The AR-556 is one of the most affordable AR-15 type rifles. And it’s actually a very high-quality rifle. The value for the money is excellent.
However, you’ll need some of the best AR 556 accessories if you want to get the most out of your AR-556. You don’t need a whole lot of stuff to make your AR-556 a viable platform for almost any type of shooting. It’s pretty capable right out of the box.
SPOILER—however, you need a sling for just about any type of AR-15 shooting. The Blue Force Gear Vickers 2-to-1 Unpadded Sling is easily one of the most versatile slings on the market that works for just about any type of shooting.
If you’d like to get a few more accessories to make your rifle even more capable in more shooting contexts, keep reading. I’ll lay out all the best AR 556 accessories (you might consider some of them to be upgrades) that will make your rifle better for whatever you want to do with it.
Top AR 556 Accessories on the Market Today
Best AR 556 Accessories Reviews: A Better AR 556
The overall best AR 556 accessory is up first. The remaining AR 556 accessories will be presented in order of importance.
The accessories that I recommend you pick up first are up first.
The accessories that you can add to your AR-556 at your convenience are near the end.
One last note: there are plenty of different AR-556 models. I’m assuming that you have a base model, here. If your AR-556 already has something I mention, I apologize. You can skip that one.
1. Blue Force Gear Vickers 2-to-1 Unpadded Sling - Overall Best AR-556 Accessory
Blue Force Gear slings are my go-to slings for just about everything. The Blue Force Gear Vickers 2-to-1 Unpadded Sling is one of their most versatile slings. I’ve found that I can just slap this sling on my rifle. And it gets the job done, regardless of what I’m doing.
The main benefit of this sling is that it can be used in a 1-point or a 2-point configuration. There are times when a 1-point sling is an ideal option. And there are contexts where you definitely want a 2-point sling.
This sling can do both. And the 1-to-2 point system is super simple. It’s just a simple sling swivel attachment that’s easy to use with one hand because it sits flat against the sling webbing. So when you push the QD sling swivel with your thumb, it simply pops into place.
Additionally, the sling adjustment system is also super easy to use. There’s a thick fabric tab that you pull to tighten or loosen the sling.
Admittedly, it’s easier to loosen the sling than it is to tighten the sling. But I think the adjustment tab system is the best compromise between functionality and snag-free simplicity.
The last thing I’ll say is that the Blue Force Slings are super durable. The webbing is thick. And all the hardware is either metal or high-density polymer.
I’ve got a few of them in my inventory. And I’ve never had anything break. So you can count on this sling when you need it.
2. Streamlight ProTac Rail Mount 2 Fixed-Mount Long Gun Light - Value AR-556 Accessory
A light is one of the most valuable accessories for any gun. You can’t shoot at what you can’t see. And, with a rifle, a weapon-mounted light is pretty much mandatory, unless you’re going to one-hand your rifle like Arnold Schwarzenegger.
So the Streamlight ProTac Rail Mount 2 Fixed-Mount Long Gun Light is one of the most valuable accessories you can get for your AR-556. It enables you to use your rifle in almost any context.
But the main thing about this light is that it’s more affordable than many other weapon-mounted lights. And it’s actually a good piece of equipment. It won’t stop working after you’ve owned it for 37 seconds, like many of the cheap lights on the market.
Additionally, this light comes with everything you need, including a remote switch and picatinny rail mounts for the remote switch. So you don’t have to use zip ties for anything but cable management.
It mounts to a picatinny rail. So you may need to purchase a rail section, if your handguard only has M-LOK or KeyMod mounts. But, other than that, you can mount this light up and go, right out of the box.
The only downside is that this light only puts out 625 lumens. Don’t get me wrong. The light output is more than enough for target identification in almost any context. However, you can get lights that put out 1000 or more. They’re just more expensive.
But, overall, there’s a lot to like about this Streamlight light. It’s affordable. And it meets the demands of most civilian shooting and even the needs of tactical professionals.
3. Plano Molding All Weather Tactical Rifle Cases - Budget AR-556 Accessory
I had debated whether this was more important than the light. But I decided that being able to use your rifle was more important than having a dedicated place to store it.
But, being able to securely store your rifle is important. That’s why the Plano Molding All Weather Tactical Rifle Cases is on the list before anything that might be considered an upgrade.
There are two reasons why this is an important accessory to have:
- It protects your rifle from things like water, which will cause it to fail.
- This case can be locked to help keep children, burglars, and anyone else from accessing your rifle when you’re not around.
So this case keeps your rifle in working condition. And it gives you a way to secure your gun without getting a gun safe. However, a gun safe is inarguably more secure. And there are better ways to stage your rifle, if you want to keep it ready for home defense.
But this Plano Molding case is weather proof, which is nice if you shoot outside. And the outer shell is fitted with a relief valve that keeps your case from exploding when the pressure changes from temperature or altitude.
It’s also got a perforated foam insert which you can easily cut to fit your firearm. That way your AR-556 doesn’t bounce around in transit.
Overall, it’s just a really solid gun case. And a gun case is useful for just about everything you do with your rifle, from storage to heading out to shoot.
4. Radian Weapons Raptor Ambidextrous Charging Handle - Ergonomic AR-556 Upgrade
As far as I know the AR-556 comes with a standard mil-spec charging handle. Mil-spec charging handles suck, even for right-handed people. If you’re left-handed, it’s even worse.
The Radian Weapons Raptor Ambidextrous Charging Handle is good for everyone. It’s one of the best charging handles you can get, end of story.
Mainly because the latch design is the easiest to use, regardless of whether you’re left-handed or right-handed. The latches enable you to pull the charging handle straight to the rear, without any of the binding that you often get with mil-spec charging handles.
Also, the latches are skeletonized. So this charging handle doesn’t even weigh that much more than a mil-spec charging handle.
And everything is pinned. No screws. This charging handle is super durable.
Last thing, then I’ll stop ranting about how rad this charging handle is: even though the latches are enlarged, they don’t present any real snagging issues. Even with the largest Raptor charging handles—which have offensively large tabs—there’s no snagging issues.
This Radian Weapons charging handle is a simple, straight over upgrade for your AR-556. You don’t have to give anything up to get much easier and faster operation.
Well, except money. This charging handle is significantly more expensive than a mil-spec charging handle. But it’s worth it.
5. A.R.M.S., Inc. Low Profile Flip Up Rear Sight - AR-556 Sight
Many of the AR-556 models come with a fixed front sight post or a polymer rear sight. In either case, a solid rear sight can’t hurt.
The A.R.M.S., Inc. Low Profile Flip Up Rear Sight is pretty much the only flip-up rear sight that I use anymore. There simply aren’t any others that are as durable or as capable.
There are two main reasons for this:
This sight is almost entirely metal. The only thing that’s polymer is the small rear aperture. Also, the locking system is a metal bar that captures a notch on the top of the sight.
So this rear sight is bomb proof.
The other reason I almost exclusively use this sight are the apertures. Both the large and small apertures have an overhold notch for making longer shots. Even though this is technically a battle sight, you can still use it to get hits at longer ranges, where you’d need an overhold.
Other than that, everything is pretty standard. It lays down flat enough to be out of the way of just about any optic.
And it attaches to a picatinny rail with a single screw.
The biggest downside to this ARMS Inc rear sight is that it’s also pretty expensive. It’s awesome. But I can’t deny that there are far more affordable rear sights out there. But they’re not quite as capable. If you want functionality, this rear sight is the way to go.
6. Bravo Company MFG BCMGUNFIGHTER Vertical Grip-Mod 3 - AR-556 Foregrip
Want to put the best foregrip ever on your rifle? Get the Bravo Company MFG BCMGUNFIGHTER Vertical Grip-Mod 3. Thanks for coming to my TED talk.
But seriously, this is probably the best all-purpose foregrip you can get.
The main reason is that you can use it for almost any grip technique. It’s long enough that you could use it with a vertical four-finger grip, if you want.
However, it’s got a good shape and a very slight angle that makes it ideal if you use a more modern thumb-forward or thumb-over grip. It provides a really good leverage point to pull your rifle into your body for more stability and better recoil management.
And, even though it’s a good grip point, it’s also compact enough that it presents very little risk of snagging.
This Bravo Company grip also has a really nice grip texture that’s not too abrasive. But it’s good enough that you won’t have any issue with slipping, even when your hands are sweaty or oily or whatever.
Lastly, this grip attaches to an M-LOK rail. So it’s compatible with the free float rail that comes with the AR-556.
However you’ll either need to upgrade your rail or get an adapter if you have an AR-556 with the classic A2 handguards.
But, no matter how you need to attach it, this is easily one of the best foregrips you can get for any rifle.
The AR-556 is one of the budget AR-15 rifles that I recommend most often. They’re well built. And Ruger’s quality control seems to be on point, even if their handgun designs might not always be the wisest.
Want one accessory that will be the right choice, every time? Get the Blue Force Gear Vickers 2-to-1 Unpadded Sling. It’s an affordable, do-it-all sling. And you need a sling for doing almost anything with an AR-15.
That’s just the first accessory. After that, get another one. And keep going until you’ve got the AR-556 you always wanted.