Most gun owners in the US say that they own firearms for home or self-defense, and with the ever-increasing numbers of mass shootings and home invasions, their decision is quite understandable. However, there is a lot of debate among gun owners on what kind of firearm is better for home defense. Some people like the firepower of a shotgun, some prefer the range and accuracy of a rifle, whereas some believe that pistols are the way to go.

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In reality, neither weapon is completely perfect. They all have their advantages and drawbacks. Ideally, you should use a weapon that fits into your specific self-defense requirements and is suitable for your home’s layout. You also need to consider the laws of your state, along with a multitude of other factors before you can pick the best firearm for home defense.

So, let’s talk about the pros and cons of different weapon classes from a home defense perspective, so that you can determine which weapon is perfect for you. However, before we get to that here are some things you should keep in mind when buying a home defense weapon.

Be aware of your target, and what’s behind it.

Overpenetration is a serious problem in any home-defense situation. In most cases, you want enough stopping power to put down an intruder, but not so much penetration that the bullet passes through the intruder and hits someone else. Moreover, you don’t wasn’t miss shots going through walls and putting your own family in danger.

So, if your home has thin walls, it is better to prefer higher capacity over higher penetrating power. You should also use hollow points, which have a lower chance of over-penetration.

Consider the layout of your home

Another important factor to consider is your home layout. For instance, if your home has narrow corridors, and doorways, like most homes, a rifle with a 20-inch barrel, or a long shotgun aren’t the best option.

On the other hand, if you live on a farm or a ranch, which has a huge landscape, you may want a rifle with a longer range.

Check your state laws:

Firearm laws are subject to change, and it is important to look at your state laws when looking for a home defense firearm. For instance, some states like New York and California have strict laws against certain types of rifles.

Pistols, Shotguns, or Rifles?

When it comes to choosing a weapon for home defense, you typically have three options. You can either go for pistols, shotguns, or a rifle.

Starting with Pistols, they are a very versatile home defense weapon and have a lot of advantages. They are very maneuverable and easy to store because of their size. Moreover, they have a higher capacity than most shotguns, and their bullets are small enough to avoid over-penetration.

Pistols, Shotguns, or Rifles?

However, you do have to trade off stopping power. Still, pistols are very capable for home defense. You can shoot multiple shots rapidly with them, and with the right caliber, you can stop an intruder in a very short time. You should opt for calibers like  9mm, 45 ACP, or perhaps 40 S&W, which carry a decent amount of stopping power, and most full-sized pistols can fit a decent amount of them in one magazine.

Keep in mind that you will need multiple shots to put down a determined attacker with a pistol. But the good thing is that with a full-sized pistol, you will have more than enough bullets to do so. Pistols like the Sig P320, Beretta M9, Glock 17, and Glock 21 are good options for home defense.

Next up, let’s talk about shotguns. Shotguns are a very common choice for self-defense. They are usually affordable, and they have a lot of stopping power. Moreover, with the right kind of ammunition, the chances of over-penetration are very low.

Pistols, Shotguns, or Rifles?

However, the drawback is that shotguns are usually quite long, and can be difficult to wield. In most states, shotguns legally need to have an 18-inch long barrel. With the proper paperwork, you can get a short-barreled shotgun, however, that doesn’t solve all of your problems. Shotguns are also very loud and concussive, especially when shot indoors. Their effective range is low, especially when using birdshot or buckshot.

Ideally, you should use buckshot for home defense, since it has a lot of power and very low chances of over-penetration. Even a single shot is enough to put a large and determined attacker down. With shotguns, it is also quite easier to aim. Since the buckshot pellets spread, they will hit the attacker even if you are slightly off target.

There are several types of shotguns you can get for home defense. If you live in a country with strict gun laws, like the UK, you will have to settle for a double-barreled shotgun. However, in the US, you can get both pump-action and semi-auto shotguns as well.

Pump-action shotguns are more affordable, however, semi-auto shotguns will surely be more effective. The Remington 870, and Mossberg 500 are great pump-action shotguns for self-defense, and the Benelli M2 and M4 are some of the best semi-auto shotguns on the market. If you want a budget semi-auto shotgun, there are some good Turkish shotguns on the market as well.

Next up, rifles are also good self-defense weapons for certain situations though some people may say that they are a bit overpowered for home defense.

Pistols, Shotguns, or Rifles?

You get more stopping power, accuracy, and range with the rifle, but the problem is over-penetration. Mort rifle rounds have enough power to go through an attacker, through a thin wall behind them, and still carry enough energy to be dangerous. Moreover, legally rifles need to have a 16-inch barrel, which makes them long and difficult to maneuver.

They might not be ideal for indoor defense, but if you have a large property, and need to defend it, a rifle gives you the range to engage attackers at a much longer distance.

An AR-15 is perhaps the best option for a home defense rifle. It fires a very capable, yet small enough 5.56 NATO rounds, which are great for home defense.

Lastly, Pistol Caliber Carbines and AR pistols are a great home defense weapon that gives you the best of a rifle and a pistol as well. With a pistol caliber, there is a very low chance of over-penetration, and you have a very high round capacity. Moreover, with a pistol brace, and a longer barrel of the Pistol caliber carbine, it is also much easier to shoot accurately. The CZ Scorpion EVO and the Sig Sauer MPX are good options for home defense weapons.

Final Thoughts:

So, in conclusion, no single weapon is perfect for self-defense. All these different kinds of weapons have their advantages, and we hope this post helps you choose the best home defense weapon for your needs.

If you’re looking for a home defense weapon, or want tom accessories to upgrade your current weapon, you should check out www.ammoandgunaccessories.com. They deliver gun accessories to your home, and you can pick up the guns you buy from your local FFL.

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