Now I know the topic of best home defense weapons opens a BIG can of worms, because everyone has their opinions. There are so many options to choose from, but in my opinion, if you at least have some type of firearm in your home to protect yourself, you are ahead of the bad guys.
Each type of weapon has advantages and disadvantages, and the type of weapon you have may or may not be perfect for the exact situation that you may find yourself in. When looking at weapons, there are choices such as handguns, rifles, and shotguns. I will explain my thoughts on each one.
This particular article is not going to discuss all the details of caliber, types of rounds, and models of guns to be used for self defense, but will instead cover the broader thoughts on advantages and disadvantages of the types of guns, and their ease of use, as personal home defense weapons.
Handguns For Home Defense
This particular topic could support an entire website all to itself, as there are so many makes, models, and calibers to choose from that the debate could go on forever. First and foremost, you must be competent with whichever hand gun you decide to use. Handguns are extremely effective, and also easy to handle in most situations. One of the drawbacks
with handguns is the lack of accuracy. Handguns are great at close range and can be maneuvered very easily, but if you are not proficient and fail to practice using a handgun, it could be difficult to use in a stressful situation. Think about loading and reloading. Is anyone in the home be proficient in these skills, or able to learn? Because of the drawbacks, the handgun may not be your best choice of home defense weapons.
Rifles For Self Defense In The Home
Rifles are another choice that many people consider for their protection inside the home. Rifles can be very effective is stopping an intruder, but keep in mind that they are not as maneuverable as a handgun. Most rifles must be kept in closets or areas where they may not be as accessible as a hand gun. Rifles also have higher penetration than handguns or shotguns, and this should be considered. High powered rifles have the ability to penetrate walls, and in home defense this may not be desirable, especially if there are other family members in other rooms.
Obviously there are many calibers to consider when talking about rifles for home defense, but the AR 15 has been extremely popular of the last few years. The AR comes in basically a .223 caliber or .556. The AR is a great rifle, but really how effective is it at close range trying to stop an intruder? The AR or any rifle for that matter is very effective at distance and should be considered as part of ones personal defense strategy, but is that the weapon you want as your go to?
Shotguns In Self Defense
Now let’s discuss the scattergun. Shotguns are one of the most popular weapons in America. Face it, nearly every home in America that has a weapon usually has a shotgun. Shotguns are so versatile because they are used for hunting and sporting, many people own shotguns. A couple of thoughts for shotguns in personal home defense. The shotgun does not penetrate walls as deeply as handguns and rifles when used in the home, but they are not as lethal at longer ranges as the rifle would be. A shotgun because of its size is not as maneuverable as the handgun or probably the AR platform.
Another drawback of the shotgun is recoil. The average 12 gauge full sized shotgun would probably be cumbersome for a 120 lb female to handle easily in a difficult situation. Although this full sized 12 gauge shotgun is one of the most popular guns in the country, would it be the best choice for home defense?
My thoughts on the best self defense gun for the home
Personally, I don’t think there is one choice of best home defense weapons, but there are several considerations to make when considering a gun for your home. If a person is confident, I do think there is a place for all 3 types of weapons. Personally I would recommend keeping a handgun on your person all the time, or at least where a handgun could be easily accessible if need arises. At least a handgun can be readily available in most situations, as I have on in my back pocket as I type this.
AR’s and other rifles also have their place. Who knows, there could be a need for defense that does not involve an in home invasion. This would give you enough time to grab your rifle and use it in a situation where a handgun or shotgun would not be effective.
Best Home Defense Weapons – My Conclusion
So what is the best weapon to have, if you only have one choice to protect you and your family? I would personally go with the shotgun, and not just any shotgun. My personal choice would be a youth model 20 gauge pump shotgun as demonstrated by legallyconcealed.
- The 20 gauge in the youth model can be manipulated more easily than the large model 12 gauge.
- The recoil is not as severe in the 20 as the 12, this would be better suited for use by a female or older child in the home.
- Also, in home defense, the shotgun is not going to penetrate walls as easily as a handgun or rifle.
- The shotgun is not going to have to be aimed as precisely as a handgun or rifle, therefore it may be more effective in a stressful situation.
- I like the pump, because it is very reliable and because if someone enters the home, most people will recognize the shuffling sound of a shell going into the chamber. This in itself could bea deterrent and keep an intruder at bay.
- Also there are many types of ammo available for the shotgun, but my personal preference for inside the home would be regular ol’ high brass 6 shot. This “birdshot” is devastating at close range and has stopping power.
Obviously as distances grow, the effectiveness of the shotgun diminishes, but at close range it is the clear winner and worth consideration as one of the best home defense weapons.