Ways to Keep Your Detached Garage Safe and Secure
What do you keep in your garage? Cars? Lawn equipment? Tools? Chances are, you’re storing some valuable belongings in there.
While you may have home security measures in place, you may not have given as much consideration to your garage, especially if it does not provide direct access into your house. But by taking a few proactive steps, you can help keep your garage secure from potential intruders, says Family Handyman.
According to the FBI, residential burglaries resulted in a loss of $4.5 billion worth of property in 2013. And garages are the fourth most-common entryway for intruders, says HouseLogic.com. By taking some precautions, though, you can help prevent yourself from becoming a statistic.
Secure Windows and Side Doors
Detached garages may tempt burglars who want a quick, easy haul with minimal risk. Garage windows may provide potential intruders with a view of your belongings, says Family Handyman. The site suggests covering windows and further protecting your garage by installing bars over the windows.
In addition, Family Handyman suggests reinforcing the garage service door and doorjamb as well as installing deadbolt locks. Motion-activated lights outside the garage may also serve as a deterrent, according to the site.
Automatic Garage Doors
You might think an automatic overhead garage door will secure your garage, but it may still be possible for an intruder to gain access.
In fact, a burglar may be able to get into to your garage in seconds by using a wire hook to access a garage door’s manual emergency override, says Family Handyman. But you should never tamper with the door’s emergency manual override to try to prevent this, cautions the International Door Association. The association says the emergency override should be functional at all times to help prevent entrapment.
HouseLogic.com suggests screwing a wooden board above your garage door may prevent would-be intruders from being able to reach the emergency release with a wire hook. This video demonstrates how to do this.
Technology may also help alert you the moment someone opens your garage door. Smartphone apps can deliver alerts when your overhead door is raised, and you can close the door with a tap of the screen if you install a special sensor and Wi-Fi hub in your garage and sync the equipment to the app, HouseLogic says.
More Ways to Secure Your Garage
Other precautions may provide additional layers of security for your garage.
If you keep your garage door transmitter in the car, make sure your car is always locked; better yet, get a keychain-sized transmitter and keep it in your purse or pocket, says Family Handyman. And, says the site, when you pull your car out of the garage, watch to make sure the overhead door closes before you drive away.
Being observant can also be a useful security measure, but, of course, you won’t always be at home. When you are home, keep an eye on your neighbors’ homes and garages, too. And ask them to do the same for you. Joining a National Neighborhood Watch program and reporting any suspicious activity to law enforcement is one way to help keep your home and garage — as well as your neighbors’ — safe.
With a few basic security measures in place, you can gain the peace of mind that comes with knowing you’ve done your part to keep your garage — and its contents — safe and secure.