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Keeping a firearm in the house can be a double-edged sword. On the one hand, you’re able to defend yourself and your loved ones if you experience a house raid. On the other hand, you increase the risk of danger posed by guns to your family.
That’s where gun safes come in, and in this article, we reveal the best pistol gun safe available on the market.
In our opinion and many other huge fans of all things gun-related, the Vaultek VS20i is the best pistol gun safe you can buy right now. This safe ticks all the boxes when it comes to securing firearms. And it’s incredibly high-tech as you’ll see.
So, keep reading to find out what the world of gun safes has to offer, which options are the best, and what you’ll want to look out for when choosing a gun safe.
- Here Are the Best Pistol Gun Safe (Our Picks)
- Buying Guide: Choosing the Best Pistol Gun Safe for Quick Access
- Final Verdict
Here Are the Best Pistol Gun Safe (Our Picks)
The following pistol gun safes are the creme de la creme of home firearm storage. Each one does an excellent job of keeping pistols out of reach while simultaneously providing quick access to the firearm when the situation calls for it.
1. Vaultek VS20i
The Vaultek VS20i is a sleek, portable pistol gun safe that’s packed with unique, high-tech features that’ll make tech-loving handgun owners swoon.
Once the lid is closed, the incredibly smart safe locks automatically, securing the pistol until it’s unlocked again with the correct access code. Moreover, the safe’s access code can be programmed using 4 to 8 digits, which you can rewrite at any time.
Additionally, It features a biometric scanner capable of storing 20 unique fingerprint IDs. The safe recognizes the first two fingerprints as admins, and only these two can authorize subsequent fingerprints (IDs 3 to 20).
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Additionally, the VS20i features a six-button keypad with a built-in proximity sensor that lights up the keypads once a hand touches them. This feature will be convenient when you need to access the safe’s contents in the dark.
Users can connect their safe to their smartphone using the downloadable Vaultek Bluetooth 2.0 app available for Android and iOs devices. Once paired, they can unlock the safe using their phone, amongst other functions. To use this feature, the user’s Bluetooth settings must be toggled on, and their phone must be within 25 feet of the safe.
For an additional fee, users can get quick access to the safe’s contents with the help of a smart nano key. It allows the user to open the safe remotely if they’re within the 6-foot range.
In terms of durability, the VS20i is constructed with 16-gauge carbon steel meant to give thieves a hard time getting to the safe’s contents. While admittedly adding to the safe’s weight, the steel used isn’t heavy enough to hurt the safe’s portability. In addition, the VS20i comes with anti-theft features like its patented two-point anti-impact latches and anti-pry bars.
The safe is powered by a rechargeable lithium-ion battery that’s easily removable with the help of a ribbon located near the battery’s hold. It can store one full-size handgun or two compact handguns and other personal belongings, including magazines, passports, and cash. The safe can be mounted or tethered to a nightstand or desk and is highly transportable.
The Vaultek VS20i is a must-have for anyone who wants a high-tech firearm storage solution at home. The use of 16-gauge carbon steel means this safe will withstand attempted break-ins without sacrificing portability.
2. Fort Knox PB1
At a glance, the Fort Knox PB1 leaves a long-lasting impression. Constructed with 10-gauge steel, this safe is as durable as it looks, making it quite resistant to break-ins.
The safe’s body is coated in an antique silver powder finish, adding to its durability. It’s also quite heavy for a portable safe, weighing roughly 24 pounds when empty. Standing in the way of thieves is the PB1’s 3/16-inch wraparound door. In addition, its steel covering can withstand massive blows from blunt tools like hammers.
Additionally, it features tamper-resistant hinges that prevent the safe from being accessed using break-in tools. And a gas strut near the tamper-resistant hinges makes it easy to lift the door, allowing for quick access.
The PB1 can store two full-size handguns and other personal belongings like cash and gun magazines. It also comes with removable foam padding that lets you make adjustments to the safe interior’s thickness while serving the dual purpose of protecting the safe’s contents from scrapes and damage when transported.
Four pre-drilled holes at the bottom of the safe make it easy to bolt it to almost any flat surface, including car interiors. Meanwhile, the PB1’s Simplex push-button lock is mechanical and is capable of 1,081 combinations. As a plus, the lock doesn’t require batteries.
The Fort Knox PB1 comes with a lifetime warranty. It has also surpassed the firearm safety device requirements of the California Department of Justice, signaling its high quality.
If you’re looking for a highly durable safe, the Fort Knox PB1 is a great choice. Its 10-gauge steel body is reassuringly imposing, while the pre-drilled holes underneath it allow you to place the safe in various locations.
3. GunVault SV500 SpeedVault
If you won’t be moving your pistol gun safe around different parts of the house, you’ll want the GunVault SV500 SpeedVault. By design, this gun safe is meant to be mounted to a particular spot, such as a bedside table. With its mounting holes, you can install it from the left, right, or backside.
Constructed with 18-gauge steel, this safe is relatively sturdy, if not undefeatable. It can store a full-size handgun, with some room left over for an extra magazine. As for its foam interior, it keeps the contents free from scuffs. As a bonus, GunVault throws in a Flambeau Zerus Corrosion Protection Slab, which keeps the safe from corroding.
Thanks to the safe’s tamper detection feature, you’ll always know when someone has messed with it. So, you’re able to check whether the wrong access code has been inputted at any time. In addition, the safe’s sleep mode function prevents any more incorrect entries for two minutes after six incorrect tries.
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The SV500 is battery-operated. GunVault provides backup override keys with the safe, so you’ll be able to access its contents if the batteries die on you. However, it’ll probably never come to that, thanks to the safe’s low-battery warning system, which prompts a battery change when the battery is low.
In low visibility situations, you’re able to access your handgun, courtesy of the safe’s internal LED light. You can also access it quickly, and it lets you combine button presses when entering the access code.
The GunVault SV500 SpeedVault is perfect for anyone who has some particularly curious kids in their household. With the safe’s tamper detection feature, you’ll always know whether anyone has tried to access the safe’s contents.
4. Stealth ShadowVault SV1
Constructed with heavy-duty steel, a 7-gauge steel door, and a 10-gauge steel body, the Stealth ShadowVault SV1 is the sturdiest gun safe on this list. The steel used for the body of this gun safe is 233% thicker than the industry average. Although this case weighs a hefty 22 pounds, it’s still portable, and it features a handle you can use to carry it to the gun range.
The SV1’s body is covered in highly durable reptilian black paint. It features a Sargent and Greenleaf Spartan High-Security Type 1 Digital Lock. This lock has a ¼ inch hard plate, making it extremely difficult for the lock to be drilled out. Additionally, the lock has a red LED light that won’t interfere with night vision when lighting up the keypad.
The SV1’s lock is programmable with a six-digit access code. It also has a lock-out feature, which bars any more attempts at inputting an access code for 15 minutes after four wrong attempts. When pressed, the keypad makes a reassuring audible sound. However, living up to its name, the keypad can be muted for stealthy access to the firearm within.
Moreover, this gun safe is highly resistant to tampering. Welded into place underneath the safe’s lid are two steel bars, which hold the door shut when the safe is closed, preventing a crowbar from breaching it. The door and body of this gun safe are also punch-resistant, thanks to the steel encasing them.
Moreover, it includes four anchor bolts so that you can bolt it down to most surfaces through the factory drilled anchor holes located on the bottom of the safe. In terms of capacity, the SV1 can store two full-size handguns.
Pistol owners looking for an extremely sturdy safe will appreciate the Stealth ShadowVault SV1. Its drill-resistant lock and durable door offer all the security they’ll need from a gun safe.
5. Hornady RAPiD Night Guard
Quick access through multiple entry methods and an inconspicuous design are Hornady RAPiD Night Guard’s unique selling points. Thanks to a large digital clock display, this handgun safe could pass for a bedside alarm clock, allowing you to hide your firearm in plain sight.
It comes with three access methods: an RFID reader, access codes programmed by the user, and a set of mechanical keys for manual entry when it isn’t possible to use the other methods. When accessed, the safe slides out like a drawer.
You can also access the safe’s contents through the 4 RFID tags. They’re embedded into the wristband, key fob, and the two decals included in the package. These RFID tags facilitate accessing the safe for the user with a simple touch of the safe’s tempered glass front panel.
Internally, the safe’s tray measures 2.2 inches in height, 9.2 inches in width, and 6.9 inches in depth. It also features a rubber tray to keep the contents free of damage. In terms of capacity, it can hold one full-sized gun.
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Built with 14-gauge steel, this sturdy and tamper-proof gun safe is capable of storing two small firearms in its padded interior. Not only is the user able to bolt the safe to any flat surface, but they can also tether it to a stationary object while in transit using its steel lockdown security cable.
The Night Guard comes with an AC power cord that you can plug into any wall socket and two USB-A ports for charging. You can also power it with batteries, which is handy in the case of a power outage.
The Hornady RAPiD Night Guard’s low-profile design renders it an essential for anyone who wants to protect their firearm from theft. Its multiple access methods also mean pistol owners can get to their guns in a pinch.
6. Vaultek Lifepod 2.0
The Vaultek Lifepod 2.0 stands out as the only waterproof pistol gun safe on our list. Constructed with high-intensity polymer, it’s lightweight, durable, weather-resistant, dustproof, drop-proof, and TSA-compliant, the last feature equipping it to be carried onboard an aircraft.
Courtesy of two compression latches located on either side and a rubber gasket, this gun safe comes with a water-tight seal. In case of flooding, the safe will float if it contains a load weighing 2 pounds or less. When submerged, it can withstand water depths of up to 3 feet for thirty minutes.
Furthermore, the Lifepod 2.0 features a removable interior tray. Not only does this feature provide an extra layer of storage, but it enables stackable storage. You can also use the tray for storing EDC gear, which can be secured with the help of the two included straps. Incidentally, the safe can store one full-sized handgun.
The Lifepod 2.0 also features touch-sensitive technology, so it supports quick access. In low-light environments, a backlit LED light illuminates the gun safe’s 4-button keypad. And you’re able to program the safe’s access code with either a 4 or 8 digit code. If you forget the access code, you can get into the safe using manual keys.
Also, this gun safe is powered by a single 9V alkaline battery, with a micro USB port at the rear, providing an alternate power source if you misplace the safe’s access key.
The Lifepod 2.0 can be secured to a stationary object using the enclosed 4-foot steel-graded cable. Otherwise, this pistol gun safe is highly portable and can be carried around on journeys.
People who live in areas susceptible to bad weather and flooding will find the waterproof features of the Vaultek Lifepod 2.0 appealing. Its lightweight polymer construction also makes it incredibly suitable for air transportation.
7. Stack-On PDS-500
For the classic gun safe design, look no further than the Stack-On PDS-500. Built with alloy steel, it’s incredibly sturdy and can store two full-sized pistols. In addition, its thick plate steel door contains live-action locking bolts, which provide extra security. This door is also pry-resistant, thanks to its hidden hinges.
The PDS-500’s electronic lock is embedded into its door and comes with a keypad and a dashboard faceplate that you can use to check the safe’s status. You can program the safe’s access code using the keypad, with each keypress letting out an audible beep. Also, you have the option of muting the beeping, which is helpful in situations that require stealth.
When the wrong access code is inputted three times, the safe goes into a timeout period. However, if the user forgets their access code, they can still open the safe using its key. Once the door is open again, the user can overwrite the forgotten access code by pressing a button on its side and entering a new one.
In addition, the PDS-500 has pre-drilled holes, which are used to anchor it to any flat surface. And you don’t even need to go searching for tools, as a bunch of fastening tools come with the safe. Once bolted down, the safe becomes immovable, preventing theft.
Although the PDS-500 is bigger than other gun safes on this list, it’s still very portable. You can place it on a bedside table or in a home office. Lastly, it comes with a limited 3-year warranty that covers defects in material and craft.
The Stack-On PDS-500 is ideal for anyone who wants a sturdy safe that’s hard to break into. The hidden hinges on the safe’s door prevent it from being pried open, while its live-action locking bolts secure its contents.
Buying Guide: Choosing the Best Pistol Gun Safe for Quick Access
Before you buy a pistol gun safe, there are some factors to consider in order to choose the right one. They’re as follows:
The best types of pistol gun safes allow almost instantaneous access to their contents. They need minimal thought or contact. Otherwise, safes that require the use of a key or dial to open them may not be the most ideal in a high stakes situation, as you’ll spend precious seconds fiddling with them.
Most pistol gun safes are portable, making them easy to carry along on trips or commutes between home and the office. With that said, you’ll have to keep in mind that the safe’s portability also means that it can easily be stolen.
Safes with higher storage capacities are helpful when you own more than one handgun. Usually, the highest number of firearms that you can store in a pistol gun safe is two. If you own more, you’ll have to look into buying extra safes or a bigger, less-portable safe with more storage capacity.
The most common types of locks on a pistol gun safe are mechanical locks and electrical locks.
On the one hand, mechanical locks tend to be more reliable, with some having key locks that prevent the combination lock from spinning. This adds an extra layer of security to them. With that said, these locks tend to take much longer to open, especially if they have a key lock.
On the other hand, electrical locks provide quicker access to firearms. They’re also programmable, granting more than one user access to the safe’s contents in an emergency. And they can store the lock’s combination in memory. Therefore, the safe will remember the combination, even if its lock’s battery were to die.
A well-made pistol gun safe is less likely to be broken into. For example, safes constructed with 11-gauge steel or lower are more likely to withstand blows from hammers or tampering with large screwdrivers.
Polymer is another durable material used to construct safes. And it makes the gun safe more lightweight than a steel-based one but may also be somewhat drop-proof or waterproof.
Conversely, gun safes made with materials like plastic aren’t as secure, and in some cases, breaking into them may be as simple as using adhesives or nail polish remover.
Bolts and Tethers
Most gun safes are portable, and this feature can be a significant drawback because it means the safe can be stolen whole. To deter such theft, you’ll want a gun safe that you can bolt down to a surface, whether it’s your bedside table or the floor.
Also, gun safes that can be tethered to stationary objects deter theft. These safes usually come with a solid cable to make the attachment.
If you choose a safe that runs on batteries or electricity and has a computer, you’ll need to make sure that it comes with a backup access method if you can’t access it electronically.
Accordingly, the gun safe must come with a key that can open it manually in case you forget the access code you’ve programmed into the safe.
In some cases, you might want a safe that you can hide in plain sight. As such, how well it blends into its surroundings will be a major purchase factor for you.
In some situations, you’ll have to access the safe’s contents in low light conditions. And you may not have the time to grope around for a light source.
As such, a feature you’ll want to look out for is lighting for the keypad. An internal light will also help you see the safe’s contents better.
Depending on your needs, you might want to factor technology into your purchasing decision when choosing a gun safe.
Some safes have high-tech features, such as proximity sensors and RFID wearables. These technologies make accessing the contents of the safe extremely quick, as the user can open it with one touch.
In addition, there are safes that can let the user know whether they’ve been tampered with, while others require the user’s biometric data before they can be accessed.
Though your budget will have the final say in how much you spend on a gun safe, it’s essential to choose one that strikes the right balance between price and quality. The materials used to construct the safe directly influence its final retail price. They’re also a good indicator of how high quality the safe is.
Handgun safes are merely shrunk down versions of firearm safes. This has its advantages and disadvantages, the major advantage being that their portability makes them easy to transport from one location to the other and keep close on a bedside table.
The major drawback with portable handgun safes is that your guns can easily be stolen due to how easy the safe is to carry the safes.
With that said, some safes can be bolted down or tethered to an object. At the very least, they make for a better storage solution than keeping your gun under a pillow or in your bedroom closet, especially when you have kids in the house.
It depends on how many pistols you’re dealing with. If you have or plan to own more than two handguns, it’ll be a better idea to get a bigger safe with the capacity to hold many firearms.
However, if you own two or three handguns, getting a spare portable safe isn’t a bad idea. It allows you to store your handguns in more than one location at home, giving you an advantage in a crisis.
It depends on how much security you want. If all you’re looking for is basic firearm storage, you can expect to spend as low as $600. However, safes that offer a higher level of security cost as much as $4000 or higher.
A good rule of thumb to follow is to buy a safe that’s worth no more than 10-20% of the contents you intend to store inside it. So, for example, if your guns and ammunition are worth $10,000, a safe worth $2000 to $3000 is a good purchase.
The above applies if you keep an extensive collection of guns. However, for firearm owners who have one or two handguns, a safe within the range of $150 to $300 should suffice.
Most gun safe manufacturers claim that their safes are certified waterproof or fireproof. However, these certifications aren’t backed by regulation and should be taken with a grain of salt.
You’ll want to look into what depth of water a safe can handle and how long it can remain submerged before being flooded. The same goes for supposedly fireproof safes: you should look for information regarding how long the safe can withstand fire and to how many degrees Fahrenheit.
Most manufacturers of waterproof/fireproof safes will provide such information, but you might have to do your research to verify these claims.
Yes, you can. However, it depends on how heavy your handgun safe is, as some safes are more suitable for transportation on a commercial flight than others due to their weight and design. For example, a gun safe like the GunVault SV500 designed to be mounted to a bedside table or office desk isn’t suitable for transportation on a plane.
Therefore, if you own a gun safe that’s too heavy or that features a mount design, you’ll need to get a carry case to fly with your firearm. This carry case needs a hard exterior that complies with the Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) rules.
Speaking of which, you’ll want to make sure you’re compliant with TSA’s other rules related to flying with a gun. This means that the weapon must be unloaded and the bullets in a box. You must also declare that you’re carrying a firearm on the flight at the check-in counter.
Opinions vastly differ on the most reliable handgun safe is. That’s because gun owners have different priorities. For example, some gun owners may place more emphasis on the speed of access to the firearm than the safe’s sturdiness, while others may care about getting high-tech features more than portability.
With that said, the handgun safe that has received universal acclaim for its reliability is the Vaultek VS20i. This safe ticks every box in terms of essential gun safe features, including portability, durability, and access speed. It’s also technologically advanced with a biometric scanner, a touch sensor, and other valuable features.
At the end of the day, if you’re looking for a pistol gun safe that’ll keep your firearm out of reach yet give you quick access when you need it, then the Vaultek VS20i is the best one right now. This safe is made with just the right amount of steel to make it portable without sacrificing sturdiness.
Additionally, its high-tech features make accessing your firearm as simple as touching the keypad, which is a great feature to have when you need your gun in a high-stakes situation. The biometric scanner is also a nice touch and is handy if you want your spouse to have access to the safe as well.