Is Your Garage Door a Soft Target?

As the economy tanks, crime is going up. The bad guys will be looking for soft targets and your garage – especially if you leave it open – is one of the softest.

What can you do to reduce the odds you’ll be victimized?

Don’t flash what you have

Try to avoid leaving your garage door open so that everyone who drives or walks by has a full view of your stuff. Even if you’re working in the garage, it’s best to leave the doors down. Try to keep what you have under wraps – and keep a low profile.

Keep the door locked

This is just common sense – but it’s a fact that many thieves never have to break into anything. They just walk right on in – and walk away (or drive away) with your stuff. Use a high quality door lock, plus a deadbolt. If you have an outside electric keypad opener, don’t use an obvious code or tell too many people what the code is.

If your garage has doors with windows, consider replacing them with solid doors

As nice as it is to have a door with an upper glass section to let the sun shine in, glass allows a would-be thief to see inside your place – and getting in is as simple as smashing out the window.

Install a bright light near your garage

Ideally, one with a motion sensor. The light should be of the floodlight type – and either far enough up or otherwise out of reach that it would take at least a little bit of effort to defeat it by smashing the bulb or some such.

Consider an alarm system

You might even get a rate reduction on your homeowner’s (as well as your classic car) insurance. Or get a fake alarm – dummy closed-circuit cameras or blinking red LED lights near doors and windows can accomplish the same thing (but forget about the insurance discount).

Make your stuff harder to steal

Tools should be secured in heavy, hard to remove/move (and locked) tool cases; ideally, cases permanently fixed to hard points such as the floor or workbenches. Locked cabinets bolted to the wall studs work well. Garage doors should have heavy metal lock bars and other such devices to make them difficult to open for an unauthorized user.

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