Thanks to the increased sophistication of alarm systems the number of burglaries around the nation is starting to decline. However, even though those numbers are falling, there is still the chance that your home may be broken in to. When we think about safe rooms, we often think about how they can protect us from natural disasters.
However, most of the time they’re there to protect us from man-made trouble.
That’s why it’s important to have a safe room. If you want to be sure that your family has a good chance of staying safe in an emergency, a safe room is the way to go about it.
If you’re looking to build a safe room, keep reading to find out our favorite safe room ideas and how to bring that plan to life.
Put Safety First
Before you start constructing your safe room you need to do research. There’s a lot that goes into crafting a safe room, it isn’t just four walls and a strong door.
You need to build your safe room the right way otherwise you’re placing yourself and your family in more danger than you would be without it.
The government has a manual available on the FEMA website that you can check out that will let you know what kinds of risks you may be running, what the criteria for the design is, how to filter the air, and what to think about when you’re designing the safe room.
Don’t let your safe room turn into the biggest danger under your roof!
Use Sturdy Materials
Your safe room is only as strong as the materials that you build it with. It’s important that you consider all possible types of disasters when you build your safe room. Think about all the factors that can turn into threats around your home and build your room around those threats.
Your material has to be able to stand up against high winds and any debris that may fly during a tornado or hurricane. If you don’t want to pour concrete walls, you can always update walls that already exist by enforcing them with steel sheathing or mesh.
Don’t put windows in your safe room. It poses a risk of breaking glass and being sighted by a burglar.
Pick the Best Location
The second most important part of planning your safe room is deciding where to put it. The best place to put your safe room is underground, if possible. Make sure that your area isn’t prone to flooding before you fit a safe room.
However, if you don’t want a safe room that will protect you from natural disasters, anywhere in your house can serve as a good panic room.
Another option for the placement of your safe room is the corner of your garage if it’s clean. This is a great place to keep safe from debris that could fall during a natural disaster.
The Best Door
Once you have a solid plan for where you’re going to build your safe room and what kind of material you’re going to use to make it, you can start looking into some of the specifics. One thing you should look at is a door for your safe room.
Safe room doors should be stronger than the average door. It should be able to hold up against high winds or intruders alike.
You won’t be able to use a traditional door jamb either. Trade out the wooden door jamb for a steel one and reinforce the wood around it with more steel.
This ensures that when your door is locked, no one will be able to kick the door in.
A Secure Lock
Next, you need to pick out the kind of locking system you want to put in place. This can be a difficult decision for many safe room owners.
While you want a lock that is secure against intruders or people who may wish your family harm, you also don’t want a lock that will take you forever to get past in the event of an emergency.
A great option for a safe room lock is a keyless deadbolt. You just want to make sure that no one knows the passcode but you, so that you don’t wind up with little ones getting stuck in the safe room.
You’ll have to reinforce the area around your deadbolt as well. Reinforce it with steel or brass strike plates.
Reinforce the Walls and Ceiling
You’ll want to make sure that you reinforce the walls and the ceiling of your safe room with concrete, steel sheets, or chicken wire. Even if that means tearing out an existing wall and reinforcing it yourself, these are important things to have in the event of an emergency.
It can be a little more difficult to reinforce your ceiling. Using chicken wire or steel sheets in your attic is one good way to reinforce if you’re in a one-story house. If you are in a two-story house, you’ll need to apply the reinforcements directly inside the safe room. It may be ugly, but it’ll get the job done.
Don’t Hesitate to Hire a Contractor
Finally, the best piece of advice we can give you for a safe room is that you shouldn’t be afraid to hire a contractor to do the job. Oftentimes when we are preparing ourselves for a natural disaster we want to believe that we can do everything ourselves.
After all, in the event of a cataclysmic emergency, we’d need to rely on no one else, right?
But the truth is that, in this instance, a contractor may be your best bet to having a safe room that works to keep the dangers out. They have experience building all kinds of things and they’ll be able to ensure that you’ve got a safe, structurally sound room to fall back into.
Bring Your Safe Room Ideas to Life
There are a ton of good safe room ideas out there. And no two safe rooms are alike. What you put in your safe room is likely going to be a lot different than what your neighbor puts into their safe room.
At the end of the day, it all depends on you and your individual needs.
Keep checking back for more information about how to keep yourself and your family safe in the event of an emergency!