What To Consider When Selecting The Best Home Safe
Fire and theft are one of the top home security issues. Some safes protect better than others. And then there are those safes which protect from both. Water damage is yet another problem at the top of homeowner’s minds, and you will find safes that provide some water resistance on top of their protective capacities. What you want to keep safe and what or who you wish to defend it from can help you figure out the appropriate locking mechanism, capability, and fire rating on your safe.
Key lock: Simple and plain describes these locking mechanisms. Nonetheless, you need to keep an eye on the key. If it is stored in the home together with the safe, it might get damaged in a fire or be discovered by burglars.
Mechanical combination lock: There is no key management involved with a mechanical lock mixture, nor do you need to stress about a dead battery or electronic malfunction. Some mechanical locks have a key lock that can be used in an emergency. Nevertheless, you are more restricted in combination choices with a mechanical combination lock.
Electronic combination lock: These locks features more password choices, and you do not have to be concerned about losing the key. Nevertheless, some models require periodic battery changes. Like mechanical locks, a few electric combination locks have a security key if you forget the code.
Biometric lock: Biometric locks utilizes retina scan or fingerprint to open the safe. You don’t need to memorize a code or keep a key. Many may have a key as a backup safety measure.
Most safes are produced of heavy steel sheets. The sheets, which may be various centimeters thick, offer the safe its heavy weight. Nevertheless, these are not just any sheets of steel. Safes contain plates made out of both mild steel and hard steel. Heat can lead to hard plates to crack, subjecting the contents to hot temperatures. Mild steel warps instead of cracking, defending the contents while temperatures rise.
Fire safes can also be designed with a layer made from a non-conductive composite material which inhibits the interior temperature from rising for 30 to 120 minutes. Fire-resistant insulation is also frequently used to help keep those interior temps down.
Nevertheless, steel is not the sole substance utilized to make fireproof safes. Various resins and ABS plastic are utilized as well. These two substances are lighter weight and are used to create smaller, more lightweight safes.
Size and Capacity
Start your hunt for a fire proof safe by creating a summary of what you would like to put in the safe. If you’ve got precious jewelry or other irreplaceable things, a bank lockbox has the best protection. Passports, Social Security cards, birth certificates, insurance policies, and tax returns are important documents that can present a concern if lost to fire or theft.
Check out your list and ensure the jewelry safe will hold almost everything on it. For instance, firearms take up far more space than DVDs or documents.
Size, in addition, plays a role in the area where you can place the safe. Bigger safes are tougher to hide and much easier to identify. When you would like to keep the safe hidden, consider a tony model that more quickly fits in a closet, crawl area, or under floorboards. Remember that little safes are susceptible to theft if they are not hidden.
Fire and UL Ratings
In fact, no safe is 100% fireproof. Safes are fire-resistant up to a specific temperature and for a particular amount of time.
Underwriters Laboratories (UL) evaluates safes and provides a fire rating. Two things are indicated by these ratings—the optimum temperature at which the safe can have a safe interior temperature and how long the safe can keep that temperature.
The interior temp determines the types of substances the safe could protect. For instance, the inside of a paper document safe should not get hotter than 350 degrees. Anything beyond that, and the paper will burn off. Nevertheless, electronics might not have the ability to withstand temperatures of over 125 to 150 degrees.
The UL rating also shows how long the safe can keep that interior temperature. Most home fireproof safes provide a minimum of 30 minutes of protection. This might not seem long, but most fires move through an area in under 20 minutes. For extra peace of mind, nonetheless, several safes provide as many as 120 minutes of fire safety.
Waterproof safes point out how long they can defend their contents from water, along with the depth at which they can keep that protection. Most resist water for around 24 hours, but many could provide as much as 72 hours of water safety in water that is 8 to 40 inches deep. Nevertheless, in case you reside in a flood-prone region, it is advisable to keep the contents of the safe in waterproof bags, whether the safe is ranked for water protection or not.
Some safes also supply humidity resistance that may guard items or documents hypersensitive to subtle climate changes.
Usability features include weight, display visibility, and the safe’s general portability. LED displays are a lot easier to spot in dim conditions. Considering that safes are usually stored in the dark, protected areas, a simple display can make the safe even more functional.
Some safes are lightweight with a side or top handle for easy carrying. These small safes could weigh 25 to 30 pounds. Others weigh more than 100 pounds and would take two people to move.
Tips For Buying And Utilizing The Best Home Safe
The things you wish to defend, your available room, and the threats from what you need to protect your items will assist you in figuring out the proper safety for you. Here are a few additional suggestions to help you locate the perfect safe and make use of it to its greatest advantage.
- Keep the safe above ground level (not inside a basement) to reduce the chances of water damage in the course of a flood.
- The first level of a multistory house offers the greatest protection from fire.
- Safes that come with a bolting system are made to be connected to the floor or exterior wall for additional security.
- Don’t keep the safe in plain sight. As part of a comprehensive strategy to maintain your house and its contents protected, place your safe in a location that is hidden or inconspicuous.
- Search for a safe that is “ETL verified” or “UL listed.” These labels suggest that they have been evaluated and passed third-party scrutiny.