What’s a TL-15 Safe You Ask?

February 23rd, 2017

Great question! We spend a lot of time around here talking about security and security ratings.  One of the basic questions after you are done with talking to people about safes is what are you actually getting for the money? So I thought I would give you a run down to UL listed ratings for burglary. From the lowest to best or most that you would be interested in actually purchasing.  It is very important to note that there are a load of safes, metal boxes, and even plastic containers that call themselves “safes”. Some will even have a UL listing but it may not be for security. It may be just for fire.  Then those companies market what we call a “fire box” to the consumer.  The side package will say something like “UL listed 30 minute fire rated and burglary safe” What that means is it is UL listed for 30 minutes of fire. Then they just throw on the “burglary safe” at the end of the sentence. I see these on Sentry safes a lot. Which are basically like an igloo ice chest with a lock on them. Good fire protection just no real burglary but they mislead the consumer into thinking that it is burglary.  When it takes a kid less then 60 seconds to pry it open with a spoon!

  1. RSC: In the number one or lowest position on the ratings scale is the Residential Security Container or RSC.  You will see this mainly on high end gun safes and fire and burglary safes.  Low end gun safes found at Big Box retailers rarely have it and in fact make the thinnest steel safes to look like the higher end ones. But once you know what to look for you won’t be fooled. You want to keep in mind you are buying steel, fireproofing, and of course a lock.  No RSC rated safe is recognized by insurance companies or is insurable for contents.
  2. TL-15: In the number 2 spot is the TL-15 rating and this is actually the first rating in security by UL that is recognized by insurance companies. You can insure the contents with a separate rider policy. Those contents can even be cash, gold coins, and of course jewelry.  Now you may say you don’t need an insurable safe today because you just want to keep things quite. Well, I don’t blame you there. However, should the value of gold or the contents get caught up in inflation you may change your mind. Many are expecting the price of such commodities to sky rocket once inflation hits our shores.  I hope it never does but in the minds of many the die has been cast so to speak. TL stands for TooL and 15 stands for 15 minutes of actual attack time. Though the test may last 3 or 4 hours. There is also a 5 minute side wall test that is performed.  This type of safe is normally purchased by jewelry owners, coin collectors, and folks that want to keep a lot of cash on hand. As well as commercial accounts.
  3. TL-15×6: Same as above but instead of the 15 minute test being done just on the door they do it on each of the sides as well.  Same type person also purchases this safe.
  4. TL-30: Again, TL stands for TooL and 30 is for 30 minutes. A 15 minute side wall test is done. Often purchased by customers that have a minimum of $100k to put inside the safe and then up from there.
  5. TL-30×6 Same as the above but of course all the sides are tested at the same 30 minutes.
  6. TRTL-30×6: Okay, this really isn’t even found in banks.  However, many jewelers and pawn shops that take in jewelry for pawn or repair will have one of these models. The TR stands for ToRch and the TL stands for tool. 30 minutes tested on all 6 sides. The torch that the test it with is not blow torch but a lance. A lance makes a blow torch look like a candle compared to a bonfire! TL-15 rated safes

Written by Value Safes




Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.