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Understanding TypeScript Type Guards

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Understanding TypeScript Type Guards


One of the standout features of TypeScript is its ability to provide precise and strong type information, enabling developers to catch errors early in the development process. Among other features that TypeScript offers, type guards stand out as essential tools for writing robust and maintainable code. In this blog, we will dive deep into TypeScript Type Guards, exploring what they are, why they’re important, and how to effectively use them in your projects.

What are Type Guards?

Type Guards are a set of techniques that TypeScript provides to narrow down the type of a variable based on runtime checks. They help you write more precise code that takes advantage of TypeScript’s static type system while still dealing with the dynamic nature of JavaScript.

Using Type Guards

1. typeof Type Guards

Using the typeof operator, you can create type guards that check for primitive types like strings, numbers, and booleans. For instance:

function isString(value: unknown): value is string {
    return typeof value === 'string';

2. instanceof Type Guards

When dealing with classes and constructor functions, instanceof can be employed to perform type checks:

class Dog {
    // class implementation

function isDog(pet: unknown): pet is Dog {
    return pet instanceof Dog;

3. Custom Discriminated Unions

Utilizing the power of tagged unions, you can create custom type guards based on discriminant properties:

interface Circle {
    kind: 'circle';
    radius: number;

interface Square {
    kind: 'square';
    sideLength: number;

type Shape = Circle | Square;

function isCircle(shape: Shape): shape is Circle {
    return shape.kind === 'circle';

4. Type Predicates

TypeScript allows you to define custom functions known as type predicates. These are functions that return a boolean value, indicating whether a value is of a specific type:

function isNumberArray(arr: unknown): arr is number[] {
    return Array.isArray(arr) && arr.every(item => typeof item === 'number');

Benefits of Type Guards

1. Improved Type Inference

Type guards enable TypeScript to infer more specific types within a code block, leading to better autocompletion and early detection of type-related errors.

2. Code Readability and Maintainability

By explicitly narrowing down types, your code becomes more readable and self-documenting.

3. Error Prevention

Type guards catch type-related issues at compile time, preventing runtime errors and enhancing the overall stability of your application.


TypeScript type guards are indispensable tools for creating robust and reliable codebases. By employing techniques like typeof, instanceof, custom discriminators, and type predicates, you can leverage the full potential of TypeScript’s type system. Embrace type guards to write clean, maintainable code that minimizes bugs and maximizes productivity.

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Aanchal Agarwal is a Software Consultant at NashTech. Her practice area is web development. She is recognized as a multi-talented, multitasker, and adaptive to the different work environments. Her hobbies include watching movies, listening to music, and traveling. She likes to read books and explore new things.

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