Home Security: Doors & Lock Suggestions to Prevent Burglaries

Posted on: 27 January 2016

Your home, above all else, should be safe and secure. One of the most important aspects of home safety can be measured by quality of your home's locks and doors. If you've never considered your locks or your doors before, you might be unaware of a serious home security issue. Here are some tips commercial locksmiths often give their clients to prevent home burglaries.

Measure Your Situation

Even if you move into a brand new home, you are still relying on your general building contractor's locksmithing capabilities. Most commercial locksmiths find that general building contractors often struggle with basic locksmithing tasks, like installing deadbolt locks and window latches. You take the measure of your property's security situation by measuring the following:

  • Deadbolt "Throw": when a deadbolt lock engages, it "throws" the bolt from the lock into the adjacent door frame. If your deadbolt lock has been properly installed, all of your deadbolt locks will have at least three inches of throw. You can measure your deadbolt's throw by engaging the lock while the door is ajar. If you can measure three inches of throw, your lock has been properly install. If your deadbolt has less than three inches of throw or if it does not fit flush with the door, you may want to have a commercial locksmith reinstall the lock.
  • Strike plate Screws: your deadbolt throws its bolt into a strike plate. The strike plate is the flat metal piece drilled into your door frame, which helps secure the dead bolt in place. One of the common locksmithing mistakes made by general contractors is installing strike plates with short screws. These short screws drastically increase the odds that the strike plate will give if a burglar attempts to kick the door in or pry the door open. That's why it's a good idea to unscrew at least one of the screws, measure it, and, if the screws are less than 3 inches, replace them with 3-inch screws. 

In addition to these deadbolt tips, you should always make sure to have your doors re-keyed when you move into a new property. While you're having your doors re-keyed, you can have your locksmith look for other potential security concerns.

Grade Your Situation

Not all security hardware is created equal. Even if your property appears to have stout doors and locks, you should always "grade" your home security hardware. Here are two easy things to look for:

  • Hollow or solid: In order for your doors to withstand a violent kick of a potential burglar, it should be solid, not hollow. If you rap lightly on your door you will be able to hear or feel if it's solid or hollow. If you find that it's hollow, you should consider having it replaced immediately.
  • Metal sheets grade: The most secure doors are clad in metal sheets. These metal sheets generally come in two grades: 24 or 12. The latter option, 12, offers far more protection than the former, 24. Unless you've worked with metal before, the only way to tell the difference is to consult a commercial locksmith.
  • Lock grade: The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) grades all commercially available locks sold in the US.  The lower the number, the more formidable the lock will be if tested by a burglar. You can try ask your landlord or building contractor for the information about the lock grades installed on your property. However, the only way to truly know is to have a commercial locksmith assess your lock grades. 

Keeping your family safe is important. These simple commercial locksmith tips can help you help your family stay safe and secure. Learn more about your options by contacting companies like Suburban Lock.