Choosing a Fireproof Safe
When you’re looking for a fireproof safe, you need to make sure you buy the right one for you. While it’s important that you get a good safe, you might not necessarily want to spend too much money. However, if you want to buy one of the best fireproof safes out there, you’ll need to be prepared to pay more for it.
When it comes to searching for a safe, you’ll need to make sure you understand the features that come with many different safes. When you understand the features you’ll understand what you need to look for.
However, before we take a look at the features, we’re going to look at a few things you should know before you buy a fireproof safe:
What you Should Know before you Buy a Fireproof Safe
What you plan to keep in the safe
Knowing what you plan to keep in your new fireproof safe will help you to find the safe that’s right for you. If you don’t plan to store much in your safe you won’t need a huge one. In addition to this, you should also look out for a safe than has a range of compartments. For example, some safes might have document drawers, whereas others might have racks for firearms.
How big the safe needs to be
If you need a large safe you’ll need to make sure that you have enough space for it. You should ideally buy a safe that’s a little larger than you currently need it to be. However, it should not be too big. The smaller the safe is, the easier it will be to hide.
Whether you can store electronic items in the safe
Not a lot of people know that keeping electronic items in a safe can cause data loss if there’s a fire. This is because the electronics can become too warm and all data could be lost. If you wish to keep electronics in your new safe you will have to make sure that it’s suitable for this.
Features that come with a fireproof safe:
The Fireproof Rating
One of the very first things you need to look out for is a safe’s fireproof rating. This is the most important aspect. If you choose a safe that has a low rating, chances are it won’t protect your valuables quite as well as you’d hope. You could find that your valuables could become damaged.
You should look out for the fireproof rating that is known as the “UL rating”. This rating tends to be made up of 2 sets of numbers. These numbers tell you how fireproof a safe is.
Let’s imagine you come across a safe that has a rating of 400, 1 hour. What this means is the inside of your safe will be less than 400 degrees Fahrenheit for at least 1 hour if there’s a fire. However, you should be aware that some documents will only be safe up to 230 degrees Fahrenheit. Any higher, and they could start to burn.
How Waterproof it is
While you might not automatically consider waterproofing to be important when you buy a fireproof safe, it’s more important than you think. This is especially the case if your home is at risk of being flooded. In addition to this, water might be used to put the fire out. Chances are, you will not want any water to get into your safe. So you see, buying a fireproof safe that’s also waterproof makes a lot of sense.
What type of lock do you want? When many people think about a safe they usually think about a safe with a mechanical lock. However, these days you can also buy a fireproof safe with an electronic lock.
What you should be aware of is if someone wants to break into a mechanical safe they’ll need to be an expert. This type of safe should ideally have at least 2 redundant locks. This is because it will take even more time for someone to break into it. However, you will need to get your safe’s lock serviced regularly to keep it in good working order.
When it comes to electronic and digital locks, they tend to be quite good. Locks on safe’s such as these are powered by batteries and they will need to be changed now and again.
The Cash Rating
Many safes come with a cash rating. The cash rating refers to the security level. The higher the cash rating, the more money an insurance company is likely to pay out. This is because a high rating equals a safer safe.
Please note, some safes are only manufactured to keep your documents safe in the event of a fire. Safes such as these do not tend to come with a cash rating. This means you will need to make sure you buy a fireproof safe that will ensure all of your valuables are protected.
How much would you like to pay for your new fireproof safe? Chances are you might want to pay as little as possible. However, a good safe should cost at least $2,000. Any less than that and your valuables might not be quite as protected as you’d hope.
The cost of a safe might be putting you off from buying one, however, you need to think about insurance. How much will it cost to insure the contents of your safe? How much will it cost to secure your safe? A good safe should be too heavy to lift by hand. It should also sufficiently protect your valuables. The safer your valuables are, the happier your insurance company will be.
Where you Should Put your Safe
You might decide to pay a lot of money for one of the best safe’s on the market. However, if you don’t place your safe in the right spot you could lose it. This is because thieves are always coming up with new ways to break into a safe. Make sure that when you place your new safe in your home or your office that you keep it out of sight. A potential thief should not be able to spot your safe if they look through a window.
One of the best places to keep your new safe is in the wall or even in the floor. While this method is quite expensive, it can help to keep your safe secure, and out of sight.
The Security Rating
Most people plan to keep their most valuable possessions in a safe. From jewellery to passports, money, and guns, every safe needs to be secure. However, they all come with different security ratings. If you intend to keep high-value items in your safe the security rating should be at least BF-rated or a well-built composite safe.
Your insurance company will be able to provide you with a few guidelines as to how secure your safe should be. Failure to follow their guidelines could result in you failing to be compensated in the event of a fire or theft.
Below you will find the different security ratings that we used at the time of writing:
- RSC – Ideal for up to $5,000 in content value. A low end safe that can be opened easily. However, there are some that take longer to open but the manufacturers don’t tend to spend money testing them.
- B-Rated – Ideal for up to $10,000 in content value, usually has a ½ inch plate door along with a ¼ inch body.
- C-Rated – Ideal for up to $30,000 in content value, usually has 1 inch door protection and ½ an inch on the body.
- L. TL-15 – Ideal for up to $200,000 in content value. Can deal with 15 minutes of being interfered with using hand tools and other tools.
- L.TL -30 – Ideal for up to $375,000 in content value. Can deal with 30 minutes of being interfered with using hand tools and other tools. This does not include the sides or top of the safe.
- L TL -30X6 -Ideal for up to $500,000 in content value. Can deal with 30 minutes of being interfered with using hand tools and other tools. This includes all 6 sides of the safe.
- L TRTL-30X6 – Ideal for up to $1,000,000 in content value. Can deal with 30 minutes of being interfered with using a torch and tools on all 6 sides.
Please note, different safes will have different capabilities. The above security ratings are only to be used as a guide.
As you can see, there are quite a few options for you to consider before you buy a fireproof safe. However, when you’ve gone through these options you’re more likely to find a suitable safe. Try not to hurry when you’re choosing a safe. Taking your time and considering all the options and features can ensure you end up with a safe that works well for you.
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