Must-Have Home Defense Gear

By Richard Douglas
Posted in #Gear
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Must-Have Home Defense Gear

January 25th, 2020

4 minute read

It’s 3am, you’re asleep, and you hear a suspicious “bump” in your home or your home alarm goes off. What do you do?

Most people would straight-up panic. Others might grab their varmint rifle equipped with an Athlon Argos BTR scope and try to fight from their master bedroom.

Regardless of what you do, we could all agree that every second is critical. An intruder defense kit will make sure you use every second to your advantage.

Why You Need It

When defending your family, you want all your critical supplies at your fingertips, ready. More than that, you want to create as big an advantage for you — and disadvantage for the intruder(s) — as is possible.

Your intruder defense gear does this, because you’re bringing multiple resources to the fight. It’s unlikely the intruder(s) will be as prepared, and this is a huge advantage. You want as much control over the situation as you can, so having these tools “at the ready” is essential.

What Do You Need?

Home Defense Firearm: The most common is a handgun — but it’s completely up to you. If you prefer an AR-15 or shotgun, then go with it. Just use a weapon that you have training with. Wherever you store it — even a drawer — make sure it’s secure and lockable in some form, while still being quickly accessible.

A good flashlight is a must-have addition to your home defense gear.

Flashlight: Having a flashlight is vital. The reason? You need to see what that “threat” is, and to be sure it is a threat.

You don’t want to injure your 16-year-old sneaking back in at 2am (it happens). Have a backup in case one fails and keep them in a pouch in your defense kit bag.

Pro Tip #1: Bright light itself can be a weapon. If your flashlight is bright enough, an intruder will be both disoriented and lose his night vision if you’re able to deploy your light in a tactical way (think surprise). That second or second and a half can make a big difference in the final outcome of the encounter.

Pro Tip #2: This isn’t easy to remember when you’re responding to someone violating the sanctity of your home where your wife and kids sleep, but try to remember that you know your home, the intruder doesn’t.

This is a massive advantage. Let the bad guy trip over the rug or the coffee table. Keep a clear head and use your knowledge of your home layout and interior to your advantage.

Practice getting ready, and responding to a situation. Have extra magazines for your firearm loaded and ready, in your bag. Practice different shooting stances.

Pro Tip #3: Use a tape measure to measure distances in your home from where you’ll be to where an intruder is most likely to be engaged. Use these distances for target practice at the gun range so you’re most ready to respond.

Cell Phone: Have a cell phone ready, charged, and in your bag. Obviously the first call is to 9-1-1.

Pro Tip #4: When you call the police, tell them there is a “home invasion in progress” and not a burglary. This signals to the police that they need to respond to an emergency situation.

A burglary means the bad stuff has already happened, the bad guys have made off with your property, and the police need to show up to write a report. Very different.

Your charged, ready cell phone can also be used to contact other people in your house, asleep in another room, a neighbor, etc.

Having a knife is always a good idea. You never know when you’ll need one.

Knife: Because you never know.

Keys: So you can get out, into your car, and away to safety as fast as possible. I’m not suggesting that you and your family jump into your bug out vehicle. But having the ability to get into your car and driving away from danger if needed just makes sense.

Keep your keys nearby and handy.

Pepper Spray: Pepper spray is good to have. But a large can of grizzly spray can be a great addition. Something non-lethal that can span a distance and make an intruder think twice about staying.

First Aid Kit: You, or someone you love, could be injured while defending your home and you want to be able to stabilize trauma until the police/medics can arrive.

A pen and notepad is an often overlooked, but possibly very important tool to have.

Pen & Notepad: For example, if an intruder flees into a car, you want to be able to write down their license plate number, and any identifying characteristics in the moment.


These few items as part of your intruder defense kit should have you ready to protect your home.

Practice accessing everything in the dark, so you know exactly where to go to when you need it.

Seconds matter in a big way during a home invasion. You’ll be concerned for your family and you want muscle memory to work to your advantage.

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Springfield Armory® recommends you seek qualified and competent training from a certified instructor prior to handling any firearm and be sure to read your owner’s manual. These articles are considered to be suggestions and not recommendations from Springfield Armory. The views and opinions expressed on this website are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Springfield Armory.

Richard Douglas

Richard Douglas

Richard Douglas is a firearms expert and educator. His work has appeared in various large publications including The National Interest, Daily Caller, American Shooting Journal, SOFREP, and more. In his free time, he reviews various optics and guns on his Scopes Field blog.

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