Preventing Garage Door Break-Ins

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A garage door is large and can be one of the most challenging entry points in a house to successfully secure. The checklist below provides homeowners with items to make sure their garage doors are protected against break-ins.


Select a strong, rigid, and thick material for the garage door.

A common tactic for home intruders when owners and neighbors are not around is to cut or break through the garage door. A rigid material will deter an intruder from cutting or breaking through. Effective materials include steel and solid wood. Stay away from weaker materials such as thin aluminum and fiberglass. Also, a thicker door will make break-ins more difficult for intruders. Ensure that the door is continuously solid and at least 1-3/4″ thick. A 2″ thick insulated heavy gauge steel door or a continuously solid 1-3/4″ thick wood door are ideal choices.



Specify proper windows for the garage door.

Window inserts in garage doors are highly desired because they provide sunlight into a garage and enhance the style of a building facade. However, they enable home intruders to survey the interior of a house. Additionally, they provide a glass surface entry point for intruders. With this in mind, the safest option is to select a solid garage door with no windows. If a window insert is selected for design purposes, ensure the window has tinted glass or frosted glass. This will make it difficult for an intruder to see into the garage. Additionally, the windows should be small and high up on the door. This makes it more difficult for an intruder to break them.


Install a specialty lock.

Locks can be an effective way to secure a garage door when it is not in use. Many break-ins occur when owners are away from their home for an extending period of time. To secure the garage door in this situation, many specialty locks work by fixing the door to the ground. The lock cannot be disabled, and the door cannot be opened without a key.


Put a peephole into the garage door.

A peephole in the door will enable a homeowner to see outside and check on any suspicious activity while remaining protected behind the door.


Keep the area around the garage door well lit.

Many break-ins occur at night in darkness. A well lit area around the garage door opening will surely deter many intruders. An effective product may be a motion sensor light installed at the head of the garage door opening. The light should be positioned to shine down and illuminate the area in front of the opening.


Always remember to close the garage door before leaving the home.

This last step on the checklist is a simple, yet very important and commonly forgotten item. Numerous break-ins occur because homeowners neglect to close their garage door before leaving the home. Remember to always keep your garage door closed.