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The Best Fireproof Safes for the Home in 2022
There are so many sizes, shapes, functions, and features to consider when purchasing a home safe. Protecting important documents and valuables against fire is should certainly be one of the primary considerations.
This guide was put together to highlight some of the best home safes that are fireproof. Actually, fireproof, while commonly used, is something of a misnomer. No safe is completely fireproof.
However, the safes considered in this article offer resistance against heats normally generated by house fires for a particular duration of time. While there are commercial fireproof safes available for specific applications, the safes considered for our purposes were ones designed for more common usage to fit the general needs of most homeowners and apartment dwellers. We have done the research and found some of the best values in the marketplace.
To the left is a “quick jump’ navigation feature to enable you to easily access the most relevant information that you are searching for. Our goal is to simplify the process of choosing the best fireproof home safe for your individual needs.
Common Features of Home Safes
When trying to choose the best home safe for your home and family, there are a host of factors to consider. There are many styles and features designed for specific applications.
The type, size, and features of the safe will vary depending on your priorities and the amount and type of items that you want to keep in the safe.
The type of safe required for one just trying to store a few documents may be very different from a safe designed to safeguard a large gun collection or priceless antiquities and jewelry.
This guide will focus primarily on finding the best fireproof safes for everyday use.
Of course, some of the safes may be suitable for more than just keeping a few documents safe from harm. At the top of the list are a couple of safes that are fireproof and large enough to safeguard a fair amount of valuables as well- providing the best of both worlds…
Top 6 Considerations When Buying a Safe that is Fireproof
The Size and Weight
Fireproof home safes come in a variety of sizes. They range from smaller portable ones, for a few documents and small items to larger units, designed to house gun collections weighing many hundreds of pounds. The best fireproof home safes are large enough for the items you need to store. You should also factor in a bit of space to keep valuable items you might purchase in the future.
Smaller, portable safes that can be hidden and carried when traveling.
If you are looking for a bit more versatility, there are some modest-sized fireproof safes that will enable you to store documents and some valuables as well. An average-size 1.3-cubic-foot safe typically weighs in the 80-100lb range. This is usually large enough to store important documents, a handgun or two, and expensive jewelry.
While the weight makes it difficult for an intruder to carry it off, these safes can usually be bolted to the floor for an extra measure of security.
Some of them even contain a separate smaller lockbox inside which can be transported. Additionally, fireproof pouches can easily be taken on the road as well.
Types of Fireproof Safes
Safes for your home can provide protection against a variety of threats – theft, fire, or even water. Some safes do a good job protecting against all of them. However, there are typically trade-offs to be made. Not all safes are designed to address all these risks. When selecting your home safe, be sure that it is designed to protect against the risks that concern you most.
When choosing the most secure safe to use at home, there are a variety of styles to choose from:
Portable – If you travel or are away from your primary residence for extended periods, a portable safe might be a good fit. (or work well as a secondary unit). It will be more convenient to bring the safe with your valuables and important paperwork with you.
Wall Safe – Safes for walls are typically installed in between the wall studs. They can be easily concealed behind furniture or prints and paintings. However, they are not very spacious and often provide less protection against fire and flooding.
Stand-Alone – They come in a variety of sizes and can even be bolted to the floor. These safes offer more durable construction and may provide additional protection against fire, water, and theft.
Gun safes – Are available in various sizes, from small handgun boxes to massive safes for rifles
In addition, there are different levels of protection against specific types of threats. Keep this in mind if you are looking for safes that are fireproof.
Although they are often referred to as “fire-proof” safes, a more accurate term would be fire-resistant. Fire-resistant safes are rated Underwriters Laboratories (UL) and other agencies based upon the safe’s ability to keep the contents below a certain temperature after the exterior is exposed to fire-level temperatures. It is based on keeping the temperature below 350 degrees F for times that range between 30 minutes and up to 2 hours.
This temperature was selected because these safes are commonly used to protect important paper documents. Paper begins to char at 387°F and ignites at 421°F.
The most common UL classification system is as follows:
- Class 350-4Hr. (formerly Class A) 4 hrs. @ 2000°F
- Class 350-2Hr. (formerly Class B) 2 hrs. @ 1850°F
- Class 350-1Hr. (formerly Class C) 1 hr. @ 1700°F
- Class 350- 1/2Hr. (formerly Class E) 30 Min. @ 1550°F
Most fireproof home safes can keep the contents below 350°F for a minimum of 30 minutes after being exposed to flames. This is often sufficient, as house fires usually do not exceed 1200°F and are put out in less than an hour. However, for those who reside in more rural areas, where the response time may be longer, it might make sense to consider higher-rated safes.
For the best fire resistance, a location on a concrete surface such as a basement or garage floor will be less susceptible to extreme temperatures.
Some items, such as computer disks or DVDs, are easily damaged by extreme heat. If you are looking to store sensitive info on this type of media, you will need to purchase a safe which will keep temperatures under 125°F.
These are typically far more expensive, so you may want to consider just converting to digital media and storing it in the cloud.
Home Security Safe Rating Index
Not all safes have UL Ratings. However, Underwriters Laboratories (UL) rates certain safes based on the construction, design, and capability to deter forced entry attempts. Following are some very general industry guidelines commonly used to recommend safes by specialized safe retailers.
The most common burglary ratings are:
• B-rated – $5,000 or less worth of important items.
• Rated B/C – Up to $10,000 worth of content.
• UL RSC – Up t0 $15,000 worth of content.
• C-rated – Up to $25, 000 worth of content.
• UL TL -15 – Up to $100,000 worth of valuables The safe can be able to withstand an attack of 15 minutes using ordinary tools and devices.
These values are typically doubled when combined with top-rated monitored home security systems!
One of the features that distinguish fireproof home safes is the type of locking mechanism it uses. The lock type can be a simple as a key or combination…or as sophisticated as a fingerprint sensor.
A biometric safe is opened by using a fingerprint sensor that matches fingerprints that are programmed into the safe. This can be the fastest and most efficient system, but some of them can be finicky.
Also, bear in mind, it will require a power source-either battery or an AC outlet. (as does an electronic keypad)
Keys and combination locks are more traditional and don’t require power. However, keys can be lost, and codes can be forgotten. As a result, it is always best to have a backup means of opening the safe.
The most common types of safe locks are:
- Traditional lock: This safe opens with a traditional key.
- Combination lock: Uses a series of numbers like vintage school lockers.
- Electronic Keypad: Requires the entry of a personal PIN code.
- Biometric lock: Access is gained by registering fingerprints into the system.
- Dual lock: Multiple methods are required for access. For example, you may need to enter both a combination and use a key. Some systems include the key as a backup.
Water-resistant safes can safeguard important documents and valuables from water damage resulting from flooding, broken pipes, leaks, and water damage caused by extinguishing a fire.
The possibility of water damage may be much higher in areas that are prone to flooding, or when storing a safe in the basement. Also, safes located on upper floors can end up submerged in a fire if the wood floors are compromised. The weight of the safe can crash through fire-ravaged floors and the safe can end up underwater in the basement if the fire damage is extensive enough.
For protection from water-related damage, look for a safe that has an ETL waterproof certification. This independent Electrical Testing Laboratories (ETL) rates safes based on their ability to withstand a certain amount of exposure to water for a specified period of time.
Premium Features to Look for in a Fireproof Safe
The best fireproof home safes may offer additional features to enhance usability, security, and convenience:
- Hardware – Additional mounting hardware for securing the safe to the floor or a wall. This provides an additional measure of protection against theft.
- Lighting – Interior lighting can aid in identifying the contents of the safe. Backlit keypads make it easy to gain access in the dark
- Adjustable Shelves – Help you optimize the interior space and customize it to your needs. Some home safes even have a lockable shelf or box which can be quickly removed and taken with you.
- Carpet or Felt Lining – A carpeted lining can protect firearms and valuables from getting scratched or marred.
- Tamper Alert – An audible alarm that is activated if it detects vibrations due to a possible break-in attempt or if the passcode is repeatedly entered incorrectly.
These are some of the most common features that we evaluated in determining our list of the Best Home Fireproof Safes of 2022.
Best Fireproof Safe for the Home – Overall Winner
- Dimensions – (L) 12.4″ x (W) 9.8″ x (H) 17.8″
- Item Weight – 113 Pounds
- Waterproof? – Yes
- Fireproof? – Yes, 2 hours at 1850°F
- Lock Type – Electronic
- Capacity – .9 Cubic Feet
Fireproof 2 - Hrs. @ 1850 Degrees
Heavy-Duty Construction - 113 Lbs.
Waterproof - 8 Hours Submerged
Backlit Keypad Lock
Emergency Access Keys
7 Year Warranty
Not As Spacious As Some Models
If you are looking for a medium-sized home safe that is fireproof, the Honeywell 2605 is hard to beat. At 113 lbs, it is solidly constructed. It has pry-resistant concealed hinges with a recessed door and boasts 2 live and 2 dead steel locking bolts for extra security.
The real kicker here is the Insulated Double Steel Wall Construction. It affords UL 350 Classified Fire Resistance for 2 Hrs.! Additionally, it is waterproof for up to 8 hours when submerged.
And, it has a patented bolt-down system that won’t void its industry-leading 7-Year Warranty.
Add to that, premium features such as a removable/adjustable drawer and an audible alarm that activates when the safe is tilted or dropped…and you have a winning fireproof safe combination from a leading security provider – Honeywell!
Best Fireproof Safe – Runner Up
SentrySafe SFW 123GDC
- Dimensions – (L) 19.3″ x (W) 16.3″ x (H) 17.8″
- Item Weight – 86.3 Pounds
- Waterproof? – Yes
- Fireproof? – Yes, 1 hour at 1700°F
- Lock Type – Electronic
- Capacity – 1.23 Cubic Feet
Fireproof & Waterproof
Available w/ Combo or KP Lock
Multiple Sizes Available
Back-Up Key Lock
Requires 4 AAA Batteries
It is UL fireproof rated to protect important documents and digital media against heat reaching 1700°F for up to an hour. The interior temperature will remain below 350°F for up to an hour.
And should the floors burn through, it can withstand impacts of 15-foot drops and keep those valuables dry for 24 hours in up to 8 inches of water.
The safe has four live-locking bolts, a pry-resistant hinge bar, a locking drawer, and even an interior light inside. It comes in a variety of sizes to meet the needs and budgets of all but the most demanding situations.
Although it doesn’t have quite the same level of fire resistance as our top choice for best fireproof safe, it does have greater capacity…and was our #1 pick overall in our best home safes category.
Best Fireproof File Safe
- Dimensions – (H) 12.9″ x (W) 15.9″ x (D) 12.6″
- Item Weight – 47 Pounds
- Waterproof? – Yes – 24 Hrs at 1 Meter
- Fireproof? – Yes – UL 30 Mins. at 1550°F
- Lock Type – Key
- Warranty – 7 Years
Fireproof - UL 30 Mins @ 1550 Degrees
Waterproof - 24 Hrs. @ 1 Meter - Submerged
Multiple Sizes Available
Key Lock Only
Not as heavy-duty as a traditional safe, the Honeywell 1106 is designed for a specific purpose, to protect important files and documents.
It has .64 cubic feet of capacity and will comfortably accommodate a modest amount of standard hanging file folders.
While there has been some feedback about shipping issues and the key locking mechanism, Honeywell backs it with an industry-leading 7-Year Warranty.
This fire-safe box has a 30 minute UL fire protection rating for up to 1550°F. It also boasts a 24 hour waterproof seal that is verified to keep contents dry, even when submerged up to 1 meter underwater.
Best Biometric Fireproof Safe
TSS Biometric Fireproof Safe
- Dimensions – N/A
- Item Weight – 102 Pounds
- Waterproof? – No
- Fireproof? – Yes, 1 hour at 1700°F
- Lock Type – Biometric, Backup – Key
- Capacity – 1.13 Cubic Feet
Fireproof - 1 HR. @ 1700 Degrees
1.13 Cubic Feet
External Battery Charger
Biometric, Code and Back Up Key
A versatile safe, it has biometric, electronic code, and key locking capabilities. It is even equipped with a plug-in backup battery to power the unit if the batteries run out.
It is rated to withstand temperatures up to 1700°F for an hour.
While it has only been on the market for a short while, ratings are positive so far. And when you factor in the included storage shelves, mounting hardware, and the fact that it is fireproof and offer biometric locking capability…this safe offers some serious bang for the buck.
Best Portable Fireproof Box
SentrySafe CHW 20205
- Dimensions – (L) 15.4″ x (W) 14.3″ x (H) 6.6″
- Item Weight – 20 Pounds
- Waterproof? – Yes
- Fireproof? – Yes, .5 hour at 1550°F
- Lock Type – Key
- Capacity – 1.23 Cubic Feet
Fireproof - 30 Mins. @ 1550 Degrees
Waterproof - 72 Hrs. Submersion
Too Small For Some Items
Because it is small in size, it can be tucked away in the closet or concealed easily, and yet still affords both fire and water protection.
The interior lighting option and carrying handles make it simple to transport and access and identify the contents with ease.
Home Safe FAQs
How big should my fireproof safe be?
The size of your home safe depends on a number of factors:
- Contents – What items are you trying to protect? The size and volume of items to be stored will determine how much capacity is necessary. Be sure that the safe is adequate to hold the items you are looking to protect. Safe capacity is often expressed in terms of cubic feet or inches, but you may need to check the specific internal dimensions to accommodate certain items.
- Location -Do you wish to hide the safe under the bed, place it on a closet shelf, mount it on a wall, or bolt it to the floor? The placement of the safe will often determine the size.
- Portability – If you are looking to transport the safe, the storage capacity will be limited. While they may be convenient for you to take with you while away from the home…a portable safe is equally convenient for a thief to carry. If you opt for a portable safe, make sure that it is well hidden.
Where should I place my safe?
Once again, where to place a home safe is largely dependant on what you are protecting, how often you will need access, the size, and type of the safe, and the size and room available in your home or apartment.
For the handgun safe, it might be tucked under the bed or mounted to the bedstand.
A portable safe might be hidden on a shelf in the closet.
A wall-mounted safe could be concealed behind a print or painting.
And a larger safe might be bolted to the floor in an unused closet.
The possibilities are endless, but the common denominators are typically to make it as accessible as you need to for your own access and as difficult to locate or steal for an intruder or anyone else for whom you don’t want to grant access.
What type of safe is best for my home?
The best home safe that is fireproof really depends on individual needs, budget and features required. Some of the most important considerations, aside from budget are:
- Size – How much capacity do you require for storage?
- Type – Are you looking to bolt it to the floor, mount it on the wall or take it with you?
- Locking Mechanism – Do you prefer an old-school key or combination lock or biometric finger scanning?
- Water Resistance – Are you concerned with protecting contents from flooding or water damage?
- Fire Resistance – Do you have important documents to protect against fire?
We have selected a number of fireproof safes that we feel represent the best overall value in a home safe for specific categories, and have selected the Honeywell 2605 as our #1 pick for the Best Fireproof Safe. It is reasonably priced and protects your valuables at a higher temperature, for twice as long as comparably priced fireproof safes!
Do I really need a home safe that is waterproof and fireproof?
While most people think of a safe as a means to protect valuable property against burglaries or thieves, fire and water damage can be just as much of a threat if you are planning on storing important documents.
Fire-rated safes can maintain internal temperatures below 350 degrees for a specific period of time when exposed to extreme temperatures. This provides limited protection against documents charring or even igniting.
Water-resistant safes can provide some protection against partial submersion for a period of time.
If it is within the budget, both of these can be important considerations.
What to store in a home safe that is fireproof?
Protecting Valuables in the Best Fireproof Safes
The items you choose to protect in your home safe will often dictate the size, weight, and capacity of the safe that you choose. This can vary greatly, but some of the most common items are:
- Guns – Guns should be secured against unauthorized use.
Cash – Even in this digital age, having an emergency stash of cash tucked away in a safe can provide some peace of mind in times of trouble.
- Valuables – For Instance- jewelry, silver, gold, or family heirlooms.
Computer Backups- A large capacity flash drive or backup drive can be periodically updated to preserve digital data and photos if you don’t want it on the cloud.
Keys- A set of spare house or car keys, or keys to a safety deposit box at your bank.
Identification – Documents such as passports, social security cards, birth certificates, or a marriage license should be kept in a safe place that can withstand fire or flood.
Important documents- I.E. a property deed, car title, a will, home and health insurance, bank account information, medical records, etc.
What is an ETL Rating?
Why the Best Home Safes are UL or ETL Listed
Most of us are familiar with the term UL Listed. UL stands for Underwriters Laboratories. They create safety tests and develop standards for about 1500 classes of products.
ETL stands for Electrical Testing Laboratories, which is the testing and certification division of Intertek…a UK-based corporation. While they do not develop the tests and standards, they perform the same tests to ensure that products meet UL standards.
Either label is a good indicator that the product exceeds common industry standards of safety and performance.
What is the best lock type for a fireproof safe?
The Best Lock Type for a Fireproof Safe
The best locking mechanism for a fireproof safe is the one that you will find easiest to use. When considering the type of lock on a fireproof safe, you will want one that you prefer to use on a consistent basis. In the event of a fire, the real concern is the protection level of the safe. The minimum protection of a fireproof safe is typically30 minutes at above 1400ºF.
The best fireproof safes offer 1-2 hours of protection against fires that run as hot as 1850ºF.
Do I really need to bolt down my safe?
Should a Home Safe Be Bolted Down?
It is considered a best practice to bolt a safe to the floor. If intruders break into your home and locate your safe, they may very well just remove it from the property if they can.
Taking extra steps to secure your safe will help prevent this from happening.
Additionally, it can increase stability. A taller shallow safe designed for firearms could tip over with the weight of the door when opened if it is not properly secured.
Many of the best home safes have pre-drilled holes and come with the necessary hardware to secure them to a wall, the floor…or both.
How do I maintain a fireproof safe?
Best Fireproof Safes Maintenance Tips
Safes don’t really require much maintenance. However, if it has an electronic keypad, you do want to make sure that the batteries are charged.
Also, because fireproof safes are sealed, it is a good idea to use some sort of desiccant to prevent moisture build-up and keep things from smelling musty.
Home Safe Security Recommendations
Top 5 Tips to Keep the Best Fireproof Safes Secure
- Keep it Locked – If the safe isn’t locked, it is nothing more than a centralized display case for your most valuable items. You never know when you might be unexpectedly distracted or called away suddenly. Don’t take a chance of forgetting to lock the safe and make sure to develop the habit of always locking it immediately.
- Use a Complex Code – Year of birth, birth dates, last 4 of social….all should be avoided. Make sure you use a code that can’t be easily guessed or that you commonly use.
- Bolt it Down – While 100 lbs. might seem heavy to you, thieves that are intent on stealing your most valuable treasures might find it less challenging to remove the safe entirely. By taking the extra step of bolting it to the wall or floor, it will be far more difficult to remove.
- Select Strategic Location – Where you decide to put the safe depends on the size, type, and your need to access the safe. However, it is typically best to try and keep it hidden out of view and secure it to the floor or wall unless it is a portable safe that you wish to take with you.
- Conceal Contents – Keep the contents and the location of your safe to yourself. Never advertise the whereabouts of your safe or what you are keeping in it to others. If you need to access the safe while others are around, ask that they remain in another area of your home.
Bonus Tip – While a home safe adds a layer of protection and better secures important documents and valuables, don’t let it create a false sense of security. There are countless YouTube videos on how to defeat common safes. At a minimum, one should monitor the safe location with security cameras.
For a higher level of protection, a top-rated monitored home security system will provide more comprehensive overall home security. Even the best home safes can be compromised- but adding multiple layers of protection will serve as a more effective deterrent and provide greater peace of mind.
Summary – The Best Fireproof Home Safes of 2022
If you are looking to protect a modest amount of valuables and documents against theft, fire, and water damage, it is hard to beat the Honeywell 2605 for bang for the buck. It is reasonably priced, well constructed, and provides both fire and water damage protection. At over 100 lbs., it won’t easily be walked out the door, and even comes with mounting hardware for added security.
OUR #1 Pick for the Best Fireproof Safe
Of course, if you have more specific needs and requirements, we have selected other alternatives that might be better suited to your individual needs and tastes.
Ultimately, a home security safe is only one component of a more comprehensive approach to protecting your home, valuables, and family. You may wish to also consider checking out our best home security systems, for additional options.
Best Fireproof Safes Comparison Chart
|TopBest Fireproof Safe||Honeywell 2 Hour Fireproof 8 Hour Waterproof Fire Safe with All Steel Exterior, Medium, 2605||Buy on Amazon|
|Runner Up Fireproof Safe||SentrySafe SFW123GDC Fireproof Waterproof Safe with Digital Keypad, 1.23 Cubic Feet, Gun Metal Gray||Buy on Amazon|
|Best Fireproof Filing Cabinet||Honeywell - 30 Minute Fire Safe Waterproof Filing Safe Box Chest (fits Letter and A4 Files), Medium, 1106||Buy on Amazon|
|Best Biometric Fireproof Safe||Biometric Fireproof Safe with Fingerprint Biometric Pin Code Entry Lock Box for Firearms Documents Money Jewelry 1.13 cubic ft||Buy on Amazon|
|Best Portable Fireproof Safe||SentrySafe CHW20205 Fireproof Waterproof Box with Key Lock and Interior Light, 0.28 Cubic Feet||Buy on Amazon|
The rankings and ratings expressed on this site are the opinion of thehomesecurityadvisor.com and are subject to change. To keep this valuable service free, we may generate advertising revenue from some of the companies reviewed on this site. This in no way effects our ratings. Learn more.
Is Purchasing the Best Fireproof Safe Enough?
While getting a highly rated fireproof safe to secure firearms, important documents, expensive jewelry, valuables, and cash is a worthwhile investment- you might not want to stop there. When it comes to protecting your home and family, investing a few dollars in a monitored home security system may be the next logical step to protecting the things that are most important to you.
A monitored alarm system can help protect your home and family against many threats. Among them are break-ins, home invasions, and environmental threats such as fire, carbon monoxide poisoning, floods, frozen pipes, and more.
And it might be much more affordable than you think.
Today’s home security systems are typically wireless and can be either professionally installed by companies like ADT, or self-installed. DIY systems like Frontpoint, make it even more affordable…and don’t require a long-term contract.
Looking for all the bells and whistles? Companies like Vivint can also serve as the hub for a smart home automation system that includes cameras, doorbell cameras, energy management systems, lighting, and smart locks.
Including your new fireproof safe in a fully integrated security system can take it to the next level, and afford you the peace of mind that comes with knowing your valuables, home, and family are fully protected.
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Thank you for your interest in our reviews of the best home safes. We hope you found it helpful. If you are looking to enhance the protection of your valuables, home and family, click the button below for our top-rated home security recommendations.
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Last Updated on January 15, 2022 by The Home Security Advisor