Safe Services

safe services 1(805) 297-1294Safes Services in Westlake Village 1(805) 297-1294

There are four basic types of Safes for the home: Fire Safes, Burglary Safes, Gun Safes, and Jewelry Safes. Depending on the type of safe you need, there are special features to each one you should know of. By knowing the different types of safes, it will be easier for you to choose the best one for your needs.

Choosing a safe, or strongbox, doesn’t have to be a daunting task even though the number of options can definitely be overwhelming. Do you need a safe for your home or office? Perhaps you are looking for a something to protect your family jewelry and heirlooms. you may only need to protect your documents or your data from fire or water damage. Do you keep large amounts of cash at home or at your office? Should you buy a wall safe, a floor safe, a fire safe or lock box?

The best way to approach buying a safe is to collect your thoughts on the subject and contact a local locksmith. They deal with strongboxes and locks every day and are best suited to solve this type of problem quickly. Just as you don’t want to buy one that is too small or too big or not secured enough.

Before Calling In

If you need help opening your safe, please have as much of the following information on hand as possible when you place your service call:

  • Manufacturer names
  • Model numbers
  • Approximate size of safes
  • Any tags or other identifying information mounted on the safes

If you only want to protect important documents at home, like a will, automobile titles, etc. or anything that are very important to you, but would be of little use to a burglar, you might only need a simple fire safe. They are not very secure, but they are fire resistant and might protect your valuable papers in the event of a house fire. Their fire ratings are not very good (fire resistant, not fire proof) and are time limited to one hour or less. But, these entry level safes are good for those on a strict budget.

Types of Safes: Home Safes (Residential Safes):

Burglary Safes (Burglar Fire Safes)

A burglary safe is more secure than the simple fire safe. They are heavier, and in the “safe world”, heavy almost always equates to “more secure”. Steel is heavy and well-built safes are made of steel! Burglary safes are usually concealed in some manner. The three main burglary type home safes are the stand alone safe, wall safe and the floor safe. Most of these safes are fireproof, not just fire resistant. It’s always good practice to check the fire rating before purchasing.

Standalone Home Safe

This type is heavy and usually made of steel. It can be fireproof and can be fitted with a wide array of locking devices, from key lock, to combination lock, and even all types of fancy electronic locks. They generally can be mounted to the floor or another surface but generally are just free standing. Their weight alone discourages removal from the premises. This versatile safe can easily be located in almost any “out of the way” place. Just make sure you have room to open the door fully! Also, keep in mind that you may want to move it at some time. So, bear that in mind when buying.

Wall Safes

This is a very popular way to hide important documents and other valuables in the home. People employ this type of safe to conceal their valuables inconspicuously out of site. The wall safe is more convenient than the floor safe because it is connected to the studs in the wall and does not require the home owner to stoop to use it. For even more security it can be concreted into place.

Floor Safes

This type can actually be embedded into a concrete floor. This makes them very immune to removal. The only down side to embedding it in the floor is that it can, over time, succumb to rust, because of how it is installed. Ask your local locksmith about this and about what preventative measures can be taken to reduce the likelihood of rust damage.

Gun Safes

These come in various sizes, strength of security, fire resistance, and price ranges. A gun safe is most often necessary to keep your weapons out of the hands of children. If that is your only concern, then you need not worry yourself with fire resistance values or the use of highly secure locking mechanisms. Of course, if you have a valuable collection, possibly even containing some guns that are irreplaceable, you need to protect them from both theft and fire. Talk to your locksmith about the fire resistance and fireproof ratings of the various models. The size of your collection will also help determine which model to choose.

Jewelry Safes

The local jeweler used to be the most common user of a jewelry safe. Well today, affluent citizens in all countries have turned to jewelry safes for protecting their valuable, and often priceless, jewels and other valuables. They are fairly expensive, but, if you have fine jewelry, the expense can be justified.

Types of Safes: Business Safes (Commercial Safes)

Most businesses require a much higher level of security than home owners. They process and save documents that have tax ramifications, as well as store higher cash money on a daily basis. Various unique vault and safe issues can be very important in situations like this. Most businesses utilize an alarm system in conjunction with their money, safe, or vault.

Bank Vaults

A bank vault is different from a conventional safe in that it is an integral part of the building that it is in. Sometimes called a strong room, it is in fact an armored room with a heavy, close fitting steel door and a complex locking mechanism.

Office Safes

Typically the office safe is a stronger version of the home safe. They are usually fireproof. Their fire ratings are usually much higher. In most cases, they are drop tested to verify that they will not unlock when dropped from a specified height. And the locking mechanism is usually more secure than a home safe. Most of these safes utilize an electronic lock of some kind.

Hotel Safes

These inexpensive safes are provided by hotels so that their lodgers can have a secure place to put their valuables during their stay. These are not really very secure, but it beats leaving your valuables laying around. They are usually mounted to the wall with supplied bolts. Some have automatic lockout in case too many consecutive incorrect attempts have been made. If the guest forgets the combination, there is a master card or key that the front desk can use to open it. These are considered low security safes.

Media Safes (Data Safes)

These are state of the art and can be quite expensive, depending on the size and specs. Paper inside a safe that is in a fiery room can withstand temperatures of up to 350 Degrees Fahrenheit for a couple of hours without being destroyed. Digital media, however, can only withstand temperatures of less than 125 degrees and humidity lower than 85%. So, what is digital media? Think computers and video. We are talking about video and audiotape, CDs and DVDs, floppy discs, and all types of film, including microfilm.

Drop Safes (Deposit Safes, Depository Safes, Drop Slot Safes)

These are used by banks, postal offices, and anywhere that a quick secure deposit needs to be made, without opening the safe door. Usually the valuables are dropped into a small hatch in the top or front of the safe. These are used to hold the valuables temporarily until the goods can be transferred to the main safe or else processed in some way (such as when a teller processes a bank deposit).

How a Locksmith Opens a Safe


Although professional locksmiths rarely take this course of action, it’s possible to cut a locked safe open. Using either a torch or a saw, they simply cut into the safe. This process is messy, noisy, slow and destroys the safe. Depending on the material used to construct the safe, several sets of saw blades may be needed as they are dulled down.


A tiny hole can be drilled into the safe for the locksmith to pass a small instrument inside and see how to open the lock. Many manufacturers now equip safes with advanced interior technology which can make the job challenging, but this is often the preferred method because of the relative speed of the process and the minor repairs needed to render the safe usable again.


After drilling a small hole in the safe, a locksmith inserts a borescope into the hole to get an idea of how to open the lock. This is an effective and relatively inexpensive method to utilize when added security measures, such as glass re-lockers or manipulation-proof mechanical locks are present.

Gizmo Locksmith’s Best Safe Services

You probably have lots of questions, and we would love to answer them. Want to learn more about our available safes? Need help with an existing safe? Would you like to schedule an appointment for a safe locksmith technician to come visit your property? Whatever the case may be, please call Gizmo Locksmith Westlake Village and one of our specialized technicians will gladly assist you.