Area Safe & Lock Service
Area Safe & Lock Service
3301 Mount Vernon Ave
AlexandriaVA 22305
 (703) 684-6161

How to Choose the Right Safe for Your Home

How to Choose the Right Safe for Your Home

Your personal belongings are important, and you need a way to protect your documents and valuable possessions against potential hazards, such as burglary or fire. So, you have decided to invest in a safe to keep your possessions protected. There is a wide range of styles and types of safes to choose from, meaning there are several factors to consider when choosing the best residential safe that will provide the degree of security you need.

Cosmetic Appearance

When choosing a residential safe, one of the things to consider is whether the cosmetic appearance of a safe will be a concern. For example, if you choose a style that is bolted to the floor and will be placed in an open area, you have the option of choosing a higher quality paint finish and attractive dials. However, if it will be installed in a closet or out of view, it doesn’t have to be cosmetically attractive.

Portable or Permanent

You will need to decide whether you want a safe that is permanently installed, which is either bolted to the floor or set into a wall, or one that is portable. Choose the best model and size for your particular needs. For example, if you are considering a safe just to hold a few items, such as personal documents or a couple of valuables, or if you are a renter, a portable security safe may be the best option. However, if you own your home and plan to store large amounts of valuables or if you want to install a “hidden” gun safe, then a permanent safe may be the best option.

You will need to decide whether you want a safe that is permanently installed, which is either bolted to the floor or set into a wall, or one that is portable. Choose the best model and size for your particular needs.

Locking Mechanism

Residential safes are typically available with a few different options for the locking mechanism, including key, combination and fingerprint identification. For homeowners, the best choice is usually a combination lock because they offer the highest level of security; keep in mind that keys can get lost or stolen over time.

Type of Protection

Safes are available in a vast array of protection options, such as burglary protection, fire protection and/or water resistant. When choosing a residential safe it is important to keep in mind what your goal is as far as providing security. For example:

  • Burglary Protection: to determine the degree of burglary resistance, the UL ratings are determined by the ease of entrance into a safe by use of tools, explosives and/or torches. A safe with a rating of TL15 is typically designed to withstand about 15-minutes of aggressive manipulations with standard tools. Another thing to consider is the thickness of the steel housing; the thicker the steel, the heavier the safe will be, making it more difficult for a thief to carry off.
  • Fire Resistant: fire is typically the primary concern of those who are considering a residential safe. Fire resistant safes are rated according to the degree of heat and the amount of time the safe can withstand a certain level of heat. For example, a safe that is used to protect documents should be able to withstand heat of least 350 degrees on the inside. The most common amount of protection time for residential safes is 30-minutes, which means the safe should be removed or the fire will be extinguished within 30-minutes.
  • Water Resistant: in most situations, water resistance is an added feature of residential safes. Most safes automatically have some degree of resistance to water. But if you are concerned about something such as a flood, there are safes available that can withstand being submerged in water.

Before you begin shopping for a residential safe, the first thing to do is to consider your budget. Buy the safe that best meets your needs and will provide the level of security for your valuables and that falls within your budget.

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Contact Area Safe & Lock Service to learn more information about which safe will be the best suited for your needs. Our professional and experienced locksmith will be happy to discuss the various options with you and can help you choose the most appropriate safe to protect your valuables.