During the summer, water guns are a source of excitement for children (and adults!). Get ready for a battle using the coolest weapon of your choice.

While good old-fashioned water balloons can do the trick, water guns are a great choice too! They compliment the perfect summer day and can be used at the beach, the pool, or your backyard. Typically inexpensive, water guns are a great and safe way for kids and adults alike to have endless fun. Water guns can be used to squirt your friends at random or can be used in an ultimate game of water tag! No matter how you decide to use your water gun, you can bet on having long-term fun with these super soakers! So now you may be wondering, which type of water gun should I get? Is there a particular kind that guarantees more fun over another?

A Brief History of The Water Gun and How They Work

Have you ever considered the history of the water gun and how it has evolved over time? Probably not. But when researching the 10 best water guns for this article, we were in awe of this incredible industry and how it’s developed since its early days.

The water gun had limited capabilities before the 1980s and handheld pistols only produced a small amount of water across a short distance. This narrow stream of water didn’t have much power or confidence to it, and people had to refill the gun after nearly ever fire, due to its small capacity. As we look at the history of the water gun, designers have been toying with how this should operate to improve its capabilities for users. Let’s look in more detail about the design evolution of popular types of water guns.

The Motorized Water Gun

​As the pump on a simple piston gun requires the trigger to move back and forth, this limits the water capacity, range and how long each burst of water lasts. Over time, the motorized water gun’s pump cylinder and trigger increased size to cater for these needs. The trigger mechanism also advanced from a trigger to a syringe so that you can hold the pistol and cylinder in separate hands for easier operation. To collect water, you simply pull the piston and cylinder apart and push them together again to release water.

These developments provide more water with each shot and you don’t have to fill up the water gun as often. By pushing the piston into the cylinder, you can release water for a substantial distance. But if you push the piston slower, you can increase the amount of time the water releases for. Towards the 1980s, the water gun developed even further so that it did most of the work (ie. collecting and releasing water) without you having to do much. At this stage, the trigger completes an electrical circuit so that the battery creates energy to power the motor. The motor then rotates a small cam that catches the piston to pull it back and release. By the motor moving the piston in and out of the cylinder, this enables the gun to collect water from a reservoir. If you continue to hold the trigger down, the motor will continue pumping to emit numerous bursts of water.

The Super Soaker

This type of gun is ideal for producing a powerful stream of water, especially when compared to the motorized water gun. In 1982, a scientist named Lonnie Johnson came up with a solution to produce a high-pressure stream of water with great force in a short timespan. Through research, Johnson realized that compressed air provides excellent pressure for water. This revolution helped to generate a pumping mechanism for the super soaker water gun. It builds up a great amount of water pressure before releasing it so that you have a solid stream of water with each fire. The more air you pump in, the more it compresses and the more powerful the water.

The pumping system inside a super soaker compressor air. Each time the gun collects water, this pushes up against all of the air inside of the gun. As you add more and more water, this takes up a larger volume, and with limited space to take up, the water compresses the air to create a higher pressure than outside of the gun. Then, the water presses on the sides of the gun to get and get outside of the gun to create a balance of pressure. The trigger mechanism keeps the water inside the gun and prevents it from overspilling out. As you pull the trigger back, the metal pieces attached to the gun’s housing push all of the water out of the gun to create an equal balance of pressure. The more pressure you build up inside the gun, the greater the velocity of the water when you fire.

The Uses For a Water Gun

Water guns aren’t just for kids, and they have many exciting and productive ways you can use them in and outside of the home. For example, you can use a super soaker to water the garden with a hose. By adjusting the setting on your water gun, you can create an equal stream of water to save time and money watering plants. Another popular use is to quickly and effectively wash the sand off of your feet at the beach so you don’t have to tread any into your car or mess around with a towel to get clean. Finally, another popular use is for cooling down in the summer and having fun at the same time. You’ve never too old for a good old-fashioned water fight!

Our Top Pick of the Best Water Gun

Before we share our extensive selection of the best water guns on the market right now, we’d like to share our top pick for those in a rush. The Super Soaker Switch Shot Blaster is an excellent go-to water gun because it considers the user’s ergonomics, actions and attitude while holding the gun. It’s built with precision in mind and is simple to function. Its design is one of our favorite aspects of the gun too as it clearly has a traditional feel of the water gun to not (which not all current water guns have!).

Its pump-action features take this gun to the next level to massively increase the amount of water the gun releases. So if you’re looking for hours of fun in the garden, this gun won’t let you down – plus, you can easily soak your enemy in seconds. The gun is shaped like a handheld semi-automatic gun to give the feel that it’s not just a toy for kids, but appropriate for adults too. It also comes in numerous colors to help you customize the look to suit your preferences.

Aside from performance and design, the size of a gun matters, and we love how compact and small this is in contrast to the number of features it has. You can easily fit this gun in your pocket while you use your hands for other tasks, but it’s also portable enough to carry around with you. With so many possibilities, this gun goes beyond your perception of what a water gun can achieve. Finally, another reason this gun made our top pick is because it has detachable parts to make the gun as simple or exciting as you want. This feature also helps to provide many uses.

The 10 Best Water Guns

Nerf Super Soaker Freezefire Blaster

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Why we like it: A quality, long-range blaster that even comes with ice capabilities!

Let’s start this list off right with one of the best, well-known brands in the toy gun industry. The Nerf brand knows how to make regular toy guns so you can count on them knowing how to make a water gun! The Nerf Super Soaker Freezefire Blaster does exactly what its name says in which this water gun comes equipped with water-freezing abilities (once you add ice in it). Once you add ice to the water gun, you’ll be able to blast your friends (and the blaster is also included) with a frozen water mixture. How’s that for being cold-hearted?

Nevertheless, you will be able to impress your friends as well with this water gun’s long-range water shots. The water gun comes equipped with a pump handle and is able to fire up to 38 feet. Not to mention, the water gun can also hold up to 23-fluid-ounces of water. Even with the water gun’s ice-cube added feature, this water gun is lightweight, only weighing 12 ounces! This water gun was looked upon favorably and deserves a spot on our list!

Nerf Super Soaker Breach Blast

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Why we like it: A high-capacity water blaster with quality features and a cool design.

Get the ultimate super soaking experience with this water blaster. The Nerf Super Soaker Breach Blast makes blasting your gang with water an easy defeat with its superior features. The water gun can hold a commendable 50 fluid ounces of water, which is a higher storage capacity than most water guns have to offer. Reach your opponents with ease as this water blaster can shoot water up to a range of 38 feet. You can have fun shooting with this water gun with its easy to utilize fire to pump feature, making it great for children and adults to use.

With an included water blaster, you can easily leave your opponents drenched. This water gun is great for use at the beach, at a pool party, or right at home in your backyard. We found that the product was a bit difficult to carry by their children when filled with water and have found the product lacking in design and a trigger. If you aren’t bothered by these minor flaws, then we certainly recommend this product as a reasonable option.

Exsport 2 Pack Water Squirt Gun

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Why we like it: A colorfully designed water gun that is also environmentally-protected and perfect for a wide range of ages!

We want to tip our hats off to the Exsport brand for designing a fun product that is serious about material design. The Exsport Water Squirt Gun is designed from environmentally-protected ABS material, known to be strong, durable, and impact resistant. You won’t have to worry about this water gun easily breaking or shattering on you, which means you can use it for long periods of time. This makes the product suitable for children as young as three years old to use (just make sure they don’t try to swallow the water gun!). The water gun also comes conveniently in a pack of two and is featured in two colors, pink and blue.

Unlike many of the water guns we reviewed here, this product actually comes with a real-working trigger! The water gun’s quick-fire trigger lets you instantly shoot a long-distance stream of water. This well-made product is also designed out of harmless, BPA free, non-toxic plastic. This solidly built water gun is truly a great toy gun for water parties, water battles with friends, and outdoor gatherings. For its value and great design, we recommend this product.

Fun Express Sea Life Squirt Guns

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Why we like it: It’s a pack of water guns for a group of twelve friends or family that come in cute sea creature designs!

The Fun Express brand certainly puts the fun in water guns with this product! These Sea Life Squirt Guns come in an assortment of 4 cuddly sea creatures that you and your friends can choose from to play with. The best part is that you can provide a water gun to a variety of your friends and family as these water guns come in a pack of 12. You and your gang can choose from two types of sharks, a dolphin, or a whale to squirt water with. The 6 to 8-inch sea creature water guns are also lightweight, so you don’t have to worry about carrying a water gun around the size of a whale (no pun intended).

These nicely-sized water guns are perfect for use anywhere such as at the beach, at a backyard party, or at the swimming pool. Though we like the irony of this product, some didn’t like how prone the water gun is to leaking. However, if you can maneuver around the leaking issue, then we say this product may be for you. With its great design, commendable water shooting, and affordability, we give this product a spot on our list.

Prextex Fireman Backpack Water Gun Blaster

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Why we like it: A great water gun for kids that only needs to be filled once and comes with cool features.

So we mentioned how water guns are a perfect accessory for beach, pool, and outdoor trips in general. What we didn’t mention is that water guns can also be used inside the home as well, such as during bath time! The Prextex brand shows us how great you can make a child’s bath time with their Fireman Water Gun Blaster. First off, this water gun comes in a cool fireman design that is able to attract any kid. The water gun can also be carried as a backpack and even comes with a cool fireman hat for a kid to wear. Any kid can look cool while carrying this nifty water gun to any indoor or outdoor event, whether it’s the bathtub or the beach!

What makes this water gun really awesome is the fact that you only have to fill the tank once and you will not have to refill it over and over again! This allows you to enjoy a continuous session of water spraying without the hassle of refilling. This water gun can shoot water up to a distance of 9 meters. On top of that, the water gun is super lightweight, only weighing 4 ounces, making it easy to carry for anyone. On a different note, we think the straps aren’t very adjustable and are ill-fit for some children. For its trendy features, versatility, and overall positive rating, we give this product a spot on our list.

Stream Machine Water Launcher Gun

Why we like it: A powerful super soaker with a long water-shooting range at a reasonable price.

If you’re looking for the ultimate super soaker, then this product may be the right one for you! The Stream Machine Water Launcher Gun certainly launches its water up to a maximum of 70 feet. Even when this water gun is in its double-barrel mode, it has the ability to shoot water up to 50 ft with a single shot. The water gun’s barrel comes in several other sizes at different price points, but for this review, we selected the maximum barrel size of 22 inches. Feel free to use this long barrel water gun in the backyard, at the pool, at the beach or even in your boat.

Besides its long-range features, the water gun itself is made in excellent quality material. The water gun is made out of high-quality polymers and saturated colors that will not chip or peel off. That makes this gun ideal for long-term use. In need of a water refill? The Stream Machine water gun can be refilled instantly and easily by just submerging the barrel in water and pulling back the handle to replenish it. What we forgot to mention is that this water gun comes with a secondary 17-inch barrel that’s capable of extending to 36-inches for the ultimate soak! Although we previously mentioned how easy it is to refill the water gun, this gun does require multiple refills and has some leakage. Nevertheless, the overall quality of this product and its incredible power and range makes it a great addition to our list.

Super Soaker Switch Shot Blaster

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Why we like it: A fun yet powerful super soaker that allows you to change up the way you shoot water!

The Super Soaker brand means serious business with this water gun. The Super Soaker Switch Shot Blaster not only blasts water up to an impressive 25 feet but can switch up how you spray your water with its multiple shot patterns. With this water gun, you will have the option to switch between one of four modes: Scattershot, Triple Shot, Atomizer, or Jetstream mode. Depending on which mode you choose, you can send three streams of water at your friends from up to 25 feet away or with the Atomizer mode, you can choose to mist your friends with water. All you have to do is twist the knob on the gun to switch between the various modes seamlessly.

The water gun is also able to hold up to 20 fluid ounces of water in its banana clip. If 20 ounces of water isn’t enough for you, then you can attach extra Banana Clips around your waist for additional “ammo” (extra clips are sold separately). Not to mention, this water gun comes equipped with a detachable stock that allows you to enhance your blasting accuracy. The water gun is extremely durable and comes in an attractive design. Do note though that this product isn’t exactly the most affordable and we aren’t happy with the gun’s fake trigger. Besides those points, this water gun is of superior quality and could be the right, versatile gun for you.

The Original Stream Machine Long Water Gun

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Why we like it: A truly long-range water gun that comes in a set of two and in multiple colors!

The Stream Machine company takes water shooting range seriously with this product. The Stream Machine water gun can shoot a jet of water up to a whopping 70 feet. Your friends and family sure won’t be able to dodge this long-range water attack! Not to mention, the size of this water gun is impressively long, measuring over 29 inches in length. Looking for a water gun for your friend too? No worries, as this water gun comes in a set of two. You and your friend can duke it out in the ultimate water battle with this convenient two pack water gun set.

Did we mention that this water gun also comes in a multitude of colors? Feel free to choose the color you want for your water gun to have it fully customized to your style. The colors include green, blue, red, or orange. Besides those minor issues, this water gun provides long-range fun for two, making it the perfect addition to our list.

Water Sports LLC Original Stream Machine Water Gun

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Why we like it: A durable yet lightweight water gun with incredible range and a modest price.

Similar to the earlier Stream Machine water gun we reviewed, the Water Sports brand supports the trend of barrel style water guns with their product. The Water Sports Water Gun also comes in an assortment of colors, but instead of four, customers will get to choose from an option of five colors. The colors consist of red, orange, green, blue, and yellow. This water gun, which comes in a size of 17 inches, has the ability to shoot up to a water stream range of 70 feet. You’ll certainly be able to blast even your farthest friend with this water gun.

Conveniently as well, this water gun comes in a pack of two, providing double the fun for both you and a friend. Another great feature about this gun is that although it is durable, it is lightweight, making it easy to carry for anyone the age of 5 and up. We recommend this product for its durability, convenience, and affordability.

Water Sports QF-2000 Stream Machine

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Why we like it: An affordable water gun that blasts at long range and is made of quality material

The Stream Machine brand makes its way back onto our list with its enhanced water stream barrel gun. This water gun has a slightly different design than many of the barrel water gun products we featured here, that we find to be more sleek and edgy. Besides its attractive look, the water gun, like some of the other barrel water guns, can shoot water up to a range of 70 feet. This water gun is also made from superior quality polymers and contains saturated colors that will not chip or peel off. This water gun is available in brighter, neon-like versions of the colors red, blue, green, and orange.

What sets this product a little further apart from the others mentioned here like it is its price. This water gun can also be quickly reloaded by simply submerging the barrel in water and pulling back at its handle to fill it with water. Besides minor faults, the product has an overall positive rating and works efficiently, which is why we choose to recommend it.