Buying a safe is often a huge relief for homeowners or businesses. It creates security for one’s most prized possessions: jewellery, documents, sentimental items, electronic material, money, etc. In the event of a loss, even when insurance reimburses the value of items, there is often value beyond the basic monetary worth which cannot be recovered. For this reason, many people choose to proactively secure their valuables in home safes. Safes made specifically for fire-resistance and gun-security are also available, but may have easier mechanisms to open. For the optimum security for valued items, choose a good quality safe that protects from burglary and fire.
A non-professional burglar may or may not be prepared with the tools necessary to open a safe. Their attempt would be to either breach the safe with whatever they have or find, or take the safe to try open it elsewhere. It deserves mentioning that most thieves, unless it is a well-organised attack, would not be carrying a great deal of specialised equipment when entering a home. Home safes are rated knowing this, and they usually rate the safe durability based on how long the safe resists intrusion with regular household tools like hammers, saws, and the like. This is important when buying a safe—being aware and prepared for how much safety it can offer. Similarly, fire safes are rated by the time that they can withstand fire of a certain temperature.
You may consider yourself safer and more secure after buying a home safe, but what happens when burglars simply carry the safe out, taking when them everything you hold dear? If they are able to remove the safe from the property, the burglar may have access to additional tools to be able to breach the safe. Of course, there are home safes on the market that are prohibitively heavy and even with considerable effort, they remain unmovable. These safes, however tend to be very expensive and may not be ideal for the average consumer. It is possible, though, to buy a smaller safe and still deter the criminals who would seek to take off with the entire safe. This is achieved by bolting down the safe to the ground.
You may decide that the best protection comes from a relatively impenetrable safe, that is sized to meet your needs, but has the added protection of being secured to the ground underneath. But for this to be effective, you must ensure that you drill in the safe adequately. It is recommended that you begin the process by laying the unlocked safe flat on its side, with the door laid open, flat against the floor.
Some models have pre-drilled holes to secure your safe. If so, they may look like little caps which can be removed to expose the holes. If your safe doesn’t have pre-drilled holes, look for indentations or marks on the opposite corners of the safe’s underside that tell you where to drill. Using an 11mm drill bit (or other size recommended by the safe manufacturer), drill into the bottom at the identified indentation marks. Once the holes are made, close the door and return the safe to an upright position.
Next, you should place the safe at the exact location/position you want it to be bolted. Open the door and from inside, mark the position of the two holes on the floor. With the safe moved to the side, drill into the floor 2.5 inches (64mm). The drill bit size will depend on the floor material, with concrete floors requiring a slightly bigger bit. Given a masonry floor, you should install a masonry anchor in each of the drilled holes. Finally, realign the safe with the holes and secure it. To secure in wood, thread each lag screw with a washer, through the safe, and into the floor. You can tighten it up with a wrench. When securing in masonry, thread each lag screw with a washer, the hole in the safe, and masonry anchor in the floor. Again, use a wrench to tighten. As you tighten, the body of the anchor bolt expands, securing it into the concrete floor.
As mentioned earlier, a home safe can provide you with superior protection of your valuables. Choosing a safe, however, is a deeply personal choice—you must decide what is personally valuable and how much you’d like to spend to secure it. It is a reasonable expectation that owning a safe means that what you put inside will be safe, however buyers have to be diligent in understanding how much protection any given safe provides. To begin shopping, read our home safes reviews here.