For many homeowners, tools, yard equipment, bicycles, ATVs, watercraft, and cars are often located in the garage. No matter what you keep, is common and unfortunately, many garages aren’t very secure. In fact, 9% of burglars enter through the garage door because of poor garage door security. Still, this information doesn’t mean you shouldn’t store valuable items in the garage. Garage storage is a commonality, so taking the time to ensure security and safety are considered, you’ll make any garage a less inviting entry point for burglars. If you’re wondering how to secure a garage door, here are some simple ideas to get you started.
Tips to Enhance Garage Door Security
Use these tips to secure your garage door and make it safe to store your possessions or use it as a premium storage rental option.
Cover the windows
Whether you use your garage as seasonal storage to get rid of clutter in your home or keep valuable items inside, you should limit visibility. Garage doors often feature windows that make it easy for potential thieves to see if you store valuable items inside. Those windows are also a good way for burglars to ensure no one is home. Opaque curtains keep burglars from looking in, but it can be easy to forget to close them. If you use your garage frequently and use the natural light windows provide, consider adding a frosted film that sticks to the windows for better garage door security. It will allow light in but make it difficult for intruders to see what’s inside.
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Invest in security
A security system for your garage door security might seem like an obvious answer. But many people never even consider buying one. All too often, the reasons for not getting a security system have to do with the events of the past. Homeowners and renters alike assume that they don’t need a security system because they’ve never been robbed before or because of a neighborhood’s safe history.
The reality is, a security system is designed to be used as a preventative measure, and studies suggest it works. Burglars seek homes that are an easy target so they can avoid attracting unwanted attention. When planning a robbery, 60% of burglars avoid homes with a security system. If you own a security system, you may think that you never need to use it. But it could be protecting you from threats you were completely unaware existed.
If you’re seeking a more affordable security system, a smart monitor could be the answer. A smart garage door opener makes use of your smartphone and adds an extra layer of security to your garage. The opener utilizes wi-fi to connect to your phone and send alerts every time your garage door opens. This gives you an opportunity to control and monitor your garage no matter where you are and call law enforcement immediately when a break-in occurs. If you don’t have a garage door opener, you can purchase a monitor that attaches to your garage door frame and syncs to your phone with its own app to send alerts.
Don’t keep the remote opener in the car
It’s common to leave your garage door opener remote in your car. Whether you clip it to the visor or leave it in the console, it’s simply convenient to have it on hand. Unfortunately, it’s not a good idea. Whether you’re parked at home or in public, those are the first places a burglar will look. Car break-ins are devastating enough without providing the burglar a pass to enter your home. Choose a way to carry your remote with you when you’re in public (like a purse or pocket), and bring it inside when you enter your home.
Close and lock the door
Of course you close your garage door every night before dark and when you leave your home — except for that time you forgot. Leaving your garage door open when you’re at home can be an open invitation to unwanted visitors. It’s common to leave the garage door open when you’re working outside or going in and out of your home. Unsurprisingly, these activities can make it easy to forget to close the door behind you. Not only does this leave everything in your garage on display for would-be robbers, but it can actually increase the likelihood of a daytime robbery while you’re at home. While most people worry about burglaries occurring at night, 45% of burglaries actually occur during daytime hours. Often, burglaries happen by chance, and leaving your garage door open can make you a target.
Pro tip for how to secure a garage door:
Adding a lock is an easy option to secure your garage door. See our full list of the best locks to help you decide which one is right for you.
When burglaries occur at night, thieves depend on the cover of darkness. Late-night burglars generally assume homeowners are asleep and lights are an unwelcome surprise. There are a variety of outdoor lighting options to choose from to improve your garage door security.
- Professionally installed outdoor lighting: Outdoor lighting is a popular way to enhance your outdoor space and eliminate dark areas on your landscape that can shield would-be burglars. You can choose from a variety of lighting options that are wired into your home’s electrical system.
- Motion sensor lights: These lights come on suddenly when potential burglars near your garage. They often cause enough of a disturbance to interrupt the burglary before it begins. These lights can be wired in or solar-powered.
- Solar-powered lights: If you rent your home or aren’t in a position to have outdoor lights installed, solar lights are a great alternative. Solar-powered floodlights require no electrical wiring.
Professionally installed, DIY-installed, and solar-powered outdoor lighting are available in a variety of options, including floodlights, pathway lights, and motion sensor lighting.
Secure your safety release
There’s no doubt your garage safety release is a useful tool. However, potential thieves can exploit the feature to quickly access your home by taking advantage of your safety release to open a locked garage door in less than a minute. Luckily, there are ways to eliminate the problem without getting rid of the release entirely.
A few ways to secure your garage door include:
- Cut the cord. If you have an alternate way to reach the release lever, simply removing the long cord is the quickest, most cost-effective way to eliminate outside access.
- Add a zip tie. Threading a zip tie into your safety lever to hold it in the locked position will make it virtually impossible for a potential burglar to grab the release cord with a coat hanger and trip the release. In an emergency, the zip tie can be broken by pulling hard on the release cord from inside the garage.
- Install a shield. Installing a shield designed to block wire from reaching the cord will eliminate access without changing the way your release cord works at all.
Each of these garage door security solutions still allows you to use your garage door remote as long as you have power.
Inspect your landscape
Trees, shrubs, and bushes can provide valuable hiding spots for burglars sneaking around your home. Look at your yard, driveway, and surrounding landscape from different vantage points to determine if your landscaping choices are blocking your visibility. Clearing away large trees and bushes can provide neighbors with a clear view of strangers sneaking around your property. Consider clearing all shrubs and bushes away from windows and entry doors. An alternative option is to plant small thorny plants beneath ground floor windows. This can deter thieves from looking in or using windows as a potential entry point to your home.
Learning how to secure a garage door allows you to use the space without worrying about losing your belongings to burglars. It also helps you keep the rest of your home safe from criminals. A garage is a valuable asset to your home, and it’s easy to secure with the simple methods outlined above. Instead of letting your space go to waste, consider garage door security an investment and add extra space to your home.