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Valuable documents, family heirlooms, and firearms are susceptible to damage or loss in the face of fire, water, or intruders, but this collection of the top fireproof safes can keep your valuables secure.

Introduction

Fireproof safes can stop a fire or break-in from escalating from terrible to truly disastrous by keeping essential documents like birth certificates, Social Security cards, and passports safe from destruction or theft. These have at least 30 minutes of fire protection and the durability to keep thieves out. They’re also a good way to organize and keep track of sensitive information in your home as part of your home security system.

Useful features range from biometric locks and backup locks to alarms and water resistance. Wondering ‘what is the best fireproof and waterproof safe for home use?’ Your budget, capacity needs, and available space will help determine which fireproof home safe is suitable to keep your valuables secure.

Each of the top picks below was selected after an in-depth review of the market and thorough product vetting.

Quick Picks Products List
BEST OVERALLSentrySafe SFW123GDC Fireproof and Waterproof Safe
BEST VALUEHoneywell Safes & Door Locks 30 Minute Fire Safe
BEST WITH ALARMSentrySafe 1.23 cu. ft. Fireproof/Waterproof Safe
BEST MINI SAFEFirst Alert 2030F 0.39 Cubic Feet Fire and Water Safe
BEST SAFE BOXHoneywell Safes & Door Locks 6104 Fire Resistant Box
BEST SAFE CHESTHoneywell Safes & Door Locks 6104 Fire Resistant Box
Product Reviews
Best Overall

Sentry Safe SFW123GDC Fireproof and Waterproof Safe

A robust, cheap safe that offers a decent amount of space and a simple but secure electronic locking system. This is one of the most popular small safes on the market

  • Fire Rating: Protects for up to 60 minutes/up to 1,700 degrees F
  • Lock Type: Electronic combination lock
  • Dimensions: 19.3 by 16.3 by 17.8 inches
  • Weight: 86.3 pounds

The SentrySafe SFW123GDC ticks all of the boxes for the safekeeping of sensitive items. Its UL rating indicates that it can keep its 1.23 cubic feet of interior space at a safe temperature for paper documents, DVDs, and USB drives for up to 60 minutes in temperatures up to 1,700 degrees Fahrenheit. The SFW123GDC also resists water for 24 hours in depths up to 8 inches.

Burglars will have a hard time cracking this egg since it can also withstand a 15-foot drop without breaking. The safe also comes with bolt-down hardware to secure it from thieves. You can set your own combination on the digital keypad but also have the assurance of access with a backup key.

On the interior, a locking drawer and shelves organize your documents and valuables, with interior lights that illuminate contents in the dark. At 86.3 pounds, this model is not lightweight. It requires four AA batteries to run the lock mechanism and interior light.

Pros

  • Contents stay dry in 8 inches of water for up to 24 hours
  • Locked drawer and organization features
  • Interior lighting makes content more visible
  • Can withstand a 15-foot drop
  • Comes with backup key
  • Includes hardware to bolt in place

Cons

  • Heavyweight
Best Overall

Sentry Safe SFW123GDC Fireproof and Waterproof Safe

A robust, cheap safe that offers a decent amount of space and a simple but secure electronic locking system. This is one of the most popular small safes on the market

  • Fire Rating: Protects for up to 60 minutes/up to 1,700 degrees F
  • Lock Type: Electronic combination lock
  • Dimensions: 19.3 by 16.3 by 17.8 inches
  • Weight: 86.3 pounds

The SentrySafe SFW123GDC ticks all of the boxes for the safekeeping of sensitive items. Its UL rating indicates that it can keep its 1.23 cubic feet of interior space at a safe temperature for paper documents, DVDs, and USB drives for up to 60 minutes in temperatures up to 1,700 degrees Fahrenheit. The SFW123GDC also resists water for 24 hours in depths up to 8 inches.

Burglars will have a hard time cracking this egg since it can also withstand a 15-foot drop without breaking. The safe also comes with bolt-down hardware to secure it from thieves. You can set your own combination on the digital keypad but also have the assurance of access with a backup key.

On the interior, a locking drawer and shelves organize your documents and valuables, with interior lights that illuminate contents in the dark. At 86.3 pounds, this model is not lightweight. It requires four AA batteries to run the lock mechanism and interior light.

Pros

  • Contents stay dry in 8 inches of water for up to 24 hours
  • Locked drawer and organization features
  • Interior lighting makes content more visible
  • Can withstand a 15-foot drop
  • Comes with backup key
  • Includes hardware to bolt in place

Cons

  • Heavyweight
Best Overall

Sentry Safe SFW123GDC Fireproof and Waterproof Safe

A robust, cheap safe that offers a decent amount of space and a simple but secure electronic locking system. This is one of the most popular small safes on the market

  • Fire Rating: Protects for up to 60 minutes/up to 1,700 degrees F
  • Lock Type: Electronic combination lock
  • Dimensions: 19.3 by 16.3 by 17.8 inches
  • Weight: 86.3 pounds

The SentrySafe SFW123GDC ticks all of the boxes for the safekeeping of sensitive items. Its UL rating indicates that it can keep its 1.23 cubic feet of interior space at a safe temperature for paper documents, DVDs, and USB drives for up to 60 minutes in temperatures up to 1,700 degrees Fahrenheit. The SFW123GDC also resists water for 24 hours in depths up to 8 inches.

Burglars will have a hard time cracking this egg since it can also withstand a 15-foot drop without breaking. The safe also comes with bolt-down hardware to secure it from thieves. You can set your own combination on the digital keypad but also have the assurance of access with a backup key.

On the interior, a locking drawer and shelves organize your documents and valuables, with interior lights that illuminate contents in the dark. At 86.3 pounds, this model is not lightweight. It requires four AA batteries to run the lock mechanism and interior light.

Pros

  • Contents stay dry in 8 inches of water for up to 24 hours
  • Locked drawer and organization features
  • Interior lighting makes content more visible
  • Can withstand a 15-foot drop
  • Comes with backup key
  • Includes hardware to bolt in place

Cons

  • Heavyweight
Best Overall

Sentry Safe SFW123GDC Fireproof and Waterproof Safe

A robust, cheap safe that offers a decent amount of space and a simple but secure electronic locking system. This is one of the most popular small safes on the market

  • Fire Rating: Protects for up to 60 minutes/up to 1,700 degrees F
  • Lock Type: Electronic combination lock
  • Dimensions: 19.3 by 16.3 by 17.8 inches
  • Weight: 86.3 pounds

The SentrySafe SFW123GDC ticks all of the boxes for the safekeeping of sensitive items. Its UL rating indicates that it can keep its 1.23 cubic feet of interior space at a safe temperature for paper documents, DVDs, and USB drives for up to 60 minutes in temperatures up to 1,700 degrees Fahrenheit. The SFW123GDC also resists water for 24 hours in depths up to 8 inches.

Burglars will have a hard time cracking this egg since it can also withstand a 15-foot drop without breaking. The safe also comes with bolt-down hardware to secure it from thieves. You can set your own combination on the digital keypad but also have the assurance of access with a backup key.

On the interior, a locking drawer and shelves organize your documents and valuables, with interior lights that illuminate contents in the dark. At 86.3 pounds, this model is not lightweight. It requires four AA batteries to run the lock mechanism and interior light.

Pros

  • Contents stay dry in 8 inches of water for up to 24 hours
  • Locked drawer and organization features
  • Interior lighting makes content more visible
  • Can withstand a 15-foot drop
  • Comes with backup key
  • Includes hardware to bolt in place

Cons

  • Heavyweight
Best Overall

Sentry Safe SFW123GDC Fireproof and Waterproof Safe

A robust, cheap safe that offers a decent amount of space and a simple but secure electronic locking system. This is one of the most popular small safes on the market

  • Fire Rating: Protects for up to 60 minutes/up to 1,700 degrees F
  • Lock Type: Electronic combination lock
  • Dimensions: 19.3 by 16.3 by 17.8 inches
  • Weight: 86.3 pounds

The SentrySafe SFW123GDC ticks all of the boxes for the safekeeping of sensitive items. Its UL rating indicates that it can keep its 1.23 cubic feet of interior space at a safe temperature for paper documents, DVDs, and USB drives for up to 60 minutes in temperatures up to 1,700 degrees Fahrenheit. The SFW123GDC also resists water for 24 hours in depths up to 8 inches.

Burglars will have a hard time cracking this egg since it can also withstand a 15-foot drop without breaking. The safe also comes with bolt-down hardware to secure it from thieves. You can set your own combination on the digital keypad but also have the assurance of access with a backup key.

On the interior, a locking drawer and shelves organize your documents and valuables, with interior lights that illuminate contents in the dark. At 86.3 pounds, this model is not lightweight. It requires four AA batteries to run the lock mechanism and interior light.

Pros

  • Contents stay dry in 8 inches of water for up to 24 hours
  • Locked drawer and organization features
  • Interior lighting makes content more visible
  • Can withstand a 15-foot drop
  • Comes with backup key
  • Includes hardware to bolt in place

Cons

  • Heavyweight
Things To Consider When Buying

What to Consider When Choosing the Best Fireproof Safe 

Fire and theft are at the top of most people’s home security concerns. Some safes offer better protection from one than the other. Water damage is another issue at the top of many people’s minds, and there are safes that offer some water resistance in addition to their other protective capabilities.

Ultimately, the items you want to protect and what or whom you want to protect them from help determine the right capacity, locking mechanism, and fire rating for your safe.

Type/Lock Mechanism

  • Key lock: Plain and simple describes these locking mechanisms. However, you need to keep track of the key. If it’s kept in the room with the safe, it could get destroyed in a fire or be found by burglars.
  • Mechanical combination lock: There’s no key management involved with a mechanical lock combination, nor do you have to worry about a dead battery or electronic malfunction. Some mechanical locks also have a key lock to use in an emergency. However, you’re more limited in the choice of combinations with a mechanical combination lock.
  • Electronic combination lock: These locks have more password options, and you don’t have to worry about losing the key. However, some models need periodic battery changes. Like mechanical locks, an electronic lock may come with a backup key in case you forget the code.
  • Biometric lock: Biometric locks use a fingerprint or retina scan to open the safe. You don’t have to remember a code or keep track of a key. Some may have a key as a backup security measure.

Material

Most safes are made of thick steel sheets. The sheets, which can be several centimeters thick, give safes their hefty weight. However, these aren’t just any sheets of steel. Safes contain plates made from both hard steel and mild steel. Heat can cause hard plates to crack, exposing the contents to hot temperatures. Mild steel warps rather than cracks, protecting the contents even as temperatures rise.

Fire safes are also constructed with a layer made of a nonconductive composite material that prevents the interior temperature from rising for 30 to 120 minutes. Fire-resistant insulation is also often used to help keep those interior temperatures down.

However, steel isn’t the only material used to make fireproof safes. ABS plastic and various resins are used as well. These two materials are lighter weight and are typically used to make smaller, more portable safes.

Size and Capacity 

Start your search for a fireproof safe box by making a list of what you want to keep inside it. If you have valuable jewelry or other irreplaceable items, a bank lockbox offers the best protection.

Passports, birth certificates, Social Security cards, insurance policies, and tax returns are also valuable documents that could pose a problem if lost to theft or fire. Take a look at your list and make sure the safe will hold everything on it. For example, firearms take up more space than documents or DVDs.

Size also plays a role in where you can put the safe. Obviously, a fireproof wall safe or a large safe is harder to hide and easier to spot. If you want to keep the safe hidden, consider a small fireproof safe that more easily fits in a closet, crawl space, or under floorboards. Keep in mind that small safes are vulnerable to theft if they’re not hidden.

UL and Fire Ratings 

In truth, no safe is 100 percent fireproof. Safes are fire resistant only up to a certain temperature and for a certain amount of time.

Underwriters Laboratories (UL) evaluates safes and gives them a fireproof rating. These ratings indicate two things—the maximum temperature at which the product can maintain a safe interior temperature, and the length of time the safe can hold that temperature.

The interior temperature determines the kinds of materials the safe can protect. For example, the interior of a paper document safe shouldn’t get hotter than 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Anything above that, and the paper will burn. However, electronics may not be able to withstand temperatures of more than 125 to 150 degrees.

The UL rating also indicates how long the safe can hold that interior temperature. Most home fireproof safes offer at least 30 minutes of protection. That may not sound long, but most fires move through a room in less than 20 minutes. For additional peace of mind, however, some safes offer up to 120 minutes of fire protection.

Water Resistance 

Waterproof safes indicate how long they can protect their contents from water as well as the depth at which they can maintain that protection. Most resist water for approximately 24 hours, but some may offer up to 72 hours of protection in water that’s 8 to 40 inches deep.

If you live in a flood-prone area, it’s a good idea to put the contents of the safe in waterproof bags, whether the safe is rated for water protection or not. Some safes also offer humidity resistance, which can protect items or documents that are sensitive to subtle environmental changes.

Usability 

Usability features include display visibility, weight, and the safe’s overall portability. LED displays are much easier to see in dim conditions. Considering that safes are often stored in dark, secure areas, a display that’s easy to see will make the safe more functional.

Some safes are portable with a top or side handle for easy carrying. These small safes may weigh 25 to 30 pounds. Others weigh more than 100 pounds and would take two people to move.

Weight

Fireproof home safes can weigh anywhere from 20 pounds to hundreds of pounds. The ideal safe weight depends on several factors, including portability and intended location and use.

If portability is a concern, look for a lighter safe, weighing under 30 pounds. These safes will be easier to take along when traveling or commuting. They’re also usually smaller and made to store items like USB drives, cash, passports, and other important documents you may need to carry with you.

Lightweight safes are easier to carry—both for you and a possible burglar. For larger or freestanding home safes, a hefty weight can work to your benefit; it’s harder for a robber to make away quickly with a safe that weighs hundreds of pounds.

Tips For Using Product

Tips for Buying and Using a Fireproof Safe 

The items you want to protect, your available space, and the threats from which you want to safeguard your items will help you determine the right safe for you. Here are a few more tips to help you find the best fireproof safe and incorporate it into your home security system.

  • Install the safe above ground level (not in a basement) to reduce the chances of water damage during a flood.
  • The first level of a multistory home offers the best protection from fire.
  • Safes that come with a bolting system are designed to be attached to the floor or exterior wall for added security.
  • Do not keep the safe in plain sight. As part of a comprehensive plan to keep your home and its contents secure, store your safe in a place that’s inconspicuous or hidden.
  • Look for a safe that’s “UL listed” or “ETL verified.” These labels indicate that they’ve been tested by and passed third-party scrutiny.
FAQ introduction and FAQ's

FAQs

Fireproof safes aren’t particularly complicated. But if you’re new to them, you probably have a few questions. We’ve got the answers to common questions along with tips to help you better protect your sensitive information and belongings.

Will a fireproof safe survive a house fire? 

It depends on the safe’s level of protection. If the house fire does not exceed the safe’s maximum fire-resistance time or temperature limit, it will survive the fire.

Are all safes fireproof? 

Not all safes are fireproof. Some safes are designed specifically to deter theft, while others may protect from water damage rather than fire or theft. Some protect from all three. If you want a safe that protects from fire, you need to specifically look for one designed for that purpose.

What is the maximum temperature that my fireproof safe can withstand? 

It depends on the safe, so look at the displayed specifications. Many fireproof home safes can withstand temperatures over 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit.

Where should I put my safe? 

The size of the safe will narrow down your options. Look for a low-traffic area that’s not easily seen or noticed. Someplace other than the master bedroom is a good choice since thieves usually start their search there.

A guest bedroom or hall closet are good options. However, avoid the garage or basement. Garages tend to be left unsecured and are an easy target for thieves to carry away a safe. Water easily floods basements, making them a less-than-ideal choice.