Below I will explore some of the different ways to secure your home from threats that I have learned as a security installer.
No one intends to be a victim of a crime or break-in, but it does happen. And when it does, it can be a traumatic experience. Making your home less vulnerable to crime and break-ins is important.
I will cover some of my favorite tips below.
1. Reinforce Your Window Locks
To protect your windows, you should consider installing additional locks. You can use pin locks on your windows. This is a simple and effective solution.
You may also install a security bar on every window; this is also an excellent option. The bars expand and seal into position, making opening a window more difficult.
Some Additional Tips for Windows:
- Install secondary locks, such as a bolt or security bar, to supplement the primary lock.
- Replace standard screws with longer, stronger screws that reach deeper into the window frame.
- Use window locking devices, such as a keyed lock or a sash lock.
- Apply window film to increase the strength of the glass and make it more difficult to break.
- Install window sensors that trigger an alarm when the window is opened.
- Replace old or worn locks with new, high-security locks.
- Consider adding window grilles or bars for added protection.
- Regularly inspect and maintain locks to ensure they are functioning properly.
2. Install Motion Sensor Lights
Studies have shown that properties with good lighting and security systems are less likely to be targeted by burglars. However, it is important to note that motion sensor lights are not guaranteed against burglaries and should be used with other security measures, such as locks and alarms, for maximum protection.
If you don’t want your lights to be on all the time, you can install motion sensor lights to switch your outside lights on only when somebody or something moves around. Motion sensor lights are an effective crime deterrent.
Best Types of Motion Sensor Lights:
3. Use Screws to Secure Sheds
Your locked shed may appear secure, but an expert burglar might still be able to break in. A burglar can remove the hinges and other hardware with visible screw heads with a screwdriver.
Use Allen head, Torx head, or hex-head cap screws rather than regular Phillips head screws to deter thieves. You can buy tamper-proof security screws, which need special removal equipment that an average criminal is unlikely to obtain.
4. Invest in Door and Window Alarms
The first way to protect your house is to secure your doors and windows. Burglars dislike disturbance; a minor alarm will usually send them fleeing.
Doorstop alarms are little-known yet powerful security systems that you can place on your interior and exterior doors. It’s a small wedge-shaped gadget you will need to insert beneath the door. If a burglar attempts to unlock the door from the outside, the alarm goes off and creates a loud noise. The wedge form will also stop the door from opening.
It is also convenient since you can transfer the alarm from door to door or travel with it. You can get one for less than $10, and you may install it in seconds.
5. Reinforce Your Door
Burglars can gain entry with a well-placed kick or body slam that cracks the doorjamb and even the door, allowing them to stroll right in. You may stop intruders in their tracks by strengthening your door and jamb with additional hardware.
If you are using a sliding door in your house, you may use this DIY hack that can protect your door, and it’ll only cost you $15 or less and will only require several seconds to set up.
This solution involves inserting a bar or dowel into the sliding door’s tracks to prevent someone from opening or moving your door. A wooden dowel or a cut-off broom handle would work just as well as a bar for securing sliding glass doors wrapped on the ends to avoid damaging your door frame.
6. Use a Door Barricade
A door barricade is a simple device with two primary components: the base plate and the barrier. It would be best to secure the base plate to the floor before sliding the barrier into place.
As unreliable as it looks, backing up your door with this device is one of the best lifesaving security hacks. These tools can help protect your door from the inside. This is an excellent solution to keep criminals out even if your lock is broken.
7. Beat Bolt Cutters With Bigger Chains
Justin Matuszek, a security tips expert, said, “a desperate burglar with an angle grinder and enough time can break through most any lock.” “But most often, a burglar armed with a bolt cutter will take much more time.”
From this statement, the bigger a lock’s chain is and the less accessible it is, the more resistant it is against bolt cutters. As well as the type of locking mechanism determines how easy it is to remove a lock. Bolt cutters are not as effective when a stronger lock is in place, such as the Master Lock Magnum keyed padlock and the Master Lock ProSeries Combination Lock.
8. Pickproof Your Deadbolt
Sadly, unless you have a keyless lock, there are no 100% pickproof locks. Pickproof locks are simply more challenging to lock picking and bumping because they contain additional tumblers, giving the key two functions. This increases the lock’s susceptibility to tampering, and, as a result, it is vulnerable to lock bumping.
You may install a deadbolt protection mechanism that slips a ‘lock’ over the deadbolt handle and prevents it from rotating, preventing the door from opening.
9. Back your Entrance with a Door Strike Plate
Many people use a door chain to strengthen the security of their front doors. Most door chains break quickly when pressure is exerted on your door, making them ineffective in keeping criminals away.
Using a heavy-duty strike plate and extra-long screws to reinforce your door’s frame provides the additional reinforcement it needs to resist a thief attempting to kick in your door.
A strike plate lock is a rigid security mechanism that performs equally to a traditional door chain but offers significantly more protection. It can endure more than 50 kicks, whereas most conventional door chains give in after only a few tries.
You can quickly set up these devices. You can use two long screws with the device to secure it to the jamb. That is all there is to it. It operates on both round and lever doorknobs, allowing you to secure most doors quickly.
10. Upgrade Patio Doors
Patio door locks are not enough, and burglars can break into them fairly easily. Putting a heavy-duty stick inside the doorway track will shut the door, but it will look shabby and will be challenging to take whenever you would like to open it. However, there is a better approach to acquiring the security you require.
You may install an additional foot lock to attach the door’s bottom with a screw that slips into a hole that locks the door. The Door Guardian is a comparable lock that mounts to the top of the door. Without compromising security, these locks allow the door to open 3 inches. It takes roughly 10 minutes to complete the installation. Drill holes in the track for the pin to slip through, and attach the bracket carrying the hook to the door.
11. Install Ground and Wall Anchors
Installing ground and wall anchor is an excellent method to protect your house. Security anchors are dependable and robust anchor points to lock your valuables safely.
You may start by drilling three holes and inserting screws to attach the heavy-duty security hook to the concrete. You can find the pin and bolts behind a dome. You may use your fasteners to connect the anchor in truck beds or other surfaces. The directions are straightforward, and it usually comes with a lifetime warranty.
12. Invest in a Small Safe
Most of us do not require a large, expensive safe to protect our belongings. You may acquire a safe that would protect you from criminals for $100. If you have spare money, you can have more optional features such as fire protection and digital or biometric opening systems that might raise the price of your safe. Screw the wall safe or cylinder floor safe to the floor, as most safes feature holes inside for this purpose. Attach the wall safe within a wall and cover it with a picture, or hide it in the corner of a closet or another inconspicuous location.
13. Secure Your Spare Keys
When it comes to finding “hidden” outside keys, a burglar’s intuition is sharp. So, rather than hiding your spare keys beneath the doormat or in a planter, keep them secured. Instead, keep your spare key hidden somewhere safe. Remember that insurance providers may refuse to compensate your losses if there is no evidence of forcible entry.
Installing a combination lockbox might be an excellent solution for you. Install your lockbox in an unnoticeable location of your house. However, do not use the manufacturer’s short, flimsy screws. A thief may pry the box and take it home to open later. Instead, use four stainless steel No. 10 x 2-inch screws.
14. Invest in a Protective Mail Box
Mail theft is rising due to the ease with which thieves usually target unsecured mailboxes. You may use a secure mailbox, which is one definite way to prevent crooks from stealing your mail—checks, credit card offers, and personal information.
Protective mailboxes are wall-mount lockable mailboxes made of 14-16 gauge electro-galvanized steel for strength and durability. (1)
These boxes are an excellent way for you to protect your essential information. Suppose you receive mail and want to open the box; you’ll need a key. Fasten it to the wall or post it like a regular mailbox.
15. Don’t Leave the Garage Opener in Your Car
A criminal who sneaks into your vehicle can quickly gain access to your garage by grabbing the remote. You can remove your visor-mounted remote and replace it with a keychain remote. It’s easy to bring it with you every time you get out of the car. Home centers provide a limited selection of remote controls, but you may discover more online.
16. Secure Your Garage
You certainly have expensive tools, your car, and easy access to your house in our garage. Always close your garage door to block passersby from seeing what’s inside, secure the entrance to your home, and put a motion sensor light above your garage. These days you can now install digital door locks in your garage, which are pretty reliable.
17. Secure the Overhead Door
Usually, whenever homeowners travel on vacation, they unplug the overhead garage door opener to “lock” the door. This is a good idea, but shutting the door physically with an additional lock is even greater. An unplugged opener can’t prevent “fishing,” and it can’t keep a burglar from breaking inside the house from opening the garage door from the inside.
Locking the door itself makes a burglar’s job more difficult and time-consuming. Drill a hole in the track directly next to one of the rollers and insert a padlock if your door doesn’t have a lockable latch.
18. Avoid Sharing Travel Plans through Social Media
Remember that everyone is using social media nowadays. Therefore, it’s similar to speaking to an audience with a megaphone. If you don’t want your entire social media group to know about your travel plans, don’t share them. Criminals can easily search for terms like trip, travel, vacation, and out of town and obtain details of the dates and times people will leave their homes while cross-referencing them with the particular street. This makes these houses an incredibly easy target. (2)
On the other hand, you may also use social media to make it appear as if you are still at home while on vacation. Moreover, it would be best if you waited patiently until after your holiday before posting information about your trip. If you need to let folks know you’ll be out of town ahead of time, make sure you set your post private on that social networking platform. You may make sharing your calendar considerably more private by limiting its audience.
19. Utilize Fake Signs and Stickers
Placing a fake home security system sign in your front yard is a quick and easy DIY home security solution. You can even put stickers on the doors and windows. These signs and stickers serve as a deterrent to potential criminals, and even if they’re not real, crooks will falsely believe they are and seek out a less complicated target.
It’s for this reason that they’re so powerful as a deterrent. You may purchase signs like these for $10-15 only, which is significantly cheaper than the monthly costs of a monitoring home security system.
20. Install Fake Security Cameras
To deter criminals completely, you must convince them that breaking into your home is not worthwhile.
Installing fake security cameras on your property is a simple yet efficient way to reduce the chances of an invasion. You can carefully place two or three counterfeit cameras around your premises. It will be enough to scare burglars and force them to seek easier targets.
One thing to note is that it is possible to hack security cameras. So, the other benefit of fake cameras is that security camera hackers cannot invade fake cameras and home privacy.
The most effective are the fake cameras with tiny flashing LED lights that help them appear to be turned on and recorded. These devices usually cost $10 each only. It is very savvy compared to actual security cameras that can cost several hundred dollars each from a security agency. (3)
We have tried to provide you with as many tips as possible here, but the onus is on you to follow through with them. Securing your home may not be the most exciting thing, but in the end, it could save your life or thousands of dollars. That is why we highly recommend you take our advice and implement as many of these tips as possible.
(1) electro-galvanized steel – https://www.britannica.com/technology/electrogalvanizing
(2) social media – https://communications.tufts.edu/marketing-and-branding/social-media-overview/
(3) security agency – https://www.britannica.com/topic/National-Security-Agency
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