Vault Door Basics

If you are looking to fortify your home, then a high-security vault door is by far your best bet! There are a number of factors to consider when analyzing the security of your home, but the most basic of these is access. By controlling levels of access you maintain the authority of who does and does not enter your sacred space. Here you will find the basics you need to know when searching for the correct vault door for your needs.


Settle For Nothing Less Than Solid Steel Construction:

Any vault door you’re placing your trust in to protect your family and belongings must be built using a minimum of ½” thick solid steel. Despite the outstanding claims and confusing information offered by many vault door manufactures, there is no compromise for the robust strength of solid steel. Any vault door that doesn’t utilize steel plate as its base level of protection is subject to being easily opened within minutes. Steel is expensive and the sad truth is many manufactures cut corners by using inferior materials. Be aware of  vault door makers that don’t specifically list steel thickness or use terms such as “composite”, as this can mean anything from sheet metal wrapped around wood to sheet metal and drywall construction. Another sneaky trick often employed by vault door sellers is that of listing “door thickness” only. By listing only the total thickness, these manufactures include the inner airspace, boltwork, dial, and other components that don’t give the end user accurate information on which to base an educated purchase.


Evaluate By Weight:

When judging the ability of a vault door to protect against burglary and fire, the weight of the vault door is one of the best indicators of it being able to hold up to its intended purpose. Steel is heavy, so a quality vault door constructed of solid steel weighs in at substantially more than flimsy sheet metal wrapped around insulation panels. If the vault door is rated to protect against fire, then it should incorporate a concrete based amalgamate in addition to steel – which means the vault door will be VERY heavy. A true burglary vault door with solid steel walls and concrete amalgamate fire cladding often carries three time the mass of an equivalent size door constructed from sheet metal and drywall panels.


Only an UL Approved Lock Will Do:

Any vault door you purchase should have an approved  Group 2 UL lock or better. In our 35 years of business we’ve found there only a few lock manufactures producing locks you can depend one. Select locks from respected builders like LaGard, Sargent & Greenleaf, and Kaba Mas to guarantee decades of trouble free operation. By selecting a lock without a recognized UL approval, then there’s an extremely high likelihood that the lock is produced in China. These Chinese locks are highly affordable, but at a high cost of another kind. Their inferior components, materials, and build quality means the unrated Chinese locks are prone to early failure and are not dependable.


Require Re-lockers:

The re-locker feature ensures the vault door will remain locked during an attempted break in. Once triggered these hardened pins lock into points within the jamb and cannot be retracted without hours of drilling. Depending on the size and desired burglary protection the number of re-lockers can range from 2 to 10 or more and can be engaged in a variety of methods after sensing tampering. Be aware that re-locker pins will only help if the door is constructed of suitable thick steel. Without the base protection of steel, these hardened pins will simple bend or tear through a thin door jamb during a simple leverage attack.


These are just a few of the basics, so be sure to check out the Brown Safe website for much more information and to find the vault door that best for your needs.




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