Any reason not to store ammo in gun safe?

Any reason not to store ammo in gun safe?

This is a discussion on Any reason not to store ammo in gun safe? within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; The title says it all. I do not see a problem with it and I don't have a lot of ammo so I want to ...

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Thread: Any reason not to store ammo in gun safe?

  1. #1
    Member Array Wisewolf's Avatar
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    Any reason not to store ammo in gun safe?

    The title says it all. I do not see a problem with it and I don't have a lot of ammo so I want to make sure I done lose what I have.

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    Senior Member Array cn262's Avatar
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    If you keep it cool and dry it should last a long time. I had some .223 match ammo from the mid 1990's that I shot last summer. It worked perfectly after roughly 15 years of storage in my safe.

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    I keep much of mine (minus a few thousand rounds) in two safes, keeps it cool and dry and adds weight to the safe.
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    VIP Member Array joker1's Avatar
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    NO NO NO!

    You have to keep the icky bullets away from the evil guns! Preferrably in a different safe at the opposite corner of the county on a separate floor. If you keep the guns and ammo in the same location the guns may load themselves and go on shooting sprees!

    Oh the horror!


    Ok now that I got that out of my system, it is ok to store ammo and guns in the same safe hell you could even keep magazines or clips in there too!
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    Senior Member Array kb2wji's Avatar
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    If I didnt lose all of my guns and ammo in the hurri-nado-floodi-quako-cane I would be keeping my ammo in the safe. Adds weight to the safe and lets face it....I want to keep it out of the wrong hands.
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    Distinguished Member Array chuckusaret's Avatar
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    I have ammo, mostly .38, .44 and shot-shells, that was stored in the original boxes on open shelves in my father's garage for at least 40 years and I have had the ammo since 1994 and today it shoots as new. Can't say that for the paper shotgun shell casings from the early 1900's, many show signs of bulging/expanding. Can't keep mine in the safe, no room. Dampness and high temperatures are the worst threat to stored ammo.
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    I keep my ammo in a gun safe because mine has fire protection. One thing many never think about is if they have a fire in their house and it reaches where their ammo is stored and the rounds start popping off.
    The chief danger in life is that you may take too many precautions. - Alfred Adler

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    Until 5M ago I barely had maybe 200R in my safe. Now I have about 1200R in my safe. There just isn't room for more ammo.
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    Member Array Todd_Ohio's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Old_Dog View Post
    I keep my ammo in a gun safe because mine has fire protection. One thing many never think about is if they have a fire in their house and it reaches where their ammo is stored and the rounds start popping off.
    Very good point.

    Aren't most safes only good for an hour? I wonder when they'd reach ignition temperature. I guess it depends. Better than nothing!
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    Member Array linuss's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Old_Dog View Post
    I keep my ammo in a gun safe because mine has fire protection. One thing many never think about is if they have a fire in their house and it reaches where their ammo is stored and the rounds start popping off.
    Loose ammunition 'popping off' in a fire is no danger. Having said that, the uneducated firefighters will still be scared and hide, letting the house burn.




    OP, reason for not putting ammo in a safe? When there's no room for it :D

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    Member Array baruffic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Old_Dog View Post
    I keep my ammo in a gun safe because mine has fire protection. One thing many never think about is if they have a fire in their house and it reaches where their ammo is stored and the rounds start popping off.
    You might want to double check with your insurance company on this. Many insurance companies will not cover your loss if you store ammo in the same safe as your guns. If you ammo goes off in a fire and destroys all your guns you maybe SOL depending on your insurance company.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Array kb2wji's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Old_Dog View Post
    I keep my ammo in a gun safe because mine has fire protection. One thing many never think about is if they have a fire in their house and it reaches where their ammo is stored and the rounds start popping off.
    I've wondered about this, but dont really see a problem. If your safe's internal temp gets high enough to pop off rounds, then your rounds outside the safe would have gone off long ago. Also, the casing has less mass than the bullet, so if it did pop off, I would imagine that the casing would just fly backwards instead of the bullet acting like a bullet. I dont see much damage occurring. Also, the safe isnt air tight as far as I can tell, so the odds of internal pressure causing it to become a "bomb" is almost non-existent. Not that I would bet my next paycheck on it, but I think its worth the risk for the payoff in security. Hope to never find out though!

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    Sadly, I can speak from a BAD experience:

    Ammo in a safe is fine, guns in a safe is fine. But not necessarily together, and it depends on how much ammo. If you have a fire and you have a quantity of ammo in your safe with the guns, the safe becomes an oven and it's likely the ammo will cook off, when it does it's going to raise the already rising internal temperature of your safe and cause more harm to your guns and contents. We enjoy having a fire-resisitant safe, but when you put ammo in there, you are sort of over-riding the idea of it's fire resistance and asking for trouble.

    You could have a few loaded mags in your safe and I think that would be alright, but not large quantities. Just think how hot your gun gets when you shoot it 10-15 times, that's only 10-15 cartridges worth of heat. Now consider a block of 500 rounds going off inside an already hot captive box with no place for it to vent or the smoke and residue to go. Not only did the contents get hotter, but your safe contents are more seriously gunked up from the powder residue, smoke etc, and that's more than you could imagine.

    Ok, let's shift gears. If you have stored ammo in your house, not in the safe, the FD may back off from rounds that cook off? So you have no one fighting the fire for a while? UGH I'd say gun's only in the safe and ammo stored in a separate safe. However, I realize the finances of another safe, but as an alternate you could construct a nice large lockable box lined with several layers of fire-rock or insulation to impede ammo cooking off, and put it somewhere else in the house. Another alternative is keeping your quantities of ammo off-site. A buddy of mine has a small nice storage building in his backyard and he keeps his multiple ammo stored and secure in that building.

    A few other thoughts.
    1. IMO, from a fire standpoint that a gun safe is better along a perimeter wall of a house, if it's in the "center" of the house, it'll likely be surrounded by fire 360 degrees, on the edge it's only surrounded by roughly 180 degrees, so it would have lesser of a heat challenge at the perimeter.

    2. If you live rural your fire philosophy might need to be even more acute for the simple reason of distance and travel time to the fire. Your risks and losses will likely be greater.

    3. Make sure you have your stuff insured and a list of ammo, guns and serial numbers stored off-site.

    4. Consider purging your gun safe of the shelf/rack internals. Have nothing but an empty and roomy safe, buy some cheap padded gun cases, number them, and pack/record your guns in the safe that way. The padding is insulation from heat as well as protecting your guns from dings. If you have wasted space up at the top inside of the safe, then make a sheetrock lined wooden box to go at the bottom (it's cooler down there) and put all of your guns on top of the box, inside the safe. Use the box to store a little ammo, special papers, bagged handguns or other valuable.

    I hope this helps and I wish I'd heard this long ago myself.
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  14. #14
    Senior Member Array kb2wji's Avatar
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    ^ Lot's of good info, thanks!

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    Senior Member Array tubadude's Avatar
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    I'd store magazines with the guns, but not boxes of ammo. Space is at a premium, and bulk ammo is just fine in my closet.

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