Whether you are a serious collector of firearms, a weekend enthusiast, or simply someone who wants to protect their home from armed intruders, buying a gun safe is a prudent decision. That said, there are so many options available to the average consumer that you may not know exactly what to look for when it comes time to actually purchase a safe. So before you fork over some serious cash, take a look below at three things you should keep an eye out for.
Gauges of Steel
Almost all modern gun safes are made of steel, but not all steel safes are the same. The ease with which the average thief can break into a safe depends in large part on the gauge of steel a specific safe features. Keeping in mind that that a lower numbered gauge is harder to break into, consider that the average safe marketed to consumers is rated between a 14 and 16. For a safe that really protects your gun(s) and is quite difficult to force open, you'll want to look for something in the range of 10 to 7.
Another thing to consider when buying a gun safe is how well it will hold up in the event of a fire. While most people may assume that they'll never experience a devastating fire in their home, you should never make an assumption that may end up costing you your firearms. The cheapest safes will likely have minimal protection, usually in the form of a layer of drywall. Better safes, on the other hand, have a layer of poured concrete that will shield your guns from the effects of even the worst fire.
Perhaps the most important thing on your to-do list before buying a safe should be measuring all of the firearms and related accessories that you plan to put in the safe. Then, when you are shopping for a safe, remember to only look at safes that are one size larger than you think you will need. This will allow for your firearm collection to grow and also doesn't force you to make tough decisions if a family member wants to keep other items in the safe as well. It's much better to plan for the future by purchasing a larger safe than it is to regret buying a smaller one and having to go through the process of buying another.