Securing your doors and windows: our tips
Feeling safe is a human basic need. Anyone who has ever had the misfortune of being the victim of a break-in knows only too well what negative ramifications this invasion into our private space can cause. Break-ins represent a stark violation of our personal safety, not just in material terms but also emotionally. There are various ways to protect yourself from such intrusions. We have described the main ones in our article on Protection against break-ins. In this article, we would like to show you how you can protect the access points to your home (windows and doors) against intruders.
An overview of the essentials
Doors with wooden frames and single pane windows are very easy for burglars to break open. They only need the simplest of tools, like a screwdriver, and they’re in. Once they have overcome this first hurdle, they are free to do what they want if there are no further security measures in the house or flat.
It’s not just the doors and windows in old houses and flats that make for easy pickings; even a lot of new properties don’t have security windows or doors. These are seldom installed on account of the cost involved and so as not to ruin the aesthetics.
But they can be retrofitted with certain mechanical solutions to make them a lot more secure. Burglaries aren’t prevented through mechanical solutions alone. Prevention requires the dependable interaction between these and other security measures such as alarm systems and video surveillance. You can read more about the advantages of security systems in this section.
Mechanical options for securing doors and windows
Securing your windowsWhenever you leave your home, all the windows should be properly closed. A window that is slightly ajar is an open window.
There are two things you need to bear in mind when it comes to securing your windows: one is the glass and the other is the locking mechanism. Most new windows are double-glazed as a minimum and can often also be locked. It is the single pane windows in particular, like those used in the basement, that do not fulfil any security criteria.
Secure windows should be made from shatterproof glass, so they cannot be easily smashed. Security film adhesives can also be applied to the glass.
This prevents the glass from completely shattering as it is held together by the security film. When installing these films, it is important for the edge of the film to be firmly attached all along the window frame. That’s why a specialist should also be called in for this.
Besides the glass, there are also plenty of different locking solutions to prevent intruders prying the window open. These include swivel bolts, which are pushed in front of the window at a 90° angle to lock it. Lockable window handles and solid window locks in the form of steel bolts will also do the trick. Hinge locks are fairly easy to fit and reinforce the window’s hinges.
Securing your doorsAll doors to your home should also be closed as a matter of principle, even if you’re only going to be out for a short time.
There are several mechanical solutions for securing doors. Care should be taken to ensure that the door hinges are firmly attached, as much as possible, in the door panel and frame. The striking plates should also be a certain thickness and properly attached as well.
There are also lots of locking devices with which you can secure your doors. Bolt locks are used as standard today; the bolt should be at least three centimetres long. There are other locks for doors like a latch lock, security door bar and crossbar door lock.
In addition to these locking mechanisms, just how secure the door is depends heavily on how it is attached. Simple wooden door frames can be easily kicked in if they are not anchored deep enough into the walls. But these types of doors can be retrofitted to make them more secure. It must ensured, however, that the securing solutions used on the panel, frame, hinges, locks, fittings and strike plates are all properly coordinated. Security doors made of metal offer maximum protection, but they are rarely installed in residential buildings.
The downside of only using mechanical security solutionsThere are lots of possibilities for retrofitting existing doors and windows or securing them in a new building. But they are sometimes associated with very high costs and a lot of effort. And a layperson can hardly be expected to work out which combination of security solutions is best. After all, it’s not enough to secure just one window or door.
As a tenant you often have fewer options for improving the security of your windows and doors against break-ins, as many mechanical solutions alter the design of the windows and doors and cannot be easily removed again.
In many cases, burglars are not deterred by these additional security features. Because if they really want to get it, they will find a way.
Sustainable protection with a security system
Security systems with an alarm system, mechanical security features and video surveillance provide all-round protection. Lots of burglars are already put off when they see the stickers on the outside, because they know what’s in store for them. But if they still manage to enter your house or flat, all is not lost. There is an alarm system inside with a motion detector. This can be very easily disabled within 30 seconds. But in the event of a break-in, a siren goes off after this time. This alarm signal goes to Securitas Direct with video footage so they can assess the situation and notify the police if need be. The burglar doesn’t get the chance to take anything from the flat or house, and you don’t have to worry when they’ve gone again.
Every property and house is different; not just the location, but also the nature of the living spaces determine which protective measures are worthwhile. Securitas Direct offers a free security check so as to optimally tailor your security system to your needs.
Arrange your free security check now
So, not only are you protected against break-ins, but also against fire, water damage and power cuts. This is reported automatically and we make sure to resolve the issue. Which means that if you’re away, for example, you don’t have to cut your trip short.
Still have questions about our offer? Contact us. We’re happy to help.
For more tips on how to protect your home against break-ins, read our related articles.