Biometric Gun Safe Guide

Here at Biometric Gun Safe Info our main focus is on gun safety and gun security SentrySafe Biometric Pistol Safein the home. Our aim is to find the best and most practical security solutions to safely storing firearms and valuables whilst at home or travelling.

We mainly write Biometric Gun Safe Reviews and our writers spend many hours researching the products you see reviewed on this site.

Our goal is to provide you with honest reviews that contain full explanations of how these products work, including technical specifications, but perhaps more importantly the personal opinions of current users and the problems they have encountered when using each product.

We look at all types of safes, but for the most part focus on biometric gun safes as we believe they offer the most sophisticated type of security, and that security is unique to you. Read on below for a guide and introduction to using gun safes for home safety and security. We show you the best solutions in each category.

If you want to get straight into the site then the products below are among the best home biometric safes that we have reviewed so far.

Best Models of Biometric Safe

Firearm safety in the home

First and foremost for our concern is the safety of young children whenever handguns or larger firearms are present in the house. There are two methods for combating unnecessary accidents in the home, one is by education about firearms for which there is no complete substitute for educating children about the dangers and good methods of practice. The other is by having a secure location that is inaccessible by children for you to store your firearms when you are home without you needing to keep an eye on it all the time.

Usually, it is best to have both and in some states you are required by law to have a firearm safe that meets certain requirements. We are not against gun ownership, we just want to aid you in having the best in terms of security and safety to meet your needs. There have been many tragic accidents over the years involving young children getting hold of handguns when playing and the outcomes are never positive. Just recently another tragedy occurred where this very thing happened, emphasizing firearm safety for young children once again.

Everyone should have a way to secure their firearms, not just hide them as you can never be completely sure what children are doing around the house every moment of every day.

What are you using a safe for?

One of the biggest considerations is what you want to store inside your safe and how you intend on using it. If you want to store rifles or lots of your most expensive possessions then you will need a different size and the requirements are different if you want to just store some important documents and a handgun or two when you are home. There are many different sizes and different levels of protection to suit your needs so here is a run through about the different sizes and what are the common features among those safes.

Large Home Safes

For rifles and extreme security against the average home break in the largest sized models can hold up to 15 rifles on racks with space for multiple handguns and valuables. These are the most expensive and have the most features to protect against all angles of attack. They use the thickest steel and can weight upwards of 1000lbs and can be the size of a wardrobe, the very best are fireproof for up to 60 minutes and have multi layered bodies to protect against drilling attacks. We do not necessarily deal with this kind of safe often as we are more interested in handgun security but you will find a few rifle safe reviews pop up on here over time.

Medium/large home gun safes

These are the solution to those who don’t need to store rifles but want to put away their other firearms and important documents. If I call a product a gun safe you do not need to use it just for guns, they just have to be extra secure to be able to store firearms by law. These are around the size of a suitcase and usually come with shelves in. Some of these are fireproofed and if you are storing really important documents it is essential to get one that is fireproof. Although not the main solution for handgun storage, some of the wall safes that fall into this size category are really handy to use in a bedroom wall so you will see some of these researched and reviewed.

Medium Safe

For storage of multiple handguns magazines and valuables these are the solution. Drawer Safes and the larger personal gun safes fit into this category. Usually have shelves and can accommodate two handguns with plenty of room to spare for extra magazines. Can also be used for documents though its uncommon to find fireproofed safes at this size as the smaller a safe gets the harder it is to prevent heat damage. Can store phones, watches and other things. Good for small offices that want to have daily storage of items, can be secured to a floor or concealed in cupboards or drawers.

Small

Stores at least 1 handgun with magazines with a little room for extra valuables. These are usually stored in an easy to access but concealed location like the back of a cupboard. Best used for storing your handgun while at the home but where you can get hold of it. Most common type of safe for pistols and revolver handguns.

Miniature

Strictly with space for only 1 handgun. Some designs are only for one handgun such as the svb500 whereas others are just extra small and designed for fitting in desk drawers for storing handguns while at home and at work. Or in a nightstand for quick access in case of a burglary.

Personal Locking Carry Cases

For security on the move there is now the option of a carry case that is locked using biometrics which can fit your handgun if you stay in a hotel. These usually come with high strength security cables to secure around an immovable object such as a radiator for extra protection against theft. These are also great to use in vehicles.

Different Gun Safe Lock Mechanisms

There are three main types of mechanisms for unlocking safes. Each one has advantages and disadvantages, most of the smaller ones have backup key unlocking mechanisms which I am not including as a separate mechanism.

Combination Dial Lock

This type is most commonly seen on larger models and is the one you are probably most familiar with from the movies. Using a set combination you have to turn the dial to the requisite positions before the door unlocks. This is not the main focus of our site so expect to find less of these researched here.

Advantages

  • Established technology has been around for ages and has become digital allowing for faster detection of you turning the dial.
  • Familiarity, old style models have used this type of lock for centuries.

Disadvantages

  • Usually come with a manufacturer set combination so if a thief has a list of these combinations and you haven’t changed it then it makes it easy to crack.
  • Take a long time to open.

Electronic Keypad Pin Lock

This is the most common unlocking mechanism found on safes today. Usually they have either a 10 number keypad from which the user can set a pin with a length from 3 to 9 numbers. Some companies, especially GunVault have their own unique solution for this where a prearranged set of buttons need to be pressed in a certain order to unlock the door. GunVault call this the No-Eyes Keypad but there are similar equivalents for some other manufacturers.

All of the models using this type of lock require either batteries or to be plugged into the mains to operate, so something to consider is battery life and power source. It is recommended to change batteries at least annually even though they can last for 4 years or more. If you leave a battery inside any piece of electrical equipment for too long they can start leaking so best to at least check annually the condition of the battery.

Advantages

  • We already use a PIN code for bank cards so it is exactly the same kind of thing.
  • Easy to program, instructions are very clear.
  • Reliable, if you get the code right then the door will open.

Disadvantages

  • Have to remember another PIN code and can easily mix it up, some are very long and writing down a code compromises its security just the same as writing down a password makes it less useful.

Biometric Fingerprint Scanners

You’ve seen this technology in the spy movies and even on new mobile phones nowadays. A Biometric fingerprint gun safe works by scanning your fingerprint the scanner compares it to pre programmed images in its database to determine if you are the owner and then unlocks providing this is successful. This is the best kind of security, one that is individually tailored to you or anyone you want to have access to your possessions, all the databases can store multiple prints so you can have both you and a spouse enrolled.

No-one can replicate your fingerprint without great difficult and access to your fingers provided you understand good practice. Luckily we have another article about how to get the most out of your biometric gun safe. It has obvious advantages over the other combination and electronic keypad locks but we think the best advantage is the speed you can access it .

Advantages

  • You are the unique security, essentially an uncrackable mechanism as there is no PIN code or combination to guess.
  • Very fast to gain access, in high pressure situations such as in a burglary when you have a firearm stored in your bedroom you can get to it in 5 seconds or less and that could make the difference.
  • No need to remember long PIN codes or combinations, very good for people who are characteristically forgetful.
  • Easy to program, most only need one or two buttons to be pressed to enroll additional fingerprints.
  • Can enroll multiple fingerprints some models offer space for up to 120 possible scans.
  • Constantly improving every time new models come out, compared to ten years ago the scanners of today are highly accurate.

Disadvantages

  • Shorter battery life, you will need to replace the battery annually as they use more power than a PIN pad.
  • Cheaper models can be unreliable, we research every model and give you information on which ones have the best scanners. We also have an article about improving recognition if you are having trouble.
  • Requires some practice to get used to it.

Legal Requirements

From the California DOJ requirements are:

  • Shall be able to fully contain firearms and provide for their secure storage.
  • Shall have a locking system consisting of at minimum a mechanical or electronic combination lock. The mechanical or electronic combination lock utilized by the safe shall have at least 10,000 possible combinations consisting of a minimum three numbers, letters, or symbols. The lock shall be protected by a case-hardened (Rc 60+) drill-resistant steel plate, or drill-resistant material of equivalent strength.
  • Boltwork shall consist of a minimum of three steel locking bolts of at least ½ inch thickness that intrude from the door of the safe into the body of the safe or from the body of the safe into the door of the safe, which are operated by a separate handle and secured by the lock.
  • Shall be capable of repeated use. The exterior walls shall be constructed of a minimum 12-gauge thick steel for a single-walled safe, or the sum of the steel walls shall add up to at least .100 inches for safes with two walls. Doors shall be constructed of a minimum of two layers of 12-gauge steel, or one layer of 7-gauge steel compound construction.
  • Door hinges shall be protected to prevent the removal of the door. Protective features include, but are not limited to: hinges not exposed to the outside, interlocking door designs, dead bars, jeweler’s lugs and active or inactive locking bolts.

Or

  • Is listed as an Underwriters Laboratories Residential Security Container.
  • Is able to fully contain firearms.
  • Provides for the secure storage of firearms.

Check out the California DOJ for information about sales and requirements of firearms from our resources page here.

Reviews and Comparison Tables

As stated before a lot of time and effort go into our reviews to make them easy to read and balanced. We find out the problems so you can know about them before you buy a gun safe, we also offer solutions to these problems where one has been found. For us we wouldn’t buy anything before looking at what actual customer opinions were and so we look at reviews from large shopping sites and forums across the internet to get a balance and sense of what the customer saw as the pros and cons.

We make comparison tables so you can see all the safes that fit into different categories, currently we only have the security solutions from the manufacturers on their respective pages but we are looking to expand this into more categories such as pricing, types of guns to store and size across all the different levels. We hope you find our biometric gun safe reviews helpful. If you have any questions then drop us a mail using the Contact Us link and we’ll try to help with your query.