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4 Best Home Defense Shotguns

Read on to learn about our choices for the best home defense shotguns.

Though they don’t come without shortcomings, shotguns can be extremely effective home defense tools. However, like any tool, you need to use the right one for the job. Yes, you can drive a nail with a screwdriver, but a hammer is a much better choice. By the same token, there are many home defense shotguns specifically designed for the task that are much better choices than your trusty duck hunting shotgun with a 28″ barrel for defending your home.

Whatever home defense shotgun you end up choosing, your work is only beginning once you actually obtain your shotgun. It can be extremely effective in the right hands, but it takes a lot of time and effort to truly become a master at running a shotgun. Invest the time and energy necessary to become an expert with your chosen home defense shotgun and you’ll be a formidable obstacle to those who wish to hurt you.

Continue reading to see our choices for the best home defense shotguns.

Winchester SXP Defender

best home defense shotguns winchester sxp
Winchester

First up on this list of the best home defense shotguns is the Winchester SXP Defender. The primary feature of the SXP (Super X Pump) series of shotguns is their inertia-assisted action, which Winchester markets as one of the fastest and smoothest pump-actions currently available. The SXP Defender combines this outstanding and innovative pump-action system with an 18″ fixed cylinder choked barrel (no constriction) that makes it a great choice for both buckshot and slugs.

It is reasonably priced, lightweight, very handy, and can hold 6 (5+1) 12 gauge shotgun shells. The fact that it is manufactured in Turkey is a strike against it in the eyes of some, but make no mistake: the Winchester SXP Defender is an excellent choice for defending your home.

Benelli M4

best home defense shotguns benelli m4
Benelli

One of the biggest problems with using a semi-automatic shotgun for home defense is that they tend to be more finicky than pump-action shotguns about the type of ammunition you use in them. However, the Benelli M4 has a self-regulating gas system that is specifically designed to reliably function with a wide variety of shotgun shell length and power levels. Add an 18.5″ barrel, a 6 (5+1) shell magazine capacity (which can be increased with an after market magazine extension), a ghost ring sight, and a Picatinny Rail that gives the shooter the option of adding an optic, and you’ve got a very potent shotgun.

It has such an excellent reputation for reliability and durability that it is used by a number of military and police forces all over the world, including the U.S. Marine Corps, where it is known as the M1014. With a retail price of around $2,000, the Benelli M4 doesn’t come cheap, but it is one of the best home defense shotguns money can buy.

Remington 870 Hardwood Home Defense

best home defense shotguns remington 870
Remington

No list of the best home defense shotguns would be complete without a Remington 870. The pump-action 870 is the best selling shotgun of all-time for good reason: it works. Though Remington makes several synthetic “tactical” versions of the venerable 870, there is no rule stating that a good home defense shotgun can’t have a wood stock.

Sometimes simpler is better and with an 18.5″ barrel sporting a fixed cylinder choke and a 7 (6+1) magazine capacity, the 870 Harwdood Home Defense has all the basic characteristics you need in a home defense shotgun. Another cool feature is that it will safely and reliably shoot 2 3/4″ or 3″ 12 gauge shotgun shells and you can even switch out the barrel with a standard 870 replacement barrel if you want to use it for hunting. It is already a very reasonably priced shotgun, but the incredible versatility of the Remington 870 makes it a good all-around choice for a person who wants to do as much as possible with a single firearm.

Mossberg 590A1 Tactical

best home defense shotguns mossberg 590a1 tactical
Mossberg

Though the Remington 870 is the best selling shotgun of all-time, the Mossberg 500 series is a close second and is also an excellent shotgun. The Mossberg 590A1 Tactical is currently in use by the U.S. Army because of its rugged durability and reliability. The base model has an 18.5″ barrel with a fixed cylinder choke, a 7 shell (6+1) magazine capacity, and a synthetic stock that can store an additional 4 shotgun shells.

However, Mossberg also makes variants of the 590A1 Tactical with a 20″ barrel that increases the magazine capacity to 9 shells (8+1) along with the option to add a Picatinny rail, an adjustable stock, and a ghost ring sight. All in all, the Mossberg 590A1 is one of the best home defense shotguns around.

What do you think of our choices for the best home defense shotguns? Did we miss any?

Like what you see here? You can read more great hunting articles by John McAdams on his hunting blog. Follow him on Twitter @TheBigGameHunt and on Instagram The_Big_Game_Hunter

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