We write more about concealed carry weapons (CCWs) than we do probably any other weapon platform, other than an AR.
Every person has their own preferences, but if I didn’t use a 12-Gauge shotgun as my primary home-defense gun, I’d use a full-size, high-capacity, and lightweight pistol.
Whether you’re familiar with a full-size 1911 platform or looking for a lightweight polymer pistol, we got you covered.
We took a poll in the office to discuss which pistols our former Special Forces, Rangers, and Marine vets use as their home defense pistols. This list of 5 pistols represents the best home defense gun, according to Clandestine Media Group and RE Factor Tactical.
What is the Most Effective Weapon For Home Defense?
As a guy with a toddler and a wife at home, nothing is more important to me than holding down the fort to protect my family.
When discussing the best o most effective guns, I think it’s all relative to each individual shooter. For example, I will always suggest a 12-ga shotgun with #4 buckshot such as my Stoeger M3500. However, many of my friends and co-workers prefer a full-size pistol or AR-15.
I always suggest a shotgun because of its simplicity, practicality, and chance of success under duress. For those who’ve never been in direct combat or had to defend their lives with force, the adrenaline and dopamine coursing through your veins will set off your fight-or-flight mechanism.
With that in mind, using a shotgun is going to give everyone the best possible chance at hitting their target in a hallway or doorway.
If you prefer to use a pistol over a shotgun, you’ll need a pistol with a high capacity and modular platform for an RDS or light/laser combo.
Why Did I Choose The Following 5 Pistols?
Each of these pistols below has proven to be reliable, modular, accurate, and durable.
I’m sure there are many criteria you’ll see on what to look for, but those 4 attributes are what I use to buy guns. Reliability in a pistol is the most important feature next to accuracy, but they go hand-in-hand.
With the hundreds of aftermarket companies selling pistol parts and attachments, there’s no reason to buy a pistol without modularity. The coating of the pistol slide and barrel often shows the durability of the pistol, especially with weather resistance and corrosion.
Every pistol on this list has been owned, operated, and recommended by our team of professionals.
The Canik TP9SF features a new barrel finished with Cerakote-over-Nitride for optimal durability and dependability. The Warren Tactical sights are blacked out and the TP9SF model comes with a white dot front sight.
The trigger is really light and nice with a 5-6 lbs. trigger pull and a single-action design that has been coated in nickel for durability and reliability.
The Canik TP9SF is great for home defense because you can carry 18 rounds in this pistol and the longer 7.5" frame absorbs the recoil more than a CCW.
Pros: 18-20 rounds capacity is incredible! A loaded chamber indicator provides a secondary safety mechanism to let you know if you forget to clear your chamber. The trigger feels like a flat trigger with how quickly it breaks and resets. Warren Tactical Series has been a favorite of the military, law enforcement, and competitive shooting. Match-grade barrel with a Carakote finish with the new FDE model. It makes a big difference in the barrel’s life from normal wear and tear and aesthetics.
Cons: The grip texture isn’t good enough without the addition of Talon Grip or other grip textures.
FN 509 Tactical
The FN 509 is a double-action 9mm pistol with fixed 3-dot luminescent sights and a 17-round magazine.
Built with a MIL-STD-1913 accessory mounting rail to add after-market light or laser to the bottom for an increased advantage. The slide stop lever and mag release are both ambidextrous, and the front and back serrations are more rigid and pronounced on the slide.
The FN 509 Tactical is 1 ounce heavier, 0.5" longer, and has a 0.19" increase in height over the FN 509. Despite the advantage of a longer frame, the Tactical model has the same sight radius as the standard FN 509.
The raised sight wings are unique to FN and do a great job of protecting your iron sights from hitting them from the side or from drops. The aggressive grip of the FN 509 Tactical is much better than the Canik.
Pros: Optic-Ready. Picatinny rail for lights & lasers. Threaded barrel for a compensator or silencer attachment. Incredible capacity with an option of a 24-round magazine. Interchangeable backstraps. Adjustable trigger pull weight to 5.5 lbs. Suppressor Height Trijicon 3-Dot Green Tritium Night Sights. Raised sight wings to protect sights
Glock 22 Gen 5 MOS
The Glock 22 is one of the most popular Glock models behind the G17 and G19 9mm pistols. For those who don’t know, the Glock 22 is the most carried LEO pistol in the country with a specific LEO model.
The G22 is a great pistol that has saved many lives, but its recoil is even harsher than the Glock 21 (.45 ACP) and the overall length is not much different (8.07") from the G22.
I chose the Glock 22 Gen 5 MOS model because it makes little sense to not make sure your slide is drilled and tapped for an RDS. Even if you’re not wanting to install an RDS immediately, it’s the best way to improve your accuracy and target acquisition speed without being a professional.
With hundreds of thousands of LEOs and millions of Americans across the country trusting the Glock 22, it’s enough for me to trust it as well.
Pros: Lightweight (1.61 lbs). Picatinny Rail System. Optics-Ready. A long sight radius of 6.61" provides quick and easy target acquisition, especially at distances over 25-35 yards. 40 S&W provides the best stopping power of any pistol on this list.
Cons: The felt recoil is significantly higher in the Glock 22 than in any other pistol on the list
Glock 19 Gen 5 MOS
Simply put, there is no better pistol on the planet for less than $1,000 than the Glock 19. It’s the perfect size for a CCW and home-defense pistol with the match-grade barrel and interchangeable backstraps to accommodate shooters with small or large hands.
The Glock 19 Gen 5 MOS is not only for the Special Operations guys like the Navy SEALs or Army Special Forces soldiers who trust their lives to them.
It’s a great pistol for beginners too because of its lightweight trigger pull, optic-ready slide, and controlled recoil versus many other pistols on the list.
Pros: Lightweight (1.61 lbs). Picatinny Rail System. Optics-Ready. A long sight radius for quick target acquisition. Trusted by our elite warriors, including the Navy SEALS and Army Special Forces (SF).
Cons: My only complaint about the G19 is the creep on the trigger.
The Masada is a striker-fired pistol that features a low-profile barrel that reduces felt recoil by lowering the bore axis to be more like a Glock.
The IWI Masada Pistols are specifically for the Israeli military and have gone through very tough testing to be released from their military. One feature I really like is the beavertail grip with the interchangeable backstraps that allow any hand size to get a high grip on the pistol. The high grip helps to control the recoil more than other 9mm pistols for improvements in accuracy.
The Masada also stands out with optics ready frame that has fit the Trijicon RMR, Vortex Venom, Leupold Delta Point Pro, and Sig Romeo1 optics. Combined with a 6 lb crisp trigger pull with a positive reset gives this gun unprecedented accuracy.