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Best Fireproof Safes

There are many things we collect, over the course of our lives, that are very important. Some of these things are mementos, pictures, and letters that can never be replaced. Some are important documents; titles, leases, contracts, bearer bonds, things like that which are hard to replace. Some people even keep large amounts of cash or precious metals and stones on hand as an investment tool. To keep them safe, you need a safe.

Best Fireproof Safe – Comparison Table

When a fire or flood destroys the sanctity of your home, many things can be replaced. Couches, electronics, tables, these can be replaced. Most of the things in your home can be replaced, although it’s not an enjoyable process. But those documents may be impossible to replace, and baby pictures, wedding pictures, things like that, it may be impossible to find another copy. If you put them in a fireproof safe, you’re much more likely to save them, so finding the best fireproof safe for your home is a fairly important consideration.

First, let’s take a look at a simple comparative chart. Here are the best fireproof safes 2018.

Fireproof SafeUsable Dimensions (In Inches, HxWxL)Lock TypeProtection Offered
SentrySafe H0100CG3.375 x 12 x 7.375KeyedFire for 30 minutes up to 1550 F, ETL verified waterproof
SentrySafe SFW123GDC13.8 x 12.6 x 11.9Keyed, Digital KeypadFire for 1 hour up to 1700 F, Water resistant
Steelwater AMSWFB-45011.6875 x 14 x 12.875Combination LockFire for 2 hours at 1850F
First Alert 2092F-BD13.63 x 13.25 x 12.5Combination LockFire for 1 hour up to 1700 F, waterproof
Steelwater AMSWEL-3609.25 x 15 x 12.125Digital KeypadFire for 2 hours up to 1850 F, water resistant
Mesa Safe Company MBF1512E16.5 x 14.25 x 12. 5Digital KeypadFire for 2 hours up to 1830
SentrySafe HD4100CG10.4 x 12 x 8.5KeyedFire for ½ hour up to 1550
Honeywell 1108W10.2 x 14.8 x 12KeyedFire for 1 hour up to 1700, Water for 48 hours up to 39 inches

This chart offers a decent amount of information concerning the various fireproof safes we looked at, and what they can offer you. The search for the best fireproof safe requires you understand what you need your safe for, and how much space you need, before you can even begin to look into find the right safe for your needs.

Now, let us look at the various safes that we reviewed, to find the one best for you.

1

SentrySafe H0100CG – The Under-Your Bed Fireproof Chest

The first entry is from SentrySafe, a business with a long history in making fireproof safes. If you’re looking for a safe that will hold a lot of documents and what have you, this is not the one for you. If you’re looking for a safe that will hold the important documents in your life, and that you could grab in the event of a fire, then look no further.

This is a great safe when it comes to protecting your documents from fire and water. It has a rubber gasket inside, which protects your documents from water, as well   The safe itself is designed to withstand temperatures up to 1550 degrees for up to a half hour (and since fires tend to move through a building, that’s about all it needs).

A word of caution, though; if you are looking for a safe that is burglar proof, this is not it. Even without the key, it will take very little time to break through the lock. This safe is designed to protect against fire, not against malicious acts. It will take no time at all to break into. But if you’re looking to safeguard something precious against fire and water damage, this is a great safe to invest in.

PROS
  • The safe is waterproof and fire resistant
  • If possible, you can pick it up and take it with you in event of an emergency
  • The safe is light enough to move on your own
CONS
  • No protection from burglary at all. The manufacturer even makes mention of this
  • The safe has no anchor point and cannot be bolted to the ground
2

SentrySafe SFW123GDC – The Heavy-Duty SentrySafe

This offering from SentrySafe is a bit closer to what most people think of when you talk about a safe. Whereas the last offering from SentrySafe was more of a chest, technically speaking, this is a real safe.

It’s made to survive fire (thus the logo), and it will survive an hour in 1700 degree heat. It wasn’t necessarily designed to be waterproof, but it can prevent water damage for about a day in up to eight inches of water (in other words, not completely immersed).

But what about keeping your values secure otherwise?  Well, to begin with, this thing weighs 109 pounds, which is hard to move for a single average person. It also comes with the hardware to bolt it to the floor, which makes it much more difficult to remove the safe from the house.  Even if they do, there’s still 4 giant bolts, a digital keypad, and a lock standing between them and being able to access your valuable. And, thankfully, the safe passed a drop test from fifteen feet up. Of course, let’s be honest; a burglar even getting the safe out of the building will be difficult, especially if you bolt it to the ground.

All in all, a good, sturdy safe, and one that can store documents and important mementos alike.

PROS
  • Heavy, and can be bolted to the ground
  • Fireproof up to an hour in 1700-degree heat
  • Multiple protections between someone and your valuables, include large-diameter bolts.
CONS
  • Not waterproof.
3

Steelwater AMSWFB-450 – The Classic Option

Steelwater makes their first entry to the list with their AMSWFB-450, a safe that looks a lot like the stereotypical ‘safe’. If you ever saw old Western films where the banker had to go into the safe, it looked something like this.

There’s a reason that such a basic design has stuck around so long; it works. If you’re looking for a safe that will last through a fire, a safe rated to survive 1850 degree fires for up to two hours is a good way to go. House and office fires don’t tend to stay in one place, but rather, to move through a building, like a flame moves along a piece of dry wood. It’s not likely your safe will ever have to withstand sustained heat for two hours.

Sadly, due to being designed to try and rotate air through it to keep the contents somewhat cool, the safe is not waterproof. You can either have a complete waterproof safe that will not keep the contents cool, or you can have a safe that tries to keep the contents cool.

This safe is also hard on the burglar. To begin with, it’s got two huge bolts running through it. Of course, before they could ever concern themselves with removing those bolts, they would first have to figure out how to move a 115 pound safe. Even if they have the muscle, the safe is also designed to be anchored to the ground, which means that it will require carpentry to remove (and may even collapse the house in the attempt).

This is, hands down, one of the best fireproof safes for home on the market.

PROS
  • Very heavy
  • Can be anchored
  • About as fireproof as a safe gets
CONS
  • Not waterproof at all
4

First Alert 2092F-BD – The Waterproof Model

If your fireproof safe is ever in a fire, when the firemen respond, they will spray your building down with high-pressured water hoses. This can leave your safe drenched in water. If it’s waterproof or water resistant, the water will likely be kept out, but if it’s not, your safe’s contents (including important documents) may not be in good working shape, as surely as if they had been engulfed in flame.

Because of this, many of these safes are at least water resistant, but this one goes even a step further to make sure that it will be completely waterproof. With that being the case, it may surprise you that the safe can still be bolted down to the floor, allowing you to not only keep the contents safe from being easily stolen, but also keeping them safe from the impact of water.

So, as a fireproof safe, how does it hold up to fire? It can last for up to an hour in fires that reach temperatures as high as 1700 degrees, which is enough for it to be likely to survive the vast majority of fires. Being waterproof means it will survive floods and freak hurricanes and the like. Finally, being bolted to the floor means it will survive robbery attempts.

All things considered, this is the safe that has the most to offer on the market right now, so long as you only need a mid-size safe.

PROS
  • Waterproof
  • Fireproof for up to an hour in 1700-degree fire
  • Designed to be bolted to the floor while remaining waterproof
CONS
  • The contents of the safe may heat up in the fire
5

Steelwater AMSWEL-360 – The Improved Standard

If you ever go to a hotel, especially those in another country, the rooms tend to offer a safe, free of charge. When it comes to fireproof safes for sale, it’s not a bad design at all, which may be why they are somewhat common. After all, it can last through a 2-hour fire at 1850 degrees, and that’s nothing to sneeze at.

It comes with a digital keypad that can remember 4 user codes, which can be anywhere from four digits (simple) to 16 digits (much more secure). One of the nice features about this safe is that there is no plastic inside; it is all steel, which means no melted plastic to deal with in the event the safe is in a fire.

Can it withstand water? It is water resistant, so it can withstand a bit, but you don’t really want to test that by, say, submerging it.

What about what you can do to make sure that it is hard to walk off with? Well, to begin with, since it is made of a lot of steel, it weighs about 130 pounds.  That’s quite a bit of weight, even for two people to lift, and even without the weight to worry about, it comes with a hole drilled for you to attach an anchor. It is a very secure safe, especially when you include the anchor.

Another great safe, especially for those with security concerns as well as fire concerns.

PROS
  • Steel construction
  • Great fire resistance
  • Heavy and hard to burgle
CONS
  • Not waterproof
6

Mesa Safe Company MBF1512E – The Western Safe

This offering from the Mesa Safe Company is another one of those that has an old-world aesthetic, but it combines it with new-world design to make a great safe. As you can see, it does away with the old combination lock design, and replaces it with a digital keypad.

It is another one of the very fire-resistant safes out there, able to withstand temperatures up to 1830 degrees for up to two hours. This means that it will survive almost any fire out there, even arson, and that the contents will be safe through the fire.

How does it work against burglars?  Well, it has four pre-drilled holes for anchoring it to the ground, meaning that you can anchor it. Given that the safe weighs 139 pounds, even if they manage to tear it out of the anchors, they’re still stuck moving 139 pounds (plus whatever the weight of the contents is), and that is a difficult thing to move, even for two decently strong men in the prime of their lives.

It is not waterproof, sadly. In fact, they didn’t even have it tested for water resistance, because, as with all safes, they have to have some sort of air flow to make sure that the contents don’t burn. It wouldn’t do much good to have an airtight safe that somehow got up to 450-something degrees, and then the papers inside burst into flame, would it?

This is one of the best safes on the market right now, and the price reflects it. If you are looking for a safe that will give you protection in case of fire, and will be a hassle for a burglar, here’s a great safe to start your search with.

PROS
  • Very heavy
  • Will survive the vast majority of fires
  • Has anchor holes pre-drilled, ready for anchoring
CONS
  • No water resistance certification by UL or anyone else
7

SentrySafe HD4100CG – The Waterproof File Storage Safe

Some of you reading this might just be looking for a safe that will allow you to keep your important documents safe. Birth certificates, tax returns, receipts for various expenses that you plan to write off, social security cards, bank account statements, maybe even your investment portfolio information. You’ll need to protect these papers not just from fire, but also from water that would threaten to reduce papers that are important to piles of colored pulp. If that’s what you want, then this is a great safe for you to look into.

It can stand up to a fire, too, of course. It will last for about a half hour in a fire up to 1550 degrees, which is long enough and high enough that it will survive most house fires.  However, the real draw to this safe is that it is both fire-resistant and waterproof, meaning that your documents are going to be a lot more likely to come out fine.

Is it designed to stop burglars?  Much like the first safe we reviewed, the answer is no, it is not. With a hammer and a screwdriver, you can defeat the locking mechanism. It doesn’t have a handle that would make it easy for a burglar to abscond with, but it is only 39 pounds when empty, so someone running off with it is not impossible.

This is a great safe for someone looking to protect their important papers from the threat of fire or flood. If you’re looking for something burglar proof as well, you need to look elsewhere.

PROS
  • Waterproof
  • Decently fire resistant
  • Designed specifically to be a fireproof file box
CONS
  • Not burglar-proof at all
8

Honeywell 1108W – The Roll-Away Fireproof Safe

Honeywell makes an entry to our list with their 1108W on wheels. Obviously, the fact that it is on wheels doesn’t help too much with stopping burglars from taking it, but it does look like a file cabinet, so it’s not likely that the average burglar would be very interested in the contents anyway.

As far as fireproofing goes, this is a good safe for your paper documents, but it is not really rated for keeping electronic media (hard drives, CDs, Blu-Rays, floppy discs if you still use them, etc.) safe. In event of a fire reaching 1700 degrees, the contents inside may get warm enough to damage electronic media. But if you’re looking for a file cabinet for documents and paperwork, this is a great choice for you.

It’s waterproof for up to 48 hours, which is enough for it to survive most floods. It’s also on those wheels, which keeps it off the ground, so if the flooding is minor (say, if you have a flood in the basement and you leave your documents down there), there’s always a chance that water won’t be a problem at all.

This is another one of those fireproof safes that is great for people who are not worried about burglary. If you need to keep your documents safe in the event of fire or water issues, this is a great option. Honestly, this is the kind of thing that I would think you would be happy to have if you were, say, running a small business or an office or something like that, something where you needed to have these documents somewhere that they could be gotten to (documents like payment histories, insurance policies for the business, things like that), but where they would still be safe in the event of a catastrophe occurring.

PROS
  • Waterproof for up to 48 hours
  • Fireproof up to 1700 degrees
  • Easy to move
CONS
  • Not really burglar proof in any meaningful way

Best Fireproof Safe - Buyer's Guide

If you’re looking for a safe or chest to keep your valuables in, you might notice that the market isn’t necessarily flooded. There are a handful of big names out there, and then a smaller group of ‘boutique’ makers, and they all offer different things built around the same idea. Here are the answers to some questions you might have about fireproof safes in general.

How Do I Make Sure My Safe Isn’t Burgled?

Any criminologist will tell you that a burglary is usually a crime of opportunity and that they will spend very little time in your house taking your property. The longer they’re in the house, the more likely it is they’ll be caught by authorities, after all.

So, when someone breaks into a house to burgle it, they’re looking to grab anything that they can, as quick as possible, and get out. Burglars love things like high-end electronics, watches, jewelry, money, any metals or precious stones you have, and the like, because they’re easy to sell in ways that don’t expose them to capture and prosecution. They also love guns for the same reason.

Anything that takes them too long to get at, like a heavy safe anchored to the floor in an upstairs closet, or anchored in cement in the basement, is too much hassle and too much risk to be worth their time. The best thing you can do to make sure they don’t get at the contents of the safe is make sure it’s hard to remove the safe. Burglars who DO take safes often do not open them on the premises, but wait until they’re somewhere that they can open it at their leisure.

The harder your safe is to easily remove or open, the less likely someone will get into it, in other words.

Where Should I Put My Safe?

This really depends on the building you’re in. If you’re looking to put a heavy safe somewhere other than the ground floor or basement, be sure that you get professional advice on how sturdy the floor is. Something to remember, though, is that the harder it was to get the safe into the house, the harder it is to get the safe OUT of the house, and the more likely it is to stay behind.

How Are These Safes Tested?

Various organizations, some privately funded, others government-run, will test the safes in various ways. In general, they’re tested in an oven that simulates the extreme heats a fire can reach, and they may then be cooled down by water from a hose on a fire truck.

For testing how they perform in water, they’re basically put in a vat of water.

For testing things like ‘drop resistance’, they are picked up by a crane and dropped from various heights. Most of the bigger safes are able to withstand one or two floors’ worth of impact.

Underwriter Laboratories is one of the leading testers of safes (and almost everything else). You’ve probably even seen their mark before, even if you don’t recognize it.

Conclusion


We’ve looked at a fair few good products here today, and almost any one of them will make a good safe for you, depending on what your needs are from a fireproof safe. All of them are likely to stand up to most naturally occurring or accidental fires, and most of them will likely last even through the kind of fair that destroys an entire home.

However, with all of these safes being great, there can only be one that earns the title ‘best fireproof safe’. Only one that can do it all (or at least attempt to do so). That one is the First Alert 2092F-BD. It is the best for a number of reasons. To begin with, it withstands fires up to 1700 degrees, and can do so for an hour. It is also completely waterproof, which means that you need not worry about water damage to your important documents or whatever else you put in the safe. The real kicker, though, is that it can remain waterproof while also providing pre-drilled holes to allow you to anchor the safe to the ground, ensuring that any burglar who attempts to get into the safe is in for a rough experience, to say the least.

All of these safes that we reviewed are quality safes, and any of them would be a great safe for your home use. Whichever one you pick, they will last for a long while, and hopefully, should your home ever experience a catastrophic fire, these safes will help you to protect important documents and mementos, making it a bit easier for you to pick up and start again.