5 Best AR15 Accessories For Home Defense [Only Practical Ones]
Of course you can use an AR15 for defensive purpose, and in this guide, we are going to check out the best AR15s accessories for home defense.
What makes an AR15 best suited for home defense has more to do with how the user configure the rifle & how you train with it. At the end of the day an good home defense AR15 has to be lightweight and simple to operate.
There are many fancy tricked out AR15s out there with all kinds of expensive Ninja gears attached, but when it comes to stuff that are actually matter to protect you & your family.
There are only a few simple things you need, and also getting sufficient amount of training is paramount.
Let's check out these bad ass AR accessories...
What we recommend - The Surefire M600DF & Olight Odin are our two favorite dedicated Scout weapon light for any tactical long guns including the AR15. They have tons of aftermarket scout light mounts & pressure switch accessories that can go on M-LOK, KeyMod & Picatinny handguard rail system.
In addition, a good low light training class is high recommended for anyone using a weapon light on their guns and you will learn a lot to increase your skill set
- Max Lumen Output - 1500 Lumens (18650 battery)
- Max Candela Output - 12800
- Length - 5.56"
- Weight - 5.15 Oz
- Mount - MLOK, M1913 & KeyMod
- Max Lumen Output - 2000 Lumens (21700 USB rechargeable battery)
- Max Candela Output - 22500
- Length - 5.56"
- Weight - 7.62 oz
- Mount - MLOK, M1913 & KeyMod
Why use a light - A weapon light allows a home defender to clearly identify the target in the dark and apply white light tactics to deter threats even during day time.
More than 80% of the shooting according to FBI happens in low light situations, so having a effective weapon light is indisputable for personal defense.
Positively ID targets - Anytime when a home defender is in a low light situation, a high lumen light helps the shooter positively identify whatever is in front of the muzzle before pulling the trigger, and this is absolutely critical when making a decision on a weapon light.
Peripheral Illumination - A powerful light with the widest flood beam reflector can see what's in front and what's around the defender without directly pointing the muzzle at something, and it's important to understand that the defender doesn't need to point the light at every object he/she is trying to see in the dark if using the right light & applying right techniques
Look For A High Lumen & Candela Light - There are times where the ambient light or other photonic barriers can affect your light beam, so pick a highest lumen & candela light in the range 14000 candela & 1000 lumens or more can solve this problem.
Good Activation Switch - Being able to activate the light with simple to operate user ergonomics is important. A tape switch works but they can fail sometimes so we want a dual switch capability to provide failsafe performance
Reflex Red Dot Sight
What Do We Recommend - There are many great red dot sights on the market today, and if we have to recommend one product that you can trust your life on & use it for a multi-purpose AR15 build will be the lightweight Aimpoint Micro with a simple 2 MOA precision dot.
It's recoil proof, tough as nail & used by many military & hardcore shooters. Out of everything else that are out there, the Aimpoint Micro is the best one you can buy.
Tip - Adjust the red dot reticle brightness setting to a happy medium where it's bright enough to see in low light without lens glare & when operating a tactical flashlight so the dot doesn't get washed by the light.
- Red Dot Reticle - 2 MOA
- Adjustment - 0.5 MOA / Click
- Objective Lens -
- Construction - 7075 T6 Aluminum
- Length - 2.7"
- Weight - 3 oz (No mount)
- Battery - CR2032 (50k+ hours)
- Mount - Tons of aftermarket mounts
Why use a red dot for home defense - Even though most personal defense situation happens within bad breath distances, where the point and shoot technique usually gets the job done and a red dot becomes an non necessity gear,
A wide field of view red dot sight definitely gives the shooter faster target acquisition for any shooting applications without aligning traditional iron sights.
If you have one AR15 setup for home defense, range & other applications, a red dot is the best sighting system to have.
Point & Shoot Without Iron Sights Alignment - For personal defense purposes, most shooting happens within bad breath distances, so having a red dot sighting system allows the shooter to point & shoot fast and accurately
Also On & Ready - Most durable red dots on the market today including the Aimpoint Micro last over 50,000+ hours, and they're always on and ready when the defender picks up the rifle without touching any buttons
More Head Movement - No matter where the shooter cheek the rifle, a parallax free optic (Most red dot & holographic sights are) gives the defender more flexible head movement behind the optic with unlimited eye relief, and still be able to aim accurately especially in improvised shooting positions
What Do We Recommend - A simple BCM vertical grip works perfectly. if you want a more natural wrist grip angle, then an angled vertical grip works too.
Why use a foregrip - Foregrip on the handguard allows the shooter to control the muzzle & handguard grip leverage better when applying the right technique.
Drive The Muzzle Faster - If the foregrip is mounted further out on the handguard, then it also allows the support hand extended out closer to the muzzle allowing them to drive the gun more precisely and prevents over travel when transitioning between multiple targets
Better Stability & Recoil Control - Having a vertical foregrip allows the shooter to control the grip stability of the rifle & to control fast follow up shots way better by utilizing the C Clamp grip
Consistent Grip Every Time - By using the grip as a reference point on the handguard, the shooter can place his/her hand in the same spot every time when gripping the rifle, which can help increase accuracy over time
Large Size Charging Handle
Why use a large size charging handle - A large size charging handle latch provides the shooter under stress a large gripping area to charge the rifle or use it to clear malfunctions.
Better Leverage - Unlike a small size charging handle latch that comes with most factory AR15s, a enlarged latch gives the shooter better grip leverage to operate the bolt carrier group without slipping or having difficulties pulling the charging handle
What Do We Recommend - BCM Gunfighter & Raptor ATX charging handles are our top picks, please check them out below:
Battery Assist Lever
Why add this little thing to your AR15 - The battery assist lever is designed to considerably improve the speed and efficiency of the AR15/M16 bolt catch for better weapon manipulation and clearing malfunction especially during stress.
Enlarged Button For Better Weapon Manipulation - The default AR15 bolt release paddle is too small especially when adrenaline is pumping, so an enlarged bolt provides the shooter a bigger button to press under stress and it also makes it ambidextrous.
Works For Lefites & Righties - The BAD Lever quickly addresses reloading and malfunction clearance shortcomings of AR15/M16 platforms by extending a paddle to the right side of the weapon, allowing manipulation of the bolt stop from the fire control / ready position with the right-hand trigger finger.
Please Note: The BAD Lever may get in the way of the left side magazine release button if yours has it.
Bonus - Nice To Have
Sound Suppressor - Nice To Have Based On Experience
Why use a suppressor - A suppressor equipped AR15 allows the defender to see and hear shortly after a lethal engagement event, and it's very beneficial to having hearing to communicate with someone inside the home and law enforcement officers who just showed up to the scene while the adrenaline is still running high.
Some argue that a non suppressed loud gun can pose serious psychological disabling to the direct threats, and it sends aggressive psychological messages ("It's going down! so don't charge your way in cuz you will have a bad day") to the remaining threats that are either waiting outside the property or plan on charging their way in.
There are many different opinions about the use of a suppressor, please train and use it appropriately based on your specific situation.
What suppressor do we recommend - There are many suppressors out there, and the best ones we seemed to like are the OSS suppressors while combined with upgraded charging handle & BCG.
The OSS's Flow Through technology can direct the expanding gas away from bore-line, routing it forward through the Flow-Through® coil and deflector design and out the muzzle.
Sound levels are effectively suppressed at the shooter’s ear, toxic gas blowback and rifle recoil are dramatically reduced, and weapon performance is improved.
Please Note : Buying a suppressor requires NFA registration, Tax stamp, Long wait & Gas blowback reduction upgrades
Reduces Chance Of Permanent Hearing Damage - A suppressor doesn't eliminate loud gun shot sound completely, in fact it's still quite loud but it will prevent the defender from losing their hearing completely & muzzle concussion when firing rounds inside a house
Look For A Reduced Gasblow Back Suppressor - Shooting a suppressed AR15 can cause gas blowing back onto the shooter's face and it burns your eyes and forces your eyelids to close.
There are a couple things you can do to fix this problem before you discard the idea of using a suppressor for home defense
- Reduce the amount of gas coming back into the upper receiver
- Redirect the gas away from your face (eyes and nose in particular)
Typically these involves upgrading the following parts:
- Charging Handle
- Bolt Carrier Group
- Gas System
Laser System - Aim Assist In Improvised Shooting Positions
Why Use A Visible Laser - A weapon mounted laser allows for fast and accurate aim close up without looking down the sight in an awkward or improvised shooting posture.
Why is it considered a non-necessity?
Even though a laser provides fast aim for close range, but most visible laser on the market today are expensive and can lose zero due to drops or bumps, which can cause reliability issues in a home defense situation.
If the laser is zeroed incorrectly or slightly off, the point of aim will not match the point of impact, which can become a liability to your defensive rifle system. As the distance increases any slightest laser offset magnifies.
If you want the best and the most legit laser aiming system available for a long gun, you have to spend big money and you can learn more by click on the guide link below:
How Should Your Defensive AR15s Really Look Like
After all the research, your home defense AR should look like this
If you want a multi purpose AR for defense, hunting & range. Something like this is a pretty good lightweight setup
- Red Dot & Light
- Added laser aiming device for night vision
- Can be suppressed if desired
- Can add red dot magnifier if desired