Safes provide an extra level of protection for your business for
items that would be hard pressed to replace or duplicate if lost. Purchasing a
safe may seem like one of the easier decisions you make for your business, but
it’s one of the most crucial.
If you plan on purchasing insurance for your product/inventory in
addition to the standard General Liability you are required to carry for a
business you will need a safe that meets the standards required for the
insurance policy. For a product insurance plan you will need a one-ton safe
with a TL15 rating. Remember, a safe provides the means to protect anything
from cash, important business documents, and product inventory from burglary,
fire, and/or flood. You need to select the type of safe that works best for you
and includes the options you need.
Here are some tips to keep in mind when shopping for a safe:
Safe Location: One-ton safes usually are floor safes. Floor safe
are built into concrete slabs in the floor making it difficult for burglars to
move and providing fire protection.
Type of Protection: What type of protection are you looking for
theft, fire or flood? Most safes of this size protect equally for theft, fire
or flood. Some safe manufacturers construct safes for one level of protection
over the other. The higher the UL rating the better.
The cost: It really depends on what you selected for your level
of protection and the UL rating. The types of locks are also a cost factor.
The Underwriters Laboratory (UL) tests and labels safes and locks
for their level of heat resistance and durability.
To test safes for theft resistance, the UL subjects them to picks
and blow torches. The UL uses the TL# designations to indicate safes that
withstand a number of minutes drilling. For instance: TL15 will withstand 15
minutes of drilling whereas TL30 will withstand 30 minutes of drilling.
To test safes for fire resistance, the UL also tests safes to see
how secure they are in a fire. Testers heat safes or half an hour or more to
see how the contents fare. Safes that pass this test can maintain an interior
temperature of less than 350 degrees Fahrenheit. In constrast designated record
safes, these models will protect paper documents from 1700 degrees Fahrenheit
heat for up to four hours.
Finally the UL will test to see how a safe will fare if it is
dropped. For instance, in a fire, a safe may fall through the floor, break
open, and spill the contents you are seeking to protect. The UL also indicates
whether a safe can survive a 30-foot impact, which simulates a fall of three
It is important to get a sense for what you will need to protect,
both today and in the future, before you choose a model, since safes are a
long-term investment. You want to make sure that the safe will fit into its
designated space, but you also want enough internal space to store your
valuables. So make sure to to measure and consider both the internal and the
Installation of the Security Safe
Depending on what is underneath the safe installation charges will
vary. If placed in concrete, the safes will not only be highly burglar
resistant and also be beyond the reach of most fires. Installation in these
cases can be quite costly, often exceeding $600. Bolting a safe to the floor is
a less expensive solution however; this does not provide any extra protection
The UL has approved electronic and digital locks that cost up to
Some are X-ray- and manipulation-proof, making the codes nearly
impossible to crack.
Only swiping your credit card can access other safes.
Some even attach an electronic control device that regulates the
times when a safe can be opened.
Finally, a drill-resistant hard plate can be placed over the lock
and a steel bar along the interior to prevent the door from being removed.
There are three factors that affect the cost of a safe:
Type of lock
Cheap small office safes can be bought at office supply stores for
$100 or less. On the other end, a large record safe, capable of resisting a
four-hour fire, can cost nearly $7,000.