Rebuilding After Fire – Fire Safes and Critical Documents

We know firsthand how devastating fire can be to your family, we’ve seen it so many times. And while we can restore your home, we can not restore valuable personal papers. That’s why we recommend that every home has at least a small fire safe capable of withstanding extreme temperatures and structural damage.

What valuables should be in a safe

In terms of valuables you should protect from fire, we determined there are three things to consider. First, are there precious family heirlooms that could not be replaced. Second, what types of paperwork would be hard to replace or that you would need immediately. Third, currency or precious metal.

Family heirlooms

Here we talk about the heart. You may have things that have been handed down for generations that if lost, would be terribly sad. A couple ideas that we could think of would be original family photos or documentation from immigration. Family bibles that have been in the family for a long-time documenting births, deaths, and marriages. Particularly special mementoes like children’s baptismal documentation.


Legal paperwork includes things like wills and other legal documents related to loans, or assets like bonds or business entities. Bank account information and identification documents like passports, birth certificates, social security cards, and medical information.

Cash and precious metals

It’s never a bad idea to have some cash around the house. It is, however, a bad idea to leave large amounts lying around. You should have emergency cash locked away in a safe in case of any emergency. Gold and other precious metals are also good things to lock away in a good safe.

How do you know a good safe?

Safes are rated for two things: the safe’s burglary rating and the safe’s heat rating.

The burglary rating is the measurement of how long a safe will withstand competent attempts to open by force. This is measured using skilled technicians in a controlled environment who simply try to crack a safe.

A safe’s burglary rating considers the type of lock, construction, and how long it takes to force it open. If you’re looking for a safe for both burglary and fire, we suggest you contact a reputable safe dealer for more information about burglary ratings.

Safe fire ratings

Ul and ETL both rate safes. UL ratings come in one- and two-hour ratings. Essentially a UL rating means a safe will withstand 1700’F for one hour and 1850’F for two hours and that it will not explode at 2000’F for fifteen minutes for type one certification, and 30 minutes for type two certification.

ETL ratings are forty-five, ninety, and 120-minute ratings. This means the safe will withstand temperatures up to 1200’F for the given time.

RestorePro helps you recover after fire-tragedy

Our job at RestorePro is helping you recover after fire damage. We are a trusted restoration company in the New England area and have earned that trust through decades of service.

Founded in 1997, our commitment is to help customers through difficult times. Give us a call at 781-664-9800 in Massachusetts, 603-253-2068 in New Hampshire, or 1-800-847-0014 toll free.