When you are buying a safe, you need to know if it is rated the best for what you need it to do. Safes will have specified terminology written on them that tells you what they have been rated for and what they are recommended for. You do need to know what type of security and fire protection you will need before you buy a safe. It's a good idea to check with your insurance company to see what options are the best for your needs.
How do you understand and determine the terminology of a particular safe that you are looking at? Here is a short rundown of what you should know about terminology.
Not all safes are rated fire safe. A fire safe is made from thin sheets of steel and in some cases thick plastic that forms an outer shell for the safe. They are filled with an insulating material to help keep the temperature inside the safe lower than the surrounding temperature for a certain period of time. The majority of the fire safes on the market today will keep your documents safe for a couple of hours during a fire.
Safes that are rated to prevent a person from breaking into them are made from solid steel plate or steel and composite fill such as concrete. They are divided into categories based on how well they protect against intrusion during the testing phase. They can include B-Rate (a simple box with a lock on it), TL-15 and more.
Residential Security Container
This type of rating for a safe is relatively new and is mainly for insurance companies for a home or office safe. These safes tend to have additional burglary protection but not necessarily fire protection.
These safes have been created with at least an inch of solid steel or equivalent material. The rating means that they can withstand burglary attempts using materials such as hand drills, hammers, punches and other pressure applying tools for at least a few minutes time. The safes are tested against several different types of attacks and they must withstand them for the duration to receive the rating.
TL-30 safes are typically found in jewelry stores or businesses in which precious or expensive items need to be protected. There are several levels of TL-30 safes, each becoming stronger with the added numbers to the name. These safes are of the same construction as a TL-15, however, they should take up to half an hour to breach.
To learn more about which safe is right for you, visit resources such as www.vaultandsafe.com.