Mailbox Buying Guide
Mailboxes can serve both decorative and useful purposes. The first step to determining the best mailbox for you is to decide what purpose your mailbox will need to fufill. MailboxUniverse.com carries a large selection of wall mount and post mount curbside mailboxes. The United States Postal Service (USPS) requires all residential mailboxes to conform to a number of rules and regulations. However, the specific requirements are different for curbside and wall mounted residential mailboxes.
Curbside mailboxes are used in rural and suburban locations where mail carriers use vehicles to deliver mail. Curbside mailboxes are typically mounted on a mailbox post which is freestanding and generally sit at the end of a driveway. There are various types of posts such as a pedestal post or a decorative post with a support arm. Some curbside mailboxes will also include a newspaper holder or a flower planter box. Curbside mailboxes may also include rear access so that mail can be retreived from the back of the mailbox as well. This feature is especially important if you live near a busy road.
Wall mount mailboxes are used in more populated areas and where mail carriers deliver mail on foot. Wall mounted mailboxes attach directly to the outside wall or door of your home allowing for easy mail retrieval. Some wall mounted mailboxes include a flip to box and newspaper hooks that can be nice for holding large envelopes or newspapers. Wall mounted mailboxes are available in horizontal or vertical orientations.
Curbside Mailbox Guidelines
- Curbside mailboxes must be placed on the right-hand side of the road and facing outward so that mail carriers can access it easily without leaving their vehicle
- The box or house numbers on a mailbox must be represented in numbers that are at least 1 inch tall, and they must be positioned on the front or flag side of the box
- Mailboxes must be placed 6 to 8 inches away from the curb
- The mailbox door must be 41 to 45 inches from the ground
Wall Mount Mailbox Guidelines
- USPS does not have specific dimension requirements for wall mounted mailboxes, but local codes and regulations may apply
- Mail carriers must have safe and unobstructed access to the wall mounted mailbox
- The flap on the wall mounted mailbox must operate smoothly and reliably
Some mailboxes offer a locking option for owners who want added security. Normally lockable mailboxes will allow a mail carrier to deliver mail without a key. A slot is positioned on the top or front of the mailbox that is large enough for mail to pass into, but small enough that a hand cannot reach into the box. Owners may use a key to open the slot and retieve their mail. Some locking mailboxes may not be able to accept large packages.