When choosing a deadbolt, look for such features:
as a bolt that extends at least one inch when in the locked position,
to resist ramming and kicking, hardened steel inserts to prevent the bolt
from being sawed off, and a reinforced strike plate with extra long mounting
screws to anchor the lock effectively.
Most deadbolts are single-cylinder (they
operate from the outside with a key and from the inside with a thumb latch).
Double-cylinder deadbolts require a key to open the lock from both outside
and inside your home. These locks are especially effectively for doors
with glass within 40 inches of the lock, because an intruder cannot break
the glass and unlock the door by reaching through (check with law enforcement
or Fire Marshal before installing a double-cylinder deadbolt, because
there are fire code restrictions).
As an alternative, security glazing can be applied to glass panels in
or near the door, or shatterproof glass can be installed, though these
options can be expensive.
Sliding Glass Doors…
Sliding glass doors can offer easy entry into your home. To improve
security on existing sliding glass doors, you can install keyed locking
devices that secure the door to the frame; adjust the track clearances
on the doors so they can't be pushed out of their tracks of the closed
door to prevent the door from opening even if the lock is jimmied or removed.
Most standard double-hung windows have thumb-turn locks between the
two window panels. Don't rely on these, they can be pried open or easily
reached through a broken pane. Instead, install keyed locking devices
to prevent the window from being raised from the outside, but make sure
everyone in the house knows where to find the key in case of an emergency.
An easy, inexpensive way to secure your windows is to use the "pin
trick". Drill an angled hole through the top frame of the upper window.
Then insert a nail or eyebolt. The window can't be opened until you remove
the nail. Make a second set of holes with window partly openly so you
can have ventilation without intruders.
Lighting is one of the
most cost-effective deterrents to burglary. Indoor-lighting gives the
impression that a home is occupied. If you are going to be away from your
home, consider using automatic timers to switch interior lights on and
off at preset times.
Outdoor lighting can eliminate hiding places. Install exterior lighting
near porches, rear, and side driveways, garage doors, and all other points
of entry. Entryways to your home should always be well lighted. Place
lights out of reach from the ground so the bulbs cannot be removed or
broken. Aim some lights away from the house so you can see if anyone is
approaching, or install motion-sensing lights, which turn on automatically
as some approaches.
Shrubs and Landscaping…
Your home's walkways and landscaping should
direct visitors to the main entrance and away from private areas. The
landscaping should provide maximum visibility to and from your house.
Trim shrubbery that could conceal criminal activity near doors and windows.
Provide light on areas of dense shrubs and trees that could serve as hiding
places. Cut back tree limbs that could help thieves climb into windows,
and keep yard fencing low enough too avoid giving criminals places to
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