Understanding Safe Fire Ratings


A gun safe is the perfect tool to keep the wrong people from gaining access to your firearms. It can also protect the investments you have made from damage. When you are ready to purchase a gun safe, you may overlook the fire ratings; however, you shouldn’t do this. In fact, the safe’s fire ratings need to be one of the most important considerations to make before you purchase the safe. Learn more about fire ratings here.

What Makes the Gun Safe Fire Resistant?

There are several factors that impact a gun safe’s fire resistance, which includes:

  • The type and the amount of insulation: Gypsum is used in gun safes and when it is heated and reaches 262° F, it will release a water vapor that keeps the safes interior cool. The more gypsum present, the longer the safe is going to stay cool and the higher the fire rating will be.
  • The thickness of the door steel: The thickness of the door is also an important factor related to the fire resistance of a gun safe. Heat can result in the metal getting distorted. If the temperature reaches more than 1000°, then a thin or lightweight door can be ruined quickly.
  • Seal on the safe door: Quality doors on a gun safe have seals that expand when extreme heat is present. When this occurs, the seals can expand more than 10 times their initial thickness. This helps to seal the heat out and protect everything in the safe.

How Fire Ratings for Gun Safes are Measured

The measurement process used for gun safe fire ratings are done different ways by different brands. There are some tests that are ineffective. For example, some gun safes are thrown into dumpsters that are on fire. However, because heat rises, this test is often inaccurate. While not all gun safes have inaccurate fire ratings, this is an issue that happens way too often.

Before you make a final decision regarding what gun safe to purchase, make sure to asks plenty of questions and do your homework. If you are unable to get straight answers or are given the wrong answers, then it is best to move on and find a different safe manufacturer.

What Fire Rating do You Need for Your Gun Safe?

You have to figure out the level of fire protection you need based on what you are storing in the safe, along with a few other factors. Some things consider include:

  • If a fire occurs, how long will it take the fire department to reach you?
  • How sensitive are the items that you store inside the safe?
  • What is the safe’s fire rating and how was it tested?
  • What type of warranty is offered if a fire occurs?

When you take the time to fully understand fire ratings, you will be able to purchase a gun safe with the confidence that it will be able to protect your valuable items.