High-quality vinyl or linoleum floors are extremely durable. If you’re buying a gun safe and plan to install it on this type of flooring, here are a few things you should know.
Can My Vinyl/Linoleum Floor Hold a Safe?
Vinyl/linoleum flooring is installed on a wooden subfloor. Houses without basements or crawlspaces may have concrete sub-flooring. Vinyl/linoleum floors can be installed there, too. As long as the subfloor and its supporting structures are strong, it’s possible to install a gun safe on top of vinyl or linoleum.
Will My Gun Safe Damage My Vinyl/Linoleum Floor?
Thin or worn vinyl/linoleum floors can be damaged by a heavy safe. Once this type of flooring is damaged, it cannot be repaired. It will need replacement.
The weight of a heavy safe could leave indentations in the floor, and if not properly anchored, any shifting of the safe could scratch, gouge, rip, or tear the floor. Keep in mind that when your safe is anchored to the floor, there will be holes bored into your vinyl or linoleum. As long as your safe remains in place no one will see them, but if you move your safe, you'll be stuck with the holes.
Will My Vinyl/Linoleum Floor Damage My Safe?
Vinyl/linoleum floors don’t absorb moisture. In humid or wet conditions, moisture can accumulate on the flooring. This moisture can damage the bottom of your safe with rust and corrosion if it is directly bolted to the floor. The floor itself could grow mold and mildew because there’s no air circulation.
Protecting Your Vinyl/Linoleum Floor
It is possible to protect your vinyl/linoleum floor from damage when installing your safe. Installing the safe on a base can maintain an even distribution of weight that can reduce indentations. It also allows air to flow underneath the safe to prevent moisture buildup. Just be aware that elevating a safe on a base can be a security risk. You'll need to bolt the base to your floor and then bolt your safe to the base, but it still won’t be anchored down as strongly as if it were bolted directly to the floor. You could face tipping risks, or thieves may be able to get a jack under the safe and jack it off the anchors, then haul it off or tip it over and attempt to pry the door off.
Placing a rubber or latex mat under the safe can cause permanent damage to vinyl/linoleum flooring.
How to Protect Your Gun Safe
One of the best ways to protect your gun safe is to bolt it to a strong, level surface. The type of bolts or anchors used will depend on the kind of sub-flooring beneath the vinyl/linoleum. Wooden subfloors require a wood subfloor kit that includes anchoring bolts and washers. For concrete slab subfloors, use an anchoring kit with special anchors and bolts.