Are you handy? Do you have a passion for completing do it yourself projects? Do you enjoy building things? If so, then you should consider installing your own wall safe instead of hiring a professional!
As you can tell, installing a wall safe is a lot easier than it seems. While it’s definitely more convenient and efficient to hire a professional to install your wall safe, it’s not very budget friendly. Therefore, if you’re handy and have some time on your hands, save some money and install your wall safe by yourself!
While the idea of installing a wall safe can be daunting, it’s actually pretty simple. That being said, continue below to learn how you can install a wall safe in ten effortless steps!
#1 Consider Budget, Size & Features
The first thing you’re going to have to do is consider important things like how much you can afford to spend on a wall safe, the size you need, and the features you want. For starters, budget plays a big role in determining what kind of wall safe you purchase and where you install it. Although wall safes are generally priced from $50 to $350, people typically spend anywhere from $150 to $300 on a wall safe.
Another important aspect to consider is how big you want or need your wall safe to be. Since you plan on installing your safe into your wall, it should be able to fit the thickness of your walls. You can easily measure the thickness of your walls by starting with where the studs begin or simply checking with your realtor or whoever built the house. For a general guideline, most two-by-four homes are equipped to be able to maintain a wall safe that is 16 inches wide and 3.5 inches deep.
Finally, wall safes come with a variety of features, such as different locks, fire resistance, and water resistance. You should decide before you go shopping whether these features matter to you and if you want to purchase a wall safe that has them.
#2 Research Ratings
After you figure out what type of wall safe you want, research the ratings of the most popular wall safes that match your needs. These ratings should be able to tell you how effective they are at preventing burglaries.
For reference, a wall safe effectively prevents burglaries if it has a B4 rating. A B4 rating means it would take a burglar approximately 15 minutes to break into that safe with general tools. Since burglaries typically take approximately 12 minutes at the max, a B4 rating is above standard. Unfortunately, if a wall safe has a B1, B2 or B3 rating, then it would most likely not be able to withstand an attempted burglary.
#3 Go Shopping
After doing the necessary research, start shopping for your wall safe. You have the option of shopping in stores or online for your wall safe. Typically, office supply stores, supercenters, specialty stores, and athletic stores have wall safes.
While you can find wall safes anywhere on the internet, Amazon has the most expansive and trusted list of wall safes. Amazon is a great place to purchase your wall safe because you can easily compare and contrast different wall safes, see what the wall safes you’re interested in truly look like, and review trusted reviews from previous customers.
#4 Start Placing Your Wall Safe Between Studs
Once you purchase a wall safe, start the installation process by locating the studs. In order to do this, you’re going to need a special stud locator that you can find at most of the same stores you can find a wall safe, such as superstores, home improvement stores, and hardware stores. You can also find a stud locator on websites, such as Amazon.
In the event that you don’t have access to a stud finder, simply knock around your wall. Areas where you hear a solid sound are typically where studs are, and areas where you hear a hollow sound are typically the filler area. Once you find all of the studs in your wall, use something to mark where all of them are. This is a crucial step. Without knowing where the studs in your wall are, you won’t be able to accurately cut your wall and install your wall safe.
#5 Use a Drywall Saw
After marking the studs, take a drywall saw and place it in an area where there are no studs. Although it doesn’t matter what area you cut, it should be a small and clean area of the wall. Keep in mind that it’s important that the area is big enough where you can fit at least one hand inside. After you decide where to make your test cut, don’t be afraid to use your drywall saw to make an initial cut.
#6 Check for Wires
Once you have your open area, carefully stick your hand into the hole. This part is important because you’re looking for wires or any plumbing pipes that could potentially be damaged if you install a wall safe, which in turn would damage your house.
Therefore, make sure you complete this step with extra caution and attention. While there is only a little risk that any wires or pipes in the wall could hurt you, the chance is still there. That being said, if you encounter any wires or pipes, do not yank or pull them. Instead, take a mental note of where they are.
It should be noted that while you can always work around wires, you cannot work around plumbing pipes. That being said, you should just take extra precautions and install your wall safe in a different area if you find that your designated area has wires or plumbing.
#7 Measure & Mark
After determining your chosen space is a good place to install your wall safe, use a ruler or measuring tape to measure your wall safe. Then, take those measurements and apply them to your wall.
In other words, you’re going to need to use ruler to map out the measurements of your wall safe on your wall, and then use a pencil to mark the area of where you want to install your safe. It should be noted that the lines must be straight. Also, it’s important to keep in mind that your measurements align with your wall studs because your safe has to attach to the wall studs to be secured.
Ultimately, this step could make or break how well you install you wall safe. After all, if you miscalculate measurements or draw the lines poorly, you might not be able to install or secure your wall safe properly.
#8 Cut the Wall
After outlining where you want to install you wall safe, take a drywall saw and follow the lines you marked. While you can start at any point of the markings, it’s generally easier if you start at either the bottom or top corner, and then focus on the sides. Do not tug or pull on the wall while you cut it. Instead, let the wall fall itself when you finish cutting it.
#9 Place Your Wall Safe Inside the Wall
After the piece of drywall falls out, slowly push your safe inside the wall. It should be noted that this process should be done slowly because pushing your wall safe too fast or harshly could damage your wall as well as your safe. Also, it’s important that you make sure that you keep the front door of the safe prompted up. If you don’t, it could fall and potentially hurt you or someone else.
#10 Secure Your Wall Safe
Finally, all you have to do is secure your wall safe. This is actually an easy process. Simply look at where the inside of your safe has holes. Then, match this area to each side of your safe and drill a hole in the retrospective position. Once you drill all the holes, use screws to fill and secure the holes.
This is an important step because this is ultimately the first line of defense that will keep your safe locked, and therefore your valuables protected, in the event that someone attempts to break in to your safe.
If you don’t do this step properly, then your safe might not be adequately secured. While this means that a burglar will be able to break into your wall safe easier, it also means that it could be potentially harmful to you or anyone else who attempts to open your safe.