If you’ve been looking for a fireproof safe, but aren’t sure where to start, you may want to start with the basics in understand what type of fire protection each unit offers. Did you know that just because a safe is labeled as fire resistant, that it may not be completely fireproof?
Many models are tested and rated to withstand a fire for a specific amount of time. One good rule of thumb to realize is that the more fire protection a model offers the more expensive the unit will be due to the extra materials that are involved in constructing the safe. Below is a brief definition of some of the most common fire resistant UL ratings.
UL 1/2-Hour Fire Endurance Test – This UL rating means that the safe protected its contents when subjected to temperatures of 1550 degrees F for 1/2 hour and that the interior remained below 350 degrees F during that time.
UL 1-Hour Fire Endurance Test – This UL rating rating means that the safe was able to protect it’s contents when the safe was subjected to temperatures of 1700 degrees F for 1 hour and that the interior remained below 350 degrees F during that time.
UL 2-Hour Fire Endurance Test – This fireproof safe rating is one of the highest available in fireproof safes. To earn a UL 2 hour rating, a fireproof safe must be subjected to temperatures of 1850 degrees F for 2 hours and that the interior remained below 350 degrees F during that time.
If you’re looking for a fireproof safe, be sure to evaluate the potential risks you face and what you need to protect. If you’re protecting media, data, or important corporate files, you will probably need to spend the extra money to purchase a safe that offers maximum fire protection. If you’re only seeking to protect small valuables, a 1/2 hour or 1 hour fire rated safe may be a cheaper alternative.
When purchasing a fireproof safe, be sure to purchase a brand that has been around for a while from a well known manufacturer like Sentry Safe, FireKing, or Honeywell Safe.