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PSA: When buying a home safe...

yssie

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Do NOT call a provider or vendor using your personal phone. Not even just to ask about hours or make an appointment. Use a new SIM, use a VOIP service, go find the only payphone left in your state.

If you go to a showroom, do NOT share any identifying information (name, phone, address) until you're ready to finalize a purchase. If asked for a locale for a delivery quote (before finalizing the purchase), either stop at county or give them the address of a local public institution - a school, a library, etc. The quote will be close enough.

It's commonplace to sell contact information to third-parties - that's where all those targetted ads come from. Which means that someone, somewhere, has a list of "someone at this number is looking to drop a sizable chunk of change on a safe".
And it's awfully easy to find addresses for phone numbers these days.

Once your safe has been installed, leave everything of value in the bank (and make sure you've got umbrella insurance for the contents of the bank box) for a few weeks. Don't fill it up right away.

The safest home safe is one that is designed to prevent entry with everyday tools for thirty minutes (TL-30), that's bolted into something foundational to the house, and that's too bulky and heavy for your average family truck (8000lb+).

Stay safe (pun not intended) folks.
 
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Karl_K

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tl-15 is the highest rating that is practical for a home safe.
Floors and stairs will not handle anything but the smallest tl-30 safe so that is not really impractical.
A 8000lb safe is impossible to get down residential stairs and the floor will not support it on any floor in most houses without major supports being added.
Even the concrete floor in most newer garages will not support them but having it in a garage is a bad idea anyway.

vet your dealer and flat out ask them if they sell information.
 

yssie

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tl-15 is the highest rating that is practical for a home safe.
Strongly disagree. The price difference between the two ratings is sometimes negligible, often not as high as one might think. It is, at the very least, not something to dismiss out of hand.

A 8000lb safe is impossible to get down residential stairs and the floor will not support it on any floor in most houses without major supports being added.
True. Installation requires clearance for a forklift and possibly also requires walls/doorways taken out. That also means that those who wish to couldn't get it out without removing walls/doorways. If you're storing valuables worth 100k+ in your house, as some forum members may well be doing, that inconvenience is precisely what you want.

Even the concrete floor in most newer garages will not support them but having it in a garage is a bad idea anyway.
A concrete home foundation is more than capable of supporting this weight. Having a safe in a garage is a terrible idea.

vet your dealer and flat out ask them if they sell information.
They aren't obligated to answer. The person you speak with probably doesn't even know for sure, so if they say "no", that may well not actually be the case.
 
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Karl_K

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A 8000lb safe is impossible to get down residential stairs and the floor will not support it on any floor in most houses without major supports being added.
True. Installation requires clearance for a forklift and possibly also requires walls/doorways taken out. That also means that those who wish to couldn't get it out without removing walls/doorways. If you're storing 100k+ worth of valuables in your house, as some forum members may well be doing, that inconvenience is precisely what you want.

Even the concrete floor in most newer garages will not support them but having it in a garage is a bad idea anyway.
A concrete home foundation is more than capable of supporting this weight. Having a safe in a garage is a terrible idea.
That is simply not practical for most people to tear their house apart.

A far as supporting it, depends on the code in areas where its 2inch code it will have to be cut out and a thicker pad poured and sealed for the safe.
 

yssie

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Karl, I wrote "The safest home safe is one that is...". My statement is objectively indisputable, and that objectivity is not tempered by practicality.

It's exceedingly inconvenient and potentially rather pricey to redo part of a basement or cellar to have a safe put in - the key issues are access and floor levelling/struts.
However, that is the only path to The safest home safe. If one isn't concerned with The safest home safe - and many people won't be, that's perfectly fine - they're free disregard as is right for them.

As soon as you buy a safe, you should consider the fact that you own one to be pseudo-public information. It won't be a secret. That's a rather frightening thought - it's definitely something to take very seriously.
 
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Karl_K

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Karl, I wrote "The safest home safe is one that is...". My statement is objectively indisputable, and that objectivity is not tempered by practicality.

It's exceedingly inconvenient and quite expensive to redo part of a house to have a safe put in. However, that is the only path to The safest home safe. If one isn't concerned with The safest home safe - and many people won't be, that's perfectly fine - they're free disregard as is right for them.
ok....
But being practical.....
Any safe is defeatable and if it gives time for your alarm to summon the police and them to arrive its a win.
Thanks to the internet exposing the weaknesses of even some higher end safes, that makes tl-15 the go to for giving enough time for the police to arrive.
Does tl-30 give anything extra, yes some but if you really want the best you need tl-30x6
Where does it stop?
 

yssie

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if it gives time for your alarm to summon the police and them to arrive its a win.
100%. This.

that makes tl-15 the go to for giving enough time for the police to arrive.
Really depends on what your alarm setup is and where you are. Again, the cost difference is sometimes negligible and often much less than one might imagine, so it's worth investigating. Those ratings aren't heresay - they do mean something valuable, even if they won't daunt the LockPickingLawyer.

best you need tl-30x6
I didn't disambiguate between sub-grades, but yes. Preferably withstanding common household tools for thirty minutes on all six sides.


I don't think we need to argue here. We're agreeing in concept, we're just not stopping at the same place on the "turn house into bank" scale :lol:
 

Karl_K

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rofl x2
You watch lpl too
turn house into a bank..rofl.
vault rooms would be my ideal with a single pour reinforced concrete outer wall/ceiling/flour 3 feet thick and 3inch armor plate walls inside with a 2 foot thick multilayer door.
15ftx20ftx8ft inside.
I was inside a vault like that once in an old bank building.
It was one of 4 in the building.
 

yssie

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One of my fave youtube channels - for better or worse :lol:

Saw this one a while ago, not quite to your standards but no slouch - wanna go in with me?
 
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Queenie60

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FYI - we had a very stable safe installed about 5 years ago - bought from a local safe dealer, installed and bolted into the foundation of our home - they literally went into the crawl space to be sure the bolts were secure. Then, within a few days of the safe being installed, someone attempted a break-in, the very window of the room where the safe was installed which is inconspicuous; our home is quite large and the room where the safe is placed is an unusual place. However, I did have all valuables in the bank vault, and did not intend to place into the safe for a few weeks, simply for extra security. Hope the attempted break-in was a coincidence. Don't know?????
 

mrs-b

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FYI - we had a very stable safe installed about 5 years ago - bought from a local safe dealer, installed and bolted into the foundation of our home - they literally went into the crawl space to be sure the bolts were secure. Then, within a few days of the safe being installed, someone attempted a break-in, the very window of the room where the safe was installed which is inconspicuous; our home is quite large and the room where the safe is placed is an unusual place. However, I did have all valuables in the bank vault, and did not intend to place into the safe for a few weeks, simply for extra security. Hope the attempted break-in was a coincidence. Don't know?????

Gees louise, @Queenie60 - that's disturbing!

If ever you want to lose yourself for a couple of hours, go to the safe display at the JCK in Vegas. That's where my DH picked our safe and at no time did we have to give out our online info or even a lot of different phone options. It felt very safe.

Delivery, on the other hand, was a whoooole other circus....

We don't use a safe for jewelry, tho- we use it for paperwork and...other things. Jewelry goes to the bank. Which is another reason why I will one day de-stash.
 

Made in London

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FYI - we had a very stable safe installed about 5 years ago - bought from a local safe dealer, installed and bolted into the foundation of our home - they literally went into the crawl space to be sure the bolts were secure. Then, within a few days of the safe being installed, someone attempted a break-in, the very window of the room where the safe was installed which is inconspicuous; our home is quite large and the room where the safe is placed is an unusual place. However, I did have all valuables in the bank vault, and did not intend to place into the safe for a few weeks, simply for extra security. Hope the attempted break-in was a coincidence. Don't know?????

Sorry to hear that you had a break-in Queenie :( We had a break-in a few years ago & it left me feeling violated. Straight away we had a top of the range security alarm & cctv system fitted as I no longer felt safe in my house
 

seaurchin

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Yikes! Whenever this topic comes up, I get a strong urge to run out and get a giant, ferocious looking dog.

A basic hardware-store home safe, bolted on to something somewhere, works for me. I don't want small, portable items that are valuable enough to call for more than that. I'm far more concerned about being targeted for a break-in (or personal attack) in the first place than about whatever might be taken away.

I even considered selling my most expensive ring, after misplacing it for a short time. I felt terrible and wished we'd never bought it. I think it's also very important to remember being careful about where you flash your bling, even with expensive-looking fakes.
 
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missy

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@yssie thank you for the info.

My parents used to have this humongous safe (for their rifles primarily-skeet shooting not animal hunting) and my mom kept all their important papers and expensive jewelry in that safe. It was fireproof and waterproof (up to a limit) and it was bolted down but also weighed a few tons at least. IDK how they got it in there as they had it since I was a child and don't remember a time without it. However, during superstorm Sandy it all got ruined (they live across from the water) and I am not sure if they replaced it or if my parents keep everything in the bank vault now.

We have ours bolted to the floor and the wall and in combo with our alarm system I feel it is sufficient to slow the criminal down just enough til the police arrive if necessary. Of course I fervently hope that occasion never arises and we never get to test the safety factor of our safe.

And then of course we have insurance for the few items that are not replaceable. So hopefully we are covered. There is no 100% foolproof protection but the key is having enough protection in place to make it really hard for the thieves to get what they want.
 

Arcadian

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The safe in my previous home was bolted to the floor and wall, nobody was getting that bad boy out of there, the "room" it was in...lol yeah good luck. We went through a company known for keeping customer's private information private. @yssie is correct in vetting the company.

We did NOT remove that safe (pretty damn impossible to do so)

current house has a concrete foundation, concrete walls, and yes its bolted in. Went through the same company with no worries of information leakage.

One has to have layers of protection in the home to make it unappetizing for would be thieves. You can have a safe, but if you have for crap locks and windows (and no alarm) why did you bother in the first place?
 

canuk-gal

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HI:

What about submerged floor safes? Ages ago, my friend had her part of her foundation jackhammered out to put in a deep tubular safe. It was inconvenient because it was deep, but she felt it was secure. We had the traditional bolted to the floor model. Was very serviceable.

cheers--Sharon
 

Daisys and Diamonds

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FYI - we had a very stable safe installed about 5 years ago - bought from a local safe dealer, installed and bolted into the foundation of our home - they literally went into the crawl space to be sure the bolts were secure. Then, within a few days of the safe being installed, someone attempted a break-in, the very window of the room where the safe was installed which is inconspicuous; our home is quite large and the room where the safe is placed is an unusual place. However, I did have all valuables in the bank vault, and did not intend to place into the safe for a few weeks, simply for extra security. Hope the attempted break-in was a coincidence. Don't know?????

:-o
I would never think of these things until it happened :cry:
Thank goodness you still had all the pretties at the bank
 

Daisys and Diamonds

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@yssie thank you for the info.

My parents used to have this humongous safe (for their rifles primarily-skeet shooting not animal hunting) and my mom kept all their important papers and expensive jewelry in that safe. It was fireproof and waterproof (up to a limit) and it was bolted down but also weighed a few tons at least. IDK how they got it in there as they had it since I was a child and don't remember a time without it. However, during superstorm Sandy it all got ruined (they live across from the water) and I am not sure if they replaced it or if my parents keep everything in the bank vault now.

We have ours bolted to the floor and the wall and in combo with our alarm system I feel it is sufficient to slow the criminal down just enough til the police arrive if necessary. Of course I fervently hope that occasion never arises and we never get to test the safety factor of our safe.

And then of course we have insurance for the few items that are not replaceable. So hopefully we are covered. There is no 100% foolproof protection but the key is having enough protection in place to make it really hard for the thieves to get what they want.

Im sorry your mom and dad were effected by Sandy
I hope its but a bad memory now
 

nala

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So I have a safe bolted to my garage. Bought my house 20 years ago and totally forgot about it. My ex mentioned it to me a couple of years ago but he said that we were never given the combination! I have no idea how to go about even figuring that out!
 

Karl_K

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Something that does bug me a lot about most safe companies is their trucks are identifiable as belonging to a safe company.
That advertises to anyone driving by there while they are there that there might be a safe there.
 
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Karl_K

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So I have a safe bolted to my garage. Bought my house 20 years ago and totally forgot about it. My ex mentioned it to me a couple of years ago but he said that we were never given the combination! I have no idea how to go about even figuring that out!

See if you can find the sticker on it with the safe companies name and ask them how much it will cost to open it non destructively.

edit. If you find anything in it in some states it belongs to you in other states it belongs to whoever put it in the safe.
Just an fyi in case you find a million bucks in gold.
 
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Karl_K

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One of my fave youtube channels - for better or worse :lol:

Saw this one a while ago, not quite to your standards but no slouch - wanna go in with me?
I think having a jail attached would be just a little to freaky for me LOL
Do you also watch Bosnianbill on youtube?
 

Daisys and Diamonds

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Off on a tangent a while ago for my last employer i did the banking for our big box hardware store
Behind a locked door I had an office like a broom cupboard with a window that looked down into the shop floor where i could see down the checks outside to the nursery, (unfortunatly the room was too small for the air con / heating to be effective)
anyway anyway the safe had been installed when the building was still under construction
it was taller than me and all the cash register drawers containing the floats went in there at night
We had one of those lamson systems wherw the checkout operators would send the takings up a pipe throughout the day and at close that them went into its own little safe waiting for a manager to unlock it to give to me to balance

One morning one of the dept managers arrived to unlock everything and thought i had left my room in a big mess not noticing the mess was actually the remnants of a couple of ceiling tiles
When he unlocked the safe to get the till drawers out the door feel on him - kind of lucky it didn't crush him because it was a really heavy solid steel door

someone had snuck in through the roof and had worked for hours trying to grind the hinges off the safe
all that was holding it together must have been a few mms of metal and the pins of the lock
anyway it was all on cctv - well up until he put something over my camera
The main shop alarms had not triggered
We thought about what would have happened to kevin if he had still been there when he had gone into my office

A couple of things.
The theif was dumb targeting the big safe and not the little lamson safe
When the theif ran out of grinding disks he had a whole hardware store down stairs to get better tools - of course that would have triggered an alarm going down the stairs
The safe was ruined - even though all its electronics had not been severed it was pretty much knackered
It took 6 strapping lads a lot of effort to man handle that thing down the stairs and to get the new safe back up again

The scary thing was now someone thought to look at the security footage in the middle of the night and someone (several baddies) had been breaking in through the roof at the back of the store on a regular basis to help themselves to goods to order in the middle of the night

They got our alarms repositioned but the police never caught anyone
 

NicoleNeedsHelp

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One of my fave youtube channels - for better or worse :lol:

Saw this one a while ago, not quite to your standards but no slouch - wanna go in with me?

Hmmm...... wondering if having a jail is the key to long term marital success!! :lol::lol::lol: (I‘m only joking as we all know wine/vodka are the keys to marital success! ).
 

Karl_K

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When he unlocked the safe to get the till drawers out the door feel on him - kind of lucky it didn't crush him because it was a really heavy solid steel door
A good safe will have bolts on the hinge side that hold the door shut if the hinges are cut. They are much stronger than the hinge if done right.
Usually inactive bolts(meaning they are fixed in place and the door slides over them) sometimes active bolts(they move when the rest of the bolts do).

The silver round things are bolts.
Ideally there are bolts on all four sides but this is a small safe so its ok to have bolts on 2 sides..
bolts.jpg
 
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