Where to Start
When it comes to home and business security, prevention is certainly better than a costly cure. Security does not have to be complex or expensive.
Most burglars want quick and easy access to your property. There are several simple ways to deter or deny them access.
Doors and windows
Securing doors and windows is a great place to start. Before even considering the many locks on the market, make sure your doors and windows are solid. External doors should be of solid timber or solid-core construction. All doors and windows should have strong frames. If the door or window can be easily forced from its frame, no locking mechanism will protect it. Also, use reinforced glass wherever you can, for example, in and around doors. And check the hinges. Safety hinges will prevent the door being pulled from its hinges. Fit hinge bolts to reinforce the hinge side of a door against the use of force.
Lock it up
Now you are ready to think locks.
Locks should be good quality and fitted to all doors and windows, no matter what type of door or how small or inaccessible the window seems. There's a lock for every door and window type.
In most burglaries, the intruder enters through a window. Despite this, most homes don't have keyed window locks. Window locks are not expensive - have them fitted to all windows and skylights. For an added deterrent, put security grilles on windows.
Padlocks can also be useful for locking power boxes, gates and grilles.
Security screen doors
Security screen doors may keep out flies and mosquitoes but unless they are really secure they won't protect you from much else. Security screen doors are generally aluminium or steel with a mesh screen.
When looking for a security screen door, make sure:
- It meets the Australian Standard (AS 5039 or AS 2803) - does it display the Australian Standards logo?
- It is installed to Australian Standards (AS 5040)
- You ask for a written guarantee that the door and its installation meet the standards.
- That the door frame is strong enough. If not, it may have to be reinforced.
- That the gap between the door and frame is not more than 4 mm, otherwise it may be possible to jemmy the door open.
- Aluminium or steel doors? To prevent break-in, a steel door is recommended with stainless steel mesh.
Keep external lighting bright - darkness is easy to hide in. As well as having clear and maintained lighting of entrances and exits, consider installing movement sensor lights to detect if someone is getting too close.
Movement sensor lights put burglars off. They can be wired into your mains or connected to an extension lead. Take care not to locate movement sensors where trees, pets or you will set them off.
Safes come in shapes, sizes and strengths that are ideal for homes and small business. They provide an easy method of storing valuables - from jewellery and cash to business documents and disks. Safes protect your property not only from theft but also from possible fire or flood damage.
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