Top 12 Best Gun Safes Under $1000 [Quality, Easy To Use]

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Yes, I’m sure if you have ready any other articles out there, you know it is imperative to own a gun safe if you have any form of firearm. It is the responsible thing to do, and can keep you and your family safe from harm both from unintentional use, as well as those firearms being used against you as well.

This comprehensive list of gun safes can all be purchased for under $1000, and include some awesome brands like SecureIt, Amsec, Bighorn and even Liberty Safes. You can have a great quality safe for a price under $1000. You may have to compromise somewhere, but it can still be great quality, and even USA made.

In this article, you will learn what gun safes I recommend, what to keep an eye out for, and possibly answer a couple questions you may have in the back of your mind when it comes to the entry level spectrum of gun safes.

Our FavoriteThe ProductRating
Best LightweightSecureIt Model 525 / 5
Best Value/Fire RatingSteelwater SW5928184 / 5
Best Small SafeSecureIt Model 404 / 5
Best Water ResistanceWasatch 24 Gun4 / 5
Best American MadeLiberty Centurion 184 / 5

1. Steelwater SW592818

At under $1000 it is difficult to beat the value that Steelwater offers in this gun safe! It gives 12 gauge steel, an industry beating 60 minute fire rating and a decent sized safe package.

While it is most likely the fire board on the inside of the safe giving it its weight, at 453 pounds this will be a difficult move into your home, but keep in mind, it will also be difficult to steal as well.

You can watch a lot of Steelwater’s videos which show them putting these safes through some serious torture tests, and they will show the quality this safe has.

The only downside I have for this safe, is that they don’t use a name brand locking mechanism. What I would like to see at some point, is to do what Tracker Safe does, and add the lock after it arrives here in the USA.


  • Lock Type: Unknown Brand E-Lock
  • Steel Gauge: 12 gauge steel
  • Fire Rating: 1875 degrees for 60 minutes
  • Outside Dimensions: 59″ high by 28″ wide by 18″ deep 
  • Inside Dimensions: 55 3/4″ high by 25 1/4″ wide by 14 5/8″ deep
  • Weight: 453 pounds


  • Awesome value gun safe
  • 12 gauge steel
  • Best fire rating for its price point
  • Heavy duty


  • Unknown locking mechanism

2. SecureIt Model 52

[Image courtesy of SecureIt]

SecureIt turned the gun safe world on its head by offering the SecureIt Model 52. This is more of a cabinet than a gun safe, but still offers some awesome features that make it a great alternative to what you would consider a classic full size safe.

With its modular design, you can build it and take it down wherever you want.

It also offers 14 gauge steel where it’s needed and 16 gauge where it’s not needed so much.

These would be great for those that are looking to possibly purchase a couple different units, and distribute them throughout the home, instead of compiling all firearms in one spot.

My favorite feature is the cradle grid technology on the inside of the safe! It is completely customizable and fits a range of different firearms, and you can even add different bins, pistol pegs, etc.

Opt for the PRO version, and you can get an awesome set of accessories pre-determined for you.

The model 52 gun cabinets are highly rated, and I really do like them.


  • Lock Type: Unknown Electronic Lock
  • Steel Gauge: 14 gauge front, 16 gauge sides
  • Fire Rating: None
  • Outside Dimensions: 52″ high by 20 1/4″ wide by 15 1/4″ deep
  • Inside Dimensions: 51 3/4″ high by 19 3/4″ wide by 13″ deep
  • Weight: 105 pounds


  • Lightweight
  • Company is up front on what it is meant for
  • High quality
  • Easy acces


  • Lower gauge steel

3. Tracker TS14

[Image courtesy of Tracker Safe]

A while back, I had worked with Tracker Safe on writing some articles about their safes. I had always really like their products, and thought it would be great to write and article like this.

However something that really struck me when writing the article, is the fact that they install their locks after the safes arrive in the USA.

Most manufacturers have their safes built and assembled completely across the pond (lol), however Tracker finishes the most important part in their own warehouses, the lock.

Why is this important? Because the lock is incredibly important to the quality of the safe. You can have the best safe in the world, but if the lock didn’t have good quality control, or just quality in general, you are going to get locked out, or worse, not be able to access it when you need it quickly.

That said, not only is this done for this safe, the TS14 also offers thick steel at 12 gauge, has a fire rating of the 30 minutes, and just offers and awesome value.


  • Lock Type: Electronic, or mechanical
  • Steel Gauge: 12 gauge
  • Fire Rating: 1200 degrees for 30 minutes
  • Outside Dimensions: 59″ high by 23″ wide by 20″ deep
  • Inside Dimensions: 56.5″ high 21” wide by 13.5″ deep
  • Weight: 375 pounds


  • Lock is installed in the USA
  • Choice of locking mechanism
  • Great steel gauge for the price


  • Could have a better fire rating

4. SecureIt Model 40

As a follow up to the SecureIt Model 52, we also have the Model 40 here! This has the exact same specifications as the Model 52, just 40” tall, instead of 52” (Yeah, that is where they get their names).

This cabinet is also the cheapest option on this list!

Did you know you can actually stack these gun cabinets? You can actually buy these as sets and stack them on top of eachother.

I mean really, you could have a safe for each person in the family if you wanted, all with their own little cabinets.


  • Lock Type: Unknown Electronic Lock
  • Steel Gauge: 14 gauge front, 16 gauge sides
  • Fire Rating: None
  • Outside Dimensions: 40 1/4″ high by 20 1/4″ wide by 15 1/4″ deep
  • Inside Dimensions: 39 3/4″ high by 19 3/4″ wide by 13″ deep
  • Weight: 100 pounds


  • Most compact gun safe
  • Lightweight design
  • Modular design


  • Lower gauge steel

5. Amsec TF5517E5

American Security, also known as Amsec makes a huge range of gun safes, ranging from this entry level TF series safe, all the way up to massive cement filled gun safes.

The TF5517E5 is an awesome little safe, it does away with anything that could cause the price to go up, and just offers a small, great quality safe.

This safe is one of their import safes, however from my findings, you don’t have to worry too much about quality when it comes to Amsec.

At 14 gauge steel, it is what you would expect in a budget safe, but it does offer some great lock options in the form of either an e-lock or a mechanical lock.

For a full size gun safe, you won’t find many safes smaller than this one, as it is only 55.25” high, and 17.34” wide. 

It would make an awesome safe to be added into a closet!


  • Lock Type: ESL5 Electronic Lock or Group II combination lock
  • Steel Gauge: 3/16″ steel plate door / 14-gauge body
  • Fire Rating: 1200 degrees for 30 minutes
  • Outside Dimensions: 55.25″ High by 17.34″ Wide by 16″ Deep
  • Inside Dimensions: 52.5″ High by 16″ Wide by 11″ Deep
  • Weight: 286 pounds


  • Awesome locking mechanism
  • Compact design for a traditional gun safe
  • Thick steel plate door


  • Thinner steel gauge
  • Lower fire rating

6. Liberty Centurion 18

Ahh you can’t make it past a list of gun safes without a Liberty showing up somewhere! Liberty Safes continues to make tried and true gun safes, and the Liberty Centurion is no different!

While I personally think you can get a bit of a better value out of an imported safe when you are talking sub-one-thousand dollars, if you really want a USA made gun safe, this is going to be it.

It offers 14 gauge steel, a decent fire rating, and that awesome Lifetime Warranty from Liberty!

One really cool thing that makes these stand apart, is Liberty’s move away from locking bolts, to locking bars. This article here talks about why that is actually really cool.


  • Lock Type: S&G Dial Lock standard or SecuRam TopLit electronic lock 
  • Steel Gauge: 14 gauge
  • Fire Rating: 1200 degrees for 30 minutes
  • Outside Dimensions: 59.5″ x 24.25″ x 22″
  • Inside Dimensions: 56” high by 22.25” wide by 13.5” deep
  • Weight: 336 pounds


  • Backed by Liberty
  • High quality locking mechanism
  • Good dimensions for long guns


  • Definitely an entry level Liberty

7. Bighorn B6030ELX

For under $1000.00 it is very difficult to beat the size, and functionality of the Bighorn 6030ELX (ELX stands for electronic lock). 

Bighorn is one of Rhino Metals import brands, and they really have gotten it right.

This is a larger safe, with a great lock, large interior, a great door panel, 3mm thick steel (somewhere between 8 and 10 gauge), and a whopping 70 minute fire rating at 1200 degrees.

This safe truly has some of the most features that any safe under $1000.00 can have. 

Not only is this safe found on this list of under $1000, the gloss version can also be found on my list of best safes at Costco, and list of best overall gun safes.

Also, take a look at a swing out rack in Rhino’s website as a great add on for this safe.

For more information about Bighorn Safes, I recommend checking out my full overview of their safes.


  • Lock Type: SecuRAM Electronic Lock
  • Steel Gauge: 8 – 10 gauge steel
  • Fire Rating: 1200 degrees for 70 minutes
  • Outside Dimensions: 59” high by 30” wide by 24” deep
  • Inside Dimensions: 56” high by 27” wide by 16.4” deep
  • Weight: 585 lb.


  • Awesome value safe
  • Great steel gauge for the price
  • Great fire rating
  • High quality locking mechanism


  • Can only be bought at Costco

8. Format EL19

You could be forgiven for not having ever heard of Format, but they offer some great bank for the buck when it comes to steel thickness and fire rating!

At 12 gauge steel, 549 pounds, and a whopping 60 minute fire rating, it is up there with some of the best on the list.

The main downside I do see for this safe though, is its lack of lifetime warranty. They only give a 1 year warranty on parts only, and from what I can see, do not offer any form of break-in or fire warranty.

In the end, this safe is as simple as it gets, which leaves you with lots of steel, great fire rating, and a really heavy safe, nothing more, nothing less.


  • Lock Type: Mechanical or electronic
  • Steel Gauge: 12 gauge
  • Fire Rating: 1200 degrees for 60 minutes
  • Outside Dimensions: 59” high by 28” wide by 20” deep
  • Inside Dimensions: 56” High by 26” wide by 14” deep
  • Weight: 549 pounds


  • Choice of locking mechanism
  • Great steel gauge
  • Good fire rating
  • Heavy duty


  • Lesser known brand

9. Second Amendment GS592820

This manufacturer is another lesser known gun safe builder than others on this list, and that is because they normally under the Blue Dot name offer a crazy range of business safes.

They have used their knowledge in that industry, and their buying power to be able to offer awesome value gun safes.

So what makes this safe special? It offers a name brand lock, a 28” width safe (large for this price point), 12 gauge steel, and an hour fire rating.

I don’t believe this combination of features can be beat for any other safe on this list.


  • Lock Type: Lagard Basic E-Lock
  • Steel Gauge: 12 gauge
  • Fire Rating: 1700 degrees for 60 minutes
  • Outside Dimensions: 59″ high by 28″ wide by 20″ deep
  • Inside Dimensions: 55″ high by 24 1/2″ wide by 15″ deep
  • Weight: 482 pounds


  • Very high quality lock
  • Awesome fire rating
  • Good steel gauge


  • Lesser known brand

10. Wasatch 24 Gun Fire and Water Safe

The Wasatch safes are relatively new to me, however they are made by Fortress safes which have been around for a really long time.

What stands out to me on this safe, is the low price, high steel gauge, and the presence of a water resistance rating!

Not many safes out there right now have any resistance to water, which can be a great benefit to those that have homes that are prone to flooding.

If this is you, I probably would go with this one, as there aren’t many downsides to it.

It has the steel, fire rating, and brand behind it to make it a great contender for under a grand.


  • Lock Type: Unknown Electronic Lock
  • Steel Gauge: 12 gauge
  • Fire Rating: 1400 degrees for 40 minutes
  • Outside Dimensions: 55” high by 23.5” wide by 20.75” deep
  • Weight: 329 pounds


  • Great price
  • Decent fire rating
  • Very good steel gauge


  • Very little known about brand
  • Unknown locking mechanism

11. Hollon HGS-16

I think Hollon gets forgotten a bit too much in these lists. Hollon has pushed out some truly great safes at an affordable cost. The HGS-16 is a part of their hunter series, it has 12 gauge steel (this is probably the best gauge steel you will find under $1000.00), and a 45 minute fire rating.

The smaller size is definitely made up for by the thickness of the steel. Unlike any of the others on this list, Hollon is happy to sell this safe with a variety of lock options.

However you won’t find this safe at a big box retailer, so I’d recommend checking it out online to buy.


  • Lock Type: S&G Mechanical or Electronic
  • Steel Gauge: 12 gauge
  • Fire Rating: 1400 degrees for 45 minutes
  • Outside Dimensions: 55″ high by 24″ wide by 18″ deep
  • Inside Dimensions: 53″ high by 22″ wide by 12″ deep
  • Weight: 390 pounds


  • Great fire rating
  • Awesome locking mechanism
  • Heavy duty


  • Nothing too special

12. Sports Afield SA6040

The Sports Afield SA6040 is the biggest safe on this list. At under $1000.00 it is 55″ high, 40″ wide, and a depth of 22″. 

This safe “Sports” a 40 minute fire rating at 1200 degrees. This is slightly above the industry standard, but nothing really to write home about. However, for the price, it is a great value.

At 14 gauge steel, this is competitive to Cannon’s low end safes, or the Liberty Centurion series. It again is really the industry minimum. This safe is great for people that need to fit a lot of guns, or valuables but don’t have much money.


  • Lock Type: SecuRAM E-Lock
  • Steel Gauge: 14 gauge
  • Fire Rating: 1200 degrees for 40 minutes
  • Outside Dimensions: 59 x 40 x 22
  • Inside Dimensions: Unknown
  • Weight: 550 pounds


  • Great locking mechanism
  • Very heavy


  • Lower steel gauge than competitors

What to keep an eye on when shopping for a safe under $1000

Shopping for a gun safe under the $1000 price point means you likely won’t get everything you ever wanted out of a safe. You will want to make sure the necessities are there, and that you aren’t spending money on random aesthetic things.

Because of these things, here is what you should expect, and maybe do without when you are shopping for a safe.

Quality locking mechanism

This is by far the most important thing you should be paying attention to when buying a gun safe. Read reviews of any safe you are going to buy, and watch out for people talking about low quality locking mechanisms.

You want to make sure that when you are ready to access your safe, that you are able to!

The last thing you want is to be locked out when an intruder is in your home. Due diligence in this department is imperative.

I will note, some manufacturers offer safes without a manufacturer label on it, so it is difficult to tell the quality of the lock. A great example is SecureIt. Normally I wouldn’t highly recommend a product with a non-name-brand lock. However they have proven to me that they offer quality, and aren’t just trying to get out the cheapest product possible.

Steel thickness

In the sub-$1000 price point, a good steel thickness will likely be in the 12 gauge steel category! You will likely also find 14 gauge, however I would personally lean more towards the 12.

You won’t really find any safes with inner steel on this list, however that is to be expected.

Remember, the thicker the steel you have, the less likely someone can cut through it with a saw, or a cutt cutting torch.

Fire rating

In the price range of $1000, if a gun safe has a fire rating at all, it likely will be in the 30 minute range. Of course this can be exactly what someone needs, or if you are looking for something with a bit more oomph to it, you may want to save up a little bit more.

I would highly recommend reading this article I wrote that goes much more in depth as to if you need more fire rating, or these entry level safes will do what you need!

Security Features

This encompases things like drill plates, locking bolts (or bars), and any other variety of features manufacturers add to make safes more (or less) secure.

You’ll notice I don’t talk a ton about these features in the list of the safes, and that is mainly because locking bolts tend to be a ruse, many manufacturers will stick a crazy amount of big looking bolts on their safes, but they are attached to a tiny little framework on the inside, meaning none of those bolts are going to do anything.


Even though you are spending less on a safe, you still shouldn’t expect anything less when it comes to warranty.

A safe really should have a lifetime warranty on it, as this reflects the manufacturers confidence in their product. If it is only 1 year, you probably should take a second look at why that is.


If you were looking to compromise in any part of a gun safe because of the $1000 budget, this is where you should compromise. You need the steel, you need the lock, you likely need the fire resistance, what you don’t need is a paint job akin to a Lamborghini.

Think about it this way, if you are seeing a safe that looks aesthetically amazing, that means the manufacturer spent money on making it that way. That means they spent less money elsewhere, and likely are just trying to make the sale, and not trying to keep you safe.

Additional Features

Much like aesthetics, this is going to be another category you are going to have to sacrifice some availability to make sure you are getting quality where it is needed.

These additional features may be door panels, lighting kits, and other things that more expensive safes add on to be more usable.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best gun safe for the money?

If there was one safe I personally would purchase from this list, it would have to be the SecureIt Model 52. These safes offer a great value to the dollar with its flexible interior, to its modular design.

I would buy a couple of them, one at a time, and build out a distributed system.

What company makes the best safes?

Much like car manufacturers, different manufacturers specialize in different types of products, whether that be high or low level products.

In the gun safe industry, I would say SecureIt, Liberty Safe, and Amsec really offer some great safes for under $1000.

What is the best gun safe for under 500?

So you have read through this list, and realized you don’t quite have the budget for one of them? Well you are in luck, you can still get a great gun safe for half the price.

I would recommend thinking about a different style of safe though, and include ideas like the Snapsafe Under Bed Safe to fix what you are looking for.

Is 12 gauge steel good for a gun safe?

12 gauge steel is what I personally consider the beginning of a quality gun safe! You will find this gauge of steel even in safes twice the price of what you find on this list, and they continue to be considered quality.

Once the steel gets to this thickness, it becomes more difficult to cut through using a variety of tools.


You really can own a great gun safe for under $1000, as made evident by this list. Of course you aren’t going to get the premium features of high end gun safes, however what you will get is the basic features you need to keep a basic smash and grab intruder away from your firearms, and off the streets.

As long as you are really aware of what you are buying, and aren’t expecting the world of the safe, then you should be fine!

Any of these safes on this list should work well for you. However if you have quite a bit lower budget than this article, and it is around $100, this article might be a great one to read!