Garage Security

 
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Protect you garage from burglars
Garage doors are a common security weak point and an easy target for thieves. Securing your garage door doesn’t just mean protecting the roll-up door. You also have to look at every entrance point as a vulnerability.
 
In the past, some garage burglaries were accomplished through the use of devices that could foil the garage door opener codes. Early automatic openers all featured the same code. Not very secure. Thieves could just purchase an opener made by the same company and open the door. The second generation of openers increased security through dip switches that could be set to a unique combination. Unfortunately, most owners left the default setting in place.
 
Modern automatic garage door openers feature rolling-code technology. The remote transmits a new security code each time it is pressed. There are more than 100 billion codes, so the system is pretty secure.
 
However, most of the garage burglaries in our area don’t involve any fancy electronic technology. Very often, they occur when a homeowner leaves the garage door open “for just a few minutes” or leaves it partially open for air circulation during the summer. In other cases, the burglar enters through the side or rear door to the garage.
 
Check out our “Garage Security Tips” for ways to protect your garage from burglars.
 
Garage Security Tips
 
  • Keep the garage door closed at all times unless you are somewhere inside the garage. It only takes moments for a thief to enter and help himself. 
  • Put a deadbolt on the exterior service door leading into the side or back of your garage. The same goes for the door between your house and garage. Then keep them locked.
  • Ensure that both the exterior service door and the door from your garage into the house are strong. A steel-clad door is a good upgrade, as is anti-kick metal hardware you can add to the door frame.
  • A very inexpensive anti-kick device on the exterior service door is just a simple 2x4 wooden bar across the width of the door on the inside, held up by a pair of simple door bar brackets you can purchase at most home centers and hardware stores.
  • Don’t leave the garage door remote in your vehicle, particularly if you park it in the driveway or on the street. If a thief breaks into your car, he can use the remote to get into your garage and, perhaps, into your home.
  • Consider purchasing a keychain remote opener which you keep with you at all times on your keyring.
  • If you find you sometimes forget to close the garage door, consider investing in an opener system that closes the door automatically after it has been left open for a specific period of time. You can either upgrade to a new opener that has this feature built in, or you can purchase after-market switches that tune into your existing equipment and do the job. You can even purchase garage door openers and controllers that you can monitor and control from you smart phone.
  • Install a wide-angle peephole in the door between your house and your garage. That way, if you hear a strange noise in the garage, you can see what’s going on without endangering yourself.
  • Cover your garage windows so burglars can’t see in. They won’t be able to see if your car is there (a clue as to whether or not you are home) and they won’t be able to check out what valuables may be stored there.
  • Padlock your garage door when you’re out of town. Slipping the padlock through one of the holes in the door track is all it takes.
  • Light it up. Install motion-activated flood lights on the garage to scare would-be thieves away. You don’t even need to wire them in. There now are good solar versions available at home centers and online.