Tuesday, March 18, 2014
First, I would like to thank everyone who came out to the Safety Talk I hosted at the Plano Police Department. Officer Mark Dawson informed us that a majority of people use reactive items such as alarms to protect their homes against break-ins and should be using pro-active measures. Once an alarm goes off it takes an average of 7-10 minutes for the police to arrive, however an intruder only needs 3-5 minutes in your home to take your valuables and get out.
Take a moment to read these valuable tips on how to better protect your home and family.
1. Do Not have a Garage Door Opener in Your Car – leaving a garage door opener in your car is like leaving a key to your home, especially if you do not lock the door that goes from your garage into your home. Your address can easily be found off your insurance card and the garage door remote allows them to gain access your home. Instead use a garage opener FOB that is attached to your keychain. That way when you lock your car, and take your keys you also take your garage door opener with you. Don’t forget to deprogram the garage door opener button in your car as well.
2. Don’t Use Keypads Outside Garage Doors – Over time the numbers you use in your code will become dirty and it will quickly become apparent to a burglar which 4 numbers are in your code. The burglar will then continue to try codes until they hit the combination that works. Some tips, change your code every couple of months so the same buttons are not getting dirty. Only use 3 numbers so it throws off the burglar as to which number is being used twice, and try not to use your birthday year because 1 and 9 are the most common numbers used.
3. Change Your Door Security Plate – A normal door security plate has two small screws which can be easily he kicked or pried off to open the door. The security plate in the picture below is the type of plate that should be used and by the size of the screws you can see why!
4. Don’t Pretend You are Not Home – All burglars have one thing in common, they knock. If you pretend you are not at home, they will use force and try to enter your home. When face to face with an intruder, the best thing to do is yell hang on or pretend you are calling out to your husband or wife and ask who it is.
5. Cover Glass on Front Doors – Glass on front doors are not a good idea, they allow the burglar to see into the home. The safest door has no glass windows and just a peep hole that allows you to view outside. If you want to have glass, try frosted glass or use a window covering.
6. Check That Your Windows/Doors are Locked – Be sure to ALWAYS check all your windows and doors are locked before you leave the house. Especially before you leave on vacation, anyone such as a repairman can unlock a window or door when they are working in your home, leaving it open to window burglaries which are very common.
7. Doggie Doors are a No No– A 17 year old kid can usually weigh 80 to 100 lbs and can get access to the house through a doggie door. You may look at it and think no one will fit through that doggie door however a motivated individual who needs money is very motivated and can make it work.
8. Get a Door Stopper – This Door Stopper is mounted about 5 ft from the ground and is two times stronger than a deadbolt. Most burglars will try and kick where the lock is to break open a door, if you put the door stopper in a higher location, burglars will not be able to locate where the door stopper is.
9. Peep Holes on Garage Door – If someone does break into your garage and you are inside and hear a sound you are most likely to open the door to see what the sound is. In that moment you have now come face to face with the burglar and gave them access into your home. A peep hole allows you to view the intruder while you are hidden. Make sure you mount it at the woman or teenagers height.
10. Cover the Alarm Light – Look through your windows and doors, can you see your alarm pad? If you can, cover the lights so burglars can’t see if the alarm is on. Many burglars check through a window or door to see if the alarm is on, if not they know it is safe to break into the house.
11. Get a Night Lock – Deadbolts, chain locks, flimsy wood frames are not successful at keeping intruders out. The Nightlock uses the strength of the floor and can withstand 1950 lbs and can be used on single and double doors.
12. Don’t Stop the Mail – If you go on vacation don’t stop the mail. You don’t know who has access to that information, it’s best to have a neighbor you trust collect your mail and newspapers.
13. Mount Security Cameras at Face Level – Most security cameras are mounted high up and only catch the top of the hat that a burglar may be wearing. Mount security cameras at eye level so you have a clear picture of what the intruder looks like. Don’t forget to keep the lights on so you don’t have a black and white image.
14. Use a Sign – Get a sign that says no solicitors to keep people from coming up to your door for no reason. The best thing is to have a sign that says “Do Not Right Bell, Day Sleeper.” This sends the message that someone is home deterring an intruder as they realize it is not an easy home to target to break in.