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Cheap Gun Safes - Pitfalls to Avoid

Updated on June 16, 2017

Cheap Gun Safes - Pitfalls to Avoid

The price of gun safes ranges from safes that can be purchased from a department store for a couple of hundred dollars to custom-built safes which can cost tens of thousands of dollars. The general rule is price equals quality, however just because you are paying more does not mean you are necessarily getting a quality product and vice versa. If you are considering buying a cheaper model of gun safe there are certain pitfalls you should avoid.

Exceptionally light safes will offer very little security for your guns as they can be easily carried away. Also the weight of a safe is usually a good indicator of its security, the thicker a safes walls and doors are, the safer it will be and the thicker its walls are, the heavier it will be. Avoid especially light safes as they will be little more than a visual deterrent.

A safe that has not been tested for security by a testing laboratory may be one to avoid. The most highly respected testing laboratory in the United States is Underwriters Laboratories (U.L.). They provide the industry standard for safe security; any safe that does not have a security rating from U.L. cannot guarantee the security of its contents.

If you wish to purchase a safe with fireproofing ensure that it has a fireproof rating provided by U.L. or a comparable testing laboratory such as Intertek. The temperature of a house fire can reach up to twelve hundred degrees Fahrenheit, so a fireproof safe must be able to withstand this temperature. It will be unlikely that a cheap safe will be fireproofed, meaning that in the event of a fire the contents will be destroyed.

A cheap safe may have a lock which is opened with a key. This is the most unsecure type of lock available for a safe as most experienced criminals can easily pick a lock. A mechanical combination lock is a much more secure form of lock and is still relatively inexpensive. An electronic keypad or fingerprint scanner is securer still, but will be much more expensive.

A cheap safe may not have a warranty. It is important that should any problem occur with a safe that you do not have to spend large amounts of money fixing it. A locksmith will usually charge a hundred dollars just to inspect a safe and it can cost hundreds of dollars to repair one. Most reputable companies will offer warranties that repair or replace a safe in the event of theft or a fire; a cheap safe may not offer this.

Used Gun Safes - The Ultimate Buyer’s Resource

Unlike the majority of consumer products available on the market today, which have a built-in redundancy factor, gun safes are built to last a lifetime. This makes purchasing a used gun safe a wise investment and an excellent way to save money. As well as all the usual considerations any safe buyer would have to appraise before purchasing a safe there are specific considerations that need to be taken into account when shopping for a used safe.

The validity of the warranty is important. Many companies will still honor a safe’s warranty even if the ownership is transferred. This is extremely important should any fault occur or if the safe is subjected to an attack by either fire or a thief; as most reputable gun safe companies will repair or replace a safe should an attack occur. If the safe does not have a transferrable warranty then you could incur a hefty locksmith’s bill should a problem arise. A professional locksmith can charge hundreds of dollars to simply open a locked safe and if the safe needs repairing the figure may rise into the thousands.

If the used safe is anchored within the seller’s house you will need to inquire as to how this will be removed. Many lighter or more secure safes will be anchored into the floor or a support beam of the house. This drastically increases the safe’s security but is a problem if you are trying to remove it. You (or preferably the seller) will need to secure the services of a professional safe removal company to remove the safe from its anchor without damaging the safe. This operation can be costly, so ensure that you do not have to pay for this or that you include the removal of the safe within your budget.


Once the safe has been removed you will have to consider how the safe will be transported and installed into your home (or wherever you intend to place the safe). A good quality safe will be extremely heavy making transportation difficult and costly. It is not advisable to transport it yourself, unless you have a large amount of experience in the area of heavy-removals and safe installation. Instead it would be advisable to contact the safe manufacturer and enquire as to whether they can transport and install the safe for you. This will usually be the most cost-efficient way of transporting the safe and will ensure that should any problems occur you are not liable to incur additional charges.

Overall, if you are considering purchasing a used gun safe, make sure that the manufacturer of the safe is a well-known and reputable company who can (preferably at the expense of the seller) safely remove, transport and install the safe for you. This will make purchasing a used safe as simple as buying a new one, but much less costly.

A gun safe is an investment. It is advisable to spend more on a gun safe than you feel is necessary, as saving money in the short term may cost you your possessions in the long term. Only ever purchase safes from reputable companies and dealerships and ensure that if you do buy a safe it comes with a warranty.

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