One of the most important aspects to home security – and one that is often overlooked in favour of more expensive and higher-tech solutions – is your home’s windows. Thieves come in either through the door or windows, so provided you have already invested in solid doors and door locks, windows are your weakest point of entry.
Sure up security here, and breaking in to your home will be too much work for the average burglar.
There are several methods of reinforcing your glass windows with secure materials. The first is with tempered glass, which is much more durable than traditional glass and therefore more difficult to break. It is also one of the least expensive options. Laminated glass, also known as safety glass, is another excellent option for your home’s windows. Laminated glass usually consists of a layer of vinyl sandwiched between two sheets of regular glass. To break through safety glass, a burglar would have to strike repeatedly in the same spot for a long time. This creates alot of noise and most thieves will bug out before they actually get through. You may also consider wire mesh glass or bullet-resistant glass for extra security, but be aware that these products are pricey and for most families, don’t provide extra security benefits over less expensive reinforced glass options.
Polycarbonate & Plexiglas Windows
Acrylic plastic windows are known as Plexiglas windows, and are the same thickness as traditional glass while being 10 times stronger. Polycarbonate windows are more expensive, but are very secure – they’re 250 times more impact resistant than safety glass and more than 10 times stronger the acrylic windows.
Decorative Window Bars
Decorative window bars can be customised to fit your home’s style. Steel bars on your windows make your home very burglar resistant – even if a thief smashes through the glass, they cannot squeeze through the bars to burgle your home. Many people are resistant to the idea of window bars however, since they feel that bars make a house more like a prison than a home. However, if this option appeals to you, be aware that some companies specialise in decorative window bars that are absolutely beautiful and can be customised to suit your home’s design.
There are several types of window alarms on the market today. The first is a simple window sensor alarm to detect when a window is opened or broken, sounding an alarm to warn your family and send the burglar fleeing.
The GE SmartHome Window Alarm is a popular wireless option that is easy to install and can be used on any window in your home.
A more sophisticated window alarm also adds an infrared motion detector to monitor the area around the window, and activating when motion is detected but before the window is opened or broken.
A Schlage Window Sensor allows you to remotely monitor your windows and alerts you when motion is detected of if you leave a window open at night.
SimpliSafe offers an excellent DIY option that you can install yourself, which includes entry sensors for windows and doors and ongoing monitoring.
Don’t underestimate the power of a good lock. Deadbolts and other types of window locks are excellent, but the best burglar deterrent is a hefty window lock that is visible from the outside. A window pin lock is a simple, affordable yet highly effective burglar deterrent.
Another popular option with homeowners is a vinyl window lock. One of the best vinyl locks is made by Prime Line.
A good window security strategy recommended by experts is to install strong, visible window locks on basement and first-floor windows, and simpler deadbolts or window sash locks on upper levels.