parts or accessories for your rimfire AR, please at least get these CMC Anti-walk pins.

M&P 15-22 Trigger Upgrade

timey trigger rifle upgrade
M&P 15 22lr Trigger Upgrade

The S&W M&P 15-22 comes with a budget trigger that works fine but it easily the first upgrade any shooter should make on a budget AR-15. Ths includes Smith’s other budget ARs like the MP 15 Sport and the M&P15 Sport II.

Our favorite trigger upgrade for the m7p 15 22 lr is: Timney Triggers Impact AR Trigger.

M&P15 22 Silencer Upgrade

One of the best things to do with any rimfire firearm is to suppress it (add a silencer).

Rimfire is so fun to suppress because they function well (they work nicely with silencers), rimfire silencers are the cheapest options available, and they can be VERY quiet.

22 lr is easy to suppress because the standard velocity for 22 long rifle ammo is subsonic – that is, the bullet travels slower than the speed of sound. This means when a silencer removes the “bang” from teh expanding gasses from firing, there is no residual super-sonic crack like there is with bullets that travel faster than the speed of sound.

Also, the “bang” from a rimfire, especially if you have rifle because of the longer barrel length, is already fairly quiet.

Thankfully, the 15-22 comes with a threaded barrel to is makes adding a silencer very easy.

For the M&P 15-22 we recommend ANY rimfire silencer from our friends at SilencerShop.

MP15-22 Pistol Grip Upgrade

As with most AR-15s, upgrading the pistol grip is an easy and budget friendly upgrade that may make the rifle more comfortable to shoot (and sometimes provide som extra storage).

Our favorite grip for the MP 15 22 lr (rifle or pistol) is the Magpul MOE+ Grip.

When installing it, be careful to not lose the spring nor detent for the safety. Trust us, we’ve done it before.

In addition to upgrading the grip, you may also want to upgrade the trigger guard (see on Amazon) and even get a module for this Magpul grip that gives you some oil bottle storage (see on Amazon).

M&P 15-22 Cleaning Kit

Owning any firearm means cleaning and maintaining it.

However, rimfires are especially filthy and you’re going to want a good cleaning kit to help keep your M&P 15 clean and running well.

If you allow a rimfire to get too dirty, especially if you’ve been using a silencer, it is going to start malfunctioning – that’s not good!

If you’d like a good cleaning kit, check out our Best Cleaning Kits article. But, I can save you some time now and just let you know which one we recommend the most – especially for those just starting out: the Guardian Cleaning Kit (on Amazon).

MP 15-22 Rifle Upgrades

In addition to the parts above that would work as upgrades to any M&P 22, there are some accessories that are specific to the rifle-version.

For example, although the M&P 22 isn’t meant for long range shooting with precision accuracy, a rifle scope can really help you see target further away and help to extend the effective range of the rifle.

For a rifle scope upgrade for your M&P 15-22, we’ve gathered a collection of the Best Riflescopes for Ruger 10/22 rifles that would work great for the M&P 15-22 as well because they are both rimfire 22 lr rifles.

Since the M&P is an AR-15 style rifle, a more “tactical” mid-range scope might be more appropriate. My favorite optic for my M&P 15-22 is a Vortex Spark red dot (see on Amazon).

When you go to mount your riflescope, make sure it is high enough to clear the rear folding sights.

If you put a riflescope on your M&P because you want to shoot longer range, perhaps a better hand guard might be worth looking at as well so that you have a stable platform for bipod legs.

You can get a hand guard with a picatinny rail around the sides for mounting of accessories like flashlights or bipods but we recommend a smoother and more modern option that has an m lok handguard for mounting the same accessories (even pica tinny rail sections if that’s what you’d like).

For help selecting a hand guard, check out our Best AR-15 Handguards.

MP 15-22 Pistol Upgrades

If you have an M&P 15-22 pistol, there are some upgrades unique just to your version of this rimfire AR-15.

As a pistol, even though the heart of the system is the same, the overall length and the barrel length will be shorter than the rifle version. Also, the pistol, by legal definition, can not have a buttstock.

Instead, it may have a “pistol brace.”

One of the most obvious M&P 15-22 Pistol upgrades would be to add or change the pistol brace – we have an entire list of the Best Pistol Braces to help you out. As a hint, get one from SB Tactical and you’ll be on the right track.

Whichever upgrades you choose for your Smith and Wesson M and P 15-22, we hope you have fun tinkering and modifying your rifle or pistol and that you enjoy shooting and using it even more!


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About Ryan Cleckner

Ryan is a former special operations sniper (1/75 Ranger) and current firearms attorney, firearms industry executive, university lecturer, and bestselling author of the Long Range Shooting Handbook.

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