If you own a gun, you already know that proper storage is key for safety and maintenance. The same is true for home ammunition storage. When you buy ammunition you also need to purchase the things you’ll need to properly store it.
It may surprise you to know that if it’s stored improperly ammunition can go “bad” or rust rendering it useless. Typically ammunition is made to endure extreme environments in short bursts. But there are steps you can take to ensure that they last for years to come.
Home ammunition storage is probably the trickiest because there a number of factors to contend with, including heat and humidity. Here are some tips on proper home ammunition storage, some tips may surprise you!
Home Ammunition Storage
In today’s age ammunition is designed to function in conditions ranging from the extreme cold of the arctic to the heat and humidity of the tropics. In theory, if you limit the exposure to these issues, your ammo can be expected to last 10 years:
- extreme heat
- high humidity
- temperature fluctuations
Ideally, your ammunition should be stored at room temperature with low humidity. You should be extra vigilant in the winter and summer months because temperatures can become extreme. This could affect the nitrocellulose in your gunpowder and if the temperature rises too high, your ammo can begin to sweat as the nitrocellulose inside starts to take a gas form.
Losing Nitrocellulose Can Mean A Loss Of Accuracy
The nitrocellulose gas typically starts to seep out of your ammo cartridge at 125 to 150 degrees Fahrenheit.
According to AmmunitionStore.com, “This leakage can cause an imbalance inside your ammo changing the pressure in your firearm chamber. This can lead to significant inaccuracy upon firing.”
It is unusual for the temperature outside to reach that high. But places like the inside of your vehicle, especially the trunk, have the potential to.
Extreme Temperatures and Humidity Are A Big Problem
On the other hand, freezing temperatures may not cause a loss of powder in your cartridge, however, there’s a large possibility that it will change the ballistic performance of your bullets. Similar to when ammo is exposed to extreme heat, this can affect the accuracy of the shots fired, especially with long-range rifle ammo.
It is recommended that you store your ammunition in ammo cans and ammo containers as this will also help prevent your ammunition from being exposed to extreme temperatures.
Store Supply in Ammo Can or Container
When it comes to proper storage there’s no better place than the original container you bought it in. Keeping your ammo in its original box ensures less movement. With less movement, the smaller the chance of your cartridges becoming scratched, dented, or dinged up.
This also helps keep your ammo organized. That way, you know exactly which ammo and the number of rounds are in each container.
However, keeping it in its original container isn’t always an option. Instead, you can purchase an ammo container to keep your cartridges safe and unexposed.
Safe Ammunition Storage: Prevent Ammo Exposure to Humidity & Moisture
Did you know that humidity is the worst possible thing for your ammunition? Preventing humidity and storing your ammo in a dry area is the most important step in preserving your ammo for the long term.
Cartridges, especially those with the brass casing, that are repeatedly exposed to moisture and high humidity have a high chance of becoming corroded; it can rust the case, deteriorate the primer, and ruin the powder.
What Happens If The Brass Corrodes?
If this occurs your cartridges may not fit properly when chambered in your firearm and you will have no other choice except to discard the corroded rounds. So, you’ve lost your investment and need to spend more money buying more cartridges.
It is highly recommended that you don’t store your ammo in damp basements, on or in the ground, or anywhere on the floor. The best place to store your ammunition is in an air-tight, water-tight ammo container. Just remember that when it comes to storing your ammo the drier the environment the better.
Eva-Dry Offers Home Ammunition Storage Solution
If humidity is a problem in your home, or wherever it is that you’re storing your ammo, consider an Eva-Dry portable dehumidifier. This can ensure that your ammunition is good to go for years to come without the worry of unwanted humidity corroding them. There’s also the added benefit of it helping other areas in which humidity is an issue.
If you want to be extra diligent you can put desiccant packs within your ammunition containers to eliminate any excess moisture within.