Your garage stores your car, tools, equipment, and other valuables that we normally want to keep safe but separate from the main house. However, garages can also be a vulnerable area of a home, often serving as a primary entrance and exit way and being more isolated than others areas of the house.
While most of us likely live in safe neighborhoods, there’s always the unfortunate risk that opportunistic burglars may be unable to avoid the temptation of an unsecured garage. To make sure that your garage is as safe as possible from even attempted break-ins, here are a few tips that you can follow for keeping your garage secure:
Always Keep the Door Closed and Locked
Never leave the garage door open, even if somebody is at home. Anyone who passes by or bothers to look in may find something interesting to them, especially if there is anything valuable kept in the garage. Do not leave windows open and keep both doors and windows locked when no one is around. For homes with attached garages, it is recommended that the door leading to the house be kept locked and even equipped with a double lock for added security.
Keep the Area Well Lit
A brightly lit garage makes thieves and burglars uneasy because they could be easily seen attempting a break-in. Install lights at all doors, and even around windows if possible. Exterior lighting, such as recessed lights or wall lamps not only adds a layer of security, but also nighttime beauty to your home as well.
If you’re concerned about energy consumption or need an extra layer of lighting security, install motion detecting floodlights that only turn on when someone is nearby. These bright lights will let you and others know that there was unexpected movement in the area and will surely scare many potential thieves away.
Cover Garage Windows
Install covers or curtains over the windows in your garage to prevent anyone from seeing any tools or high-value equipment you might have. Use sheer materials such as fabric or plastic sheets that allow light in but prevent anything inside the garage from being seen.
Install a Reliable Garage Door
Your garage door should serve as a strong, solid obstacle between the interior and the outside world. Even if you are looking to secure your garage in a safe neighborhood, it’s still a good idea to choose a door that is built with high-quality materials yet maintains a welcoming aesthetic, such as our recessed panel door, the Cambridge; our classic or elongated raised-panel garage door, the Standard+; or our carriage-house-style garage door, the Eastman Estate. All of which are made from 1 ¾” thick galvanized steel with a polyurethane-injected core.
If you intend to use your garage to store highly valuable equipment, tools, or other items, then it’s often a smart decision to choose a solid steel door with no windows or easily accessible openings. For example, our Top Tech is made from 23-gauge hot-galvanized steel and reinforced with 14-gauge plates around hinges and handles.
Install an Alarm System
Even a simple door sensor can work as a deterrent to would-be thieves. Door sensors can send out an audible alarm when the garage door is opened, discouraging anyone who tries to sneak in. Another option is a remote door sensor that triggers a silent alarm by sending a signal to a remote monitor or receiver when the door is opened.
Many garage door openers also have built-in security features, including a self-closing system or the ability to monitor when the door is opener or closed. Many openers now often integrate with smartphone apps, so you can even open or close your garage door over the Internet.
Never Share Your Security Code
If you have a wireless keypad installed outside of your garage, never tell anyone what the security code is. When using the keypad, make sure no one sees the numbers that you press. If you have to share the code with anyone for any reason, make sure it is someone you can truly trust and be sure to change the code regularly to make it difficult for anyone to guess what it is.
Bring the Keys to the Garage with You
When you’re away from home, always be sure to keep your house and garage keys on you rather than leaving them in the car or in a secret hiding place at home. For example, if your keys are left in your car and it gets broken into, a thief has easy access to your garage if they know where you live. If the garage door is operated with a remote, consider a keychain type remote that can be carried in your pocket, purse or bag with a key ring.
Hide Your Remote Control in Your Car
Do not leave the remote for your garage door opener clipped to your sun visor. Hide it in the glove compartment or another concealed storage spot in your car. If someone breaks into your vehicle and find your registration papers, and therefore your address, it would be easy for them to use the remote to enter your home.