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Be Secure In Your Home

Most burglars are opportunists and they will look for unlocked doors or opened windows to access your property. Research shows the majority gain access through a door. By taking some basic precautions you can protect your home from uninvited guests…
 
Front Doors 
Having a flimsy front door makes for an easy target. The police advise you to ensure that the timber frames are sound and securely bolted or screwed to the walls every 60cm around the whole frame. Ensure that the frame is strong and will support the door, hinges and lock and that the door is suitable for external use and is a minimum of 44mm thick. Consider fitting a London Bar (metal strip on frame side) to support the strike box, or Birmingham bar to support the frame on the hinge side. If the door is weak consider fitting a sheet steel plate or door reinforcer on the outside covering the lock area. 

Doors should ideally be fitted with a five lever mortice deadlock. A single rim lock is usually inadequate. If you are thinking of changing the door, the police give approval for doors that have reinforced frames and come with a five point locking system. 

If your doors have multi-locking handles, make sure that you always lock the door with a key. Simply closing the door and pushing the handle up will not prevent someone entering. Ensure that you engage the multi-locking mechanism and that the door is securely locked – LIFT, LOCK, REMOVE. 

Glazed panels may look pretty but are not as safe as solid doors. Consider replacing ordinary or toughened glass panels with laminated glass - two pieces of glass bonded together with a sheet of laminate - as they offer much greater resistance to a break in. 

For added safety and security fit a spy hole and door chain or limiter. These will enable you to deal with callers to your front door whilst retaining a level of security. 

Letterboxes should have an internal cover plate or a letter-box cage. Do not leave house or car keys near the door as they can be removed through the letterbox. 

Patio Doors 
Patio doors should have a minimum of three locking points, with an anti-lift device to prevent them being lifted from their runners. 

French Windows 
They are less secure than single leaf doors. Both doors should be fitted with mortice rack bolts (bolts fitted within the door and operated internally by a threaded key). Alternatively, you could use surface-mounted locking bolts (push to lock, key to open). Whichever type you use, fit top and bottom to provide rigidity. 

Bi-folding Doors 
The most secure bi-fold doors will come with a high quality multi-point locking system and a hidden, inline tracking system. This combination will render it impossible for an intruder to lift the doors out of place. The doors are attached to the running gear that is contained and concealed within the track. 

 

When you are at home get into the habit of ensuring both your front and back doors and locked, particularly if you intend to be in the garden and away from the house for a time. 

Windows 
Fit window locks with keys to all your downstairs windows and any others that are easy to reach. Keep window keys in a safe place, out of sight and reach. Keep them close to the window so that you can find them easily if you needed to escape in the event of fire, but not on the windowsill. 

Lighting 
Outdoor lighting not only acts as a deterrent, but also makes it easier to find your way if you're coming or going after dark. You can install a low-level light that automatically switches on from dusk until dawn. Or you can get a light that switches on when it senses movement outside your home. 

Plug a lamp into a time switch that will automatically turn on in the evenings but don't leave it in a room that passers-by can see into when the light is on. 

Alarms and Cameras 
Visible burglar alarms and security cameras will deter burglars and increase the security of your home.
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