Temp range for gun storage in a safe?

Temp range for gun storage in a safe?

This is a discussion on Temp range for gun storage in a safe? within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; I am farily new to firearms but have aquired a small but growing collection. I am about to buy a full size safe for my ...

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Thread: Temp range for gun storage in a safe?

  1. #1
    Member Array Orthodoc's Avatar
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    Temp range for gun storage in a safe?

    I am farily new to firearms but have aquired a small but growing collection. I am about to buy a full size safe for my guns/valuables. The best/easiest place is in my garage, bolted to the poured concrete floor. However, there is not HVAC there so it will be below freezing in the winter and over 100 at times in the peak of summer. I know that humidity is a bigger issue in the inside of a gunsafe and plan on buying a dehumidifier but should I try to find somewhere inside for a more stable temperature? I will be storing documents, digital media backups and the following guns (probably with some boxes of their ammo):
    FN Five Seven
    FN FNP45 Tactical
    Glock 19
    Sig p238
    Beretta NEOS 22lr pistol
    Benelli M2 shotgun
    I am also looking at AR's but dont have one.

    Thoughts on temperature of the exterior environment of the safe? I have my eye on one of the nicer Liberty safes at a local dealer I know


  2. #2
    VIP Member Array peckman28's Avatar
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    Really the biggest thing you need to be worrying about is the humidity, so it's good that you're starting with that. My recommendation would maybe be a space heater for the winter and definitely a dehumidifier in there for the summer. The temperature, at least between those ranges, won't harm the weapons nearly as much as the associated condensation as you go from cold to warm weather. I would definitely focus on that if I were you. As far as the other stuff....any documents will also be affected most by the humidity, which is exacerbated by the temperature changes. Maybe you could rig the dehumidifier to pipe out the water so that it can run indefinitely (as opposed to the little bucket attachment that will make it stop working if you forget to empty it). Good luck with your storage solutions in any event!

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    I'm no expert but I can tell you your going to have a heck of a time keeping humidity and condensation out if it is in an unconditioned garage. There is too much of an investment in that safes contents to not have it inside if at all possible. I would be afraid of long term damage.
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    Get your safe inside...
    My guns are stored in two safes that are both inside of our home...i'm not worried about temp or the gun storage for long term.
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    VIP Member Array SIGguy229's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigdog44 View Post
    I'm no expert but I can tell you your going to have a heck of a time keeping humidity and condensation out if it is in an unconditioned garage. There is too much of an investment in that safes contents to not have it inside if at all possible. I would be afraid of long term damage.
    I concur with bigdog. While its easiest to have your safe in the garage, for secure storage and safe security, and to effectively monitor the conditions of the safe, you should bring it inside the house....put it on pressure treated 4x4s and bolted to the floor in the basement (if you have one). Would you freeze and thaw your digital media? Would you give thieves easy access to your safe with the required tools easily available in your garage?

    Also, you do realize that keeping the safe in the garage, the only thing between the safe and the outside is a thin piece of aluminum...plus, it would not be inconceivable to have someone break in while you are not home, open your garage, and use a vehicle to remove your safe. If its easy for you to put in the garage, is easy for BGs to remove from your garage. If anything, if someone does break-in, make them work for it.
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  6. #6
    Senior Member Array wormy's Avatar
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    Ive had my safe in the garage for 15 years with no problems at all. Just put a dehumidifier in it and youll be fine. The cold will not harm your guns. The problems start when you bring a cold gun into a warm house. That creates condensation. Also no matter where your safe is just keep your guns cleaned and oiled. I also take pictures of all my guns and store somewhere besides my safe so if some dirtbag steals my safe my homeowners policy will replace them.
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    Member Array DanDglassman's Avatar
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    I bought a safe from Gun Safes : Fire Safe Manufacturer : Sturdy Gun Safe an keep it in the garage, as it is too large and heavy to get in the house. 1400 lbs unloaded. I just place some dessicant bags in the safe, run a heat rod, and place my guns in silicone treated gun socks. No trouble here. Temp range in my garage is 50-95 degrees. I've heard a lot of positives about the gun sock's ability to protect the guns.

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    The humidity is easily controlled with an "airtight" safe and any number of desicants/dehumidifiers on the market. As long as it's airtight, changes in temp won't affect what's inside. El Cheapo safes with no door seal are a whole nother story and best stored inside in the air-conditioning. I had (have?) firearms stored inside plastic gun cases for over 20 years in an inside closet that have resisted all rust with little more than a light wipe-down of Outers gun oil, in humid FL no less.
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    Senior Member Array Dennis1209's Avatar
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    I keep mine in the conditioned basement, however, during cold weather I use my wood burning stove and the basement gets cold. I had to remove the door frame to get that 880 lb. monster in. To be on the safe side, I use a Golden Rod heater (available at Cabela's, etc.) and a couple of desiccants.

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    Member Array Orthodoc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dennis1209 View Post
    I keep mine in the conditioned basement, however, during cold weather I use my wood burning stove and the basement gets cold. I had to remove the door frame to get that 880 lb. monster in. To be on the safe side, I use a Golden Rod heater (available at Cabela's, etc.) and a couple of desiccants.

    [IMG][/IMG]
    Thanks guys. All good points of view. I will consider bringing it inside if at all feasible. Its a big freakin basement so I should be able to find SOMEWHERE.

    Also, Dennis1209, what safe is that in your pic? It looks a lot like the one I am looking at (cabela/Liberty brand)

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    The basement is a much better solution due to the humidity in Missouri. The HVAC will condition the air significantly, thus reducing the level of humidity the dehumidifiers are required to handle. Also more secure.

    And, welcome.


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  12. #12
    Senior Member Array marcclarke's Avatar
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    There are plastic bags made especially for storing firearms in safes. The bags are moisture-proof and thus keep out any external humidity. Combined with a desicant packet or cartridge inside the bag, your firearms will be completely immune to any external humidity if you pack them in the sealing storage bags. Guns really don't care what temperature they are stored at; they do care about humidity and rust.

    Ammunition, on the other hand does very much care about what temperature it is stored at. Ammunition degrades rapidly in high heat and in high humidity. Sealing ammunition in a waterproof container (such as a surplus military ammunition can with a rubber gasket) helps protect ammuntiion against humidity, but you have to store the ammuntion someplace cool (such as in a basement or even a crawl space). A garage that does not have air conditioning or heating is a very poor place to store ammunition.

    I agree with previous posters. Put the safe, firearms, and ammuntion in the basement if at all possible. If not, bolt the safe to the garage floor and walls, add several hundred pounds of dead weight (lead for reloading is ideal), and store the firearms inside the safe in moisture-proof plastic storage bags with good dessicants. Store the ammunition inside in the basement in moisture-proof containers no matter where the safe and guns end up.

  13. #13
    Member Array HOTCHKIS's Avatar
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    I have my safe in the garage in FL and use 2 golden rods! I also bought one of those thermometers and it keeps the contents between 35-40%! That's what you want 35-40% humidity level!

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