Storing ammunition is super cool. Have you ever thought about how long it remains robust?

Its composition consists of an antinomy ally. It is further wrapped either in delicate brass or copper-plated steel. The design-build provides complete safety. However, it contains high-powered materials and can be lethal if not used accurately. It is sensitive to various conditions such as excessive hot temperature, humidity, electromagnetic radiation, and forays by any insect.

Therefore, the quality and dependability of ammunition are essential to evaluate before planning to store it. Its system is such that inappropriate handling can lead to irreparable consequences. This article answers all the questions on how long is the life of ammunition, what makes it poor and tips for storing it.

Shelf Life Of Ammunition


The shelf life of ammunition is highly dependent on its storage conditions. Almost every manufacturer suggests that it can last for a decade if stored properly. Here, the storage conditions are affected by its manufacturing system and handling practices.

Thus, there are various factors impacting the shell life of ammo.

Nevertheless, it is said that standard ammunition stored appropriately can be applicable for action even after a hundred years. For instance-the stories of ammo from the World Wars.

The ammo used during those times remained ideal regardless of time.

Therefore, it is always advisable to store, handle, and treat your ammunition delicately in the right way. Each ammo has a distinct shelf life. You can contact a trusted online dealer that offers premium-quality ammo.

The Modern Ones


Modern ammunition is not composed of black powder like the old ones. It has smokeless powder, which extends its shelf life. The composition of the bullets is strong enough towards corrosion. And the moisture used in the sealing of these bullets makes them a great choice to store.

Full Metal Jackets Or Brass-lined ammunition

Both of them provide a layer of protection towards humidity.  They contain copper or brass metal cartridges. They are also insusceptible to degradation. But the self-defense points, made of concave lead, are disclosed. These make it vulnerable to humidity and abrupt changes in temperature.

The Non-corrosive

This ammunition dangles between speculations and proof. There is a belief that their shelf life is short. On the other hand, assumptions suggest otherwise. They say the non-corrosive are lead-free and so can sustain a 25 years life span.

And Steel Case

Steel case ammunition is more predisposed. They are cheaper but also poorly shapeable. They are inferior to atmospheric fumes, making them prone to both moisture and corrosion. Apart from that firing from these require more precautions than all the above-mentioned.

How Does It Get Flawed?


Numerous factors lead to the minimization of its shelf life.

  1. The duration gets reduced due to corrosion.
  2. The rust caused by the chemical reaction between its metal and moisture makes ammunition inoperable.
  3. Extreme temperature is another significant factor that lessens its life duration.
  4. With the passing of time, gunpowder also loses its potency, making the bullet unworkable.
  5. Then comes the exposure to water. Ammunition goes poorly when exposed to water or humidity repeatedly. It is because the moisture penetrates the primer. You may then find a sign of rust somewhere near the primer or the case. This will halt the propellant charge.
  6. And lastly, the cause could also be a natural disaster making it degrade or destruct.
  7. While the corrosive ammunition gets dubious. It gradually loses the purpose of serving personal defense or any sport on its own.

Therefore, it is advisable to replace ammunition after every six months or at least once a year. Choose a primary date like the birthdays of your close ones, your birthday itself, or any other significant day to take the ammunition out.

Nevertheless, in such a dilemma, it is always best to ask the local police. They can facilitate you from unworkable ammo. And if you have solid networking, you can also contact the other side with expertise in such matters as the local waste managers. They can easily help you with the disposal.

Tips To Increase The Shelf Life

  • The basic rule is to store ammo in a cool, dark, and dry place, such as inside a specialized case. Exposure to air, temperature changes or other factors leading to humidity is prohibited.
  • Purchase a good ammunition storage case. Just like you spend while purchasing the ammo, similarly, you need to purchase for the case. A good case will protect your ammo from all the required aspects.  You can also buy an ammo can. They are water-resistant and hold the capacity to protect ammo for long years.
  • Make sure that the place you choose to store your ammo is also protected from extreme temperature indifference. There should not be any option for air to enter. Plus, this also helps in preventing the happening of the chemical reaction.
  • You can also utilize a vacuum sealer with the help of silica gel for your ammo. It will preserve the ammo from moisture and humidity.
  • Most importantly, keep rotating the loaded rounds of your handguns every now & then. And abstain the places with oils or other such solvents. As it will lead to cartridge penetration completely destructing your ammo.
  • Lastly, never store ammo in places that move a lot. It can be your car, bike, or any other vehicle. It makes cartridges hit each other, leading to damage to the bullets. Exposure to excess sunlight is to be restricted as well.


Beyond all these, there is a skill to recognize the behavior of ammunition under various such conditions. One needs to keep track of all those as well. The prediction will also help in the restoration or replacement of the ammunition. Anyway, proper storage is the best prevention to extend the shelf life and extract it to its full use. And it is always important to remember that creating the ideal atmosphere to protect your weapons is an investment. It is an investment that every owner should make.