At a Glance: The Best Small Gun Safes
Comparison of The Best Small Gun Safes
Our Top Pick
|Hornady Rapid Night Guard Safe
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Our Top Pick
|Snap Safe 2-Gun Keypad Vault
|View Latest Price
Our Top Pick
|RPNB Mounted Firearm Safety Device with Biometric Fingerprint
|View Latest Price
As a handgun owner, it’s your responsibility to protect your gun from getting into the wrong hands. Whether you want to keep your weapon away from curious kids or safely secured from potential burglars, a small gun safe is what you need.
Pistol safes are compact and lightweight, which makes them easy to carry while taking up minimal space. Despite their size, the best small gun safes will be incredibly difficult to crack open. Furthermore, this investment will not just protect your handgun. You can use a gun safely to store other valuables, such as passports, jewelry, or electrical devices.
This article will explain what makes the best small gun safe and what to look for to find the highest quality security boxes on the market.
Our Guide To Buying The Best Small Gun Safe
We have tested and reviewed the 8 best handgun safes and cases available this year to assist you further. Our thorough reviews will help you determine the gun safes that give the highest security to your weapon, and therefore, you and your family too.
Hornady Rapid Night Guard Safe
The Hornady RFID Night Guard is our top choice for the best handgun safes. It uses high-tech RFID technology for speedy, touch-free access to your firearm, along with superior security. The safe comes with four patented RFID biometric tags that unlock the safe faster than any keypad can. Another unique selling point of the Night Guard safe is the additional clock function and USB charging ports, making it the best small gun safe for your nightstand. Along with the advanced technology, the safe has a strong, tamper-proof steel construction, including heavy-duty exterior housing and hardened interior locking lugs.
- Dimensions: Exterior: 12 x 10.5 x 3″, Interior: 9.2 x 6.9 x 2.2″.
- Weight: 18 Pounds
- 2 USB-A ports for charging devices
- Rapid Safe Night Guard
- wristband & key fob
Other features include the discreet glass-tempered display panel with an access code keypad for an additional entry option and the spring-assist drawer that slides open smoothly and quietly to reveal a padded interior to protect your gun from scratching and damage.
The safe can use both AC and battery power, and there is a key included for manual override. With a 10.5″ height, 12″ width, and 3″ depth, the Night Guard safe will fit most full-sized handguns with some additional space for other valuables. Moreover, the safe offers top-notch security with the 1500-pound-rated security cable and predrilled mounting holes.
It’s not the easiest to program, but it does have one of the most robust constructions out of all the small gun safes we tested. What’s more, the RFID tags give the most rapid entry possible, allowing you to access your gun instantly in an emergency.
- RFID technology gives rapid, touch-free access
- Heavy-duty, tamper-proof construction
- Also functions as a clock and USB charging port
- Gives a high level of security
- Includes a 1500-pound-rated security cable and predrilled mounting holes
- Programming could be easier
Snap Safe 2-Gun Keypad Vault
The Snap Safe 2-gun keypad vault gives you access to your guns using a programmable 2 to 4 digit keypad code. The safe features a shelf creating two compartments and enough space for 2 handguns or 1 gun plus other valuables.
The vault is built using 16-gauge steel and has predrilled holes for easy mounting to a bedside table, shelf or desk. The door is spring-loaded to open immediately and fluidly. Inside, there is a protective foam liner to protect your valuables against damage.
The keypad vault is operated by 4 AA batteries and features an audible and visible low-battery indicator. What’s more, a back-up key is provided for peace of mind. I found this safe to be effortless to set up, and despite having the capacity to hold 2 guns, it still appears compact and feels lightweight.
Overall, this is a simple to operate, well-constructed gun safe that could easily be the best small gun safe for gun owners needing to store two firearms or those merely wanting additional space in their safe.
- Compact and lightweight yet spacious
- Spring-loaded door for trouble-free access
- Strong and durable construction
- Easy to mount
- Does not give as fast access as other safes
- Requires 4 AAA batteries (not included)
RPNB Mounted Firearm Safety Device with Biometric Fingerprint
The RPNB quick access firearm safe is very Compact and the best nightstand gun safe. It has a unique slim, vertical design perfect for mounting under a desk, on a bookshelf, or in a vehicle. This safe rates high for convenience as it allows you to mount from the right, left, or top side. The safe operates using either biometric fingerprint access or the easily programmable electronic keypad which allows you to program your chosen code in an instance. These high-tech locking mechanisms result in single-handed operation and fast-activation via the drop-down drawer. Your stored pistol is delivered to you in the ready position in fractions of a second.
- Exterior Dimensions: 6.97″ x 11.02″ x 1.81″,
- Interior Dimensions: 5.79″ x 8.9″ x 1.61″
- Weight 7.7 Pounds
- Low Battery Warning
- Multiple Mounting Options
Both the appearance and build quality of the safe is excellent. The sturdy steel construction and sleek, black finish gives long-lasting strength and prevents corrosion. There is a protective foam-lined interior to protect your weapons from scratching or damage. The only thing I would change is adding a silent option that removes the beep before opening. If you’re looking for a reliable but affordable device that gives you speedy access to your pistol in an emergency, this is certainly one of the most top rated gun safes for any budget.
- One of the best options for quick access
- Flawless, biometric access
- Additional key access
- mountable from right, left, or top side
- Well constructed for strength and durability
- Protective foam-lined padding inside
- Does not provide silent access to your gun
Liberty HD-90 Safe – Key Vault Small Portable Handgun Safe
The Liberty HD-90 quick vault features a slim, notebook design for portability and travel. fit most standard size handguns and is perfect for other small valuables. Approved by California DOJ, this gun vault is constructed with heavy-duty steel, anti-pry technology, and a tamper alert light that informs you of an attempted break-in. These security features make the HD-100 one of the most secure, anti-theft small gun safes we tested.
- Exterior Dimensions – 2.5″ x 10.3″ x 8.3″ (H x W x D)
- Interior Dimensions: 1.3″ x 10.6″ x 7.1″ (H x W x D)
- Weight: 5.1 lbs
A security cable comes included, giving the ability to fix the portable safe to a stationary object when you need additional protection, and it comes with a key back-up override too.
The HD-100 vault is extremely well-made, and the extra security functions give you peace of mind that the product will protect you from attempted break-ins. If you’re looking for the most dependable and guarded storage for your gun, the Liberty gun vault will meet your needs well.
- Impressive security from the anti-pry technology
- Strong and sturdy construction
- Comes with a security cable
- Portable design makes it great for travel
- Will not fit larger-sized handguns
- No extra space inside for ammo
Snap Safe Key or Combination Lockbox or Combination Lock
The Snap Safe lockbox products securely store your handgun both at home and when traveling thanks to the heavy-duty 16-gauge steel cable. A great safe for handguns. This lets you secure the safe to any stationary object at home, in the car, or to your luggage while on the move. This lockbox uses a manual key operation, and the entire interior is lined with thick foam to protect your firearm from scratching or damage.
There are also predrilled mounting holes should you choose to permanently secure it to your bedside table, desk, or shelf. The design of the lockbox meets TSA guidelines and has been approved by the California DOJ. Snap Safe offers 3 sizes to choose from, to fit all handguns and give you the capacity you want.
This versatile gun case has the easiest operation and works equally great as a storage box in your vehicle, a travel carry case, and a small home gun safe. The larger sizes will give you more capacity to store other valuables too.
- The most versatile option – perfect for travel, in the car, and at home
- Comes with heavy steel cable and predrilled mounting holes
- Foam-lined interior
- Meets TSA guidelines
- Approved by DOJ
- 3 size options to choose from
- Not the strongest against theft and break-ins
Gunvault Nanovault 200 Pistol Safe
The Nanovault 200 pistol safe from Gunvault is a compact, clamshell-style gun case that can discreetly fit in a bag, under a car seat, or in a desk drawer. It is also tamper-resistant and meets TSA checked baggage guidelines, making it a great travel choice. Plus, with almost 108 cubic inches of capacity, it will hold a full-size pistol plus magazine.
The Nanovault 200 is made from 18 gauge steel and given a black powder coat finish. It features a manual key lock with 2 keys included. What’s more, it comes with a security cable for attaching to any solid fixture and predrilled holes for a permanent mounting solution too.
I found this gun safe to be very well-made both inside and out, and I particularly liked the thick protective padding inside. Nonetheless, the locking mechanism is simple and does not offer the highest security against theft.
This is also not a rapid access case, so it is not the fastest way to get to your guns in an emergency. Even so, if you’re simply looking to secure your weapon safely, either on the move or at home, Nanovault’s simple but effective operation will serve that purpose.
- Compact design to discreetly fit in small places
- Great for traveling and meets TSA guidelines too
- Features a security cable and predrilled mounting holes
- The Interior is thickly padded
- The locking mechanism is not as pry-resistant as others
- Not a rapid access case
Bore Stores Long Term Gun Storage Cases
Bore stores offer various soft, cushioned, rust-resistant cases, which are custom-fit for most handgun models. These foldable fabric cases work well as a quick-case for travel or to provide maintenance-free, long-term storage of your pistol.
These lightweight fabric cases feature a velcro closure. They are made with open weave exterior fabric that allows thorough air circulation, preventing moisture, corrosion, rust, grit, and dust from getting inside. Moreover, the soft pile interior cushions protect your gun against nicks and scratches. The fabric was thicker than i expected, and it felt like a durable and protective material.
Bore stores offer 15 size options to choose from! All are custom-made for specific handgun models and sizes such as ar-15, ak-3, and m1.
While this isn’t a product to protect your gun from theft or unauthorized users, these alternative gun cases are great if you battle with humidity or mold in your home. The soft cases will prevent moisture from getting to your firearm, and thus, completely prevent rust or corrosion.
- Unique soft case for protecting your gun from scratching and damage
- Open weave fabric circulates air well and keeps moisture out
- Prevents mold, corrosion, and rust
- A large array of sizes for a custom-fit
- No theft protection or security
- Does not meet tsa guidelines to take on a flight
Awesafe Biometric Fingerprint Gun Safe
Awesafe is one of the most trusted gun safe manufacturers in the industry. This is another of their classics and our favorite choice for the best handgun safes. The safe is made from stainless 18-inch steel, which makes it damage and pry-resistant. A well-padded interior allows your firearm to sit comfortably and grants easy access when needed.
It comes with a well-lit interior that utilizes LED lighting. The gas strut powers the automatic door opening sequence and allows you instant access once you have verified your biometrics. This is a useful feature when you need your gun in an emergency, and the silent opening feature makes this more valuable to gun owners.
- Three-safety lock system that enables it to keep its content secure.
- Fingerprint biometric scanner to grant swift access
- A backup key code
- manual keys
These three systems can be used individually or as a combination to improve your security configurations. It is an ideal bedside gun safe as it is light, easy to keep, doesn’t consume much space, and doesn’t need external light sources.
The system comes with two keys, a set of screws and four AA batteries. There is a one-year warranty by the manufacturer (All safe) for individuals who encounter any problems while using the safe within its first year of use.
- Solid steel construction.
- Responsive touch keypad
- Blue interior lighting
- Multiple fingerprint registration allowed (up to 30 unique prints
- Only one source of power (batteries).
- You will need to change the battery often.
Things To Look For When Choosing A Small Gun Safe
When buying a handgun gun safe, there are certain things you should look for to ensure you choose the best pistol gun safe with the highest quality and performance. The following factors should be considered when searching the market for a gun case to secure your firearm and protect it from unauthorized users.
Even though you want a small gun safe that does not take up too much space, you need to ensure that it still offers sufficient space for your firearm and any accessories it may have.
There are two types of security devices that we have included on this list. Some are small vault-type gun safes that are suited to a bedside table or desk. Others are gun cases/lockboxes, which are ideal for travel and portability purposes.
- Portable gun cases are a great option if you plan to travel with your gun. Their compact and lightweight design provides a safe and secure way to transport your firearm. However, this does mean that there is very little capacity inside.
- If you may want to store your ammo in the safe too, and perhaps some other valuables such as passports, jewelry, or money, a large capacity gun safe will suit you better.
- Regardless of which style you choose, be sure to check the safe and your gun measurements to avoid purchasing a safe that is too small.
Does It Meet TSA Requirements?
Talking about travel, if you plan to take your handgun on a flight, you will need a gun case that meets TSA requirements.
Different airlines and airports may have slightly different rules regarding the storage of a gun, but the general requirements are:
- Your gun must be stored in a small, hard, and lockable safe box.
- The lock has to have a combination code or a manual key.
- You must be the only person with the combination or key for the safe.
According to Federal law, the TSA cannot open the gun safe themselves or use a TSA-master-keyed lock. Therefore, your gun safe does not need and should not have a TSA lock.
You should check the product description of a small gun safe before purchasing to check it is TSA compliant. These safes should be built to withstand the demands of 100 round trip air flights.
Type of Locking System
Most safes will feature one of the following types of locking mechanisms, and some will have more than one type of access system:
- Manual – usually a combination lock. For this type of device, there is no power supply needed and no need to replace batteries.
- Electronic or Digital – typically uses a passcode. This type of lock gives greater ease of use and does not require re-locking every time.
- Biometric Technology – such as fingerprint or key fob access. These safes usually give the fastest access and the most expensive.
The locking mechanism you choose comes down to personal preference, as well as what you want from your gun safe. For example, suppose you want a safe that will give you rapid and silent access in the event of an emergency. In that case, a biometric safe will be the best choice. Moreover, many biometric safes will also have a digital keypad and come with manual keys, offering all three mechanisms in one.
If you’re looking for a safe that is fire-resistant to protect your guns and other valuables against a potential house fire, you should look for a small gun safe with a BF certification.
- A safe with a BF certification means it meets a specific fire rating level from ETL-Intertek laboratory testing, which is the industry’s leading independent laboratory for gun safe fire testing.
- According to ETL, all BF rated gun safes have superior fire protection for up to two hours against 1200ºF heat. Most house fires only reach temperatures of 1100° F.
- BF Gun Safes use a proprietary fill material called DryLight, which offers exceptional fire protection while keeping the safe lightweight.
- The safes are tested by being placed in a furnace with gas burners which reach an outside temperature of 1200ºF. This temperature is maintained for 120 minutes. A safe will fail this test if temperatures exceed 350°F anywhere inside the safe.
Do You Need a Dehumidifier?
As a small, enclosed space, many safes are at risk of humidity, especially if located in your house’s damp area. Humidity can lead to mold and mildew, which can be destructive to your firearms and your ammunition.
- With the presence of mold and mildew, both the safe itself and your guns could become susceptible to rusting and corrosion.
- A humid environment will reduce your ammunition’s shelf life significantly.
- Moreover, bullets subjected to moisture in the air will lose their accuracy and may not even fire at all.
The best way to keep moisture out of your safe and protect your guns from humidity is to use a dehumidifier. A good quality dehumidifier that is correctly maintained will result in optimum moisture levels and thus no humidity and mold issues.
However, bear in mind that dehumidifiers do require space, so depending on your gun case’s capacity or safe, this may not be a possibility.
One of my favorites is the Eva-dry Wireless Mini Dehumidifier.
Which Is the Best Small Gun Safe?
Suppose you’re looking for a compact home safe that will protect your gun from unauthorized users and provide rapid access when needed. In that case, the Hornady RAPiD Night Guard safe is the top choice. The RFID biometric tags give the fastest entry possible, and the strong, tamper-proof steel construction will keep thieves out too.
On the other hand, if you’re looking for a case to protect and carry your handgun while traveling, I would recommend the Liberty Safe And Security Co. HD-100 quick vault. The slim, notebook design means it will easily fit in a bag or under a car seat. Yet, it offers the highest security level, too with its heavy-duty steel build, anti-pry technology, and tamper alerts. If that’s not enough, the auto-open door and electronic keypad give rapid entry also.
We hope this article’s information and advice will help you find the best small gun safe for you and your handgun.