A stun gun is an effective way to stop an attacker and protect yourself and your family without needing the training you do with a gun. You can carry and conceal small, powerful stun guns, providing yourself with safety and peace of mind.
Today’s stun guns are powerful and can be purchased at a reasonable price, so they don’t break the bank. This article provides the information you should know before buying a stun gun and offers a guide with good stun guns currently on the market.
Personally, I appreciate a stun gun that is small enough to carry with me regularly, and powerful enough to stop an attacker (Which is why you will see my Editor’s pick is the “S.M.A.C.K.”)
I also have a review coming out on this stun gun, so check back soon.
Table of contents
Stun guns are a good choice for just about anyone who wants to protect themselves…
- No special training required
- No ammunition is needed
- Viable in any weather condition
A Stun Gun is Not a Taser
While stun guns and tasers are both electroshock weapons, don’t get the two confused.
The differences between them are apparent to a observer.
|Shocks via electrodes||Shocks via two metal prongs|
|Requires contact with the assailant||It can be used from a short distance|
|Inexpensive||Costly to buy and maintain|
We also have an article on how stun guns and tasers are different if you are interested in more detail on the differences.
If you choose a stun gun, you will have a weapon that provides you reliable self-defense via what is referred to as pain compliance. This type of gun delivers a high voltage jolt of electricity to your assailant when it comes into contact with skin. The arc of white-hot electricity is visible before contact and provides a painful shock and an involuntary contracting of the surrounding muscles.
The goal is to scare off or incapacitate an assailant long enough for you to leave the scene, and you have a lot of options to accomplish this. These weapons are affordable and come in a variety of shapes and sizes.
Types of Stun Guns
There are several types of stun guns. In addition to different types, there are stun guns for men and women, and some even in bright colors. Stun guns disguised as lipstick or camouflage colors are also available.
Below are the three most common types of stun guns.
Compact stun guns come in different shapes and sizes and are designed for easy carrying and concealment. In the compact category, you’ll find models that attach to your keyring, small flashlights that include a stun gun, and even stun guns that are shaped like brass knuckles. You will be hard-pressed not to find a model to suit your needs.
Heavy-duty stun guns are designed for tactical situations or home defense. These models tend to be heavier, have a more robust battery, and cost more. These stun guns serve a more profound purpose than compact units, which are usually a “just in case” safety measure, kind of like a guard dog or pepper spray.
As the name suggests, these models are long like a police baton. The obvious advantage to this is that it allows for more distance between the assailant and victim, but that’s not all. The stun baton can also be utilized as a melee weapon which is an added feature. If the stun doesn’t stop an attacker, being hit by a heavy baton is also effective.
Are Stun Guns Legal?
If you are seriously considering acquiring one, it’s essential to know if they are legal in your area; they are illegal in Wisconsin, Michigan, New York, New Jersey, Hawaii, Rhode Island, and Washington D.C. Laws can change, so make sure you check your state and city.
They are also prohibited in several cities and counties across the country: Philadelphia PA, Chicago IL, Baltimore MD, Annapolis MD, Crawford County IA, and Baltimore County, MD.
You can buy stun guns at various places such as hardware stores, sporting goods stores, outdoor gear shops, and your local weapons dealer. You will also find the most extensive selection at online retailers, but keep in mind that online stores will not ship you a stun gun if your state prohibits ownership.
If your location isn’t listed above, that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s OK to own a stun gun. Many states have restrictions on the ownership of electroshock weapons. Be sure to research your state, federal, and local laws before you invest.
Features to Consider in a Stun Gun
When shopping for a stun gun keep these features in mind:
Voltage is misleading because it is not the only voltage that makes a stun gun effective.
In order for a stun gun to be effective, it has to provide sufficient current, at a high enough voltage, over a long enough period of time, to create pain. Voltage times current over time – is called the “charge weight”.
Charge weight is measured in micro-coulombs (µC) and the higher the charge weight, the more effective the stun gun.
When shopping for a stun gun ask for the micro-coulombs (µC) because this is going to indicate how much pain your stun gun produces, making it effective.
The chart below gives you a good indication of a stun gun’s effectiveness as provided by the National Institute of Justice (NIJ).
|<.500 µC||Temporary Discomfort|
|.500 µC to 1.000 µC||Pain|
|1.000 µC to 1.500 µC||Intense Pain|
|>1.500 µC||Unbearable Pain|
Stun guns come with rechargeable lithium-ion batteries or replaceable batteries. The battery type, size, and strength are important because this determines the duration of the shock you will be able to deliver.
Battery type determines the dependability of the shock and the stun gun’s ability to deliver its max shock. Rechargeable batteries tend to diminish over time, so this is a factor to consider when buying a stun gun.
The size you should consider depends on what you plan to do with the stun gun. If you plan to carry it with you on a regular basis, then a compact model is probably the best choice.
Protecting your property requires a powerful punch since you will be protecting your home and family from intruders. In this case, take a look at the more heavy-duty stun gun, like batons.
If you have small children or will be carrying your device in your pocket regularly, make sure you review the safety mechanisms. In addition, make sure that the safety feature is robust but easy to use at the same time.
The same safety rules that apply to firearms should apply to stun guns.
All opinions are mine and based on my own research.
The stun gun industry is not overly regulated, and it is hard to get good information. It seems that every stun gun “produces 80,000 million volts and incapacitates a moose!“
After hours of research and reviews, I chose the two vendors below to recommend, and I purchased my most recent stun gun from “TheHomeSecurityStore.” Both of these vendors have good websites, reputations, reviews, and responsive customer service.
The Home Security Store
“TheHomeSecurityStore“ did not have micro-coulombs (µC) listed for their items, so I sent them an email asking for this information. I did not expect to hear back for a couple of days, if at all, but was pleasantly surprised.
They emailed me back with exactly what I needed for each item in literally 5 minutes and responded to follow-up questions almost as quickly.
Their website is comprehensive, and you can’t beat Lifetime and 5-Year Warranties.
Sabre has a good reputation in the self-defense industry and their products receive good reviews. Most importantly, I was able to find the information I needed on their website. Unlike many of their competitors, they even listed the micro-coulombs (µC) for each device.
Sabre also has 2-Year limited warranties. They are not as extensive as TheHomeSecurityStore.com, but unlike many others, they have a warranty and stand behind their products.
Final Thoughts on Vendors
Do your research before you make a purchase. If you Google “What is the Best Stun Gun,” you will find a lot of Amazon Affiliate Articles. They probably only have Amazon items.
Google the most common vendor you see in these articles.
This particular vendor has a bare-bones website, does not provide micro-coulombs (µC), and has no warranty information that I could find.
Don’t misunderstand me, I’m an Amazon affiliate, but I try to recommend the best products and not just those on Amazon. I also have product reviews with no affiliate relationships because those vendors don’t have those programs, but offer the best products.
Sabre sells their products on Amazon, but Sabre provides good information, warranties, a good reputation, etc.
Best Devices Available
With so many types of models available, you must decide what works best for you based on the size, strength, and features you want. The devices below are well-made, reliable, and will perform when you need them.
The Jolt tactical flashlight is powerful, compact, and has a bright flashlight that is definitely good to have at night. 2.15 uC, 3 protection levels (on/off switch, safety switch, stun button), 200-lumen flashlight, military grade aluminum, li-ion battery, rechargeable, Weight: 0.68 lbs., Dimensions: 7.75" tall x 1.5", wrist strap, holster, Lifetime Warranty
This small stun gun packs a punch, and I like that I can easily carry it anywhere. Features include - 2.88 uC, 180 Lumen flashlight, keychain ring, intimidating discharge, USB recharging cord, safety switch, Weight: .36 lbs., Dimensions: 3 x 1.25 x 0.75
- This baton stun gun is very popular, and firing it into the air is enough to scare off most attackers! 1.30 uC volts, rechargeable - plugs into a standard wall outlet, "Grab Guard” stun strips, bright LED flashlight, rubberized armor coating, built-in wrist strap and holster, Weight: 1.25 lbs., Dimensions: 14.25" long x 2" diameter, LIFETIME MANUFACTURER WARRANTY
Sabre is well-known in the safety industry and this stun gun will deliver the powerful charge you need. Sabre also includes safety training with its products so you know how to handle an attacker. 1.25 µC, 120-lumen flashlight, wrist strap, belt holster, anti-grab bar technology, rechargeable battery, safety switch, 2-Year Warranty, Weight: .3 lbs., Dimensions: 8.4 x 4.7 x 2 inches
This little stun gun may look good, but it also packs a 1.6 uC charge, so your attacker is going to feel it! 1.6 uC, flashlight 120 lumens, pepper spray also, rechargeable battery, safety switch, belt holster, Dimensions 4.38 x 8.13 x 6.25 inches, Weight: .6 oz., 2 Year Limited Warranty.
Peace of Mind and Safety
Stun guns are a good way to take extra safety precautions in areas where they are allowed. In addition, they are a good choice for non-lethal weapons or weapons that don’t require extensive training.
Stun guns are also reasonably priced and you can get a good stun gun for well under $100.
Stun guns are also convenient and easy to carry and conceal. You can throw them in your purse, glove box, or shove them in your pocket as you are leaving the house.