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Hinges - Beef Up Your Home Security

Apr 12, 2008
Are the doors into your home as safe and secure as you think they are? While you may have a deadbolt lock on the door, or even a few deadbolts, if the hinges on the door are not as strong, it doesn't matter.

So many people focus on the knob part of the door instead of the hinges, when in fact, these have just as much of a role in keeping intruders out of your home.

The wrong hinges may actually help intruders trying to break into your house. Think about all the images you have seen of an intruder kicking in the door. While the lock is usually the part to give way, if there are stronger locks, that kick is still going to put pressure on the weakest point. If the weakest point on your door is the hinges, they may be able to kick that side of the door open instead.

Look at your hinges.

If they have been on the doors for a long time, and have seen a lot of use and abuse, it may be time to replace them with newer and stronger hinges. If you have had a number of children who liked to 'ride the door' putting all their weight on it, that can weaken both screws and the hinges over time. Small fractures in the screws or hinge could make them easier to break through for an intruder.

If you live in an old home many have less strong hinges than should be on doors in today's world. Look for hinges with 3 inches of metal attaching to the wall and the door in two to three places down the edge of the door. Also, look carefully at the screws that are being used to hold these hinges. Old hinges likely have old screws. These are going to weaken over time. You should replace these with new, stronger and longer screws.

Where are your hinge pins? Most modern doors have these on the inside, and that's where they should be. But, if you have older doors, some have the hinge pin on the outside of the door. All a crook needs is a screwdriver to pop the pin on your hinges and gain entry into your home. If you have pin hinges on the outside, you need to replace them with interior pin hinges.

What types of screws are holding you door hinges in place. Many home builders just use 3/4 " screws. That's not a really tight hold on the door frame. A few well-placed kicks could send the hinges right out of the doorframe and allow someone entry into your home. You should replace any short screws with longer ones of at least 2 inches (3 inches if you can). It is important that these screws also have threads so they will hold firm in the doorframe.

Home security is more than deadbolt locks. While checking your doors to see your locking mechanisms are in good working order, always take the time to look to the other side of the door and check on the condition of your hinges.
About the Author
Jesse Akre,author and owner of numerous home decor sites, offers online consumers his thoughts on purchasing indoor accessories such as concealed cabinet hinges, sturdy door hinges and small but mighty hinges for your home.
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