DIY Tips - how to improve the safety of your home and garage

A Generic Photo of Lock and chain. Lock the shed with a sturdy chain and padlock or an anchor device to keep your property secure. See PA Feature HOMES Homes Column. Picture credit should read: PA Photo/thinkstockphotos. WARNING: This picture must only be used to accompany PA Feature HOMES Homes Column.
A Generic Photo of Lock and chain. Lock the shed with a sturdy chain and padlock or an anchor device to keep your property secure. See PA Feature HOMES Homes Column. Picture credit should read: PA Photo/thinkstockphotos. WARNING: This picture must only be used to accompany PA Feature HOMES Homes Column.

Improving door security might seem like the most important step to home safety, but if your home’s windows are easy to break in to, it is basically pointless.

All windows on the ground and lower-ground floorshould be fitted with locks and, ideally, laminated glass which won’t break into removable pieces.

There are locks for all types of wooden window. Many houses in this country have sash windows which are a lovely original feature, but a risky one because they can be opened from outside. Sash catches prevent this from happening, but you must fit locks as well.

UPVC and metal windows should have adequate built-in security, but if you want to improve it, consult a locksmith because it’s not easy to do yourself and you may end up invalidating any guarantee. If you’re buying new windows, check they have the latest security features.

Garden sheds and other outbuildings will always be vulnerable to a break in, and thieves know they often contain valuable items like tools and lawnmowers. If you must store valuables in the shed, mark them with your postcode and house number using a UV pen, and lock the shed with a sturdy chain and padlock or an anchor device.

Garages are also vulnerable to break in and, if they have internal access, could be an easy way into the house. While you can improve the security of garage windows and back doors with locks, grilles and laminated glass, the main door (where the car goes in) can often be ignored. There are locks available to suit other types of garage door.