Everyone looks forward to vacation time, but many people worry about keeping their garage safe from intruders when they are away. Garage doors can become vulnerable when you are far away on vacation. Some older models can be manipulated, giving intruders free access to your home and belongings. And if you haven’t called a professional garage door repair team for maintenance work, parts could get worn out.
However, there are several things you can do to ensure garage door safety before leaving for your holiday. We have highlighted many of them to help you rest easy, knowing that your home is safe.
The first thing many experts recommend before going on vacation is asking the neighbors for help. Neighbors can be your eyes in the neighborhood even though you’re a thousand miles away. It does not hurt to make friends with them. A good neighbor can help you water your plants, pick up your mail, and park in your driveway to create an illusion that you are home. This alone can prevent burglars from paying you a visit in your absence. So start by making friends with your neighbors and offer to help them out when they travel as well.
What else can you do?
How to secure your garage door?
Below are a few things you can do to secure your garage door before your vacation:
Secure your garage door remote
The remote control of a garage door offers an easy entry into your property. This is why it is unsafe to keep the remote control in your car during vacation. If a burglar finds the remote and takes it, then breaking into your home will be a breeze. Check if your remote has a rolling code technology. This technology works by forcing the user to reset a remote’s security code every time it is used. This will reduce the chances of a criminal using it successfully.
Another thing to look at is the garage opener wall console. More recent models of opener systems feature a vacation lock function on the consoles. The feature is relatively easy to activate, and it blocks out handheld radio controls and others that are programmed to open garage doors with radio signals. The instructions are self-explanatory, and some electronic devices need to be pushed and held until the signal lights are visible. Some others look like simple light switches with off and on positions. After activating the vacation lock, you can use the remote control to close the door one more time. After completing it, the remote control will be unable to open the door until the vacation lock is reset out of that position.
Nowadays, garage door systems have been designed to offer more. They now allow users to monitor a garage door from any part of the world with their smartphones. The security apps let you lock garage doors while on vacation, offering you peace of mind. They are also compatible with many garage doors. However, newer models may offer better smartphone compatibility.
If you have a unit like this one, then you’ll understand how it works. It can be used to monitor your garage door’s position (open or closed) from anywhere in the world. It can come in handy if you need to allow a contractor or delivery service to enter the garage. All you’ll need to do is unlock it remotely, and they can gain access. After they leave, you can also check it to see if it was locked properly. This impressive feature can work better with an internet-enabled security camera. It will give you peace when you are far away from home.
Secure your keypad
A garage door keypad is often easily accessible. If this is the case for you, then you should turn it off to secure it against intruders. If the keypad doesn’t work, intruders will not waste any time trying to enter it. It stands as the first line of defense against them. An excellent way to secure the keypad is to turn off its circuit breaker. In some garage doors, you can find vacation settings on the keypads. You can use this as well, and you can also choose to remove the device’s batteries.
Hide the emergency release
The emergency release cord makes it possible to open a garage door manually if all other methods fail. While it helps you during emergencies, it could be a weak link that exposes your garage to intruders. All-electric garage doors are built with an emergency release cord to allow you to open the door in case there is a power outage. Intruders can use this by running a wire into the garage from the top to trigger the release. You can prevent this by adding a padlock or placing a zip tie through it. This may help prevent unauthorized entry, but you should remember to remove the devices because they could affect your entry and exit from the garage.
Lock the track
Another way to lock your garage door before traveling is to install a deadlock to lock the track. Some garage doors have a lockable latch. In this case, you just need to lock it, and you are good to go. In the absence of a lockable latch, you can drill a hole along the track, above the rollers, and add a padlock.
A garage door deadlock can be installed as well as it is very affordable. It involves a lever that slides over the garage door track. It prevents the door from being raised when the lock is added. This one does not require any keys because it works like a sliding bolt that many other doors use.
Other homeowners may choose to lock the door itself before going on vacation. It may seem like a good idea to just unplug the opener, but it is better to lock the door. If the opener is simply unplugged, a burglar can still fish for the emergency release cord. Also, people with attached garages are at risk because the burglar can open the garage door from inside if they entered through the house. They can also park a van with ease to cart away items in your home. Locking the door will make the burglar’s job harder, which is better since you are away.
Use a keychain
Always keep your garage door opener and your keys in the same place. It is not ideal to leave the opener in your car because thieves can easily steal it and gain access to your garage. It is better to use a keychain to keep the opener safe.
If an intruder succeeds by breaking into your car and stealing the remote, they do not only gain access to the garage but can use your address for illegal activities. This is very risky and can cause a lot of issues.
Consider getting rid of your garage door remote on your visor and opt for a keychain remote instead. This device is easy to carry along whenever you leave your car.
Secure your windows
Garage door windows make them more appealing but can be an easy way for an intruder to peek into your garage. You should secure it like you would the garage door. Intruders can use this window to determine if you are home or not. This is why frosted or tinted windows are ideal because they prevent people from looking through. Metal bars on the garage windows can also help prevent a break-in or fishing.
Lock your home doors
If you have done everything on this list, then locking all your home doors will also help prevent an intruder from gaining access to your home as well. Some homeowners make the mistake of believing that once the garage door is locked, they do not need to lock the linking door to the house. This provides a false sense of security, and the thought should be discarded even if you are back home.
Always lock the doors to give yourself an extra layer of security. All houses have a door that leads to the house from the garage. The door linking your garage to your home should be built solidly and have a strong deadbolt and anti-kick device to prevent unauthorized entry. If you fail to do this, you can also make it more difficult for passersby to notice an intruder has gained access to your home. They can assume you gave the person access. Lock your doors properly.
Garage doors are vulnerable and could be an easy entry point into your home in your absence. However, you can protect your garage door by keeping the remote control safe. If it is stolen, it can give intruders an easy access point. Locking the track and the garage door itself with a padlock can also offer a security level if the intruders manage to override the system. The garage door mechanism will simply not move. Securing the emergency release is also essential to prevent fishing from the top of the garage. Keep your garage door opener with your keys and not in the car where it can be stolen. Be sure also to secure the windows to prevent prying or breaking in. Lastly, make friends with the neighbors and lock the linking door.
For more information, contact Titan Garage Doors today!