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Will Money Burn In a Fireproof Safe?

By USA Safe & Vault July 24, 2021 0 comments

It's a fireproof safe, so does that mean your money is completely fireproof? The answer to this question may surprise you. Find out what happens when money meets fire!

Will money be damaged in a fireproof safe?

Yes. Depends on temperature – see the temperature chart to know if the safe used is able to withstand a fire. Some fireproof safes are made out of steel and some fireproof safes are encased in concrete. The fire resistance labels on the fireproof safes vary, with fire ratings ranging from 60 to 120 minutes - this is how long it takes for a fire to burn through the material and make contact with all that's inside. A quality fireproof safe will typically be fire-resistant.

To keep the money inside remains safe, the safe you use should be in UL Class 350 at a minimum or you can increase the safety for the lower model.

Fireproof safes come with a UL rating that shows how safe the safe is when facing a fire. Each rating is available in several sub-rating of time including 1-hour, 2-hours, and 3-hours. 

A fireproof safe is typically fire-resistant or fireproof. The fire resistance labels on fireproof safes vary, with ratings ranging from 60 to 120 minutes. It's important to know that fire-resistant safes are not fireproof. The fire-resistance rating of the fireproof safe will depend on the type of fire it can withstand - some fireproof safes are made out of steel and some fireproof safes are encased in concrete.

  • UL class 350 – a fireproof safe with this rating comes with 1-hour and 2-hour variants which both of them keep the internal temperature no more than 3500F. Paper commonly burns at 4500F but these models are effective enough to protect money and paper records. It’s just the 2-hours model that can last longer than the 1-hour model. Browse our selection of 2-hour safes variants here.

  • UL class 125 – a fire protection safe with this fire rating is available in three variants of time 1-hour, 2-hours, and 3-hours. It serves to be a more affordable option to 350 ratings but it is less protective when comes to survive in a fire. Browse our selection of fire safes here.

How does UL Class 350 keep money protected from a fire

There are two variants of UL class 350 rating: 1-hour and 2-hours that both are designed to secure paper assets to an external typical house fire. The 2-hours variant offers higher protection and expect to protect the valuables from external temperature up to 17000F (2970C) as well as keep the internal temperature of safe remains no more than 3500F within 2 hours. The 1-hour variant can survive in the same condition but in a shorter period of time. 

The temperature of a house fire

The median temperature through an average house fire is about 11500F or 6000C in several hotter areas at the house such as ceiling and roof. However, in lower areas such as the floor, the temperature is likely lower which can be around 2200F or 1000C. Although the cases might vary, UL class 350 does the job to protect paper assets effectively in a fire. But, if the temperature increases and the heat overdoes, there is a possibility the money inside will burn.

Does a fireproof safe protect money?

When paper is burned in a high-temperature environment such as fire, it will turn into ash and break down to its most basic form. Paper records can be decimated by heat up to 5000 degrees Fahrenheit which is the fireproof range. Paper records will also risk being destroyed when immersed in water or fire-resistant liquid, and they're unlikely to survive well if exposed only for a short period of time.

Can a safe burn in a fire?

Fireproof box are fire-resistant or fireproof containers that can protect money from being destroyed by fire. The fire resistance labels on the fireproof safe vary, with ratings ranging from 60 to 120 minutes. UL class 350 has two variants of time which both are designed for assets.

What can you store in a safe?

A lot. You don't just have to store cash, ammo, paper documents, or sensitive data to get value out of it. Get creative with what you need to be secured or what you want to be stashed away for later use.


To know whether money burns in a fireproof safe or not depends on the safe used. It will not burn if you use at least UL class 350 rating safe and with a note that the fire doesn’t surpass the specification value of a safe variant. It’s able to use UL class 125 too but you need to increase its safety. To know whether money burns or not depends on the quality of safety offered by your chosen safe - both classifications must meet specific minimum standards before any purchase should even happen. The best option would be a UL-rated 350 (or higher) model which offers good fire protection defense against all types of fires.

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