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How Secure is Your Shed and Garage?

Aug 17, 2007
Sheds and garages are often full of expensive garden tools and machinery, as well as bikes and other similar items. What's more, a burglar may not only steal these items but can use them in order to gain access to the rest of your property.

The simple way to avoid having your shed or garage broken into is to make sure that it is properly secured and not run down so that it acts as a deterrent to any potential burglar. Never leave a garage or garden shed unlocked, especially if it has a connecting door to the house, a thief could get in and work on the inner door in privacy.

Ensure that your shed is in good condition. Make sure that the wall panels, door and any windows are strong and secure. If you your shed is in bad condition that consider that a burglar could easily gain access to it so avoid keeping valuable items inside, such as lawnmowers or bikes.

If you do want to keep such items in your shed, and also for general security, then consider getting a strong and secure lock for the door. The fittings should be bolted through the shed door and reinforced at the back with a steel plate. Any hasp should have concealed screws. Padlocks used externally should be no less than 6cm wide and made of hardened steel. A "closed shackle" type is best, as thieves cannot get the likes of a crowbar through the shackle to break it. The locks should have no less than five pins. Considering fitting any shed windows with an internal grille fixed to steel plates. For sheds that have exterior door hinges - replace existing screws with security screws. They are designed so that they cannot be unscrewed once they are screwed in.

Make sure that your garage is safe and secure too. Many up-and-over style garage doors are easily overcome, but a padlock with a hasp and staple on the inside is an effective way of improving security. Consider adding a mortice lock to double garage doors with a rim latch.

Another option to secure an up-and-over garage door is a garage defender lock. This is a heavy-duty metal arm, padlocked to a base plate that is bolted into the concrete outside the garage door. This prevents the door from being opened. They cost around 50 pounds which is a small price for protecting what is kept inside your garage.

Alternatively you can fix bolts to the runners of an up-and-over garage door that can be locked from the inside. This is a particularly good idea if you tend to enter your garage from inside your home, and not from the outside.

If your garage door is attached to the main house, ensure any connecting doors are made secure. If your gardening equipment or tools are especially valuable, consider using special security devices inside your shed or garage. Items can be locked down using chains through eyebolts secured to the floor or walls. There are a number of specialist systems available for this purpose. Consider fitting security cages inside sheds or garages and keep valuable equipment inside them. It's well worth locking down ladders and tools that could be used to break in to your house. Mark all your garden equipment and tools with your postcode.

Finally, check with your household insurance company that your policy includes cover for items stored in garages, sheds and outbuildings and remember, if you fail to put your equipment away or lock-up, your insurance company probably will not pay up.
About the Author
Home Secured discusses home security options for all households regardless of what type of property you live in. Find out more about securing your home to keep you, your family and your possessions safe at http://www.home-secured.com .
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