Safes are used to store valuables, important documents, and even cash. They come in different sizes, and ratings, so it's not easy to determine which option suits you best. It's important to conduct some research and understand the options available to you thoroughly before committing to a purchase. Here are some factors to consider during your research:
1. What size should you purchase?
Many people buy a safe only to realize it's too small for them after they've used it for a few days. It's always a good idea to purchase something that's bigger than what you need. If the safe is too small, you won't be able to store enough items in it securely.
2. What security rating do you need?The security rating of the safe depends on what you intend to store in the unit. The more expensive the item, the more secure your safe should be. Here are some ratings you need to consider based on the value of the content:
- $5,000 - RSC
- $200,000 - U.L. TL-15
- $375,000 - U.L. TL-30
- $500,000 - U.L. TL-30X6
- $1,000,000 - U.L. TRTL-30X6
This is just a rough rating guide and should give you an idea of what to look for. However, it's wise to consult with a safe expert to determine which rating is ideal for you.
3. What fire rating do you need for your safe?
This is one of the most important considerations while buying a safe that most ignore; assuming that their safe doesn't need fire protection. Regular safes without a proper fire rating will not survive even a simple house fire. Here are some tips on how to choose the right fire ratings:
- Class 350-rated – The file cabinets and safes are designed to protect paper products from fire damage. Some products come with UL Class 350 1-hour rating and some with 2-hour rating. This means the safe will be fire-resistant under tested conditions for 1 or 2 hours.
- Class 150-rated – These fire-resistant file cabinets and safes are designed to protect magnetic tapes and photographic film.
- Class 125-rated – These fire-resistant file cabinets and data safes are designed to protect flexible computer disks and other such digital storage solutions. They come in 1-hour, 2-hour, and 3-hour variations so they can protect the items stored inside for 1, 2, or 3 hours.
If you’re still uncertain about the fire resistance ratings, contact the company’s customer service and ask them for advice on the matter.
4. Fire-resistant safes don’t prevent burglaries
Fire-resistant safes can still be vulnerable to break-in or theft attempts, especially if you buy inexpensive and low-quality safes. These are good for protecting and storing documents but not suitable for protecting high-value items like jewelry or cash. You can find safes that are specifically designed to protect items from theft and offer good fire protection as well. Modern safe building technology has advanced enough to ensure you don't need to worry about choosing between one and the other.
5. What kind of locks to do you need?
- Dial and electronic locks available today are UL rated and offer good protection.
All this information will help you find the best fit for your requirement and ensure you spend your money on the right product.
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