"When you've outgrown all your safes, the next step is a vault door added to a reinforced room to create an entire room to store valuables in. You can also use it for a safe room as well. Installing a vault door allows you to store large items that will not fit into any size safe, such as artwork, heirlooms, or other large collectibles. "
John Dean Owner, Dean Safe
Different Types of Vault Doors:
In-Swing vs. Out-Swing:
The first decision to make when choosing a vault door is the type of swing you want, and this completely depends on your application. To get an accurate idea of how they work, after you enter the combination, you "push" the in-swing door in, away from you, to enter the vault room. With an out-swing vault door you "pull" the door out, towards you, to enter. In some situations, if there is not enough clearance for the door to swing out, an in-swing vault door is the only option. We strongly recommend working with a general contractor or someone who has experience installing vault doors to advise you on type, style and fit before purchasing. You'll also notice that in-swing vault doors will be constructed with internal hinges that are not exposed on the outside whereas out-swing vault door will have the hinges exposed externally. All of the out-swing vault doors we carry add steel deadbolts behind the hinge side to prevent the door from being able to open after someone attempts to cut the hinges off. The door just stays right in place.
Left-Hand vs. Right-Hand:
When combining the two options for door-swing, things can get really confusing really fast. The easiest way to understand left-hand swing vs. right-hand swing is to think about where you want the hinges. Simply enough, Right-Hand Swing has the hinges on the right side and left-hand swing has the hinges on the left side. Don't try to think about which hand you use, just think about which side you want the hinges on. For example if you want the door to swing or push in and the hinges on the right, you need an in-swing, right hand vault door. If you want to pull the door out towards you and the hinges on the left side, you need an out-swing, left hand vault door. If you have any questions or need help finding the right door for you, please call any of our safe experts at 800-827-7534 and we are happy to help!
Since Vault doors are just a door and not an entire safe, there are no tests that can accurately state a fire rating as it's going to be dependent on the rest of the vault room. For example are the walls just drywall or an entire cement room? However, this does not prevent manufacturers from adding fire resistant material to the doors. For example, Liberty Safe provides four layers of fireboard in the door and a palusol heat activated door seal to prevent smoke from entering. Fort Knox adds 1 layer of fireboard in their vault doors and AMSEC uses fireboard on the NF series and their proprietary drylight fire insulation concrete material on the BF series. When combined with a cement room, these doors can provide excellent fire resistance even without a certified fire rating.
Other Differences Between Vault Doors:
Now that you've decided what type of swing you need in a vault door, there are a few other options to consider with the most important being the level of security you need. When it comes to safes and vault doors you always get what you pay for, so if you are looking for a budget friendly vault door, the SnapSafe Vault door fits the bill, it's constructed of all 12 gauge steel in the door and frame and has nine 1" locking bolts. The next level up would be Rhino Ironworks Vault Door made with a 12 gauge steel door and 10 gauge door frame. Rhino also adds additional security features like an anti-tamper handle, multiple relockers and a ball bearing hardplate. The next level up from there would be the AMSEC NF Vault Doors, followed by the Fort Knox Executive, AMSEC BF series and finally the Liberty Vault Door with 18 1/2" thick military locking bars. Each level up adds more steel and security features, and more steel is always better.