The Professional Choice

A companion overview to the popular "Ask Mr. Handyman" radio program airing on Christian Talk Radio, KCRO 660AM Saturdays @ 9:30AM.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Burglaries are up Nationwide.

Is it the economy?  Or are there just a lot of down and out people?  I think in either case I do not want to be one of their victims.  The best defense is a deterrent.  If the thief cannot break in your door he cannot steal from you.  Or if he does not have unfettered access to your garage he will look for another victim.

Here are two devices to reduce the chance of your home being the next victim.

1. StrikeMaster II Pro - doorframe reinforcement

According to the FBI, the easiest way for a criminal to get into your house is just to kick in your door! The FBI says every 12 seconds a home is invaded by going right through the front or back door. This is caused by doorframe failure. Two o'clock in the afternoon is the biggest break-in time.  What makes these thieves so brazen to burglarize during broad daylight?  Because kicking in a door is so easy!

A deadbolt lock alone does not secure your door! The door jam needs to be reinforced to offer any sort of protection. The weakest point is almost always the lock strike plate that holds the latch or lock bolt in place. Home security devices like deadbolts and steel doors are not the problem. The average door strike plate is secured only by the doorjamb material. These thin ¾ pieces of softwood can be torn away with a firm kick or shoulder slam. Chiseling and removing wood to fit the locks will also result in a much-weakened doorframe.

Unless extra reinforcement is taken to strengthen the doorframe, a forced entry or kick-in burglary will split open the wooden doorframe around the lock. FBI statistics show 70% of all break-ins are from doorframe failure.

For far less than the deductible on your insurance you can have one of these StrikeMaster II Pros installed.  The manufacturer's stated warranty includes paying up to $250 towards your deductible if it should fail.  So far after over 15,000 sold throughout the US, none have failed. 

For more information about the StrikeMaster II Pro visit their website  Cost is around $220 installed or $ 110 outright purchase plus tax.

2. Garage Door Minder - automatically closes garage door when left open

Another burglary statistic shows that busy suburban families sometimes forget to ensure their garage door is fully closed when they depart for work or go to bed in the evening. It is an easy invitation for a thief casing the neighborhood.

The garage door minder closes the door after a preset time period and at dusk. It can be bypassed or switched off for activities in the garage and it will not interfere with the safety devices on the door.

Cost is around $160.00 installed or $50.00 outright purchase.