A Step-by-Step Guide to Disposing of Your Old Gun Safe

Learn about your options for disposing of your gun safe legally. Follow these steps to ensure a safe and responsible disposal process.

A gun safe is an enclosed space with a reliable locking mechanism to store guns. It is a valuable asset to keep firearms safe and out of reach of unauthorized persons. 

Like any other functional equipment, gun safes reach the end of their usefulness. It would be best to dispose of an old gun safe when this happens properly.

Safety is the main reason why proper disposal of gun safes is being advocated.

Safety Considerations for Disposing Your Old Gun Safe

Gun safes are sturdy; some are large-sized and heavy and thus cannot be easily moved for disposal. They also contain hazardous chemicals to prevent trapping fire since it is designed especially for guns.

Keep in mind these safety considerations to ensure a safe and responsible disposal process.

1. Plan your disposal

Authorities and experts know about the right centers to scrap it or the right landfills to dump it. Dumping an old gun safe outside your yard can be dangerous for the next day’s non-hazardous waste garbage collection.

2. Think of your environment

Unauthorized persons might get attracted to it and open it. And if you didn’t empty it properly, the wrong person might access what you had left inside your old gun safe.

Someone might accidentally sell the gun safe to a syndicate. We do not want these things to happen.

3. Follow local regulations

Be sure to research and follow local regulations for disposing of a gun safe. Some areas may have specific requirements for safe disposal, such as recycling programs or hazardous waste disposal facilities.

4. Proper disposal of electronic components

If your gun safe has electronic components, such as a keypad or lock, be sure to dispose of these properly according to local regulations. Some components may contain hazardous materials that require special handling.

Options for Disposing of Your Old Gun Safe

When disposing of an old or unwanted gun safe, several options exist. Depending on the condition of the safe and your local regulations, some options may be more suitable than others.

Here are some of the most common options for disposing of a gun safe:

1. Let the experts do it.

Search online and contact an authorized disposal site or a gun safe removal specialist that can take your old safe off your hands safely and legally.

Note that disposal might need inspections and permits from your government. Licensed safe disposal sites or businesses can take the burden off your shoulders.

2. Recycle the safe.

The three options above, letting the experts do it, selling, and donating, will likely end up with the recycling process.

If you want to recycle your old gun safe for your use and still have ample space in your home or office, you can stack other things inside it, such as books, golf equipment, etc.

Check for molds, rust, and dead critters inside your gun safe, and clean or treat them first.

3. Sell your safe.

You can disassemble your safe and check what your gun safe is made out of. Chances are its lining is mostly made out of metal. All scrap metal is hazardous waste, and if you have the tools and expertise, you can disassemble the safe and sell its components.

On the other hand, you can find a buyer for your intact old gun safe online. Make sure to lay all your terms to potential clients.

You can ask fellow gun owners in your community if you have a club or an online group that may be interested in buying your old safe.

4. Donate your safe.

Check for organizations with networks to different gunsmiths or gun organizations that accept donations. If your gun safe passes an antique check, museums might be interested.

Correct organizations surely know how to handle donated gun safes properly and legally.

You can check with industrial organizations that convert scraps to materials used for construction, furniture, health-related equipment, etc.

5. Dispose of the safe.

If none of the above options are suitable, you may need to dispose your gun safe. This may involve taking it to a hazardous waste disposal facility or contacting a professional disposal service.

Steps to Safely Dispose Your Old Gun Safe

You can take several steps to dispose of an old gun safe, including emptying it of all contents, determining if it can be recycled or sold, and finding a professional company to help with disposal.

Proper disposal of a gun safe protects the environment and helps prevent the possibility of the safe falling into the wrong hands.

Now, let’s go over the steps to safely and responsibly dispose of an old gun safe.

Step 1: Plan.

Where will you relocate the guns and accessories in your old gun safe? If your gun safe is large, who will you ask for help with moving the gun safe from one place to another?

If the gun safe is in good condition, you may be able to sell it to a second-hand retailer or gun store. If not, you can also recycle the safe by contacting your local waste management company or a metal recycling facility.

Plan it all to have a smooth relocation or disposal of your gun safe.

Step 2: Empty your gun safe.

Ensure that your old gun safe is empty of all contents. This includes any firearms, ammunition, or other materials stored inside.

If you’re unsure where to transfer the contents, you can create mounts or a false wall or keep the guns under a laminated floor.

Step 3: Disassemble your gun safe.

If you can’t sell or recycle it, you may need to disassemble it before disposal. This can be challenging, especially if you need the necessary tools or experience.

You can hire a professional company to disassemble and remove the gun safe for you. Most gun safes nowadays have electronic security features. Before disposal, disable its security functions.

This is a cautionary measure in case you accidentally leave a dangerous material inside your old gun safe.

Step 4: Call your local government or disposal company.

Tell them about your plan and ask them to guide you on legally disposing of your old gun safe.

Also, let them know about the option you have in mind, like selling, donating, or recycling, and ask if it is feasible.

If you choose to find a professional disposal company to dispose of your gun safe, ensure they’re licensed and insured.

Step 5: Follow local laws and regulations.

Following local laws and regulations is essential when disposing your old gun safe.

In some areas, you may need to obtain a permit or follow specific guidelines for hazardous waste disposal. Check with your local government or waste management facility for correct procedures.


The benefits of properly disposing of an old gun safe revolve around safety and legality.

If properly practiced, there will be no legal issues, and it will be safe for yourself, your family, the environment, and the community.

Also, you get to exchange it for money if you decide to sell it, help organizations if you choose to donate it, and boost your creativity if you decide to repurpose it for your own use.

Anything physical that is related to gun safe use is hazardous and must be taken with great caution. It is highly recommended to ask permission and guidance from the authorities first.

Weigh your current needs and reasons to help in choosing from the options on how to dispose of an old gun safe.


How do I dispose of an old gun safe?

These are how to dispose of an old gun safe: seek disposal services from the experts, sell it, donate it, or recycle it.

Can I recycle my old gun safe?

Yes, you can turn it into storage for things that are not dangerous.

Are there any environmental regulations to consider when disposing of a gun safe?

Yes, and it is best to seek advice and permission from the authorities before you dispose of an old gun safe.

Can I donate my old gun safe? If so, where can I donate it?

Yes, you may be able to donate your old gun safe to local military schools, non-profit organizations, gun clubs, or shooting ranges.


“Gun Safe Definition.” Law Insider, www.lawinsider.com/dictionary/gun-safe.

Hill, Phil. Dispose Of, Replace or Upgrade Your Old Safe with Thornhill Security. 3 Apr. 2017, www.thornhillsecurityltd.co.uk/things-consider-disposing-relocating-old-safe/.

“How to Dispose of Guns and Ammunition – Granger.” Https://Www.grangerwasteservices.com/, www.grangerwasteservices.com/how-to-dispose-of-guns-and-ammunition/.

“What We Do – National Center for Unwanted Firearms.” Www.unwantedfirearms.org, www.unwantedfirearms.org/what-we-do/.

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