Your home is your castle, right? The sad truth is that most homes are not nearly as secure as the homeowners think they are. On top of that, most advice on home security is pretty much useless. It mainly just keeps honest people out. But the people you really want to keep out can kick most front doors wide open, even with a deadbolt!
Most of the home security measures the average person takes will not stop an attack by determined, armed intruders. They’re only designed to deter those who want to sneak into your home quietly. But if someone doesn’t care how much noise they make a security system isn’t going to stop them. Think about it, a locked window isn’t going to stop someone who is more than ready to break it.
The best place to start to secure your home against attack is at the most common entry points for criminals, the first floor doors and windows.
- Replace Your Door Hinge Screws. Most screws that are used to hold front door hinges are only around 3/4 of an inch long. Just long enough to go into the wooden door frame. That doesn’t provide much security. Start by replacing them with 3-inch case hardened screws that are long enough to go all the way into the stud behind the door’s frame.
- Use Security Door Strikers. Most door frames are made of wood, rather than metal. And your deadbolt is only as strong as the striker plate that holds it. If your door frame was made of metal it would be nearly impossible to kick open. But if it’s made of wood and you only have a small metal striker plate mounted to the door frame, the deadbolt will break the doorframe itself when kicked because that’s the weakest point. By replacing the standard striker plate with a security striker plate, from 12-60 inches long, the force of a kick will be spread over a bigger area which will make it harder to break through the wood door. Again, install the new striker plate with 3-inch case hardened screws.
- Install Door Clubs. Door clubs are placed inside at the bottom of the door and connect the door to the floor. Once in place, a door club can resist over 2 tons of force preventing intruders from kicking in the door. They do require drilling a hole in the floor and when in place the door cannot be opened from outside.
- Consider Replacing Your Sliding Glass Doors. Sliding glass doors are the hardest doors to secure. And they usually face the back of the house out of view from neighbors or passers-by who might notice an intruder. While more up to date sliders are harder to remove from their tracks, all it takes is a determined attacker to break through the glass. The best option is to replace sliding glass doors with well-secured entry doors.
- Install Window Security Bars. Just like glass doors, a determined intruder can simply break your windows to get into your house. One solution for this would be to install window security bars. These bars are attached to the house itself and prevent entry into the home through the windows.
- Use Window Security Film. Window security bars do tend to be unsightly so another solution to consider is security film. You’ll probably need a professional to install the film but it will cover the inside of your windows making them much harder to break.
- Secure Your Garage Door. Automatic garage doors are pretty easy to break into, especially if they’re made of aluminum. The locks can be easy to break which allows the locking bars to be lifted by hand. But putting a simple bike lock through a hole in the tracks, directly above one of the wheels, you can prevent the door from being opened even without the lock.
- Plant Thorny Hedges. Most of us can’t surround our property with a moat or a 10-foot wall but a nice thick hedge of thorny bushes can be an attractive barrier as well as a painful deterrent. In the effort to avoid injury intruders would be forced through an opening in the hedge or to climb over a gate where you could more easily confront them.
In a survival situation, you need to shift your focus from keeping burglars out of your house to taking the steps needed to keep a mob of hungry, potentially violent people out. People who are willing to do anything they have to in order to get what they want.
Your goal is to secure your home so that it’s hard enough to break into that you’ll have the time you need to react. Even one extra minute could be enough for you to gain access to your firearms so you can repel an attack.