6 Best AR-15 Handguards (2024) Backed By Results

Best AR 15 Handguard
Alfred Mendoza

Choosing the best AR-15 handguard for your rifle can be challenging but we’ve got you. Check out this guide and see how easy it is to choose the best AR-15 handguard for your needs.


Aero Precision M-LOK Atlas S-One


Midwest Industries


Magpul MOE M-LOK

1. Aero Precision M-LOK Atlas S-One

The Aero Precision ATLAS S-ONE M-LOK handguard is a free-floating handguard machined from 6061-T6 aluminum. This is another durable and lightweight free-floating handguard designed for MSR builds. 

This free-float handguard uses the new Aero Taper Lock Attachment System (ATLAS) like the Aero Precision R-ONE M-LOK. This functional Aero Precision handguard features two mirrored tapered locking nuts that evenly distribute clamp pressure across the barrel nut.




2. Midwest Industries

he Midwest Industries handguard is another best handguard that provides a reliable grip and extra-long durability. This two-piece drop-in M-LOK handguard is constructed from 6061 aluminum, providing a reliable ruggedness without any added weight. 

We also find its monolithic type continuous top rail system perfect for placing any sights or any optional accessories in increasing the efficiency of our every shot. This is very easy to install, even without the help of a professional gunsmith, and is compatible with some gas piston systems.



3. Magpul MOE M-LOK

The Magpul MOE Carbine Length Gas Systems M-LOK Handguard is one of the best handguards for AR-15. Furthermore, it allowed us to attach other M-LOK mounting accessories with no hassle. This handguard also provided an integral riveted aluminum heat shield and operator protection from the AR hot front sight assembly. 

It also snaps into standard AR with a delta ring and round/triangular front handguard cap. This carbine-length gas system handguard also works great with a front sight block. It is made from reinforced, heat-resistant polymer construction, making it ultimately durable. 



4. Bravo Company GunFighter

The Bravo Company GunFighter AR-15 Handguard is also one of the best AR-15 handguards we have discovered. It is built to fit low-profile gas block rifles and M-LOK platforms. It also gives you the freedom to choose between a low-profile gas block or a front sight base. 

This also includes a mechanical index to the 12 o’clock rail. Lastly, the weapon system’s position mounting hardware mitigates the movements caused by its heat generated.



5. Geissele Automatics MK14 Super Modular Rail Handguard

The Geissele MK14 Super Modular Rail handguard is also one of the best AR-15 handguards we have come across. We liked its slim cross-section because it provided us the thumb-over-the-bore support hand grasp. 

It also comes with three M-LOK mounting slots at full length at the 3, 6, and 9 o’clock positions. We also liked how Geissele super modular rails included sockets for its QD push-button sling swivels at the rear’s 1 and 11 o’clock positions.



6. Aero Precision ATLAS R-ONE

Why We Picked It:

The Aero Precision ATLAS R-ONE Handguard is precision machined from 6061-T6 Aluminum, providing extreme durability for your lightweight build. We liked its slim profile because it made our shooting experience smoother and easier to handle. 

The new Aero Precision Aero Taper Lock Attachment System (ATLAS) R-ONE handguard features two mirrored tapered locking nuts. These nuts provide evenly distributed clamping pressure across the proprietary barrel nut.



Your Guide To Buying

buying guide


We suggest looking for other handguards made of 6061-T6 aluminum alloy like most quad rails because it’s strong and lightweight. It also conducts and dissipates heat well. [1] Some may also offer carbon fiber and reinforced, heat-resistant polymer materials that are almost equally strong and lightweight. You can also find carbon fiber handguards and even a titanium barrel nut. 

Easy Installation

You also need to be wary of purchasing a handguard that offers an easy installation process. It would be a hassle to buy a handguard that needs the help of a professional gunsmith or special tools just to install them. Most free-float handguards aren’t easy to install, but sometimes, reading its manual would suffice. 

Durability & Finish

Since handguards are essential parts of your AR-15 builds and upgrades, it is recommended to look for something durable so it would serve you longer. As always, we recommend handguards made of aluminum alloys or reinforced polymer materials. 

The finish of the handguard makes it appealing to look at and could also help it become more durable. You can buy aluminum/polymer handguards that are either anodized or cerakoted.

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Length & Weight

The handguard length and weight of your handguard may affect the overall weight of your rifle build. Hence, if you love hunting in the wilderness for long hours, we suggest looking for lightweight handguards to match your rifles. 

However, the length and weight of your handguards must fit your rifle’s barrel length. Hence, it would be best to ensure that the size of the handguard and your barrel length to be of a perfect fit. 

Heat Resistance

If accuracy is on top of your list when deciding to buy a great handguard, we suggest looking for free float handguards. They do not interfere with the barrel when fired, so your shots become more accurate. A handguard made with 6061-T6 aluminum alloy may also help since it could also serve as a conductor and offers heat dissipation.  

Free Float or Drop-In

For handguards that are easier to install, drop-in handguards are a perfect choice. However, if accuracy weighs heavier for your buying consideration, then free-floating handguards are mode ideal. Drop-in handguards are generally more affordable, but free-floating handguards offer better space because they are longer. 


It is relevant to determine how much you are willing to invest when buying the best AR-15 handguard. Generally, a rail system and a handguard are affordable. However, if you aren’t on a tight budget and willing to spend a few more bucks to invest in a better quality handguard, it would be better to get some free float handguards.

Our Team's Selection Process

selection process

Overall Performance

To have an unbiased result in the overall performance of these handguards, we decided to put them to the test. One by one, these handguards were tested for hours in the shooting range. We also opted to use the same shooters with the same environment for better results. 

Weapon Compatibility

Handguards may be used with different weapons. Some may or may not work when installed into a particular AR-15 build. Thus, we had to spend hours of tests to ensure that we had tried these handguards to every weapon we brought. 

Product Quality

We had assigned a team to carefully scour the internet to find reliable reviews and customer feedback regarding these handguards. They also had to spend ample time doing their task while other teams had to test their qualities through experience.

What’s the #1 Handguard for an AR-15 Rifle?

Based on our testing and research, the #1 handguard for most AR-15 rifles is the Aero Precision M-LOK Atlas S-One.


Our #1 Recommendation

Aero Precision M-LOK Atlas S-One

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