Is It Legal to Build a Private Indoor Shooting Range?

Any avid shooter would love nothing more than to step into a private indoor shooting range to unwind after a long day.

The chance to practice when we want to practice despite the weather, time, or day of the week is inviting. The question looms whether it is legal to build an indoor shooting range.

A thorough investigation of local laws, rules, and regulations is the only way to determine the possibility of building an indoor shooting range in your home. You should also consider other factors that may become issues in constructing a home shooting range.

When constructing a home shooting range, a discussion of air quality should take place to ensure the safety of your family. A professional HVAC ventilation system is required and should be reviewed with experts such as Action Target, who can help you design and install the proper system

Can You Have a Gun Range in Your Home?

It is possible to have a gun range in your home if you meet the building and zoning requirements. Some residential building codes don’t reference gun ranges. In this case, the zoning and inspection officials refer to commercial shooting range codes that impose local requirements.

Legal challenges to building a home shooting range can come in several different guises. Where you live is a big determinant of what sorts of laws and regulations may affect your ability to construct an indoor home shooting range. Among the legal constraints you may face are:

  • Local building codes may directly address the requirements of an indoor home shooting range or expressly forbid the construction in some areas.
  • Local zoning regulations may prohibit the discharge of a firearm or specify that all shooting ranges be confined to specific building zones within a city or county.
  • Local, state, and federal environmental and health regulations dictate minimum standards for air quality and contaminant controls.
  • Homeowner’s associations may prohibit or highly control where and how indoor shooting ranges can be built or maintained.

Before making any plans or committing to building an indoor shooting range, you must review with your architect and ensure you comply with your local regulations.

How Much Space Do I Need for a Home Gun Range?

Most experts recommend installing a two-lane shooting range, measuring roughly 8 ft wide by 100 ft long. Each lane should be a minimum of 4ft wide and  75 ft long. Space is required behind the shooter and behind the bullet trap. A twelve to fourteen-foot ceiling height is recommended to give adequate ceiling height above the shooter while also securing space above the shooter for baffles, ventilation, and lights in order to ensure ventilation has the proper airflow over the shooter it is recommended that at a minimum, you allow for at least 15 feet of open space behind the shooter or firing line. This allows for laminar airflow to travel over the shooter keeping gases and airborne lead moving down range to be filtered through your Hepa filtration. 

There are several questions to be answered about the space you have in order to install range equipment:

  • Is there enough length to build an adequate range and stay within my property’s setbacks and property lines?
  • Do height requirements in my city zoning and building ordinances allow a building tall enough to function as a shooting range?
  • If you intend to remodel a portion of your home, is the structure suitable for the additional walls and equipment necessary for the shooting range?
  • Do I have an adequate structure, such as pured concrete walls or filled CMU block to contain rounds fired?

What are the Requirements for Ventilation in a Home Shooting Range?

The National Institute of Occupations Safety and Health (NIOSH) dictates the standards for air quality in shooting ranges. In general, ranges must maintain negative air pressure in the firing area, trap the particulate matter generated by shooting, and release clean air into the atmosphere.

There are several federal guidelines on air quality issues for indoor shooting ranges, and it is recommended that these be followed for private ranges as well. 

How Do I Build a Safe Indoor Shooting Range for my Home?

There are industry standards covering equipment, design, and installation of this equipment require professionals who are familiar with these industry standards. Contact

Can I Get Homeowner’s Insurance if I Build a Home Shooting Range?

Insurance laws vary from state to state. 

Before you plan any indoor shooting range construction, consult with your insurance agent. You’ll find a series of providers that provide additional policies to support your range build endeavor.

It’s highly recommended that you find a reputable company that specializes in shooting range design and installation. These professionals have dealt with the ins and outs of every aspect of home indoor shooting ranges, including the legalities.

Having a professional on your side can mean the difference in getting the required permits, finding the most qualified contractors, and the right equipment for your needs. Designing and building a safe and secure place to practice your shooting requires a commitment of time, money, and effort. Starting right is as important as finishing right.

Action Target Can Help

With over 30 years of experience, Action Target can help you build the perfect range for your one-of-a-kind needs. Whether you are building a commercial range that caters to casual or tactical training or a law enforcement range to better prepare your officers, our experts can help with the challenges of building a range. Talk to one of our experts in your neck of the woods here