By Lori Melton
Per FBI crime statistics, there were over 1.5 million burglaries in the United States in 2015 and 71.6 percent of those occurred at residential properties. Burglars look for easy-access entry points when breaking into a home. That’s why it’s important to make sure your windows and doors are strong and secure. Older windows and patio sliders can be weak and vulnerable during a home invasion. Therefore, installing new windows and sliding glass doors can increase home security and help keep unwanted intruders out.
Worn Out Windows Invite Trouble
Burglars often canvas a neighborhood and look for the easiest target. Gaining home access via an open or unlocked window is obviously one of the simplest ways for a thief to get in. Your first line of defense should always be to keep your windows closed and locked, especially at night when you are sleeping and any time you are gone away from your home.
Damaged, warped, or broken window sashes and frames can also invite unwanted intruders. If your home is older, chances are the windows are, too. If your windows fog up, stick while opening and closing, or feel drafty, these are signs they may need to be replaced. New windows will not only boost your home’s value, energy efficiency and curb appeal, but they will also offer increased home security.
Problematic Patio Sliders
Patio sliders are also popular entry points for thieves. They are often located at the back of the house, which makes a potential burglar less visible than a street-facing front window or door. Older patio doors can often be lifted right off the track, which defeats the purpose of the door’s latch mechanism. Plus, burglars can often bypass the existing latch just by jiggling the door.
Signs of wear that indicate replacement is needed include difficult operation from worn rollers and tracks, broken handles, or misaligned latches. New patio sliders will also improve energy efficiency, increase home value and have stronger, multi-point locking systems.
Window and Door Locks and Reinforcements
Overall, for better home security, you’ll want to do everything you can to make a burglar’s job more difficult. If your home takes too long to get into, a thief will likely move on to a quicker, easier target. Installing new windows and patio sliders make these entry points less vulnerable to home invasion. Using strong locking mechanisms and reinforcements can also help.
Cam locks, like Anlin’s Pull-Tight Cam Locks, are designed with continuous interlocking metal reinforced meeting rails which provide tamper-proof security and weather-tight performance. These locks pass California Forcible Entry tests. Cam-style locks can also be used as secondary locks to beef up security on horizontal and most vertical sliding (single hung) windows.
Wooden or metal dowels, aka security bars, inserted in patio slider tracks block horizontal door movement. Protective glass film reinforces slider glass and can be tinted to prevent burglars from seeing inside. Finally, installing auxiliary locks to your slider will also enhance security. Keyed and unkeyed clamp locks which can be added to the top and bottom tracks, or double-bolt sliding door locks are two examples.