6 Things to Look for When Shopping for a Safe
It’s fairly easy to shop for some items. Take a recipe, for example. You just need to find all of the items on the recipe list and you’re good to go. (Unless you’re confused by the number of tomato varieties out there.) When it comes to something that will protect your valuables, however, it’s a little more important (and complicated).
From the size and brand to the type and fire rating, there are several factors to consider when shopping for a safe. Here are six of them.
First off, what will you be storing in the safe? Bigger is usually better when it comes to safes, as you don’t want to buy one and figure out you need more room. But it depends on why you’re shopping for one. If you only need a safe for something small, like jewelry or a handgun, a small size will suffice. But larger guns and other items might require a bigger size.
2. Fire Rating
A home fire in the United States occurs every 87 seconds, according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). But just because you have a safe, doesn’t mean your belongings are necessarily protected. Make sure your safe has both a fire seal and a certified fire rating of at least one hour.
3. Security Rating
Just as some safes protect better against fire than others, some safes better protect against burglaries than others. Talk to a professional locksmith for detailed explanations about security ratings, but they range from low-end ratings that can pass a “five-minute attack” test (RSC) up to heavy-duty TL-rated safes that can withstand 30 minutes of attacks with a torch or tool. Oftentimes, your ideal security rating will be based on the value of the items inside the safe.
Just as certain groceries have brand names and generic brands, so do safes. But brands are a bit more important in the security world. Don’t trust your valuable belongings to a no-name safe that doesn’t have an established history. A couple examples of safe brand names that are well known in the industry are Browning and Liberty.
Another factor to consider is the type of safe you’ll be buying. There are several basic types of safes, from fire and burglary to gun and jewelry safes. There are also certain types of safes based on where they’ll be stored, such as floor safes and under-the-counter safes.
Finally, make sure the lock is easy for you to access and gives you peace of mind. There are basic dial locks like you might have seen in the movies, as well as electronic locks that have their own security ratings. You need to decide if mechanical, electronic or combination mechanical-and-electronic (aka redundant) locks will work for you.
There are several other factors to consider, in addition to the ones on this list. For assistance with buying the right safe to meet your needs, give A-1 Locksmith a call at (972) 284-7500.