The 5 Best Small Safes For Documents

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As you may know, documents are sensitive and fragile; that is why they always need to be kept safe and secured. There are irreplaceable and essential files such as birth certificates, property deeds, passports, tax returns, etc. that should be taken extra care of. Otherwise, they might get damaged and give you a headache in having to reprocess them in return. Owing to that, you should consider buying the best small safe for documents in the market. 

Best Small Safe for Documents Comparison Chart

Honeywell Safes & Door Locks – 1 Hour Fire Safe Waterproof Safe

Honeywell Safe 1104

First Alert 2602DF Waterproof Fire Chest with Digital Lock

First Alert 2602DF Waterproof Fire Chest with Digital Lock, 0.39 Cubic Feet

SentrySafe CHW20221 Fireproof Box and Waterproof Box with

SentrySafe CHW20221 Fireproof Box and Waterproof Box with Key Lock 0.28 Cubic Feet

SentrySafe HD4100 Fireproof Safe and Waterproof Safe

SentrySafe HD4100 Fireproof Safe and Waterproof Safe with Key Lock 0.65 Cubic Feet

SentrySafe 1170 Fireproof Box with Key Lock 0.61 Cubic Feet

SentrySafe 1170 Fireproof Box with Key Lock 0.61 Cubic Feet

Best Small Safe for Documents Reviews

Honeywell Safes & Door Locks – 1 Hour Fire Safe Waterproof Safe

Product Highlights

This safe box was designed to keep your valuable items in good condition even when it is challenged physically. It has bragging rights because of its fire protection rating, which is relatively higher than most safe available in the market. It strictly secures your documents for them to withstand fire that is up to 1,700 F for about an hour. The rate of protection it offers is highly due to the material it was made from and how thick its walls are. Hence, it appears larger than its competition with similar capacities.  

Over and above that, it also has waterproof features. The safe can last a maximum of 24 hours while submerged up to 39 inches underwater. As long as you get it out before the time runs out, it is guaranteed that it has kept its content dry.  

Honeywell 1104 can accommodate papers up to legal size. It can hold your documents flat without having to fold them so that you can fit it in the storage space. This safe employs a key lock system. It is considered one of the best small safe for documents. 

The Good

This safe fire protection rating is impeccable. It lasts longer in the fire; thus, you have enough time to save your items when the fire is put out. It secures all your items and guarantees they remain in good condition.

The Bad

There have been reported issues regarding the keys. Some people raised concerns about its strength since some were broken after a few uses.

PROS

  • Robust and sturdy construction
  • Scuff-resistant
  • Exemplary fire protection rating 
  • Water-resistant 
  • Sufficient storage space for documents
  • UL verified
  • Justified unit price

CONS

  • Weak lock mechanism

First Alert 2602DF Waterproof Fire Chest with Digital Lock

Product Highlights

This safe is relatively smaller than the Honeywell and half as protective when it comes to fire, but it also has some excellent features. First Alert 2602DF can secure your items and documents for about 30 minutes in 1,550 F. In comparison to our top pick. This safe is also relatively lighter — weighing only 27 pounds. Thus, it is easier to manage or move if necessary.

Moreover, it has an outstanding waterproof seal that can protect your documents even when it accidentally gets submerged in the water. It was also designed to float in the water so you can easily find in cases such as a flood. This safe uses a digital keypad that makes it easier to open and highly secure. It is protected even from burglars. Its digital lock is programmable with two override keys.

First Alert 2602DF can store your documents up to letter size. It holds your records flat in storage space.

The Good

It has enhanced security features because of its digital lock mechanism. You do not have to worry about misplacing your keys anymore, or them breaking out of brittleness. You just have to set a combination. In such a case that you forget it, you have two override keys.

The Bad

According to some of its customers, there are times the safe cannot hold papers flat in the storage space and need some folding.

PROS

  • Solid material and construction
  • Water-resistant and fireproof
  • 0.39 cubic feet storage capacity
  • High-quality digital keypad
  • Strong security features 
  • Performance worth of its price

CONS

  • Batteries wear out quickly

SentrySafe CHW20221 Fireproof Box and Waterproof Box with Key Lock 0.28 Cubic Feet

SentrySafe CHW20221 Fireproof Box and Waterproof Box with

Product Highlights

​Sentrysafe company has quite a good reputation in the market for providing quality products. This safe is an airtight container that can protect your valuables at a maximum of 1,550 F for about half an hour. It is relatively smaller than the First Alert 2602DF and weighs 7 pounds lighter, but it offers as much protection.

On top of that, it also has an exemplary waterproof seal feature that allows the safe to keep your items intact even when submerged in water for about 72 hours. In comparison to our top pick, it can last in flood twice longer.

Sentry Safe CHW20221 employs a tubular key lock for stronger security. It also holds papers up to letter size flat in the storage space. It can also accommodate hanging files and folders. It has built-in-straps; thus, it is easier to store documents. This safe has an outer handle that makes it easier to carry if necessary.

The Good

This safe employs a unique key lock system. It is different from what you usually use indoor or cabinet locks. Since it utilizes a tubular lock system, it has added security.

The Bad

There have been reported issues regarding its handle. It easily rips off and affects the latching capacity of the safe. It also has a low storage capacity that can limit the documents you want to store.

PROS

  • Tubular key lock system
  • Built-in-straps
  • High fire protection rating
  • Great waterproof seal
  • Affordable price 

CONS

  • Fragile handle
  • 0.28 cubic feet storage capacity 
  • Documents curve

SentrySafe HD4100 Fireproof Safe and Waterproof Safe

Product Highlights

This safe is UL verified to protect your valuable items from a fire up to 1,550 F for about 30 minutes. You have enough time to save it after the fire is put out. In cases where the safe gets submerged in water, it can safeguard your documents for about 72 hours since it has an excellent waterproof seal and ETL verified.

Other than that, it also has a higher storage capacity of 0.65 cubic feet. It holds papers up to letter size flat in its storage space. You can store more documents when using this safe compared to SentrySafe CHW20221 that is more than half smaller. It is relatively heavier than the other box; thus, burglars cannot easily carry it, offering you more protection. It employs a flat key lock system and also has built-in-straps for better storage.

Like the SentrySafe CHW20221, it also has an outside handle for easier transport if necessary.

The Good

It has a higher storage capacity of 0.65 cubic feet. You are not highly limited in storing your important files.

The Bad

Since the handle is made out of plastic, it easily rips off, affecting the latching system of the safe and sometimes leaving it useless.

PROS

  • Excellent water resistance
  • High fire protection rating
  • Built-in-straps
  • 0.65 cubic feet storage capacity
  • UL and ETL verified

CONS

  • Weak and fragile handle
  • Documents curve

SentrySafe 1170 Fireproof Box with Key Lock 0.61 Cubic Feet

SentrySafe 1170 Fireproof Box with Key Lock 0.61 Cubic Feet

Product Highlights

This safe is UL verified to secure and protect your items from fire up to 1,550 F for about half an hour. Given the time duration, you can still salvage your valuable items. It is also ETL verified to protect your digital media such as CDs, DVDs, and USB flash drives from fire damage. Other than that, it has a high storage capacity of 0.61 cubic feet. You can lay our documents flat in the storage space.

Sentry Safe 1170 employs a flat key lock system and has built-in-straps for better and easier file storage.

The Good

The safe has sufficient storage capacity for a medium stack of papers up to letter size. You can store a lot more compared to SentrySafe CHW20221. 

The Bad

It is not water-resistant. That is why you still have to worry about a flood, albeit it can protect your documents from fire.

PROS

  • Built-in-straps
  • High fire protection rating
  • Affordable price

CONS

  • Not waterproof

Buyer’s Guide

We provided all the information you need to consider before buying for you to get the best small safe for documents in the market.

Size and weight 

It is essential to know both of these components because there are times where a safe move is necessary. It happens rarely, but you have to consider it because you might not know what risks you will encounter in the future. You have to pick a safe that is quite manageable.

Safe capacity

You first have to know what items you want to keep in the safe. If they are only documents, look for reliable products that can hold your papers flat without curving. It is to make sure all your files remain in good condition.

Type of Protection

You may choose between a digital keypad or a key lock system. The former offers greater security, but it requires battery charge annually while the latter is reliable, but it can sometimes compromise security since lock picking challenges key lock systems. Both have pros and cons, but you have to choose wisely.

Dimension

You have to know not just the storage capacity but also its exterior size to be able to visualize where you can put your safe before you purchase it.

Fire protection rating

You must buy a safe with a high fire protection rating to ensure your documents remain intact when it encounters fire.

Water resistance rating

You must pick a safe that is highly resistant to water to make sure your valuables remain in good condition even after a flood.

Price

You have to be smart about your purchases. Some safes are extremely expensive but do not offer quality protection while there are those which are cheaper but perform better. It is okay to buy costly items since it is a form of investment, but make sure it is worth the price.

FAQs

What size of safe should I buy?

The safe size you should buy would depend on the items or documents you have to safeguard. Make sure to consider the storage size and not that of the exterior design.

What is the difference between a digital keypad and key lock system?

As its name suggests, a key lock system employs various kinds of keys for access while a digital keypad utilizes number combination and works through batteries.

What do I do if I forget the safe combination?

You just have to reset the code. Usually, you will be given override keys upon purchase. If that is not the case, contact the manufacturer for assistance.

Final Verdict

Going on a shopping spree without knowing the specs of the items you want to buy would be a disaster. But if you bear in mind the information we have provided, you can purchase the best small safe for documents in the market. Always make an informed decision and base it on your long-term needs. Good luck!

  • April 1, 2020
  • Blog