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How to Bolt Down and Anchor Your Safe

Updated: 06/26/2024
Bolt Down and Anchor Your Safe

Most good quality fire and burglary safes have a predrilled hole or holes in the bottom so that they can be secured to the floor. If your safe has this feature, it is to your advantage to bold it down so that thieves can’t haul it away or tip it over to make it easier to break in.

Bolting down a safe is very easy and quick to do with the right tools.

  • A good drill, preferably one that can be plugged into the wall as most cordless drills are a little weak on power. A hammer drill is the fastest.
  • A concrete drill bit if you need to mount the safe on a concrete foundation. You can take the bolt that comes with the safe into the local hardware store and hand it to a salesperson, asking if they could get a concrete drill bit appropriate for the bolt.
  • A wood or steel drill bit if you are mounting to a wood floor.
  • A black marker pen
  • A pair of pliers
  • A small hammer

Bolting Instructions for Concrete Floor

  • Place the safe where it will be mounted then open the door and find the mounting hole in the center of the safe or each corner, where ever the holes are provided.
  • Use the black marker to color the floor where the bolt will go.
  • Move the safe out of the way. For carpeted floors, cut a hole in the carpet about the size of a half dollar coin piece.
  • Drill the hole and vacuum any dust out of the hole. In concrete it will be around 3-4 inches deep.
  • Return the safe back over the hole and line it up.
  • Push the bolt down through the safe into the hole beneath. Use a hammer if the bolt doesn’t easily fit in the hole.
  • Once down and in place tighten the nut on top of the bolt. Use several turns to expand the sleeve on the bolt to grab the walls of the concrete floor.

For Wood Floor

  • Follow the same instruction for a concrete floor.
  • If the sleeve does not grab the subfloor, you will need to purchase a molly bolt that will expand below the floor to secure the safe.

Do you still have to anchor and bolt down your safe if it’s already heavy?

The answer is yes, and here is a true story of a safe owner who does not bolt down his big and heavy safe, thinking it’s secure enough.

This was several years ago and when even the lower-priced safes were very heavy. Since it was heavy and he didn’t want to go through the trouble of bolting it to the floor, he just put it in his closet where it wouldn’t be seen very easily. One night he came home to find that his house had been burglarized. After checking carefully, the only thing missing was his home fireproof safe. He later found the safe in the woods behind his house. Whoever took it used a maul to break through and knock off the back of the safe. Everything that he had put in the safe was gone.

The moral of the story is simple. If you have a home or office fireproof safe that can be bolted down. Do it. If your home or office safe can’t be secured, then you are probably better off posting the combination on the door so that you don’t lose your safe along with everything in it. Just kidding, but bolt down if you can, especially if it’s a large gun safe that will stay there, protecting you and your family for a long time.

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