Today we’re talking about beautiful front doors and all their drama.
As a homeowner, great pride is taken in the curb appeal of our homes. However, it’s critical that we not compromise security for good looks. In this post, I’ll be discussing the potential risks in a number of different types of doors and how to make your front door as secure as it is beautiful!
DOOR #1: The Double-Door Dilemma
Double doors are often less secure than a traditional front door because there is a single point of tension where the deadbolt locks. Not all double doors are properly or satisfactorily reinforced– but yours should be!
With double doors, it is important that your stationary door be reinforced with sliding bolts. Without this reinforcement, your door may have an increased vulnerability to be kicked in or pried open. A way to combat this weakness, is to install quality bolts to the stationary door so it is reinforced. (For double doors that also include glass openings, be sure to check out the next section too.)
DOOR #2: Large Glass Openings
A large glass opening in or near the front door provides an opportunity for a burglar to break the glass and reach into your home and unlock the door.
If your door has a glass opening, you don’t have to trade it in for a solid door– there are security products made especially for these types of doors. Double-sided deadbolts used to fit this need, but these are not in compliance with fire code. A “captive-key” deadbolt is your best bet for both security and cosmetic appeal! High-security lock brand, Medeco, offers this product & you’ll gain a ton of other security features with it.
DOOR #3: Sliding Glass Doors
Commonly, sliding glass doors provide access to a home’s side or backyard. However, on a contemporary-style home, it’s possible to find a door like this as your main front door.
Make sure your sliding glass door has a bolt at the top. This allows for a secondary method of locking the door in place. This also means that young (or short!) residents in the home will not be able to exit through the door without unlocking that high bolt. A dowel in the track is a timeless tradition and still has a valid place in today’s security talks. It’s important to also be sure your sliding glass door was installed correctly by a quality contractor.
DOOR #4: Pedestrian Gates
If you have an enclosed front yard, you may have a lockable entry gate prior to reaching your front door. Or if you have a townhouse, you may have a gated entry to the back of your residence. It’s important to take the proper measures to secure this gate to increase the safety and security of your home.
Your gate lock can be keyed to the same key as your front door. Or, you can forego the keys altogether and opt for a push-button electronic lock. If you’re using a padlock to secure the gate, you want to be sure the shackle is not much longer than needed. Extra long shackles provide an easy opportunity to remove the lock with bolt cutters or other force. If you have a high security locking system on your home, like Medeco, a coordinating padlock for your gate should be available as well. It’s important to avoid leaving this area unsecured altogether. I have a personal story on learning this lesson the hard way, which might show up in a future blog- but trust me. It’s completely worth it to keep your exterior gates secured.
DOOR #5: Screen Doors
Especially in this quality California weather, a screen door is a must have to allow fresh air into your home on a warm day. However, a traditional screen door doesn’t offer much protection when it comes to security.
A quality security screen door is the best way to gain all the features of a screen without decreasing the safety and security of your home. Today, many color and style options exist and a security screen door can actually positively contribute to your curb appeal. Many of these are designed to be secured with a traditional deadbolt lock and handle and again, can be keyed to match your front door and your high security locking system, as relevant. When shopping for a security screen door, look for one that is highly rated and constructed with quality materials. If given a choice between a style that accommodates a single handle or one that works with a standard deadbolt, choose the deadbolt style lock for added security.
P.S. Let’s make sure we aren’t trusting our door/window screens to provide overnight protection, even/especially during the summer months. Don’t provide a crook with an opportunity to join you in your home!
While this blog entry doesn’t cover every single type of door, I hoped to highlight a few of the most popular styles and what their vulnerabilities may be. And, of course, be sure to inspect your door for weather-damage and wear, especially after a break-in attempt. It’s important to contact your local security services center and learn what your exact risks are. A quality expert should be able to offer honest and helpful feedback.
Published on: Aug 9th, 2016
© Katelyn Radtke, Give-A-Hoot
**Give-A-Hoot Content is for information-purposes only and is not a substitute for specific security consultations. It is always best to consult with a professional specifically for your unique situation.