Looking for Peace of Mind when Storing Firearms?
From handgun safes, to larger units built for housing long guns, there are many options for someone looking for peace of mind when storing their firearms. Fortunately, we here at Guardian Safe and Lock proudly display a variety of gun safes in our showroom. But, what should you consider when buying a gun safe?
Gun safes are used to keep weapons away and protected from anyone the owner doesn’t want accessing them, while still allowing quick access in case of emergency. Some can take protection a step further; and are fire rated in order to not only protect weapons from theft, but damage from heat as well.
Basic Features to Consider
So what gun safe features should you, as a consumer, consider when buying? The normal starting point would be to determine the size you need. A good rule of thumb is to not only plan for how many guns you own now, but how many you may own in the future.
It’s better to buy a gun safe with a higher gun capacity. This way you will have a few empty barrel rests for future purchases. Consider other features that can vary from model to model, such as door mounted holsters, shelves, lighting, and finish. Most of these options will last the life of your safe, which you may retain for many years if not a lifetime.
You also should make sure you have enough room and clearance when opening the safe doors as well. You don’t want to put it somewhere and not be able to open the door all the way, restricting access to your valuables stored inside.
While a pistol safe is fairly easy to house in most locations, larger gun safes or wall safes may only have a few places they can sit properly in your home. Be sure to measure the width, height, and even the thickness of the door and compare against the space you wish to place your safe.
Locking Mechanism and Body Types
The next thing to consider would be the type of locking mechanism you would need on your gun safe. The mechanism working the locking bolts of your safe determines the level of security of your firearms or other valuables. These range from simple key-driven bolts and mechanical combination locks, to electronic lock devices such as keypads and biometric fingerprint readers.
There are advantages and disadvantages to each type. While traditional key-driven locking bolts are simple to operate, the trade off for the quick access is a layer of security. While you may forget the passcode or combination on an electric or mechanical combination lock, the security level of these are much higher and harder for would-be criminals to break through.
Electric locks can have millions of possible combinations, and biometric readers can even secure your weapons with a fingerprint. This opens the safe faster in the event of a home invasion or other emergency. With these biometric safes reading your fingerprints, you won’t have to worry about misentering a combination or passcode during a crisis situation.
Some readers will allow multiple fingerprints to be programmed into their systems as well, allowing family members access when they need it. This ensures your family are never unable to defend themselves, even if you’re away from your safe.
Anti-tampering and Security
Another deciding factor that you should consider when purchasing a gun safe are the types of anti-tampering measures the safe has. A good gun safe will have multiple anti-tampering features such as hardened steel plates and relockers that trigger when the safe is under attack.
Hardened steel plates are tempered and used to slow down anyone that is attempting to drill open the lock body of your safe and gain entry. They greatly reinforce the safe where criminals may attempt to break in to bypass the security.
A relocker is triggered when someone is either drilling into or banging on the safe. When someone is trying to force their way into your gun safe by drilling and breaking in, it sets off the relocker; which is a solid steel bolt that drops into the railing of the safe. This blocks the bolts from being able to slide back and forth and open the safe.
Having a hardened steel plate and relocker protecting your valuables is crucial to making sure that serious criminals trying to break into your locked safe are unsuccessful. It’s critical to not just consider the way you open a safe, but alternate ways criminals can attempt to break into it too.
Fire Protection and Ratings
The next thing to consider is your gun safe’s level of fire protection. A lot of manufacturers sell fireproof gun safes, or fire resistant safes. A fire rating is usually measured in an amount of temperature over a measure of time.
Most of these types of safes are rated for protection from extreme temperatures of a couple hundred to over 1500 degrees fahrenheit for an average of 30 minutes to 2 hours. Some manufacturers, for their more expensive units, can rate safes even higher to protect the safe against larger fires. The average house fire tends to only hit about 700 degrees fahrenheit, and is usually contained and finished after about 20 minutes.
In the case of paper, burning starts at exactly 451 degrees fahrenheit. If you store cash or plastics in a safe and it isn’t fire rated, they will most certainly burn or melt inside. It is nearly impossible to add fireproofing to a safe that is not rated at the time of purchase on your own.
Trying to would include nearly destroying the safe and rebuilding it with costly materials and many hours of work, along with knowledge of these materials and the construction of the safe most people don’t have. The cost would skyrocket even without mistakes being made. Therefore; if fire resistance is something you need for your safe, you are much better off buying one that is already rated.
The last thing anyone wants is a fire setting off ammunition or destroying other valuables stored in their gun safe. This extra level of fire protection could be the difference in hundreds or thousands of dollars of property stored inside. When in a fire, safes that are not rated can become ovens that cook their contents and cost you money.
Gun Cabinets vs. Proper Gun Safes.
Sometimes not knowing the difference between a gun safe and gun cabinet can cost gun owners when trying to protect your firearms. Many in the market for a gun safe may accidentally purchase a gun cabinet instead of a gun safe. This can be a critical mistake when trying to protect your firearms or other valuables.
A gun safe is made with a thickness of gauge steel ranging from 8-10 gauge and is fire lined or concrete filled and usually weighs 300 lbs or more. This means it is only penetrable by means of a drill or other power tools with the knowledge of an experienced safe technician. A gun cabinet, on the other hand, is just a thin metal or wooden box weighing approximately 50 to 100 lbs and is just made for a means of storing your guns.
Safe Company Near Me
As you can see, there are many different options and factors to consider when purchasing a gun safe. Here at Guardian Safe and Lock, we have a solution for each and every possible security or fire threat your guns or other valuables may face.
Come stop by our showroom, or give us a call to see and be quoted on our stock of the best gun safes the industry offers. We carry an inventory from manufacturers such as Amsec, Hollon, Hayman, and Gardall. Our professionals can help you navigate all of the options available to you, and even deliver and bolt down your new gun safe!
At Guardian Safe and Lock, security is our specialty, and our employees are the best in the industry. Don’t take chances with your guns and other valuables. Come to us when you’re ready to find the best option for you in gun protection and safety.