AR15 Safety: What You Need to Consider?

So, you’ve finally gotten your first AR15 rifle?

Congrats! Noting feel good like having one of the mightiest rifles on the earth by your side. Just a quick reminder…this gun comes with the ultimate accuracy, incredible flexibility. And its lightweight, compact design makes it easy to operate for everyone- including absolute beginners.

This is a rifle you can count on for all your self-defense, competitive shooting, and hunting needs.

BUT…you don’t play games with this rifle. If you handle it inappropriately, it can cause fatal injuries or even death to YOU as well as those around you!

The rifle, like any other firearm, doesn’t give you second chances. Once you fire, you can’t call back the shot.

That said, you’d want to observe all the safety tips recommended when handling your rifle.

The purpose of putting up this post is to take you through the 13 KEY safety tips and rules to keep in mind when handling your AR15 to ensure you don’t fall victim its wrath.

Let’s get started…

Rule #1: ALWAYS, always treat your AR15 as loaded…

…even you truly know it’s not. Even if someone assures that the rifle is unloaded, don’t believe it until you confirm.

The last thing you’d want to do is mishandle loaded just because you assumed it was unloaded. Trust me; this will cause great harm not only to those around you but you as well.

Even if your true friend assures you the rifle is unloaded, don’t hesitate to check it. If he really knows the gun safety rules, he’ll understand.

Rule #2: ALWAYS keep your rifle unloaded until you’re ready to fire

Do I need to explain this?

Rule #3: ALWAYS keep your gun pointed in the safe direction

Probably the most important rule- and the first rule taught to every beginner!

NEVER point your gun at anything you have no intentions of shooting.

Rule #4: ALWAYS keep that finger off the trigger- unless you want to fire

Keeping your finger on the trigger when you’re carrying it or just examining it isn’t recommended. Most beginner shooters have a habit of doing this, oblivious to what might happen when they accidentally pull the trigger.

Follow my advice: always keep the finger out of the trigger guard UNTIL you’re ready to fire, and after shooting, take the finger off the trigger.

Rule #5: ALWAYS know your target well

Once you fire a shot, it’s gone, and you cannot call it back- and you can’t control what it hits.

With that in mind, it’s always important that you fully understand what you’re shooting before pulling that trigger. Ensure that the fired bullet will not injure anything or anyone beyond your target.

Know the surrounding of your target very well; know where your bullet will stop.

Rule #6: NEVER trust your gun safety mechanism

Though the AR15 rifle comes with a safety device that helps prevent if firing accidentally, I’d recommend you not to rely on it.


Because the device isn’t always reliable.

There have been cases where the rifle fires when the safety is release- which makes it safe to say that they’re not always useful.

Don’t stop using your rifle safety. In fact, use it when necessary. But in addition to that, observe our Rule #3 above: keep the gun is pointed in a safe direction.

Rule #7: ALWAYS use the best eye and ear protection when shooting your AR15

Your safety should also count when using this rifle.

The best way to ensure you’re totally safe when shooting the firearm involves wearing the best ear protection muffs as well as safety glasses. While the ear protection prevents your ears from hearing loss damage caused by the thunderous sound of the guns, the safety glasses help keep your eyes from falling shot, clay target chips, twigs, or even the raptured cases of rifle malfunction (though rare).

Besides, you should also wear the eye protection when disassembling (say when cleaning) your gun to prevent pins, spring, tension parts or solvents from jumping into your eyes.

Rule #8: AVOID altering/modifying your rifle (and give it regular servicing)

As we all know, the AR15 rifle is designed by experts and comes fully optimized to perform well in its original condition.

Making any modifications and alternations to your rifle might make it dangerous and even make it void of your manufacturer warranty.

I’ll strongly advise you against altering the rifle safety, trigger, or any other mechanism (unless you know and understand what you’re doing) as this can jeopardize your safety as well as that of others.

Rule #9: NEVER shoot hard surfaces

Never think of shooting hard surfaces. And by hard surfaces, I mean rocks, metal, and even the hardwood.

Why? You might wonder…

Well, there have been cases where shooters fires at such surfaces and they send back the bullet as a projectile that goes right back to the shooter or the unintended/unsafe directions- causing great harm.

You might have your doubts on whether water is a hard surface, but its density can be a danger lurking too. It can cause shotguns shots and bullets fired at it to ricochet and fly off in the unsafe direction.

I think this last rule puts more emphasis on the need to fully understand what you’re shooting at and what’s beyond it.

Rule #10: If you AR15 fails to shoot on pulling the trigger, handle it with extra CARE!

Whenever your rifle fails to fire, that doesn’t make it any “weak.” Remember that there’s still a cartridge inside the chamber, and your gun is loaded- and it can fire at any time even if it failed at the first pull of the trigger.

It can go off at any time- when you’re not even aware!

The best thing to do in such situation, therefore, is to follow the Rule #3: keep the muzzle pointed in a safe direction.

Rule #11: ALWAYS ensure the barrel is clear of any possible obstructions before shooting

Before loading your rifle, I’d also advise you to first open its action to concern that there’s any ammunition in the magazine or chamber.

In addition to that, check that the barrel is clear and free from all forms of obstruction. Presence of any obstacles, including small bits of snow, mud, excess grease or lubricating oil, etc., can lead to increased pressure in the barrel.

The increased pressure levels can then lead to bulging of the barrel or even cause it to burst on firing- causing injuries to the shooters as well as others.

Cleaning your rifle barrel with the help of cleaning rod before shooting can help minimize such unfortunate encounters.

Rule #12: ALWAYS use the right ammunition

Yes, always ensure that the ammo you’re loading to your rifle is ideal for AR15.

Just because the ammo can be easily crammed into your AR doesn’t mean that it’s the right ammo for the gun. As the pro shooters will tell you, the ammo you feed your rifle with must match its strength factors and design.

Use the wrong ammo, and it’ll end up damaging your rifle or cause severe injuries to you.

All the rifles come with the proper cartridge designation clearly marked on them.

And in ca you have any doubts about the right ammo to use with your rifle, don’t hesitate to consult an experienced shooter, gunsmith or even your rifle manufacturers.

Rule #13: Fully familiarize yourself with your rifle

Lastly (but not the least)…

If you’re using AR15 for the first time, taking time to learn all its features and operations before using it is also highly recommended.

Take time to familiarize yourself with all its mechanical as well as handling characteristics. Know how to load and unload it, how to carry and handle it, know where it safety device is located, etc.

Believe you me, when you’re sufficiently familiar with your gun, you’ll be less susceptible to the firearm-related hazards as you’ll have an easy time implementing all the safety rules we’ve mentioned in this post.

Final Verdict

The AR15 is one of the most loved rifles in the US. Everyone who owns the gun speaks of its ultimate precision, incredible flexibility, ease of handling, and so on. This means that it is a highly reliable gun that you’d want to use for all your shooting, self-defense, and hunting needs.

However, note that this rifle is just like any other firearm (probably even more dangerous) and needs taking the ultimate care and safety when shooting with it. A slight mishandling can lead to fatal injuries and even death to YOU and anyone surrounding you.

Let the 13 top safety rules we’ve outlined above guide you into handling your AR15 appropriately and keep off any cases of serious injuries or deaths.

Better safe than DEAD!

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