Safes have played a key part in securing valuables for centuries, although they have not always been proper safes. Coffers, strong boxes and lock boxes are all early versions of modern day safes. We’ve come a long way since heavy wooden boxes with metal hinges that used to be our only safe option. Today we have a huge variety of safes with many different sizes and functions. Here are some facts you may have not known about safes:

Safes are an English invention

Did you know that modern safes were invented by two locksmith brothers in Wolverhampton, England in 1835? Their goal was to create a box that would be resistant to burglars. The two brothers, named Charles and Jeremiah Chubb started the company that eventually led to the Chubbsafes that we have today.

Fire safes on the other hand were invented by Henry Brown, and African American inventor in 1886. His goal was to make a fire resistant box to keep important papers in.

Fire safes use materials from volcanos

Many fire safes are made with a material called perlite which is an incredibly heat resistant material. Perlite is what is called volcanic glass, which is an amorphous mineral that is formed by rapidly cooling magma from a volcano.  Perlite is an effective heat resister and can keep the insides of a safe cooler than the outside in the event of a fire.

When heated to extreme levels, perlite expands and becomes lighter and less dense. Some houses have it in their insulations for the same reasons it resists heat in safes. Your home could be protecting you in the same way your safe is protecting your valuables.

Burglars love certain wall safes

Wall safes are typically lighter than floor safes because they are designed to be hidden and fixed to the wall. However, when you are installing a wall safe you have to be extra careful. First of all, if you hide your hidden wall safe in a cliché location a burglar can easily find it. They know all the tricks of the trade and if you hide your safe behind you’re the portrait of your great grandfather they are going to find it.

Also, if a wall safe is not properly installed, burglars can quickly cut it out of the drywall and take it with them. Then they can take all the time they need to crack it open.

Some safes have time delay locks

Some safes, especially ones used in banks, have time delayed locks. This means that locks have a waiting period after the correct combination is entered before they open. This is used in banks because of its value in bank robberies. If a robber forces a teller to put in the combination, the lock stays locked for a set amount of time, giving the authorities time to arrive. – usually they can be pre-set between 0-99 minutes. Time delay locks can be fitted to most higher security safes such as Eurograde Safes and in addition most Time Delay locks can also be utilised in another way – as a Time Lock. A time lock can be pre-programmed to only allow the user’s code to access the safe within predetermined time slots – say between 9am-6pm Monday to Friday – and with hold entry outside these hours and days.