The Best Small Gun Safes under $500

Need a small gun safe under $500? These are the best options we could find. Any of the choices below will be excellent, just read each individual safe review to find the one that suits your needs. Each safe has been analysed and reviewed by a gun safe expert, so you can feel secure in your choice.

These safes are cheap, durable and compact, exactly what someone looking for a small gun safe needs. Each of them has its own set of pros and cons however, so be sure to look at our reviews before you purchase!

What Kind of Small Gun Safe Do I Need?

When it comes to owning firearms, the most important thing to think about is safety. Small safes prevent unfortunate mistakes from side arms. Theyfit in your closet, car, ordresser drawer. You can even bolt them to the floor to deter theft.

One of the most distinguishing factors when discussing gun safes is the lock type. This affects not only the ease/difficulty of access, but also the convenience factor. In this sense, biometric (fingerprint) locks are the most convenient, as they require no keys or safety combinations. Using a biometric lock also deters theft, and enables easy enough access to you or anyone you authorize. Moreover, they are the newest type of locks out there, but are quickly becoming the standard. Conversely, there are also key-locks and dial-locks (which require you to memorize the combination).

The least dependable safes would be those with electronic locks. They also rely on a power source, (like biometric lock safes), but are much easier to pick.

With all this in mind, look at our selection of the best small gun safes that will give you security, without breaking the bank.

Top Tech Top Seller Top Rated
Brand Gunvault GVB1000 Mini Vault Biometric Gun Safe Stack-On PDS-500 Drawer Safe with Electronic Lock Fort Knox Original Handgun Safe
Image    
Reviews 416 1,641 191
Rating 4.0 4.4 4.9
Lock Type Biometric Electronic Simplex Mechanical
Standout Feature Self-learning algorithm for speedy fingerprint identification Solid steel built, two live action steel bolts, concealed hinges Gas-strut assisted heavy door
Dimensions 5.2″H x 8.2″W x 12″D 4.2″H x 11.8″W x 8.6″L 4.25″H (5.25″H with buttons and knob) x 12.5″W x 10.375″D
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Gunvault GVB1000 Mini Vault Biometric Gun Safe

Our Rating:


If you need quick and effortless access to your firearms, then you need the GVB 1000 (MiniVault Bio). The safe is made of 16-gauge steel, which is not nearly as strong as the Fort Knox we’ll discuss shortly, but it’s adequate. No commercial grade safe will compare to that used for military applications, but it’s not supposed to. They are meant to serve as a deterrent for children and intruders, and for this purpose, 16-gauge steel does the job. The interior is lined with protective foam for an added measure of safety, as well as to keep the gun from scratching.

This is a Biometric Safe with enough memory for 15 fingerprint templates. The little tempered-steel door opens with a snap, and although there are rubber stoppers at the bottom, you should still hold the door with your thumb as you access the safe. Of course, there’s a physical back-up key, should you need to override the biometric lock if it becomes unresponsive for whatever reason (like forgetting the code). Regarding the battery, it says on paper that it should last for about a year, but take that with a grain of salt. In any case, there’s a blinking LED light to warn you when it’s low on juice.

A minor gripe would be the space available, as there’s only enough room for a Springfield XD(M) and a couple of extra mags, maybe a flashlight.

This puppy is quite easy to install, and the manual is more than helpful in this regard. It should be added that there’s also a combo-lock version, just as easy to install, the only difference being that this model does not have the Biometric Fingerprint Scanner.

 

Stack-On PDS-500 Drawer Safe with Electronic Lock

Our Rating:


The Stack-On PDS-500 Drawer Safe is a great choice if you’re looking for portability and security. The safe is exactly what it says on the tin – a perfect fit for any drawer. Thanks to its compact design, it lends itself well to transportation, so you can take it with you when you travel and fit it anywhere – hotel rooms, campers, boats, what have you.

For the sake of diversity, we decided to include all three major kinds of safes with respect to the lock mechanism. This is an electronic small gun safe. As you might’ve guessed, the Stack-On PDS-500 features an electronic lock with a numerical pad, so you can easily program a safety key override. Speaking of the pad, you can (fortunately) program the lock so that it either beeps or doesn’t beep when you press the numbers.

Despite the misgivings you may have, you’ll find that this is more than a reliable way to keep your firearms away from kids or people not qualified to handle guns. Of course, you’ll hardly deter a determined intruder with a blowtorch and plenty of time on his/her hands. However, this scenario isn’t realistic unless you’re away from home; and in that case, you’d be bringing the PDS-500 with you.

This baby comes in two colors – the silver-lock variety that you can see here, and another sharp one with a black lock and dial pad. When comparing prices, the PDS-500 is by far the cheapest, but when you look at its usefulness, it becomes invaluable.

 

Fort Knox Original Handgun Safe

Our Rating:


As a responsible gun owner, surely you take gun safety very seriously; if so, then the Fort Knox Original Handgun Safe is the one for you. Living up to its name, the Fort Knox Safe provides you with 22 pounds of 10-gauge steel peace of mind, all wrapped up in a 12.5 by 9.5 by 5-inch lunchbox. Moreover, there’s no battery to worry about, no electronic component to fail you when you need it the most – just good, old American steel (with a lifetime warranty).

This safe is ideal for both your house and your car. If you do decide to keep it inside your house, there are four holes in the bottom which can be used to mount the thing to the floor. You’ll just need four 5/16 bolts to secure it. When it comes to storage, the Fort Knox has enough space to fit two full-size semi-automatic handguns, with quite some room to spare.

The lock is a Simplex pushbutton mechanism. This will not deter any resolute burglar with time to lose, but it will make an occasional teenager or two feel it’s not worth it. More importantly, the Simplex lock gives you quick enough access to your firearm that it rivals biometric locks, albeit not as secure.

The hinges are gas-strutassisted and pop out fast, remaining in this position until you close the lid. It’s worth mentioning that there are two designs of this safe – the one that opens from the top, and another that opens from the side. Other than being a matter of preference, there’s no difference between the two. Out of the three safes we reviewed here, the Fort Knox is by far the most powerful, despite being quite low-tech. If we had to take our pick, it would have to be the Fort Knox PB1, despite its unassuming appearance and lack of tech. To put it in other terms – the Fort Knox lives up to its name to the fullest. It is the heaviest gauge of the three, it’s sturdy, easy to handle, and it will never run out on juice.

It may seem weird that a simple mechanical safe costs almost as much as a biometric, high-tech one (the Fort Knox and Gunvault Mini are roughly comparable), but you can’t put a price on safety, and with Fort Knox, rest assured that you’ll know where each and every penny went. Overall, our recommendation between the three safes is the Fort Knox Original Handgun Safe.

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