Best Gun Safe Hinges- External vs Internal

The hinges on your gun safe serve as an important barrier of entry against break-in attacks by intruders. This is why every top level model on the market today come with at least a couple of this popular security feature.

Over 2.5 million homes are broken into every single year in the United States alone. If you own guns and other valuable personal effects, getting the right security safe becomes imperative.

If you have never owned any kind of safe in your life, you may be asking yourself this question right now:

Are hinges that important in the protection of your guns or just another feature coined by manufacturers in the marketing of their products? Well, let’s delve into them to find out everything we need to know.

Then we can come to a personal conclusion as to how important they can be.

Types of Hinges Used in Gun Safes

There are two main types of hinges utilized in the gun safe manufacturing industry. Depending on the brand and model you go in for, you may end up with one type or the other.

Internal Hinges

picture showing the difference between right side and left side external gun safe hinge

There are loads of gun safes that feature hinges designed and integrated internally. This essentially means that the hinges aren’t conspicuous from the outside when the safe is locked.

Manufacturers which choose to place their hinges inside the safe do so with multiple ones mounted across the length and breadth of the door area. Some models also feature hinges across other areas apart from the door.

Advantages of Internal Gun Safe Hinges

The benefits of safes featuring steel hinges on the inside are numerous. Let’s check out a couple of them to see what they have to offer.


The most affordable safes on the market feature inconspicuous hinges. Therefore, no matter your budget, you should have no problems finding a model that meets your needs.

Sleek and Sexy

Safes that come with internal hinges tend to look sleeker and sexier from the outside. This makes them more elegant and breathtaking.

If you want a model that looks truly eye-catching, chances are the hinges have been hidden inside.


There are a few cons associated with safes that are designed with internal hinges. It’s up to you to decide whether they are strong enough to change your mind.

Limited Accessibility

The presence of inside hinges usually means that the safe’s doors can’t be opened all the way. If you want a model that gives you complete accessibility, you may have to look elsewhere.

External Hinges

can you spot the external hinges on this rifle safe?

These hinges are conspicuously designed and built on the outside for everyone to see. For many thieves, their presence can be quite intimidating.

This is probably one of the reasons why many high-end manufacturers make no effort to conceal them internally.


Here are the advantages of choosing a firearm safe with hinges openly displayed from the outside.


Hinges found on the outside of a high-end gun safe can act as a decoy to waste the time of a would-be intruder.

Remember, most thieves only get a small window of time to break into your home to attempt getting inside your safe.

Imagine the look on the face of a would-be burglar after spending a long period of time to remove these hinges one by one only to realize that it’s not even what is keeping the safe locked.

Hopefully, you or one of your family members would have arrived home by the time they figure out what is keeping the safe secured.


External hinges can enhance the physical look of your gun safe. There are so many gun owners who prefer the traditional look of hinges positioned outside a firearm safe.

If you are one of those then you are in luck.


Safes featuring these security features on the outside are actually more accessible. You get the freedom to open its door all the way because there are no hinges holding it back internally.


Here are a few disadvantages you should be prepared to deal with if you choose a model with conspicuous hinges.


External hinges can only be found in top-of-the-range gun safe models available for sale today. These safes often come with price tags running into several thousands of dollars.

This makes them inaccessible to those with limited budgets.

The Bottom Line

Many gun owners are unable to decide which type gun safe hinges to go in for during the shopping process.

Well, the truth is the hinges are only a small piece of the puzzle with respect to security features in your safe.

As such, whether they are positioned inside or outside the safe shouldn’t be a deal breaker. Your main concern has to be the overall security of the safe and whether it has what it takes to withstand multiple break-in attempts for a sustainable period of time.

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