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Old 01-05-2010, 04:35 PM
Noah Zark's Avatar
Noah Zark Noah Zark is offline
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: PA
Posts: 618
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Condensation only occurs if the temperature of the contents of the safe drop below the dew point temperature at whatever relative humidity exists in the safe at the time.

If you: 1) Increase the interior temperature or 2) reduce interior humidity or 3) both, you won't have problems. A heater inside the safe will do both during cool and cold weather.

What type of heater? Simple: A 15 to 25 watt incandescent light bulb in cold weather, and a 4 watt or 7 watt bulb in cool weather, or the 15 or 25 watt bulb on a timer, switching off from 0900 to 1500 each day in spring and fall when ambient temps are 60F or below.

Fasten the fixture low in the safe such that the bulb does not contact any interior cloth or plastic, or any of the firearms. Heat from the bulb will rise and the lower temp outside the safe will set up natural convection currents inside the safe.

My safes are in a 60F-70F basement year round and have a single 4-watt "nightlight" bulb in each of them. Interior temps stay between 80F and 90F, based on the digital thermometer probes I keep inside, with the thermometer readouts on the outside on top of each safe. I've NEVER had a problem with condensation or rust, and I've NEVER used absorbent dessicants.

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