Safes Aren't As Safe As You Think
You can consider your home safe like insurance: that is, its not 100% perfect, but the more you put into it, the more protection you will end up with. The 7 tips below will ensure your safe lives up to at least the basic security standards (and doesn't fall into any major pitfalls, like that of the electronic keypad):
1. A Fireproof Safe Wont Protect Against Burglary
A basic fireproof safe will do one thing great: protect against smoke and heat. What it will not do is prevent a thief from getting your goods; typically, the metal in a basic fire resistant safe is merely an agent to hold the fire retardant material. At this thinness, a standard hammer and nail could easily penetrate the safe.
2. Size Does Matter
True, a thief rarely spends time trying to break into a safe while they are burglarizing a home, but if its small enough, they will take it with them. Thats why you want something big, bulky and heavy that cannot be easily carted off. Gardall Safe Corps most popular home safe weighs 85 pounds, but they have models over 300 pounds as well. The heavier the safe, the harder to carry, and the more likely an intruder will give up trying to crack it.
3. Bolt It Down
Remember that last bit about making sure your safe is super heavy (and large)? Heres one more tip: make sure its also bolted down. While unlikely for a thief to take off with your 500 lb. safe, it still occurs (especially considering the larger ones are typically at accessible ground-level).
4. Safes With Electronic Locks Arent Safes, Theyre Residential Security Containers
A simple YouTube search, and you, too, can break into an electronic safe. One common trick that even your toddler can use is the bounce method, in which they drop goods atop the safe and twist the combo lock, popping it open. Another easy method for cracking electronic safes is to use small sheets of metal to activate the reset button. In short, an electronic safe keypad will do little to protect your goods.
5. Dont Pre-Program Your Mechanical Safe
If you take our advice and opt for a mechanical lock, do not get lazy; putting in the first few turns on your mechanical safe is not as ingenious as it sounds, especially if you plan to use this safe as your primary means of securing your weapon of choice. If the dial accidentally gets turned before you really have to access it, you will end up losing more time than if you just started from the beginning.
6. Composite Fire Cladded Are Your Best Bet
For protection against fire, flood, and burglary, composite safes (a mixture of substances in forming the safe) are the most secure. While there is not a definitive way to determine how long a fire will last, safes rated by Underwriter Laboratories as UL-2 will withstand a heavy fire for two hours (and you guessed it: UL-1 will last for an hour under intense fire conditions).
7. The Best Place To Protect Your Identity Is In A Safety Deposit Box
As far as identity protection goes (and personal documents), although inconvenient, a safe deposit box is going to be the most secure place to store your goods. Considering whatever housed there is legally protected in case of your death, its not recommended that Wills be kept there unless a spouse, too, has access to the box, but it can be especially useful for holding items thieves might like, and things you will not need on a daily basis, like bank statements.