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It may surprise you to learn garages make a soft target for thieves.  It seems to be the case that while homeowners take the security of their homes seriously, garages receive far less attention.  More than ever, garages are treated almost like a spare room. You may not even have a car in yours. Anything from boats to antique furniture, motorbikes to stock for a home business can be stored in garages indefinitely.  The problem is thieves seem to know this. Once you factor in unemployment and the recession it’s easy to see why thefts from garages are at record levels.

Most home owners are stuck with using their garage as a storage facility. The question then becomes what can the average homeowner with DIY knowledge or a handyman contact do to improve their garage security.

The basic problem is that the typical garage door will only have basic cylinder locks and these won’t leave your garage secure. These offer poor protection from even amateur thieves.

One option for improving security is to install locking garage door bolts. As their name suggests this is a pair of bolts which are locked by the same key. These bolts can be fitted to any style of door, with some allowances needed for thickness. So whether you have sliding, up and over, or hinged and folding doors these bolts will work on doors up to about 3.8cm thick. Careful placement and fitting of the bolts allows the garage door to be opened when the bolts are in the unlocked position only.

Another option, although specifically for up and over doors are garage door defenders which by their bulky presence offer a strong visual deterrent but also act as a block to the tilt action of up and over doors. As with any enhanced locks, look for those which have been given the sold secure seal of approval.

As well as locks, fitting an alarm to your garage may be cost effective if it provides internal access to your house or you store high value items. Although an alarm is the most expensive option and it should be professionally fitted,  it may be worth it for extra reassurance. A cheaper option is to install movement sensitive lights, which if carefully placed, can also deter would be thieves.  As with most security improvements you can make to your home, a combination of initiatives is likely to give greater peace of mind.