The front door, back door and windows of your home are the top three spots a potential burglar could use to break in. Another opening you shouldn’t forget is your garage door. Nine percent of thieves attempt to break in through the garage. No matter the statistics, you’ll likely want to ask yourself, “How can I make my garage door more secure?”
Your garage stores plenty of valuable items, from tools and sports equipment to your vehicle. It also allows access to your home, making garage door security vital. We’ve put together this guide to show you how to secure your garage door and make your house and everyone inside safer.
1. Ensure the Door Closes
This is among the simpler garage door security tips. Many homeowners drive out of their garage and down the driveway, closing the garage door behind them — but they may not always watch to ensure it closes all the way. If you leave to run errands and don’t notice the garage door stayed open, you’re inviting burglars into your garage and your home. Wait a few extra seconds before driving away to save yourself the potential for a future disaster.
If you find that your garage door isn’t shutting, you may have an issue with the opener or the sensor. Check that there aren’t any items blocking the path of the sensor and preventing your door from closing. Have a professional inspect your garage door system if you can’t see any obvious issues.
2. Change Your Opener Code
So how secure is a garage door? That all depends on how secure you make it. Many homeowners have a PIN that lets them access their garage, and it’s essential to keep that information private. Only share this code with members of your household. If you ever have to share your PIN with someone else in an emergency or if they’re housesitting, change it when they’re done. You can also create a new code if you notice suspicious activity around your neighborhood. Pick a unique number that you don’t use for any other PINs.
It’s essential to change your garage opener PIN when you get a new system, as well. Many garage openers come with a preset code that’s factory-standard, meaning a burglar could easily attempt to guess your PIN.
3. Use the Manual Lock
If you’re going away on vacation or don’t plan on using your garage for some time, use the manual lock to prevent a garage door break-in. Secure your garage door from the inside with a manual lock, often located at the center of the door. You can also engage the manual lock if you experience a power outage. That will prevent anyone from forcing it open from the outside. Just remember to unlock it before you try to use your garage door opener again.
4. Keep Your Opener Remote Inside
Many homeowners have garage door openers in their cars, but it’s not necessarily wise to keep them there. If you park your car outside, you risk allowing a burglar to break into your car, take the remote and open your garage. That leaves your home vulnerable until you replace the entire opener system and regain garage door security. Bring your opener remote inside when you get home or use an opener key fob to help keep your garage secure.
5. Maintain Your Door
Burglars can capitalize on broken locks, faulty windows and other poorly maintained entryways. To know how to make a garage door more secure, you also have to know how to maintain it. Routine maintenance keeps your garage safe for your family to use, and it can help prevent break-ins. Broken garage door panels, weak hinges and rusted bolts leave your garage door at risk for damage, which a thief could easily take advantage of.
For the best routine garage door maintenance, trust the professionals. Get annual service for your garage door or reach out to us if your garage door looks damaged or uneven, opens slowly or is loud when it opens. Those are all signs that your garage door needs a bit of upkeep, and we can diagnose and correct any issues your door may have.
6. Get a New Garage Door Opener
If you have an older garage door lift mechanism, you risk having a damaged or outdated system. Older technologies mean that a burglar could copy the opener remote frequency onto another device. That gives them access to your garage as if they’re using the same opener you do.
For a secure garage door opener, choose newer models with advanced technology that create a rolling code. This means a burglar can’t duplicate the opener’s frequency onto another remote and access your garage. Consider a new garage door opener that will protect your home and give your door a smoother operation.
7. Secure the Emergency Release Cord
The emergency release cord for your garage door is a handy feature for you, but don’t let it be an access point for burglars. Some thieves use a method called “fishing” to push a wire hook through a gap at the top of your garage door. They’ll use the wire to grab the release cord and pull it, which could open the door. While fishing is challenging and pulling the cord towards the door won’t always open it, it’s still a risk.
Secure your garage door release cord using a shield designed to cover the cord. That’s a much safer method of garage door security than cutting the cord or zip-tying it. You don’t want a thief to access the release cord, but you may still need to use it at some point.
8. Trust BlackHawk Garage Door to Secure Your Garage Door
Now that you know how to secure garage doors, take steps to make your property safer with BlackHawk Garage Door. Our family-owned business provides dependable service in the Twin Cities and throughout Western Wisconsin. Whether you need garage door repairs, residential products or commercial products, our expert technicians are ready to help. With competitive pricing and many technicians with over 10 years of experience, you know we’ll provide thorough and quality maintenance and installation to meet your garage door needs.
Regain peace of mind when you secure your garage door with BlackHawk Garage Door. Contact us today for free and honest estimates.