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Handgun Safes: What to Look for and Why You Need One

February 5, 2023

Pistol or handgun safes are a must-have for any American household with one or more small firearms. They’re also great for securing valuables and some paperwork. But what kind of handgun safe is right for you and your family? We have some quick insights to help you decide.


6 Reasons to Own a Handgun Safe

There are plenty of good reasons to own a handgun safe, including self-defense, to ensure the firearm is locked away from kids, as well as peace of mind.

  1. Limit Access. The right handgun safe will limit who can get to the firearm. Of course, you want to keep criminals from stealing your guns, but you also want to keep kids, teens, and other from gaining access.

  2. Safe Storage Laws. In both Oregon and Washington, safe firearm storage is a legal issue. There are a lot of variables with both laws. In general, as long as your firearms are secure in a safe or with a trigger or cable lock, you are less likely to be prosecuted for community endangerment or named in a civil lawsuit should your firearm fall into the wrong hands.

  3. Get Quick Access. If someone breaks into your home in the middle of the night, how will you get to your gun safe in the downstairs closet? A handgun safe gives you instant, quick access to a firearm when it’s needed most.

  4. Save Money on Insurance. Some homeowner’s insurance policies require that your handguns and other weapons be locked in a qualified safe or vault. In many cases, a handgun safe does the job. Plus, some safes can help you save money on your insurance policies. Check with your insurance agent to see if you qualify for any discounts.

  5. Store Valuables (including cash). Looking for a place to keep some cash, jewelry, or important documents such as your family’s Social Security cards or birth certificates? A handgun safe might be a great option.

  6. Protect Against Fire and Theft. Home fires do happen, and when they do it pays to have your firearms in a safe that provides some degree of fire and heat protection. Want to keep your handgun safe from simply walking away? Some handgun safes can be bolted in place, including options that securely fit and lock into a vehicle’s center console.

What to Consider in a Handgun Safe

Besides the lock and reasons to own a handgun safe, there is a list of things to consider before you buy one.

Stealth:Do you want a handgun safe that allows you to quickly pull the firearm out, load, and go? There are options out there designed for you.
Space: Get a handgun safe that is big enough to store your firearm, clip, ammunition and anything else you want to safety lock away. Keep in mind, the larger the safe, the fewer options you have for placing it. Smaller safes can fit into nightstands and other locations.
Fire Ratings:If the handgun is not an heirloom, fire protection might not be necessary for a single pistol. But if you plan to store valuables with that handgun, look for fire ratings that provide at least 1 hour of protection at 1,200º F.
Mounting:Most handgun safes can be mounted with pre-drilled holes or using a security cable. Almost all can be retrofitted to work in a vehicle, but should only be used in a car or truck if you have a concealed carry permit.
Alarms: There are safes that come with alarms should someone try to move or open your safe without the code or your permission.

Coastal Carries Handgun Safes

You’ll find the security and protection you need for your family and your handguns at Coastal. That includes safes that use keys, combos, and even biometrics. Check out our full line today, including a bedside security safe end table and nightstand built to look great, protect your firearms, and give you quick access.


Review Gun Safety Rules

At Coastal we believe in gun safety. That’s why we’ve created our own 5 Rules of Gun Safety.

  1. Treat Guns Like the are Always Loaded - Always This simply means you must always treat every gun as if it’s loaded. Always assume that every gun you come into contact with is loaded until you have physically verified it for yourself. Don’t ever rely on anyone’s word for it. When you hold a gun in your hand, you are responsible for it and anything that occurs while in your possession. If you don’t know how a gun works, leave it alone and find a knowledgeable person to show you.

  2. Never point a firearm at anything you’re not willing to shoot – Ever.You must always be aware of where your gun is pointed at all times. Never point a gun at anything you are not willing to destroy. This is the rule that saves lives. You MUST exercise due caution and diligence when handling a firearm. 

  3. Keep your finger off the trigger and out of the trigger guard.Always keep your finger off the trigger and out of the trigger guard until your sights are on target, and you have made the conscious decision to shoot. If you have your finger on the trigger and you are startled in some way, your brain will react with a primitive response that will tighten every muscle in the body, including the trigger finger.

  4. Be sure of your target and what’s beyond and around it.The hand that holds the gun is responsible for whatever is done by that gun. If you fire a gun, you are responsible – no matter where it lands or what it hits. You must know where your shot will go when you fire it. You must know what it might hit if you miss your intended target. And you must know what it can go through and still have enough energy/power to kill or hurt.

  5. Always lock up your guns.Whether you use a trigger lock, handgun safe or a cabinet safe, always keep your firearms locked. As a responsible gun owner, you know that your gun is always loaded (refer to Rule #1), but not everyone is aware of these rules. Children are naturally curious and there’s always a chance someone could find your firearms. Keep them locked and away – it’s smart, and it’s easy.