According to a recent survey, about 30% of Americans admit to owning at least one gun. Additionally, more than 40% of people say that they live in a household with at least one gun in it, even if that gun isn’t theirs.
With these statistics in mind, you would think that most Americans would know how to avoid many of the most common gun ownership mistakes. Yet, they continue to make many of these mistakes over and over again.
If you own a gun, you should make every effort to steer clear of making any of the common gun ownership mistakes. It’ll keep you and others safe and allow you to enjoy all the benefits of owning a gun.
Here are eight gun ownership mistakes and how to avoid them.
1. Buying the Wrong Gun
Buying a gun is a right of passage for a lot of people. They spend a ton of time checking out different guns before purchasing the one that’s going to suit their specific needs as a new gun owner.
You should take as much time as you need to look around at different guns prior to pulling the trigger on one. You want one that’s going to allow you to familiarize yourself with owning a gun from the second you first pick it up.
You should try to avoid buying a gun that’s going to be too much for you to handle at the start. You can gradually build your way up to a more powerful gun later on once you get the hang of carrying a gun around and shooting it.
2. Failing to Obtain the Proper Gun Training
If you’ve never owned a gun before, there is so much that you’re going to have to learn before you begin using it on a regular basis. This will include doing things like:
- Loading your gun
- Holstering your gun
- Aiming your gun
- Shooting your gun
- Troubleshooting your gun
You’re not going to know how to do most of these things when you get a gun for the first time. It’s why you should go through some kind of gun training class so that you get the information that you need on guns.
You should also continue to take training classes over time so that you’re always up on the latest gun safety tips. This will ensure that you don’t make any of the common gun ownership mistakes.
3. Using the Wrong Ammunition in a Gun
In this day and age, it’s never been easier for people to purchase ammunition for a gun after buying one. In many states, it’s legal for people to buy it right online and have it shipped to their home.
The problem with this is that there is no guarantee that you’re going to end up with the right ammo for your gun when you take this approach. You’re better off going to a gun shop and having them talk to you about which types of ammo you need for your gun.
Once you get ammo, you should also be diligent about not leaving a loaded gun lying around in your home. Checking on ammo before putting a gun away is going to be key when it comes to avoiding accidents in your home.
4. Purchasing Low-Quality Accessories for a Gun
In addition to buying ammo for a new gun, you’re also going to want to get your hands on all kinds of accessories for it. This will include everything from a gun holster to one of the different firearm grips.
Regardless of which accessories you decide to buy, you should always be sure to invest in high-quality accessories that are going to keep you safe and stand the test of time. Going with something like Hogue Grips over cheap grips will provide you with a much better experience with your first gun.
5. Mishandling a Gun While Using It
Carrying a gun around is a huge responsibility for those who choose to take it on. You shouldn’t ever take this responsibility lightly when you get your first gun.
One of the first rules of gun ownership is that you shouldn’t ever point your gun in an unsafe direction when using it. That means that you shouldn’t point it up in the air, at another person, or in any other direction unless you absolutely have to.
Instead, you should keep your gun pointed down towards the ground when you’re holding it. This way, it won’t cause any serious injuries or too much damage if it accidentally goes off.
You should also avoid holding your gun in your hand if you don’t need to. It’s better to keep it tucked away in your holster where it belongs for safekeeping.
6. Storing a Gun in a Bad Place
If you don’t remember any of the other gun ownership mistakes that we mention here after today, please do your best to remember this one! It’s of the utmost importance for you to get into the habit of storing a gun properly at all times when you’re not using it.
Believe it or not, experts say that about 2 million American children live in homes where guns are left unlocked and loaded. If you have kids, you could put them into harm’s way by not taking the right approach to storage for firearms.
When you buy your first gun, you should also buy a gun safe to go along with it. Every single time you go to put your gun away, it should go inside of the safe and the safe should then be locked.
There are some people who argue that locking up a gun makes it difficult to get to when they need it. This may be true, but it’s better than leaving a loaded gun sitting around where a child might be able to come along and pick it up.
You can prevent a tragedy from taking place in your home by locking up your gun from the moment you introduce it into your home.
7. Passing Up on the Chance to Talk to Family Members About a Gun
Outside of locking up your gun so that no one other than you will be able to touch it, you should also sit down with anyone else who lives in your home and talk to them about your gun. You should let them know that you have a gun in your home and do your best to teach them about gun safety so that they know everything there is to know about it.
During your discussion about guns with your family members, you should speak about:
- Why you decided to buy a gun
- What steps you took to educate yourself about guns
- Where you’re going to keep your gun—and why it’s important for others to stay away from it
- When and where you plan to carry your gun
- What your family members should do if they ever happen to come across your gun (“stay away!”)
Far too often, people bring a home into their home for the first time but don’t say anything about it to their family members. This can cause some curiosity and might lead to kids trying to gain access to a gun that they’ve heard about. You should open up a conversation about guns with your family so that you’re all on the same page about them.
8. Letting Other People Hold a Gun
When you first get your gun, you’re probably going to be really excited to show it off to all of your friends. You’re not going to be shy about pulling your gun out so that they can get a glimpse of it.
As long as you handle your gun carefully, there is nothing wrong with letting people see your gun. It’ll give you a great opportunity to talk to them about everything that you love about it.
But you should not, under any circumstances, allow someone else to hold your gun. Even if they’re a gun owner themselves, it’s never a good idea to give someone access to your gun since you could be liable for any accidents that take place while they’re holding it.
You can let people look at your gun for as long as they want. But if they ask to hold it, you should politely decline and tell them that you would rather not risk letting them handle your gun.
Don’t Make Any of These Major Gun Ownership Mistakes
There are going to be small mistakes that you’ll make when you buy a gun for the first time. But you should try not to make any of the major gun ownership mistakes that we’ve mentioned here.
You could put yourself into a dangerous position if you mishandle a gun or forget to put it into a safe place when you’re not using it. You could also come to regret buying a gun if you make one of the other crucial mistakes that we’ve discussed.
Would you like to read more informative articles on guns? Find them by browsing around on the rest of our blog.