How to Install a Gun Safe

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Owning several guns can present a challenge when it comes to storing them. Safety, ease of access and security are questions that should be addressed when deciding how to store your guns. A gun safe allows guns to be stored out of sight and under strict control, which are important considerations when children are present or when theft of guns is a motivating factor.

Things You'll Need

  • Commercially available gun safe
  • High security padlock
  • 3-foot length of chain
  • Moving dolly
  • Check the load bearing limits of any floor on which you choose to place a gun safe before installing. Cut an opening into the floor or wall large enough to accommodate the safe if you wish a hidden safe; carefully avoid cutting or damaging any load-bearing supports such as beams, struts or studs.

  • Select an area large enough to fit the safe if you are placing it in an open room. Ensure there is enough room for the safe door to open completely. For hidden safes, ensure that the safe is placed on a support structure within the wall or under the floor and that there is sufficient room for the safe door to open completely.

  • Move the gun safe into position using the moving dolly. Before moving the safe into its final position, secure the safe to a solid, immovable object such as a support beam, permanent structure or heavy object, using the length of chain and padlock. (Gun safes have security points designed for chains to be attached.)

  • Move the safe into its final position, and make a final check to ensure that the safe door opens all the way, without obstructions, and that the combination device has easy access.

Tips & Warnings

  • Keep the combination to the gun safe secured in a location away from the safe so that an intruder cannot easily find it.
  • Do not install a gun safe in an area that is used to store tools as the tools may be used to gain unauthorized access to the safe.
  • Do not dispose of packing material in your household garbage that shows a gun safe has been installed in your home as this is an open indication that you have guns.
  • Ensure that the weight limits on a floor are sufficiently high to support a heavy gun safe.
  • Check local and state laws regarding storage of guns and ammunition.

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References

  • The Complete Gun Owner: Your Guide to Selection, Use, Safety and Laws"; James Morgan Ayres & Rick Sapp; 2008
  • The Field & Stream Firearms Safety Handbook"; Doug Painter; 1999
  • Photo Credit boy and gun image by Ivanna Buldakova from Fotolia.com
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