Windows and doors play an important role in home security. Vulnerabilities due to location, damage, poor locks and more can all make your home more inviting to potential intruders. Here are different ways your windows and doors affect home security with tips to make your home more secure.
According to Oregon inmates, most burglars enter homes through an unlocked door or window. They avoid breaking the glass as not only does the smashing attract attention, but it also puts them at risk of getting hurt. There are many types of windows, but one thing they have in common is that as they become older, the hardware and locks deteriorate. This can make it easier for intruders to jimmy them open without even having to break the glass. If your home has older windows, here are some tips on the best windows to replace them with for added home security:
- Casement Windows: This is considered the most secure type of window as it offers no way to leverage anything on the exterior of the home to get the window open. As a result, intruders have no choice but to break the glass. As long as you lock your windows, and even if you don’t, it is very difficult for anyone to get into the home through a casement window.
- Sliding Windows: Sliding windows can also be secure as they have sturdy locks that keep the windows from opening. Many homeowners prefer this style of window as they can also be protected using a burglar bar. Burglar bars stop windows from opening, and don’t require unsightly security bars on the outside of the home.
- Double-Hung Windows: Although older styles of double-hung windows can be easier to break into because they open vertically, modern models are far more secure. They use a similar lock to sliding windows to keep both window sashes in place.
Even if an intruder does decide to break the window, new windows use double glazing, with two panes of glass instead of the standard single panes. This provides window safety and added home security protection as they are more difficult to break. Burglars admit that they can break into old windows using a putty knife on the locks.
They say the number one home security deterrent is strong windowsills and new windows. Last but not least, new windows make it more difficult for intruders to disarm window alarms. Older windows, even when protected with alarms, can easily be removed due to weakened window frames and sills.
When entering a home through a front door, many burglars choose to kick in the door as opposed to trying to jimmy the lock. Therefore, entry doors with deadbolts are a must. They offer double protection, as a) They are more difficult to kick in, and b) They are more difficult to break into by jimmying the lock.
Smart lock technology reduces the need for keys, which again, makes it impossible to enter by working the keyhole. Houses with a standard lock and no signs of alarm systems or home security are easy to break into, according to burglars, who can use a pipe wrench or even a power drill to get in. Another great thing about smart locks is that you can coordinate them with your phone, so should you forget to lock the door, you can lock it from anywhere.
What Do Burglars Look For When Finding A Home To Intrude?
Not surprisingly, burglars find homes with older window frames or cheap wooden doors to be the ideal targets. They can more easily manipulate the faulty window hardware to get into windows on the main floor without the need to smash glass. As mentioned, because many burglars admit to kicking in doors to gain entry, nothing would be more tempting than a rickety old wood door with rotting door frames. Some other home security vulnerabilities burglars look for include:
- Houses in more secluded areas
- Doors and windows covered by bushes or trees
- Second floor windows with access via a tree
- Garage doors
- Side doors
- Doors with mail slots that can weaken a door
All of these things can allow an intruder to enter your home in minutes. Burglars will also look for signs someone is away, such as piles of mail or newspapers, unshoveled walks, unmown lawns, etc.
Sliding Doors Versus Garden Doors
Your back doors leading to your garden are far more vulnerable than your front door. Therefore you want to consider the types of doors you want here. Old garden doors can make it very easy for an intruder to gain access to your home for several reasons. First, double door systems are easier to kick in than sliding glass doors. As well, if you have traditional, French-style garden doors with separate windowpanes, these can be broken without much noise.
This allows burglars to break one small pane near the handle, and then slide their hand in and open the lock. With sliding garden doors, the pane of glass is far too large for a burglar to smash. As well, like sliding windows you can secure sliding doors using a burglar bar. This offers excellent home security, and in fact you can even use a piece of wood to act as added protection.
Home Security Tips To Avoid Break-Ins
To help reduce the odds of break-ins use these helpful home security tips:
- Landscaping: Trim bushes and trees that can either block entry points, or provide a natural ladder for burglars.
- Lighting: Install motion lights on your property so should an intruder try to break in, they will be scared away by the lights. Also, always keep your doors well lit, and consider keeping a light timer inside the home to go on and off at certain times to make it look like someone is always home.
- Windows: If your windows are old consider installing new ones.
- Doors: Ditto for old doors.
These home security changes will make it harder for intruders to gain entry, and will keep your house safer.
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