Fire Resistant Products FAQs

Q: Who/what is UL?

A:

U.L. stands for Underwriters Laboratories. This is US based independent testing facility that certifies various public safety products.

They test our Master Lock products to ensure they meet stringent standards for performance as claimed.

Q: Do all Master Lock safe product offer UL protection?

A:

In reference to Master Lock products, UL classifications apply to our fire resistant products, and their fire-protective classifications.

Q: What does UL Classified fire protection mean?

A:

The 1/2 hour UL classification indicates that the interior of the unit will remain at or below 177°C (350°F) when exposed to fire at temperatures of 843°C (1550°F) for 30 minutes.

The 1-hour UL classification indicates that the interior of the unit will remain below 177°C (350°F) when exposed to fire at temperatures of 927°C (1700°F) for 1 hour.

The 2-hours UL classification indicates that the interior of the unit will remain below 177°C (350°F) when exposed to fire at temperatures of 1010°C (1850°F) for 2 hours.

It should be noted that fires usually travel through a structure, and that the average house fire ranges in temperatures of 482°C (900°F) to 649°C (1200°F), for approximately 20 minutes.

Q: The inside of my fire resistant unit is plastic - does it melt in a fire?

A:

The plastic parts on the inside and outside of our Master Lock fire resistant units assist in the fire-protective process.

Our Master Lock fire resistant security chests have an outer coating and key-lock guard, which will usually melt in the event of a fire. This helps to seal the exterior/interior of the product in the process, ensuring an airtight seal to keep the heat out, and interior cool so your possessions remain protected.

The interior plastic lining on our Master Lock fire resistant products allows us to build in interior features which allow you to better organize the contents of your unit.

During a typical fire, the interior of your fire resistant unit will not get hot enough to damage this special liner. And, this liner allows the humidity usually found in most fire-resistant units, to dissipate better - reducing the moisture in your unit during day to day use.

Q: My product looks plastic - how can it be safe in a fire?

A:

The plastic parts on the inside and outside of our Master Lock fire resistant units assist in the fire-protective process.

Our Master Lock fire resistant security chests have an outer coating and key-lock guard, which will usually melt in the event of a fire. This helps to seal the exterior/interior of the product in the process, ensuring an airtight seal to keep the heat out, and interior cool so your possessions remain protected.

The interior plastic lining on our Master Lock fire resistant products allows us to build in interior features which allow you to better organize the contents of your unit.

During a typical fire, the interior of your fire resistant unit will not get hot enough to damage this special liner. And, this liner allows the humidity usually found in most fire-resistant units, to dissipate better - reducing the moisture in your unit during day to day use.

Q: What is the insulation made of?

A:

The insulation in our Master Lock fire resistant products is a proprietary mix, marketed under the Pyronox® brand name for our safes, and Survivacast® brand name for our chests and files. As a result, this information is proprietary.

It is a concrete base / water mixture with special additives to enhance the fire protective nature of our products so they meet stringent UL standards.

Q: How do I protect my CDs, DVDs, memory sticks, USB drives and MP3 players?

A:

Master Lock UL rated fire resistant products have been ETL verified to protect data storage products, which include CDs, DVDs, memory sticks, USB drives, hard drives and MP3 players. Depending on the model you own, and its specific UL fire endurance rating the media protections vary as follows:

  - UL Classified 1/2-hour fire protection = ETL verified fire protection for digital media for 1/2 hour up to 843°C (1550°F).

  - UL Classified 1-hour fire protection = ETL verified fire protection for digital media for 1 hour up to 927°C (1700°F).

  - UL Classified 2 hours fire protection = ETL verified fire protection for digital media for 2 hours up to 1010°C (1850°F).

Q: How do I protect my CDs, disks, audio and video cassettes and other magnetic/photographic and data storage media?

A:

Audio and video cassettes, photo negatives, X-ray films and microfiche need more fire and humidity protection than provided by Master Lock fire resistant products. Damage to these types of media may begin at temperatures above 52°C (125°F) as compared to paper products that may withstand heat up to 177°C (350°F).

Master Lock UL rated fire resistant products have been ETL verified to protect data storage products, which include CDs, DVDs, memory sticks, USB drives, hard drives and MP3 players. Depending on the model you own, and it's specific UL fire endurance rating the media protections vary as follows:

  - UL Classified 1/2-hour fire protection = ETL verified fire protection for digital media for 1/2 hour up to 843°C (1550°F).

  - UL Classified 1-hour fire protection = ETL verified fire protection for digital media for 1 hour up to 927°C (1700°F).

  - UL Classified 2 hours fire protection = ETL verified fire protection for digital media for 2 hours up to 1010°C (1850°F).

Q: How do I get into my safe after a fire?

A:

If a fire occurs, do not try to retrieve your possessions from your Master Lock fire resistant product. It is UL-classified to protect even papers from loss.

During the fire, tell the fire-fighters where your safe is so they can keep it cool and retrieve it when safe.

The safe should be allowed to cool for several hours, before the contents are retrieved.

Do not be alarmed if the outer lock plate has melted - it is designed to do so in a fire to further seal the exterior of the unit from fire and heat. They can be broken off with the appropriate tools once the unit has properly cooled.

Q: How can I prevent dampness/moisture in my safe?

A:

We suggest that you open the safe at least once every two weeks for approximately 20 minutes. To alleviate any musty odor, we suggest that you remove the items from the safe and wipe the interior with a paste of baking soda and water. In addition, do not store your safe unit in areas of your home or business with already high humidity levels.

Q: Moisture in Master Lock fire resistant products?

A:

Master Lock UL classified fire resistant products are insulated with a specially patented insulation. Any fire resistant unit contains insulation, which in turn, contains water crystals; thus the high content of moisture. In addition, the Master Lock fire and water resistant units close airtight to offer water resistance, which may also cause moisture to accumulate inside your safe.

We suggest that you open your product at least once every two weeks for approximately 20 minutes. To alleviate any musty odor, we suggest that you remove the items from the safe and wipe the interior with a paste of baking soda and water.

Q: Do I need to do anything special for storage & maintenance using my fire resistant unit?

A:

Yes. Due to the protective insulation in our Master Lock fire resistant units during normal use, moisture may be released into the interior of your product. To protect your items against this moisture, we suggest that you open your unit for a half hour, twice a month to let the air circulate on the inside. If this is not possible, we suggest that you place delicate articles, such as stamps, coins and jewelry, in an airtight, molded plastic container inside your Master Lock fire resistant unit. (We do not have airtight containers available for purchase; check for these products in your area.)

Pearls or jewelry with pearls should not be stored in any fire resistant product. This is because pearls are more sensitive to damage than the 177°C interior temperature maintained during a typical fire.

Q: What should NOT be stored in my Master Lock fire resistant unit?

A:

Master Lock fire resistant units are not suitable for weapons storage, computer disks, audio-visual media or photo negatives, delicate items which need special protection such as stamps or pearls. Please consult your owner’s manual for additional details.

Q: What is the powder in my Master Lock fire resistant unit?

A:

Master Lock Company is proud to be a leader in its community and industry as it relates to environmentally safe products. Master Lock products contain no toxic or harmful substances and are constructed with the greatest regard for health and safety. Master Lock’s patented insulations, which make Master Lock UL classified fire resistant products, are concrete-based. It is not unusual for dried concrete dust to be evident in your product’s interior, as a result of jostling during shipping. Again, any such dust can be easily wiped from your fire resistant unit with a damp cloth and poses no health hazard to our customers.

Would you have any further question, please contact our helpline.

Q: My Master Lock fire resistant unit is dirty, what do I do?

A:

Master Lock UL classified fire resistant products are insulated with a specially patented insulation. It is possible for some insulation dust to adhere to the exterior of your safe during shipment. Simply wipe down the exterior of your safe product with a water and baking soda solution.

Q: My safe door sticks - how do I get it open?

A:

If you own a fire and water resistant Security Digital Combination Safe or Alarm Safe, it is not unusual to find that your safe door “sticks”.

This is due to the special gasket associated with the water protection feature. In order to offer the level of water protection desired, our door seal must be very tight. It may be necessary to apply pressure to the upper left-hand top corner of the door when you first begin using your water-resistant safe.

You should soon become familiar with the feel of these specially designed units, and better understand the exact pressure necessary to open the unit with the safe handle.

Q: What is your Lifetime After-Fire Replacement Guarantee for fire resistant products?

A:

After a fire the outside of the Master Lock fire resistant safe/chest will be destroyed: the outside melts, burns up, and seals the safe shut and keeps the inside unharmed. If your Master Lock fire resistant safe product is damaged by fire at any time, Master Lock will ship a replacement free of charge.

Please send a request to mle@master-lock.fr with a photo of the burnt item and join a copy of the insurance claim. Master Lock will dispatch a new item directly to you, free of charge.