Tough as nails! Resists vandalism and thwarts theft. Can accept small packages (like boxes of checkbooks) but designed to prevent anyone from reaching in and grabbing mail.
Post-mount only. Can't hold larger packages.
Great value if you don't need a security mailbox. Large capacity and will last a long time.
Not secure, but that might be fine if you are in a rural area.
Unique design holds a lot of mail in its base, which helps prevent anyone from reaching in while still retaining a fairly large slot. Locks for security.
You might have to do some drilling to get halves of the base to line up.
Wall-mounted with good capacity and security. Narrow slot means would-be thieves can't reach in.
Mail slot small so it won't accept any packages at all.
Can be mounted on a post or wall. Great locking system and slot large enough to accept small packages, but small enough to deter anyone from reaching in.
A bit pricey. "Official" accessories such as mounting posts from Architectural Mailboxes are expensive.
We recommend these products based on an intensive research process that's designed to cut through the noise and find the top products in this space. Guided by experts, we spend hours looking into the factors that matter, to bring you these selections.
You may have heard the mail carriers' creed: "Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night …” can stop the mail from going through. But what if you don’t have a reliable mailbox?
Mail theft, damaged mail, and the loss of mail items are serious business. A mailbox that isn’t up to its task could cause you to miss vital correspondence, packages, or bills. If you are looking for a new mailbox, you’ll need to find the right one for your situation. There are regulations from the United States Postal Service (USPS) to consider, and there is the durability of the box itself to keep in mind. Some mailboxes simply aren’t durable enough to serve you well.
First things first: there are USPS regulations for curbside and wall-mounted mailboxes that you need to know about. The regulations exist to help make sure your mail is delivered intact and that mail carriers can do their jobs safely.
Curbside mailboxes should be placed for your mail carrier’s convenience on the right side of the street. That way, the carrier does not have to leave the vehicle to deliver mail. Mailbox posts must be sunk at least two feet deep and cannot be more than 4 x 4 inches square. If you use a newspaper receptacle, it can be on the same post, but it must not touch your mailbox. The size of a curbside mailbox can vary, but the height off the ground should be between 41 and 45 inches, and the distance from the curb should be six to eight inches.
Fewer federal regulations exist for wall-mounted mailboxes. The flap on your mailbox should lift easily, and the box should be placed in a spot that’s easy for the mail carrier to access. It must be large enough to hold your average daily delivery of mail. Although not a requirement, it’s wise to make sure your mail slot is wide enough to fit a magazine or flat-rate envelope without folding.
Most mailboxes are made of some kind of metal, such as cast aluminum or galvanized steel, but you will find some made of plastic as well.
Cast aluminum is a beautiful option. This material comes in decorative styles to complement the look of your home, and it does not rust. These boxes are usually fairly pricey and do not hold up to vandalism as well as steel, but overall, durability is satisfactory.
Galvanized steel wins points for strength. These sturdy mailboxes are a good choice if you want a secure box with a lock. Thickness is rated by gauge: if you want a thicker metal, look for a lower gauge. Drawbacks for steel include the potential for rust over time as your mailbox endures the elements.
Plastic is a practical and economical choice. Some plastic mailboxes look decorative, but most are pretty basic. Plastic performs well in wet weather, but it will not withstand vandalism as well as aluminum and steel.
Mailboxes have several size options, but there are standards to consider in order to make sure your mailbox is large enough for common items.
A good rule of thumb is to consider the size of a flat-rate envelope. The USPS standard flat-rate envelope measures 9 1/2 x 12 1/2 inches. Your mailbox should be large enough to accommodate this item and completely close without the need for a mail carrier to bend the envelope. If it cannot, look for something larger.
Sufficiently sized wall-mounted mailboxes are four to five inches deep. Height and width vary but often adhere to the following norms:
Keep in mind that mailboxes with a height or width of just nine inches may be a little small for a flat-rate envelope.
A minimum standard rural-style curbside mailbox is 18 1/2 inches long, six inches wide, and eight inches high. However, this size cannot fit a flat-rate envelope without bending. You may want to consider a larger curbside mailbox instead.
A locking mailbox requires a key to open. These mailboxes come in wall-mounted and post-mounted styles; the mail carrier drops the mail through a slot. The slot should be large enough to accommodate a U.S. Priority Envelope, as well as the bulk of your regular mail.
You may be replacing your mailbox because your current mailbox cannot hold your regular mail volume. If this is the case, there are many oversized mailboxes to consider.
If you live on a busy street, a rear-access mailbox will give you an option to safely pick up your mail without having to reach around to the traffic area of the box.
Inexpensive: Between $10 and $20, you can purchase an entry-level mailbox that meets USPS requirements. It will likely be made of plastic or thin galvanized steel. Some mailboxes in this range have a notably small capacity.
Mid-range: For $20 to $50, you can choose from a wide variety of wall-mounted and curbside mailboxes. These mailboxes are more attractive, larger, and of better quality than most entry-level mailboxes. Some curbside mailboxes in this price range will ship with their post.
Expensive: The priciest mailboxes are highly secure boxes made of a quality material like pounded aluminum. Prices for these boxes can reach up to $100 or sometimes even $200. Many are decorative and look great from the street.
Q. Can other delivery services deliver a package to my mailbox?
A. No. It is a federal crime for anyone other than a U.S. postal carrier to deliver an item to your mailbox. UPS and FedEx respect these regulations. In some areas of the country, UPS contracts with USPS to deliver packages. In most situations, unless a package requires a signature for delivery, the placement of the package is at the discretion of the driver. They will attempt to leave the package in an out-of-sight, dry location, or they will leave you a notice and attempt another delivery.
Q. What do I do if my mailbox is vandalized?
A. Mailbox vandalism is a federal crime. Violators can face up to three years in prison and a $250,000 fine. If you find your mailbox has been vandalized, immediately report it to the United States Postal Inspection Service. The U.S. Postal Inspection Service can also provide stickers warning potential violators or vandals of these penalties.
Q. Can I move my mailbox?
A. Mailbox locations are decided locally. First, contact your local post office: let them know you would like to move it, where you would like to move it, and why. It is a good idea to have your mailbox in a shaded area, especially if you order medications or food items through the mail. Make sure the new location is convenient for a mail carrier to access and is highly visible.