Best at Home Safes

Best at home safes
Burglary and Fire protection UL listed BFS912E5LP  click on picture for more information

Would you like the know the best at home safes?  Whether you are ready to buy a home safe, or if you are just gathering information in order to make a smart safe purchase in the future, you have come to the right place.

You may want to know if you should own a safe with strong burglary protection. Or you may think you should own a safe that will protect your valuables from fire.

Perhaps you own guns, and would like to keep them away from the curious hands of children or other family members, yet you want to be able to access them quickly in case of an emergency.

Whatever your reasons, there are some important things you should know to be sure you will buy the best home safe for you, your family, and for your valuables.

I will explain to you what makes a good home safe. I will also tell you why some safes cost more than others. You will know if you should bolt your safe to the floor, or let it rest without any anchoring. I will tell you the best locks to use that control the doors of the safe.

I will also tell you the safe manufacturer that I believe to be the best, and why I recommend them.  I will also let you know where you can buy one or more of these safes online, should you decide to do so.

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What Makes the Best at Home Safes

Best at home safes
Burglary and fire protection UL listed BF1512 Click on picture for more information.

To know what makes the best at home safes, you must first know how safes are manufactured, and rated. Some safes have primarily fire protection.

Some safes have fire protection, and impact protection. Some safes have only burglary protection. Some safes offer both fire protection, and burglary protection.

At the lower end of the protection scale are fire safes, more specifically imported fire safes. Imported fire safes can be fine for protecting documents, books, and other flammable(non cash) paper items. These imported fire safes though for the most part offer little burglary protection.

As a result, it is not recommended that you store significant amounts of cash or other valuable in them.  These safes undergo little if any testing, so it is not a good idea to store anything of significant value, even paper items in them.

Domestically manufactured fire safes will, generally speaking provide you more fire protection than an equivalent sized import, and even give you some burglary protection as well.

Many of these safes do undergo testing to ensure that the safe will perform as advertised under fire, and resulting high heat conditions. These safes are often rated by the duration of fire protection that they provide from a half hour to two hours and beyond.

Burglary safes that offer different levels of burglary protection are designed for protecting valuables from break ins of the safe. They are made of steel of various thickness.

These safes can have additional steel plates protecting the locks and relocks, and include saw tooth baffles to protect depositories from ‘fishing’ should the safe include a rotary hopper, or a front load mail box type depository. (Depository safes are normally used in commercial applications, and not for home safes)

These burglary safes however, do not offer fire protection, so the protection they offer is limited.

The best at home safes will offer both extensive fire protection, as well as solid, sturdy burglary protection.

What Determines Safe Prices?

Best at home safes
Burglary and fire protection UL listed BF1716 Click on picture for more information.

If you have shopped for safes at all, you probably noticed that there can be a wide range of prices from one safe to the next. The reasons for the wide variance again has to do with the quality and effectiveness of the safe and the locking mechanism.

Imported safes and locks tend to be less expensive than domestic safes and locks. The quality of the steel that is used in safe construction is better with the domestics than with the imports, in most cases.

A cheap safe will not be rated, either for burglary protection, or for fire protection. I advise you to steer clear from these safes, unless what you need to protect is not very valuable, or if you are trying to safeguard from young children.

Safe Ratings

Better, higher quality safes are rated. There are burglary ratings, and there are fire ratings. Some safes have one rating or the other, and other safes have both burglary and fire ratings.

Burglary Ratings 

B Rate  B rated safes will commonly have a 1/2 inch steel door, and a 1/4 inch steel body.  Some B rated safes will have 3/16 inch steel bodies. The B rate is the most common rate that you will see on burglary safes.

It is highly recommended that B rate be bolted/anchored to the floor.  The B rate is the least expensive of the rated burglary safes.

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C Rate  C rate safes consist of 1 inch thick steel doors, and 1/2 inch thick steel bodies. C rates provide more burglary protection, and as a result are more expensive than B rate safes.  Although heavier than B rates, it is recommended that  the C rates are bolted/anchored to the floor.

TL 15  The TL 15 burglary rating is superior to both the B rate, and the C rate.  The door of the TL 15 is minimum 1 1/2 inch thick solid steel.  The body of the TL 15 is at least 1 inch thick solid steel.

These heavy safes are difficult to move, but it is still a good idea to bolt them to the floor for maximum security.  This safe also has fire protection. TL 15’s are also more expensive than both the B rate safe, and the C rate safe.

TL 30  The TL 30 burglary rating is superior to all of the ratings previously mentioned. The steel thickness is at least that of the TL 15 for both the doors and the body, and it is often as much as twice as thick as the TL 15.

The TL 30 is also heavier than the TL 30 which makes it very difficult to move. The TL 30 also provides excellent fire protection in addition to it’s premium burglary protection.

The Burglary safe models TL 30 X 6, and TR TL 30 X 6 are superior still to the safes previously mentioned but are seldom used in home safe applications. These designations are most often used commercially for grocery stores, and jewelry stores.

Best at home safes
Burglary and fire protection UL listed BF2116 Click on picture for more information

Fire Ratings
A fire safe worth it’s salt will have a UL listing. UL stands for Underwriters Laboratory.

Or, in the case of a gun safe, look for an ETL fire rating.  The UL fire ratings are 1 hour, and 2 hour.

The UL Class 350 1-hour fire rating means that the inner temperature of the safe will not go above 350° for a minimum of one hour when subjected to external temperatures of 1700°.

The UL Class 350 2-hour fire rating means that the inner temperature of the safe will not go above 350° for a minimum of two hours when subjected to external temperatures of 1850°.

Obviously the 2 hour fire designation is preferable to the 1 hour designation, and safe prices will reflect this.

Safe Locks Another important consideration are safe locks. The three most common safe locks used in the home safe application are conventional combination dial locks, electronic key pad locks, and biometric lock.

Combination Dial Locks  These locks have been around and in use for almost as long as safes have been around. These locks are considered dependable, but are being phased out due to their limited capabilities, and time consuming operation.  No power source is needed for these locks.

Electronic Key Pad Locks  These locks utilize a key pad, and push button operation. They are faster, and easier to use, and provide more options than the conventional combination locks. The power source is either a battery, or A/C operation. These locks are more expensive in most cases than the combination dial.

Biometric Locks  These technologically advanced locks utilize fingerprint identification to open the safe. Access is accomplished very quickly and is superior to both the electronic locks, and the combination locks from a security standpoint. These locks are particularly useful with gun safes when quick access is paramount. The power source is normally battery operated or A/C operation.

Best at home safes
Gun safe with Certified burglary and fire protection. BF6030 Click on picture for more information.

Gun Safes and Gun Cabinets

If you own guns it is wise to protect them from the elements, to keep your guns safely away from the curious hands of children, and to be able to access them quickly in the event of a crisis situation.

There are gun safes and gun cabinets designed for the storage and protection of long guns or rifles. There are also safes made specifically for handguns, pistols, and sidearms.

Gun cabinets are designed for basic storage and protection with key locks or combination dial locks on the doors, while gun safes generally will provide you with a greater degree of protection from burglary, and from fire.

Gun safes also offer custom interiors, and the ability to keep your guns clean, dry, and in good working order.  The doors on most gun safes are controlled by quick access electronic locks, mechanical push button locks, or biometric locks.

Based on these differences, gun cabinets are normally less expensive than gun safes.

 All safes should be anchored to the floor unless they weight at least 1200 lbs.

Best At Home Safe Manufacturer

The best at home safe manufacturer that makes the best at home safe is American Security Products in California. Amsec as it is affectionately known has been in business for many years, and has a 100,000 square foot facility where they design and build safes of the highest quality.

Amsec has a complete line of safes. They provide burglary safes, fire safes, burglary and fire safes, gun safes, handgun safes, cash management safes, and can design and build a safe to your exact specifications.

Everything about Amsec is first quality: the steel, the components, the boltwork, the electronics, and the craftsmanship.

Best at Home Safes

Best at home safes
Certified burglary and fire protection Gun Safe BF7240 Click on picture for more information

The best at home safes are the Amsec BF series safes. These safes combine a good degree of burglary protection, as well as excellent fire protection to provide you with high quality, complete security at a reasonable price.

These BF safes also afford you a nice variety of locks to choose from to control entry of your safe, such as combination locks, electronic key pad locks, and biometric locks. The BF series safes are also available in attractive, secure, and functional gun safes. Amsec not only has the best at home safes, but the best commercial safes as well.

What are your favorite best at home safes? Please feel free to leave your comments, and questions below. Please also feel free to like and share this article on your favorite social media site. Thank you for reading Best at Home Safes, Tom

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