How to Store Ammo On and Off the Range
A decent-sized stockpile of ammo can get pretty expensive, so you owe it to yourself to store it properly. If you don’t, that investment can degrade quickly. While you’re at the range, this isn’t as big a concern – you’ll shoot most of it off during your trip. But if you’re storing ammo at home, even for a short period of time, there’s a right way to do it.
Here’s what’s most important to consider when you store ammunition:
- Safety and security
- Proper storage temperature
- Low humidity levels
- Using the right containers
Safety and Security
Regardless of where your ammo is, safety and security have to be your primary concerns. At the range, keep your ammo in its original can or boxes, or in a special ammunition bag or ammo pouch you can wear. Use a 12-round shotgun pouch or a double mag pouch – anything that makes it easier to get to your ammo when you need it.
At home, the bulk of your ammo should be locked away from your guns. Ideally, you’ll be able to store ammo in multiple locations for easier access if you need it.
H2: Storage Temperature
Temperature shifts – like the kind your ammo could experience if you stored it in the garage or shed – are bad for ammunition over time. High temperatures can make the nitrocellulose in powder change states – if it turns into gas, this can cause your ammo to sweat. Low temperatures can change ballistic performance. Changing temps can also trigger changes in humidity, which can drastically reduce your ammo’s shelf life since humidity causes rust, and rust causes corrosion.
Storing your ammunition on the floor makes it even more susceptible to temperature changes. Instead, always keep ammo it in a cabinet or on a rack, and avoid putting it against an unfinished wall. Your best bet is to store your ammo at room temperature – and keep it in the right containers.
The Right Ammo Storage Containers
Ammunition usually comes in boxes that aren’t cut out for long-term storage. If you don’t use all your ammo right away, invest in real ammo cans – you’re looking for waterproof, sealed containers that will protect your ammunition better than any cardboard box or basic metal can.
Storage Hack: Keep silica gel packs in your gun and ammo storage containers to absorb excess moisture that can wreck your ammunition. If you’re storing your ammo in the basement, use a dehumidifier to keep moisture levels low.
What to Look for in Ammo Storage Containers
These are the features you need in a quality ammo storage container:
- Airtight seals
- Carrying handles
- Hard sides
- Water resistance
Storing Ammo at Home
When it comes to storing your ammo at home, choose your storage spots wisely. Here are a few tips:
- Choose a low-humidity room or take steps to minimize humidity
- Store and lock ammo away from your guns
- Keep ammo well-stored in a range of places for easy access
Properly storing your ammo on and off the range will extend its shelf life. If you stick to these basic guidelines, your ammunition will last as long as you need it to.