Personal protection of our families, our properties and ourselves is something we cannot escape in this world. A gun will offer protection in certain circumstances. This means it may not be in use most of the time, hence, it should be stored well. Taking necessary storage precaution makes the firearm safe from fire, theft, or any other damage. This is where a gun safe comes in. Just like any other product in the market, there are many types and brands of safes. You will also find different sizes and styles.
When searching for a gun safe to buy, it must meet your exceptions and your budget. However, the most important thing is to get the best of the best because if you purchase a faulty safe, it may get jammed and lock you out. Hence, buying a gun safe is not a decision to make so lightly.
Why do you need a gun safe?
You may have had your gun for some years without anything complicated coming up. In fact, you may have never experienced any problem for all those years, and hence you may question the need for purchasing a firearm safe.
Here is a worst case scenario
Peter and his wife purchased a gun three years ago. For the last three years, Peter has never had any major problem with his gun. In fact, he even stores his gun in a metal box with a lock in the basement. Today, Peter and his wife are planning to go out at night to celebrate their 15-year anniversary. As they were getting ready for the night in their bedroom, they heard a loud bang coming from the basement. Their 10-year-old son critically shot himself while playing with his father’s gun. Nobody can explain how he managed to get the gun that is always locked in a metal box in the basement.
This is something that happens across the world, and many of these cases can be prevented if the firearms are locked up and secured in a safe. There are many gun safes being sold online, at gun shops and gun shows. Investing in a gun safe, for example, for the exclusive purpose of avoiding an unintentional disengagement, or a person repossession it without permission, could have saved Peter’s son, including other kids around the world. Many kids have died from intentional or accidental gunshot wounds because of poor storage of the guns.
Here are some reasons why you need to secure your gun properly.
a. Safety of your gun – One main reason why you need to secure your gun in a safe is to make sure the gun is always secured. It might look like a good idea to just store your firearm in a case or a rack, but this can raise many security questions. It may seem responsible to some people, but a simple lock provides no safety at all. A simple lock may prevent a small child from having the gun, but an older child or a burglar can use advanced tools to defect that lock.
b. Federal laws and regulations – Most individuals can easily purchase a firearm, but when it comes to storage, properly mechanisms are not observed. Hence, many States have strict laws and regulations concerning gun storage. For instance, in some areas, it is a must to have the trigger locked when the gun is not in use. In other States, the law requires the gun owner to purchase a gun safe. It is therefore important to understand laws and regulations in your area regarding gun ownership and gun storage.
c. Protect your investment – Modern guns are very expensive. Moreover, guns can become collector’s items over time, which boosts their value. Even though the burglar may not harm an individual or property with the gun, losing the gun can be an economic hardship.
d. It might be a condition for insurance – Depending on your area and the company you use, it may be an insurance company condition to store your firearm in a gun safe. Moreover, having a gun safe can help to lower insurance rates. This is a good reason buy a gun safe.
e. Legal protection – Most people do not know that there is a possibility of unsecured guns to be used to commit a crime. Firearms are very expensive to get, and normally require background checks before buying. Most criminals do not have the money to purchase a firearm, nor are they ready or willing to provide information about themselves. This makes an unsecured gun a very tempting offer for criminals. If something like this happens, you will be in a difficult situation explaining to a police officer why or how a gun registered under your name was used in a crime. It is therefore important to secure your gun by storing it in a gun safe.
f. Secure other valuables – We all have important documents, jewelry and many other valuables in our homes. If they are not secured, they can easily be damaged or stolen. Having a gun safe, will also ensure these valuable assets are securely stored.
g. Quick access
If something happens, and you are forced to use the gun for protection, having it in a central location is important.
10 Things to consider when buying a gun safe
The moment you decided to purchase a gun is the moment you subjected yourself to buy a gun safe as well. A gun safe is one of the most vital investment you can make. Whether it is your house or an unfriendly environment like Afghanistan or Iraq, you should have a secure location that you can count on. There are numerous gun safes you can buy, but before you go shopping, here are some things to consider when buying a safe. You might also be interested in my post on cheap gun safes.
It is important to buy a gun safe that is of good size. Search for a gun safe that can fit two guns and also accommodate bullets as well. However, you may get a gun safe that is small in size but has numerous spaces for the bullets. Even though a smaller safe is cheaper, it is important to invest in a bigger safe. In addition, make sure that the gun safe will fit well in your room since you do not want a safe that is occupying most of your space.
2. Fire protection
Another important factor to consider when buying a gun safe is fire protection feature. This means that no matter what happens to your property, your gun and bullets will remains safe. If ever your gun safe does not involve a natural tragedy, flood or fire, the gun safe cannot be damaged. This remain an important feature especially if you add other important materials in the gun safe.
3. Locking mechanisms
It is good to buy a gun safe with very high tech locking mechanisms. It does not make sense to buy a gun safe but your kids or burglary can have an easy access to your guns in the safe. Modern guns safes can be accessed via voice activation, through a password or via thumb print. Buy a gun safe that can only be opened by you or any other person you trust. It is also important to go through the advantages and disadvantages of all locking mechanisms. This will help you determine the best locking mechanism for you and your guns.
4. Know different brands
There are so many models of safes available online and in most local gun shops. Each and every brand has its own strength and its own weakness. For instance, some are equipped with shelves, racks, and drawers, while some lack those benefits. Others use thick steel for additional security. Other have numerous fireproofing materials. When looking at locking mechanism, there is a huge variety of options. It is therefore important to go through different brands and models before making a purchase.
5. Know your safe
Gun safes are all different. It is therefore important to know all characteristics of a particular safe before committing yourself to buy it. For example, when it comes to durability and strength, the steel used varies in quality. Some are relatively thin while others are very thick. You should also consider whether the gun safe is suitable to store other types of guns you may acquire in the future such as rifles and handguns.
Price is another factor to consider when buying a gun safe. However, the price of a particular safe may not have a big impact on the quality of the gun safe because there are some expensive gun safes that do not offer the same structures and strength as others which are relatively cheaper. Mostly, instead of concentrating more on the price, consider other factors such as safety and protection. Most people forget that a gun safe is an asset that you will use for all your life.
7. Internal and external dimensions
It is important to note that internal dimensions matter a lot than external dimensions. Even though external dimensions will give you a good idea of how big the safe is, the internal dimension is more important. In fact, the external dimensions are meaningless after installing the safe. Hence, you should concentrate more on the interior side of the gun safe.
8. Consider special features
When you go shopping, remember to consider special features that are only seen on gun safes such as fire liners, installation, damp proofing and hinges. Manufacturers of gun safes are very competitive. Thus, there are always new marketing features which are not really safety features. For example, when purchasing a gun safe, whether it is a fire proof or a cheap gun safe, the seller will ask you whether you prefer internal hinges or external hinges. Selecting a safe with external hinges means that the door can open wide, unlike internal hinges. In addition, the external hinges allow safe door removal for servicing or transport.
Just like any other purchase, it is important to look at the warranty very closely. Read everything on the warranty no matter how fine the print is. A normal warranty will have a year’s length as this is a good period that a fault can occur. Some manufacturers offer special plans to extend the warranty period. If you find a gun safe offering lifetime warranty, consider it. This will eliminate future problems.
10. Extra precautions
In an event an intruder tries to get entry into the safe, it is vital for it to have extra safeguards. It should be programmed with a re-locking device. These are devices that will work in an event the locking system is compromised. This will make it more difficult for the intruder to open. For maximum security, there should be two in every corner of the door.
How to select the right safe for your gun
Above everything, a gun safe is about protection. Unluckily, the current market is congested with cheap safes that do not provide significant protection. Apparently, the gun safes appear very good, strong, and with thick doors. But once you remove the door panel, you will know the entire truth.
When buying online, the best thing you can do is to go through numerous reviews. It may sound strange but reviews can help you purchase the right gun safe for your firearms. No not worry much about biased reviews, remember they are written by real customers who have bought and used the item.
Another part to do your homework is the placement of the gun safe. You really want to purchase a gun safe but you are not sure where to place it. Do you want a bedside gun safe, a car safe or a basement gun safe? You should also consider gun safe accessories such as lighting and humidifier. These are important things you will realise are very necessary once you buy a gun safe.
If the safe receives many negative reviews than positive ones, it is clear that it is not a good product. If you will buying at a local gun safe store, ask the sales clerk as many questions as possible about the features and the specs. This will help you understand how it works.
Some further reading –