Fireproof safes are an obvious choice for everyone who wants to protect their valuables against fire. But what about water damage? After all most home fires are put out with water. Are fireproof safes waterproof?
The answer is: Not Always. Most fireproof safes are not waterproof unfortunately. Their main priority is to protect your valuables from fire, not water. However, there are some fireproof safes that are also designed to be waterproof. They provide protection from both elements and grant superior level or security.
These fireproof and waterproof safes are typically made of materials that can resist both high heat and water pressure. A safe made of stainless-steel is a common example. If you want to know more about water proof safes, we have all the necessary information in this article.
What is a Fireproof Safe?
Before continuing the discussion of fireproof safes that are also waterproof, let’s first establish an understanding of what a fireproof safe is. It is a safe that is designed to protect its contents from not only from theft but also from fire.
That is why fireproof safe are made of s made of heat resistant materials, like steel for example. All Fireproof safes have a fire rating, which indicates how long the safe can withstand high temperatures in a fire.
If you want to learn more about fire ratings this Fire Ratings & Certification for Fireproof Safes Guide covers the topic in detail. Now that you know what fireproof safes are let’s proceed to their waterproof qualities.
Are Fireproof Safes Waterproof?
While it depends on a specific safe model, most fireproof safes are not waterproof. They can still be damaged by water. This means meaning the inside of the safe is not protected from water or moisture and might be damaged in case of a flood, a sprinkler, a leak or a fire hose. This potentially may harm your valuables, such as documents, electronics, paper money or jewelry pieces.
The good news however is that some fireproof safes are actually waterproof. These safes also have a waterproof seal around the door that prevents water from sipping in. Such fireproof safes have a separate water-resistant rating.
Waterproof Rating & Certification for Safes
Waterproof certification and rating for safes shows how well a specific model can withstand water damage. For example, it can tell for how long (minutes, hours) the safe can stay intact after being submerged in water.
There is no single, universally recognized standard for waterproof safes certification. But there are three leading organizations that offer their own certifications and that are generally universally accepted.
These organizations are:
- UL (Underwriters Laboratories). A well-known safety testing organization that conducts various certifications for safes, including waterproof certification.
- ETL (Intertek). A global independent testing and certification organization. ETL’s tests include waterproof certification.
- CEN (European Committee for Standardization). CEN is a non-profit organization that develops voluntary standards for a wide range of products in Europe, including waterproof testing qualities.
If you are interested to find out more about waterproof certifications, what organizations conduct them and detailed information about possible ratings safes can get, feel free to check this comprehensive Waterproof Certifications and Ratings for Safes article.
Why You May Need a Waterproof safe
You might be wondering – why would you need a waterproof safe? After all fire-resistance alone is a great boos to your safe’s security.
Well, there are mainly 2 reasons why you may need a waterproof safe:
- Threat of floods, storms and heavy rains. This is the first reason and it is dependent on you are where you live. If your residency is in the part of the country where floods are common or at least happen from time to time, then it would be a good idea to secure your belongings.
- Water exposure accidents. This is the second reason and this situation is universal, meaning it can happen to anyone, anytime and anywhere. It actually is quite common during house fire accidents. If the fire breaks having a fireproof safe may not be enough. Because when the firefighters arrive and do their job your home is probably going to get soaked in water. And without a proper protection the valuables that survived the fire might get destroyed or damaged by water.
Why Fireproof Safes Are Not Always Waterproof
After reading the reasons for having the waterproof safes you might be wondering – why fireproof safes are not always waterproof. It does make sense to have a safe that can resist both fire and water, right?
Well, there are a few reasons why fireproof safes are not always made to be waterproof:
- First, waterproofing any safe will increase its cost. The technology and the materials involved in providing waterproof qualities will always be more complex. This inevitable make such safes more expensive.
- Second, waterproofing a safe may lead to it being less convenient to use. Having tighter seals and heavier doors compared to standard fireproof safes make them more difficult to open and close.
So, as you can see the price and the safe’s usability characteristics result in the fact that not all safes are made to be waterproof. Eventually it comes down to your personal choice, if you need this additional level of protection. And if you do, what budget you are willing to spend on it.
What to Look for When Choosing a Waterproof safe
Now you know that if you want a safe that is both fireproof and waterproof, the price may be higher. So, if you decide to buy such a safe, make sure the model is specifically designed for this purpose and has a proper rating.
Additional tips for choosing a water and fireproof safe:
- Consider the value of the items you will be storing in your safe. The more items you have or the more valuable they are, the more sense it makes to choose a safe with a high water and fire rating.
- Consider how often you will use your safe. If you need a frequent access to the safe, pick the one which is easy to open and close.
- It is also vital to choose the right place the safe. Consider a wall mounted safe to make it more discreet. Additionally, not putting it on the floor may help reduce the risk of flooding it.
To summarize the main points – most fireproof safes are not waterproof. However, some fireproof safes are indeed waterproof. They have appropriate certifications and water-resistant ratings.
These waterproof safes are typically more expensive than fireproof only models. But they do offer the invaluable peace of mind, because you won’t have to worry about fire and water threats.
When choosing a fireproof safe follow our tips and choose the model that satisfies your personal needs.
As always – keep yourself safe, and your belongings fireproof! 🔥