The Best Trigger Locks

What should you do about gun security when you’re on the move?

Proper gun safety is a cornerstone of responsible gun ownership. But sometimes, a gun safe or cabinet won’t fit the bill. Some can take too long to open – preventing you from accessing your weapon in a hurry -and they tend to be both very large and expensive – meaning you need to be ready to send some cheddar and they can’t easily be taken with you. 

Enter trigger locks. These portable and easy-to-attach security solutions cover and protect the trigger of your firearm(s), preventing an unintentional discharge. While trigger locks are affordable and effective means of securing your firearms against misuse or accidents, some are certainly better than others.

Let’s break down the best trigger locks on the market so you get a lock that lasts a long time and doesn’t break the bank.

Quick List: The 5 Best Trigger Locks to Keep Your Guns Safe

  1. Best Overall: Viking Biometric Fingerprint Trigger Gun Lock
  2. Runner-up: Bison Finger 
  3. Best Combination Lock: Master Lock 94DSPT
  4. Keyed or Combination Option: LOCKDOWN Trigger Lock
  5. Keyed Runner-up: RioRand Keyed Alike Trigger Gun Lock

Best Overall (Top Choice):

Viking Biometric Fingerprint Trigger Gun Lock Weather & Dust Resistant IP65 – Fits Pistols,...
  • RELEASES IN 0.3 SECONDS – (***Any Issue Programming Fingerprint Please Contact us for Help!***)...
  • 🔸IMPROVED 🔸 BUILT-IN MECHANICAL OVERRIDE – The Viking Biometric Fingerprint Trigger Gun Lock...
  • 360 DEGREE FINGERPRINT RECOGNITION – Keep your family safe and secure your firearm when not in use...

What We Liked

  • Known brand
  • Proven tech
  • Reliable & easy-to-use
  • Fits most sizes of firearms

What We Didn't Like

  • Pricey
  • Initial set-up is complicated

Our top selection is a biometric trigger lock from Viking – a well-established brand in the safe and gun cabinet space.  This lock is great for home defense/nightstand use, in part because it uses the same biometric tech found on other Vikibg safes – which is reliable and proven to release in less than 1/3rd of a second. It fits the majority of firearms (pistols, rifles, shotguns and bb/airsoft) and comes with a physical backup key just in case.

Even better, this biometric lock can store up to 10 fingerprint profiles – so the gun owner and 9 other people can use it (or you can ensure any of your fingers will unlock it). It also uses 360 degree technology – which means you don’t have to hold your gun in a specific position to register the fingerprint – just swipe and go.

Runner Up

Bison Finger Trigger Lock Gun Locks Fit Most Handguns and Rifles 360 Degree Touch 1 Second Unlock...
  • The California Firearms Agency certified the gun lock, CA DOJ Approved Design. Set your fingerprint...
  • Using edge fingerprint scanner technology, 360 degree fingerprint recognition. Add your own...
  • Backup auxiliary control system, when there is no electricity, you can use the key to unlock....

What We Liked

  • Uses fast fingerprint reading for unlocking
  •  Contains a secondary unlocking mechanism if the battery runs out
  • Works in dirty conditions or inclement weather
  • Made of very durable materials

What We Didn't Like

  • Pretty expensive overall

The Bison Finger Trigger-Lock is another biometric fingerprint lock. This tech, much like the Viking, makes it almost impossible for a thief or attacker to use your weapon against you.

There’s no delay in unlocking your weapon thanks to the biometric sensor and it matches the Viking with its claimed .3 second speed. An auxiliary control system also allows for manual key use in a pinch, such as if the lock’s internal battery runs out of juice.

Furthermore, the lock is weather and dust-resistant and it can fit most types of firearms on the market. The downside is that – while it’s less expensive than the Viking – it’s still much more expensive than non-biometric gun locks.

Best Combination Lock:

Master Lock 94DSPT Set Your Own Combination Gun Lock, 1 Pack
  • Gun lock fits many but not all handguns, rifles and shotguns
  • Set your own three digit combination gun lock for keyless convenience
  • Trigger lock features a steel and zinc body for maximum durability, 4-pin tumbler for pick...

What We Liked

  • Can set your combination
  • Has rubberized pads
  • Features durable body
  •  Comes with adjustable tightness settings to fit most firearms

What We Didn't Like

  •  More expensive than other  basic locks

The Master Lock 94DSPT is an incredibly sensible and well-engineered piece of safety equipment. For less than $20 you get a slick, easy to use combination gun lock that fits virtually all handguns, rifles, and shotguns with few exceptions.

It’s made with a steel and zinc body that’s super durable and makes entering your pin into the four-pin tumbler quick and easy. That four-pin tumbler also offers reliable pick resistance – this making the lock more secure against would-be thieves. You can set your three-digit combination and never have to worry about losing a key or access to your firearm.

Even better, it has an adjustable ratchet mechanism paired with a positive locking system, ensuring a secure fit no matter what size of firearm you have. The rubber cushion pads protect your firearm’s finish from scratches and bumps when installing – and sweeten the deal even further.

Keyed or Combination Option:

Sale
LOCKDOWN Trigger Lock with Non-Marring, California DOJ Approved Design and Heavy Duty Construction...
  • DIMENSIONS: Black Keyed - 2.25” L x 1.5” W x 2.5” D and weighs .36 lbs
  • EASE OF USE: The heavy duty bolt secures through the trigger guard and prevents access to the...
  • CONVENIENT: California Department of Justice certified making it easy for travel and storage

What We Liked

  • Bright green for easy identification
  • Has rubberized pads
  • Features a heavy-duty securing bolt
  • Comes in combination variety as well
  • Has a one-year warranty

What We Didn't Like

  • The key is easy to lose
  • Not the most durable lock on the market

Although the LOCKDOWN Trigger Lock is an affordable option, it’s still a reliable choice if you want to secure your firearm in your home or on the way to the gun range. In fact, it’s been certified by the California Department of Justice, so it offers additional peace of mind.

This lock comes in both keyed and combination versions and features a heavy-duty bolt that secures through your trigger guard. This design significantly reduces the chance of an accidental discharge it storing while loaded.

In addition to rubberized pads at the point of contact that protects your firearm from any scuffing and scratches, the exterior is a non-marring coating that further reduces the chance of dinging your weapon.

We also really like that the lock comes with a one-year warranty: which is remarkable considering the low asking price. The only downside is that it’s not the most durable lock on the market, and with any keyed lock there’s always the chance you could misplace the key at some point.

Keyed Runner-up:

RioRand Keyed Alike Trigger Gun Lock Fits Pistols Rifles Shotguns(3PCS)
  • Includes one trigger lock and two keys
  • Features positive locking with adjustable ratchet mechanism. Easy to attach and lock.
  • Durable Material Construction Positive locking with adjustable ratchet mechanism. Protective rubber...

What We Liked

  • Very affordable
  • Comes with two keys
  • Has rubber pads for gun protection
  • Comes with positive locking mechanism

What We Didn't Like

  • Keys are sometimes hard to insert

The RioRand Keyed Alike trigger lock fits virtually all sizes of firearms, including even larger rifles and shotguns. It does all of this with a very affordable asking price, and it comes with two keys so that, even if you lose one, you can still access the firearm you protect with it.

The cushion rubber pads will prevent your firearm from receiving any scuffs or scratches, and it comes with positive locking mechanisms and an adjustable ratchet for versatile fitting.

What is a Trigger Lock?

In a nutshell, a trigger lock is a way to safely secure your gun when you can’t place it into a case, safe or cabinet. Most trigger locks are simple two-piece locks that fit over a gun’s trigger and trigger guard to prevent a finger from making contact with the trigger itself. They’re not perfect but they offer a lot of security for very little effort.

Don’t let this happen to you.

The actual trigger locking systems are as diverse as true gun safes – and can use keyed locks, combination locks, cable locks, or biometric technology.

Lots of people appreciate trigger locks since they’re super portable and they allow you to safely store a weapon without much hassle. Securing your weapon safely but keeping it mobile is a must while it’s in transit – such as when you’re transporting your guns for hunting.

The above notwithstanding, trigger locks aren’t the perfect solution for everyone. You shouldn’t use them on loaded guns, as a trigger lock can still cause an accidental discharge. Furthermore, some cheaper trigger locks won’t stop determined thieves. In this case, a safe is the better option for gun storage.

When it comes to gun lock styles, manufacturers offer a lot of very similar forms and functions, and given they define the various levels of security differently from one to the other and can have proprietary ratings systems, it can be hard to decide which locks are comparable – other than blindly going by price or brand name alone.

Luckily we’re here to help you separate the wheat from the chaff.

What to Look For When Buying a Trigger Lock

Like with all firearm accessories, determining whether a trigger lock is worth your time and money means you need to focus on a few basic considerations.

Locking Mechanism

The most common types of trigger locks are keyed locks – those which can be secured and unlocked with physical keys – combination locks, which use a combination lock much like the kind you probably used on your gym locker oh so long ago, and biometric locks, which use your fingerprint for almost instant entry. These three variations comprise our set of recommendations.

Keyed locks are great since you don’t have to waste time tapping in a combination or rotating dials, nor will you ever forget the combination in a tense situation. In this way, trigger locks that use keys are sometimes easier to access and unlock in a hurry.

However, you always run the risk of misplacing the key, and true quick access gun safes (with simple buttons or a biometric sensor) will generally be a faster option and easier to use in a hurry.

Combination locks face the opposite problem. You’ll never lose the key and can always theoretically open the lock. But of course you’ll need to remember the combination – otherwise, you’ll be sawing open your trigger lock to use your firearm.

Biometric locks offer the speediest entry – you simply hold your finger against the scanner and the lock pops off. These mechanisms are seen on many nightstand safes that are intended to be used when things go bump in the night – and you don’t want to be fiddling with keys.

The downside is they can be a little kludgy to use and they rely on batteries to open – so if you forget to charge it you can forget about using the scanner.

Of course biometric locks generally offer physical back-up keys, so you’re not 100% S.O.L., but that certainly defeats the advantages of the bio mechanism.

All three variations can be good choices: but the one that’s right for you largely depends on personal preference & use case.

Durability

Some trigger locks are made with plastics or polymers that won’t last very long under any circumstances, and even the most hardy of them will fail with a few simple tools. In our opinion, cheap trigger locks aren’t worth your time since any would-be thief could easily break through the lock – the same goes curious kids. So why bother to lock you gun in the first place? It unfortunately comes down to simple deterrence—after all, you don’t need to outrun the bear, you just need to outrun one person behind you. If you can lock your firearm up properly with a decently secure lock, you can remove the temptation for a thief to fiddle with it, or a kid to play around with it.

Durable, high quality trigger locks will last years and are well worth paying a little more upfront.

Look for stainless steel, high-quality polymer, and even steel and zinc bodies if possible.

Applicable Guns/Size

Lastly, consider which guns a given trigger lock will fit. Some are only suitable for small pistols or half-size rifles, while others are better for longer rifles and shotguns. Ensuring your new trigger was engineered to safely fit and protect your specific firearm is a must. Otherwise, you’re just wasting money.

Conclusion

The Viking Biometric Fingerprint Trigger Gun Lock is, all in all, the best choice for a trigger lock if you want something simultaneously affordable and durable thanks to its steel and zinc body and positive locking mechanism. Few locks balance budget and long-term security as well as this pick. Let us know if you decide to go with the Viking Biometric Lock or if you made another choice – we’re always interested in hearing what our readers use for their firearms!

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MICHAEL CRITES is el jefe around here. He writes about guns and gear.

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