Are you worried your gun safe might damage your floor? Read on to learn about the factors revolving around the capacities of both your gun safe and your floor.
A large-sized gun safe keeps many firearms, accessories, and other valuable items and documents safe. If you have many rifles and pistols, consider buying a sturdy gun safe.
Having firearms kept at home increases the risk of injuries and accidental deaths, especially for curious children and teens. Despite the importance of keeping a gun safe, many gun owners are still undecided about buying one.
Some gun owners hesitate to go for a large-sized heavy safe because they worry about damaging their floors. Stay informed and protect your floor with these valuable gun-safe insights.
Factors That Affect Gun Safe Weight
Both characteristics of a gun safe and the guns placed inside it are factors relating to how much weight an empty and a filled gun safe is. Here are some of the important thing that you must keep in mind:
Size and Construction of the Gun Safe
Gun safes vary in size depending on one’s needs. But since this article concerns floor damage, we dwell on large and heavy types of safes.
Modern gun safes are lined with steel. Gun safes house weapons, so they need thicker metal sheets with a recommendation of 12- and 6-gauge.
The lower the gauge means, the thicker the sheet. The thicker the metal sheet means, the heavier and sturdier the gun safe will be.
Gun safes are also built with locks, bolts, and shelves, so they must add to their weight. Also, the fire protection material is usually made up of concrete, asbestos, and gypsum board, which will significantly affect the weight of the safe.
If chromium and tungsten are added to reinforce the steel alloy, it also adds to the weight.
Number and Weight of the Guns Stored Inside the Safe
The gun safe alone is already heavy. The next thing we will have to check is the weight of the guns and other accessories you plan to put inside.
The weights of guns range from 1 pound to 8 pounds, depending on size. You will also have to determine the weight of the boxes of ammunition cartridges and other valuables.
Add them all together to the weight of your prospective gun safe to determine the loaded weight of a gun safe.
Factors That Affect Floor Strength
In general, floors hold everything we place in our household. But it does not mean they can hold everything without absorbing the risk of damage. Understanding these factors is essential for gun safe owners to ensure that floors are safe, reliable, and long-lasting.
Let’s explore the key factors that affect floor strength.
Moisture and Age Condition of the Floor
Where do you plan to mount your gun safe? How old is your house floor? And does it have additional support?
If your floor constantly receives moisture or water spills, it is likely not enough to support the weight of your gun safe. Plus, you would also want to avoid putting your gun safe in this type of condition to protect the floor and the bottom of the safe.
Walk through your floor and feel it. If you notice that it is not as steady or as flat or as even as before, chances are it is starting to weaken.
2. Age Condition
If you hear a squeaking sound as you walk through your floor, it is not safe to place the safe on that spot.
Does your floor have histories of repairs or reinforcements? It is also important to check on these matters to feel more confident or at ease when installing a gun safe.
Type of Flooring Material
What type of floor do you have? Do you have a hardwood floor? or raised floor? If you have a concrete floor, then no problem. Concrete floors are strong and can withstand large-sized gun safes.
If you have a hard wooden floor, see if it is still flat, durable, and thick enough.
If your floor is tiled, learn the material under it and then assess it. You can also read through this for a guide on installing your safe on it.
Calculating the Weight Capacity of Your Floor
It is important to ensure that the floor on where you will place the safe can support the weight of the safe and its contents.
You can use a Floor Weight Capacity Calculator to determine the total weight capacity of your floor.
Failure to calculate the weight capacity of the floor can lead to serious safety hazards, including structural damage and personal injury.
How to Measure Floor Strength
Calculating based on lumber grades, joist spacings and spans, and sheathing might do you good in measuring floor strength.
One way to measure the floor’s strength for your gun safe is to use a load-bearing capacity calculator. These calculators consider the safe’s size and weight, the number of firearms and other contents, and the distribution of weight on the floor.
By inputting these variables, the calculator can estimate the floor’s weight capacity and whether it can safely support the gun.
But, the easiest way to know is to contact your hour contractor and ask for its safety factor or the pounds per square foot your floor can carry.
How to Determine the Weight of Your Gun Safe
Weights of gun safes vary according to size and quality. A high-end gun safe weighs an average of 1000 pounds.
Some of the most common methods for measuring floor strength for a gun safe include using a load calculator, consulting an engineer or contractor, or performing a physical load test.
If you are worrying about it tipping over, you should read this article.
To surely determine the weight of a gun safe, you can ask its manufacturer or seller.
Tips for Protecting Your Floor
We protect our families, our weapons, and our gun safes. There is no way we will not consider protecting our floor, where all of the important people and equipment in our lives set their feet on.
Here are important tips for protecting your floor:
1. Reinforce you floor: Ask your engineers or consider the service of floor contractors to install reinforced floors. They will reinforce your floorings with sheets of steel mesh or steel fibers.
2. Use a floor mat: Place a heavy-duty floor mat under your gun safe to protect your floor from scratches, dents, and other damage. The mat should be made of durable material that can withstand the weight of the safe and resist damage from spills and moisture.
3. Install the safe on a raised platform: If your gun safe is very heavy or your floor is particularly sensitive, consider installing the safe on a raised platform. This will distribute the weight of the safe more evenly and prevent damage to your floor.
4. Regularly inspect and clean the area around the safe: Keep the area around your gun safe, clean, and free of debris to prevent damage to your flooring. Regularly inspect the floor for scratches, dents, or other damage and address any issues promptly.
Floor damage is one of the reasons gun owners are hesitant to invest in a gun safe. But owning a gun safe is important, especially if you have children at home.
To be at ease, you should consider the factors affecting gun safe weight and floor strength. It is essential to determine the capacity of your floor to hold heavy gun safes.
You should have your floor reinforced if you see the need and immediately take action if you see or feel that your floor is showing signs of damage.
If, at the moment, you cannot reinforce your floors for financial reasons, you can choose lighter gun safes, usually made out of aluminum alloy instead of steel alloy.
But weigh in on your decisions. Having a safe made of strong steel provides you and your family more peace of mind.
Will a gun safe damage my floor?
Yes. But with proper floor reinforcements, gun safe handling and installation, and responsible monitoring, it will not damage your floor.
Should you put anything under a gun safe?
Place a carpet or any fabric to prevent direct contact with the gun safe on the floor. This is to prevent contamination of rust and other elements and scratches from moving it.
Can a floor support a gun safe?
A sturdy floor can support a large-sized gun safe. Assess it yourself or have an expert assess it for assurance.
Can a second floor support a gun safe?
Yes, depending on the type of flooring material and a few other factors like age and condition.
admin. “Reinforced Concrete Floors – an Expert Guide.” Raised Floor, 8 Sept. 2021, www.raisedfloor.co.uk/reinforced-concrete-floors/.
Hoose, Shelley. “OSB Floor Weight Limit.” Hunker, Hunker, 4 Dec. 2011, www.hunker.com/13402266/osb-floor-weight-limit.
Liberty Safes of. “4 Reasons Steel Thickness Is Vital for Your Gun Safe.” Liberty Safes of Utah, libertysafesofutah.com/blogs/news/4-reasons-steel-thickness-is-vital-for-your-gun-safe.
“Floor Weight Capacity Calculator.” Calculator Academy, calculator.academy/floor-weight-capacity-calculator/.