Tips To Prevent Home Burglaries

According to the authorities, a home is burglarized once every 15 seconds in the United States.  Whether you are present or not when it happens, a break-in can permanently shatter your feeling of security at home.   There are a few simple precautions you can do to dramatically reduce the risks of an invader.  Here are some tips to prevent home burglaries:

 

  • Use a heavy duty deadbolt on your door. If you’ve just moved into a new residence, make sure to have the locks changed.  Secure your patio door with a pin-type lock, a key lock, or a steel rod inserted into the door channel.
  • Make sure all doors and windows are locked before leaving your house.
  • If you do have windows open while at home, they should be open no more than 4 inches and secured to prevent from further opening to prevent an intrusion.
  • Use a timer to keep a light on in your home, even when you’re not home. You can also use timers for a radio and make sure it is loud enough to be heard from the exterior.
  • Keep your car locked, even if it’s in the garage. If you park your car on the driveway, keep your garage door opener hidden or better yet, not in the car at all, to prevent a burglar from gaining access through the garage.
  • Keep the exterior of your home well lit at night, including the sides and backyard area.
  • Keep valuables out of sight from a window. Store valuables and important documents in a safe place to prevent a “smash and grab” to get at your valuables.
  • Avoid telling strangers your daily routines and limit what you post on social media about vacation plans or “checking in” to places your visit on a day to day basis.
  • Never leave notes on your front door that would tip off a burglar.
  • If going out of town, have a trusted friend or neighbor collect newspapers and mail while you are away. Also, have them put your garbage cans out to the street and haul them back on trash day.
  • If you have an alarm system, test it regularly and make sure to arm it every time you leave.

 

Despite the best prevention, if someone does break into your home, DO NOT engage! Call the police immediately!

 

Original Article Here: Tips To Prevent Home Burglaries

Related Article Here: Protect Yourself Against Home Burglary

 

Home burglary can happen anytime if you are lack with security measures at your home. Don’t wait this to happen! Ask Quick Locksmith Hallandale Beach for a professional help!

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THE BENEFITS OF A HOME SAFE

Do you have a home safe? If you do; congratulations; you made a wise decision! If you don’t already have one, consider getting one; they are well worth the investment. And no, you don’t have to be rich to own or use a home safe; they are for everyone who wants better security for their valuables. Here in Hallandale Beach, FL we have home safes in all neighborhoods ranging from entry level all the way to luxury estates, and why not? These secure metal compartments are useful in securing your valuables from prying eyes, thieves, and even the elements! You can use your safe to protect anything that you deem of value including cash, art, jewelry, documents, and lots more. 

Aren’t there pros and cons to having a home safe? 

Sure; there are both. This is why Quick Locksmith Hallandale Beach has compiled some facts for you to consider… and then the choice is yours to make! Many times potential safe owners have pre-buying questions about actually owning a home safe. Are they expensive? Are they hard to maintain? Aren’t these just for the rich? What if I forget my combination? Will owning a home safe make me a target? Where is the best room to put my safe? A thousand questions come to mind but in reality, the answer may be different for each person. 

What can I put in my safe? 

We are not being sarcastic, but you can put anything you want in it! It’s your safe; after all. What is valuable to you and what would you like to provide security for? For some it may be cash. For others it may be a mixture of things like treasured mementos, old love letters, coins and maybe a flash drive, or two.  

ATM 

No, your safe won’t just spit out money like an ATM but you can store cash in it. The amount is up to you but many use their home safe for a fast and convenient way to access cold hard cash whenever needed. You might have an unexpected bill come up or a sudden medical or veterinary expense. Maybe a business deal has presented itself and you have to act fast to clinch it. Other fast cash needs can include charity giving, car repairs, entertainment purposes and even funeral costs. Many a real estate transaction was made when the new owner put down a cash deposit in good faith. 

Other money related items 

Your home safe can contain non-cash, monetary items like stock certificates, appraisals, IOU’s, gift cards, credit and debit cards, theater tickets, foreign currency, rare coins, gold, silver bars and the like.  

Your arsenal 

Ok; arsenal is a bit much, but you can keep a gun or other firearms inside of it. Many a homeowner has invested in a locking gun cabinet or safe for this very purpose. Using your home safe for this is ideal if you only have one or a few guns and would like to keep them out of the hands of children, guests or burglars. Contrary to popular thought, using a locking safe to keep your gun(s) in does not put you at risk for being unarmed in the event of a home invasion or burglary; it’s actually just the opposite. Your local residential locksmith shop will be able to advise you more on this when they work with you on placement and access details. 

Diamonds, rubies, emeralds…. 

Yes, you can keep jewelry items in your home safe. Many homeowners do this and then retrieve the items for show or to wear to a gala event or night out on the town. Often, jewelry replicas are kept in the safe and worn to events while the “real deal” is locked securely away in a bank vault. It’s really up to you which jewelry items are included in your home safe. It may be that your items are not of value (monetarily) at all! Maybe they are merely costume jewelry or homemade items that have a sentimental value to you alone and you would just like to keep them secure. 

Documents 

Were you aware that home and office file cabinet and desk locks offer minimal security due to their use of cam lock technology? While these locks are better than having none at all, they are not as secure as a home safe. If you have need of mere filing of documents; use a file cabinet. If you want true security for paper goods of value; make use of your safe. You can include appraisals, stock certificates, warranties, credit checks, background checks, passports, visas, stocks, tax returns, bonds, car titles, real estate deeds and more. Again, it’s up to you what you put inside of your home safe! Old love letters from a long lost love or notes from your toddler can be just as priceless as more conventional valuable items. 

Where to put your safe 

This is a good topic to discuss with your local full service locksmith. There are many things to consider like your home layout, weight and size of your safe, ease of access, and safe contents, etc. Most buyers of home safes want it heavy enough so that burglars won’t just carry it out the front or back door. Safes can be heavy on their own or they can be bolted onto the floor or installed into a wall or alcove. Super heavy safes should always be installed on the ground floor. Safes than can be moved by a couple of people are fine for the second floor. If you have reinforced floors or live in a luxury high rise, these guidelines may be different. Your locksmith tech will know best about weight, access and placement. 

Where to buy your safe 

You can buy local or online. Safe shops and retail stores carry home safes. You can also buy used or gently used by going to flea markets, yard sales and discount shops. Our recommendation is to work with a local locksmith shop that specializes in sales, service and installation of home safes. By doing this, you’ll save money, get better service and have 24-hour access to emergency help, if ever needed. 

Five Tips For Better Home Security

As this day and age require every means we have to better our safety, we’d like now to offer you age-old methods to improve your domestic security. Note that these tips are not meant to replace a modern security and surveillance system. Nothing could replace that.

Here are some enhancements and home security tips for your home life’s advantage:

The All Seeing Eye: research has constantly shown that people behave themselves much better when they feel they are being monitored. Regardless of the fact whether you already own a security system, it’s good to place eye symbols outside your door. Yes, a mere sticker above the door, around the hallway, will do.

Spare key Placement: Never try and hide the key to your home around the entrance, hallway or garden. No matter how clever the spot you’ve picked, a savvy burglar can and will find it. Remember, if you will, that burglars are good at what they do. So then, in absence of other means of access control (which in itself is regrettable), or a trusted family relative nearby, we recommend a two-lock door, each of the keys to be given to a different neighbour.

Lights & Music: Always leave a light on in one of your home’s inner rooms (i.e that cannot be easily peeked into from the outside) and also, leave the radio on – it might help mask the fact you’re away and make it harder for a potential burglar to fathom if anyone’s home.

Shy away the goods: Low-class burglars may be tempted to break into your home if they can see in from the outside and discern any sellable goods (i.e electronics, expensive art, candelabra, silverware etc.). In order to avoid this, go around the perimeter of your home, try and see if anything stands out and if so, move it or cover a specific window with drapes.

Keys and Wallets: Many unfortunate instances could’ve been avoided if home dwellers didn’t leave keys, wallets, smart phones and other primary targets exposed. Forget about key-chain bowls in the hall and other communal places where we just put our stuff. Designate for every family member separate places to put their belongings, especially wallets and car keys. Many home intrusions occurred because the perpetrators could easily discern where the car keys were, for example.

These five tips are time and science-tested measures, but by no means could they replace more advanced means of security and control. Remember also that this isn’t an action movie, meaning to say – all you want is for the perpetrator to move on, to feel that your home is too risky, too uncertain in terms of cost-effectiveness. It’s the most you could do, the least you could do, in the absence of a full-on deterrent security system.

Original Article Here: Five Tips For Better Home Security

Related Article Here: 9 Home Security Tips

Upgrading your locks is very necessary thing to do. It is one way to keep your home secured from unwanted break-ins. Looking for a professional help? Turn to Quick Locksmith Hallandale Beach anytime!

Holiday Home Security Tips

While you celebrate the holidays remember that home burglars are also planning how to celebrate theirs possibly with you as a potential sponsor. People tend to relax during the holidays and therefore home robbers view this time as an opportunity to gain entry into your home for cash and cash equivalents like credit cards, gifts or electronic gadgets, jewellery etc. Here are a few tips of what home robbers look for when shopping for a house to burglarize. These tips will help you enjoy the holidays without incident.

  • Your home is a private place and should remain private, do not allow strangers inside your yard or home. Remember criminals also do intelligence gathering on how to gain entry into a home or valuables that can be obtained. Exercise common-sense precautions, including minimizing your profile, avoiding overt displays of wealth and maintaining good situational awareness. Criminals may sometimes be armed, if accosted, do nothing to resist or antagonize assailants.
  • The common trend with people nowadays is to post on social media updating their travel plans or current location which is an easy indicator that the person is travelling. Other users of social media can use this information to know that you will be away from home and will take this opportunity to carry out a burglary.
  • Burglars look for an easy entry with good escape routes. Don’t openly display your gifts in the front window so it’s easily visible from the street. It’s too tempting for them to smash the window and grab the wrapped packages.
  • Burglars look for occupancy cues like outdoor lights burning 24 hours a day, piled up newspapers, or advertising flyers piling up in the letterbox. If you are going to be away during the holiday, get someone trusted to house-sit so that occupancy is guaranteed always.
  • Burglars know to look for the hidden door key near the front entrance. Don’t hide spare keys under rocks, in flowerpots, or above door ledges. Instead give the spare key to a trusted neighbour.
  • Burglars prefer to enter through unlocked doors or windows. Sliding windows that are not secure can be seen from distance. One holiday problem can occur when exterior holiday light extension cords are run inside through a window and prevent it from being secured. Hire an electrician or handyman to install an inexpensive exterior outlet for your holiday lights.
  • Avoid posting your family name on your mailbox or on your house. A burglar can call directory enquiries to get your telephone number and call your home while in front of your house to confirm that you are away.
  • Don’t leave descriptive voicemail answering machine messages like, “You’ve reached the Moyo’s…we’re away in the rural areas for the holidays…please leave a message.” Burglars love to hear that they have plenty of time to break in and completely ransack your home. Some will even have time to pour themselves a drink while they are at it.
  • After the holiday, don’t pile up empty gift boxes from your new computer, DVD player, or stereo receiver on the street for garbage collection. This will attract burglars who will know that you have expensive gifts inside for them to steal. Break them down or cut them up to conceal the items better. After a lucrative burglary, the chances of being burglarized again are increased to steal the new replacement products.
  • Lastly, fortify your home by installing solid core external doors, heavy duty locks, longer screws in the lock strike plates and door hinges, and install secondary security devices on all accessible sliding windows. This may not out rightly prevent a robbery but will assist in delaying the robbers gaining access to your home and giving you ample time to call for help. It is very important to invest in a home alarm system.
  • As you travel to various destinations for your holiday, plan your journeys well and travel on time during the day so that you take it easy on the accelerator pedal.

Original Article Here: Holiday Home Security Tips

Related Article Here: 8 Top Holiday Home Security Tips

Planning to travel? Don’t leave your home unsecured! Be safe by upgrading your locks with the help of Quick Locksmith Hallandale Beach.

Smart Home DIY: How To Install A Keyless Door Lock Yourself + 5 Reasons Your Family Is Going To Love Smart Door Locks

The phrase “latchkey kid” was a popular one among my generation — the first where many families boasted two working parents. Coming home from school to an empty house was a pretty common occurrence for many of my school friends.

However, thanks to smart door locks, today’s latchkey kids can dispense with the key entirely and parents can dispense with the worry over whether their children made it home safely!

The convenience offered by smart home locks doesn’t end there.

For families in particular, these locks have plenty of use cases that can make your life run more smoothly. Who doesn’t want that? Read on to learn about how smart door locks can help you, and see how easy they are to install.

Reasons To Install Smart Locks At Home

First, a little about how a smart door lock works…

Smart door locks, a lock enabled with either a WiFi or Bluetooth connection, will open using just your smartphone (or in some cases, a keyfob or touchpad) in addition to a standard key.

Smart locks pair with your phone and turn it into a digital key — which is used to identify who you are and ensures that you are authorized to open the door.

t its simplest level, a smart door lock eliminates the pain point of fumbling in your pockets or digging to the bottom of your bag for your key. You just need to have your smartphone somewhere on your person for the door to unlock.

Now, here’s a look at the features of smart door locks that could be useful for your family:

Smart locks can be controlled remotely. No more worrying about your child losing their key or getting home before grandma arrives from the airport. You can unlock the door from anywhere you have an Internet connection. Even if you’re just upstairs with the baby but can’t remember if you locked the front door, you can open the app and remotely lock it without disturbing your bedtime routine.

No need to carry keys. With a smart lock, keys become a thing of the past. No one need carry them at all — as long as they have a phone. For children without a smartphone, a keypad or keyfob gives them easy access to the house. Having no keys also means no need to worry about keys falling into the wrong hands or hiding a spare under the doormat.

You know when the door is locked or unlocked. Does your teenager always forget to text you when they get home? Or do you often drive off only to turn around a few minutes later to go back and check if the door is locked? Most smart door locks have apps that contain a history, allowing you to look and see when the door was locked or unlocked and by whom, as well as check on its current state.

You can digitally send “keys” to people. From the plumber to the babysitter, as long as they have a smartphone, you can grant them access to your home remotely. Send an e-key over the Internet that you can revoke at any point or set to expire after a certain amount of time. This means no more hanging around at home just to let someone in. You can see on your phone when they arrived and when they left, plus you can make sure they locked the door behind them — and do it remotely if they didn’t.

You get a smarter home. Smart door locks can sync with smart thermostats and other connected devices in your home. This means you could have the lights shut off and the thermostat set to an energy-saving mode when you lock the door as you leave, and have them do the opposite when you unlock the door as you come home. You can even set up different scenarios for different people — because the lock knows which family member has come home. Additionally, you can pair a WiFi-connected camera with a smart door lock so you can easily see who is accessing your house at any time.

Original Article Here: Smart Home DIY: How To Install A Keyless Door Lock Yourself + 5 Reasons Your Family Is Going To Love Smart Door Locks

Related Article Here: Install Keyless Locks Like a Locksmith

Need to upgrade your home security? Need to replace your old locks? Contact Quick Locksmith Hallandale Beach now!

Auto Theft and Burglary Prevention Tips

The Dallas Police Department Auto Theft Unit  would like to remind everyone of a few tips to help prevent auto theft and burglary this summer.

LOCK YOUR DOOR.

This seems like a simple tip, but many people leave their vehicles unlocked and thieves looking for an easy target will walk through parking lots and neighborhoods checking vehicle door handles. Also, don’t leave valuables or extra keys in your car – especially not in plain sight! Leaving valuables visible in your vehicle makes you more likely to become a car burglary victim!

DO NOT LEAVE YOUR VEHICLE RUNNING.

Please turn off the ignition and lock your door when you exit your vehicle. Many offenses are taking place when people leave their vehicles running as they run in the store to pay for gas, to get a drink, or to let the car warm up. Whenever you exit the vehicle always turn it off and lock your door.

LOCK THE TAILGATE ON YOUR TRUCK.

Lately, thieves have been targeting tailgates on trucks that are left unlocked. Tailgates can cost up to $7,000.  Save yourself the time and money by locking your tailgate. You can purchase tailgate locks at any part accessory store. Tailgates are not outfitted with an identification number, so it is a challenge to properly identify and return it back to the victim.

CALL 9-1-1.

Call 9-1-1 to make a police report  as soon as you notice your car has been burglarized or stolen. Also, be sure to call 9-1-1 to report any suspicious activity, persons, or vehicles.

The Dallas Police Department relies on the solid partnership with our community to help keep criminals off the street. Please do your part by taking preventive action and spreading the word. You can make a difference.

Original Article Here: Auto Theft and Burglary Prevention Tips

Related Article Here: Education: The Key to Preventing Auto Theft and Burglary

Nowadays, burglary is very alarming and we should be aware of it. Quick Locksmith Hallandale Beach can help you how to keep your property safe from this.

Top Advice And Tips For Employing A Quality Locksmith

Get Rid Of Investing In A Locksmith With This Particular Advice

Precisely what does safety mean? It could mean having strong locks in the right places, or using a alarm system put in place. It could possibly also mean knowing who can help you out while you are within a jam. Finding a good locksmith using the following really provides safety for your needs.

In the event that there is a high-security lock and you will discover a problem, it is advisable to call the lock company before calling a locksmith. Since this particular lock was built to get difficult, a locksmith could have a hard to me stepping into it. You may end up paying a lot of money to allow them to try without having success.

When you call a locksmith and they also answer the phone by using a generic phrase, you must be a bit wary. Opening the call with “locksmith” or “locksmith services” means that they can be avoiding offering you a legal name. This is simply not acceptable for anybody that has the ability to access your home.

If you cannot go into your home, do not let someone drill to the lock ahead of trying some other tactics. Additionally, somebody who would like to immediately replace the lock is probably not legitimate. A great locksmith can get into almost any door. Therefore, both the steps mentioned previously ought not to be necessary.

In most states, locksmiths are needed to have insurance. Ask to see proof of any policies before they start doing any work. You desire to be sure that you are covered just in case they generally do a shoddy job and someone gains unauthorized access to your residence. Do not let the lowest price to help you be overlooking this.

One very reliable methods of determining trust with your potential locksmith is the volume of years they have been in business. Also, make sure that they’ve been set up in exactly the same location too. These two facts are really good sings that you’ve found the ideal locksmith in the market along with the one it is possible to really depend upon!

Prior to allow someone similar to a locksmith to get into your home, you must get references and a professional recommendation. Upon having them, give each a call. You do not only want the best quality service but in addition a person you can really trust.

Prior to deciding to engage a local locksmith, look at your local laws. Many states have regulations into position to protect consumers from fraud and sub-par work. For example, California mandates licensing. Understand how the laws in your neighborhood are set up to protect you and be sure they do! You’ve got too much at stake never to.

When searching for a locksmith, stay away from any organization that fails to answer the cell phone by using a specific name. These businesses will frequently subcontract the task out to other vendors. You should have a business that hires their own employees and will not farm out their work to anyone and everyone.

When searching for the ideal locksmith for your requirements, try conducting interviews. Most businesses will gladly show you their professional service people and what they should offer. Seek advice and view all references. This way you will be sure that you’ve hired merely the best when you need them by far the most.

Usually do not hire the 1st locksmith you speak to. You ought to call three to five locksmiths before you make a hiring decision. It will help you figure out the going rate. Also, you are going to reduce the costs that you simply purchase this quality.

If you receive great service from your locksmith, you need to keep his number readily available in case you need him again. A really good locksmith may not be readily available; therefore it would stop being home improvement complete series a good idea to discard their information. You will be a great deal safer only if once person handles all your security needs.

Beware locksmiths who answer the phone with a general phrase, including “locksmith services”. Once they don’t offer a company name or location, they could actually subcontract local locksmiths, meaning you have no control over the grade of the individual that shows up. Choose a company that is local and mentions their name.

It is rather exciting to purchase a whole new home and become handed over a set of keys, but this is certainly the right time to contact a locksmith. You don’t understand how many copies in the key the former owners passed out to loved ones, so it may be beneficial to find the locks changed.

Original Article Here: Top Advice And Tips For Employing A Quality Locksmith

Related Article Here: 5 THINGS TO LOOK FOR WHEN CHOOSING A LOCKSMITH

Quick Locksmith Hallandale Beach is now offering high quality locksmith services at very affordable rate! Be one of their satisfied customers!

5 Security Tips for Your New Home

When you think of home security, you probably imagine expensive, intricate systems that cost more than you’re willing to shell out—especially after buying a new home.

But that’s not always the case. Good home security doesn’t require a pricey, state-of-the-art system. In many cases, small changes and habits are all you need to keep burglars at bay.

Keep these five security tips in mind as you move into your new home. They can save you from spending on an expensive system, while enjoying the same peace of mind.

  1. Fake cameras actually work. Fake security cameras sound funny—and ineffective—but don’t rule them out. Not only are they a fraction of the cost of an actual security camera, but, “Most fake security cameras have a noticeable blinking LED light that deters criminals at night when they’re most active,” according to home security experts. If the light stops blinking, just replace the batteries.

Purchase a few to place around the front and even rear entrances to your house to provide maximum protection. Don’t forget to pair them with “This home is protected by…” security stickers. These stickers can be purchased for less than $10 online. This makes your fake cameras seem even more real.

  1. Fewer windows=good move. Adding more windows to boost the amount of natural light into your home might look good, but they make your house a more attractive option for intruders. Nearly 30 percent of burglars gain access to a home through an unlocked door or window—and windows on the first floor are especially common targets. It’s easy to forgot to lock windows after opening them to get fresh air, and that can be a costly mistake. If your garage door has windows, tint them so intruders can’t see if you’re home or away. The same goes for your front door and first floor windows—invest in blinds and keep them closed for the best line of defense. You can also put a frosted coating on the lower half of your windows, which only lets outsiders see only through the top half. These come in peel and stick form, so you can make this update quickly and economically.
  2. Make your home look occupied. It’s become increasingly common for break-ins to occur during daylight hours, since most people are away at work, the kids are at school and the neighbors aren’t out and about to notice anything suspicious. Here are a few ways to make your home look more active during the day to deter potential burglars:

Have landscapers come at all different times of the day so there’s someone there in the morning, afternoon and evening. It will be harder for burglars to spot a pattern this way.

 

Keep lights on in the most visible rooms in the house. You can install a timer to have them turned on and off if you don’t want them on for eight hours straight.

 

Don’t let mail pile up while you’re away, which is a clear sign that no one is home. Ask a friend or neighbor to pick it up each morning and leave it in your home. This way, if anyone is watching, it appears as though people are checking in and going in and out of the home.

  1. Consider your landscaping. Believe it or not, your landscaping can deter criminals. People who are attempting to break into a house want somewhere to hide if the mailman drives up or a neighbor comes outside. If you have large trees or bushes planted along the first story of your house, it gives burglars a great place to wait it out.

Avoid this easy hideaway by keeping your landscaping simple, trimmed and polished. Plant bushes that are low to the ground and provide maximum protection—think rose bushes or citrus plants that have spiny leaves. Also consider using gravel instead of mulch so you can hear when someone approaches your home.

  1. Video doorbells are worth checking out. One new way to keep your home safe and deter your kids from opening the door to strangers is a video doorbell. More affordable than most security cameras, these easy-to-install gadgets provide on-demand video, a live view of your front porch at all times and motion detection alerts sent straight to your smartphone.

Several of the newer models allow two-way audio so you can communicate with anyone who rings your doorbell, even if you aren’t home. These are a great security feature if you have kids who open the door for strangers or if your door doesn’t have a peephole.

Original Article Here: 5 Security Tips for Your New Home

Related Video Here: Home Security Tips

Living near Hallandale Beach, FL? Quick Locksmith Hallandale Beach is now open to assist you for your home security needs.

Home Security Tips

Keeping you and your family safety is a big deal. But sometimes, its the little changes you make that add up to a big difference. We’ve collected these residential security tips to help every member of the family feel safe and secure.

home-safety

HERE ARE SEVERAL HOME SECURITY TIPS TO HELP YOU AND YOUR FAMILY STAY SAFE:

  1. Inspect smoke and carbon monoxide detectors for dust and lint build up that can hinder sensors.

 

  1. Whether you are buying, building or just remodeling your home make sure to select roofing that is fire resistant.

 

  1. If possible, install a locked mailbox at your home and never put outgoing mail containing personal information in an unsecured out-box or in your mailbox for pick up.

 

  1. To help prevent tipping off burglars, if you plan to be away from home for an extended period of time, set your phone ringer to the lowest volume.

 

  1. Never leave notes on your door for service people or visitors when you are not home. It’s a signal to burglars that the home is empty.

 

  1. Do not use indoor extension cords outdoors. A safe outdoor cord will read “Suitable for Use with Outdoor Appliances.”

 

  1. If your power goes out, a full freezer can hold food safely for up to 48 hours.

 

  1. It is recommended to have interconnected smoke alarms. These alarms are linked together; if one alarm is triggered they all go off.

 

  1. Never attempt to charge non-rechargeable batteries. Attempting to recharge non-rechargeable batteries could cause the batteries to explode.

 

  1. Oily rags can easily combust, even without being exposed directly to a flame. Hang them outside to dry, and then throw them away in a metal can with a lid when finished.

 

  1. Landscaping is an important deterrent. If you live in a warm climate, thorny bushes like roses and bougainvillea can deter window break-ins.

 

  1. If you live in a cold climate, make sure to clear sidewalks and the driveway of snow so burglars can see the home is occupied.

 

  1. Other visual deterrents are signs like “Beware of Dog” or “Security Cameras in Use.” Security company yard signs are also effective.

 

  1. When traveling, always tell a trusted neighbor you are going out of town and stop all newspapers and mail delivery.

 

  1. Turn down the volume of telephones and answering machines so burglars can’t hear when there isn’t an answer indicating no one is home.

 

  1. Don’t post pictures of your vacation on social media until after you return home.

 

To read more, visit Home Security Tips.

Repairing Door Knobs, Locks & Hardware

Expert advice on how to repair problems with stuck or frozen door locks, keys that don’t work, and latches that don’t latch.

 

Many door knob and lockset problems can be corrected before they become so serious that the lockset does not work at all. Often, a malfunctioning latch assembly or lock mechanism causes the problem. An improperly functioning latch may be the result of a poorly fitting door. The lock mechanism may not work simply because the lock is dirty or dry and needs to be lubricated with graphite (do not use any type of oil because this will gum-up the works).

 

For serious lock problems, it is usually best to call a locksmith or to replace the lock entirely. Most interior door knobs are relatively inexpensive to replace; it doesn’t really pay to have these professionally repaired unless they are special. You can buy door knobs online.

 

 

Cylindrical Lockset Diagram

Exterior latches and locksets, on the other hand, can be very pricey. If you need a pro to fix problems with a high-quality door knob or lockset, removing the hardware and taking it to a locksmith is usually far less expensive than having the come to you.

 

Door Latch Is Misaligned

If a door latch does not operate smoothly, the latch bolt on the door may not be lined up properly with the strike plate on the doorjamb. Repairs range from making minor latch adjustments to repositioning the door.

 

If the latch does not catch, close the door slowly to watch how the latch bolt meets the strike plate. The bolt may be positioned above, below, or to one side of the strike plate. (Scars on the strike plate will show where it is misaligned.) It is also possible the door has shrunk and the latch no longer reaches the strike plate. Once you have figured out the problem, try one of the methods shown here.

 

For less than a 1/8-inch misalignment of the latch bolt and strike plate, file the inside edges of the plate to enlarge the opening.

 

If the latch does not reach the strike plate, shim out the plate, or add another strike plate. If the latch still will not reach, shim out the door’s hinges. Replace the door with a wider one as a last resort.

For more than a 1/8-inch misalignment, remove the strike plate and extend the mortise higher or lower as necessary. Replace the plate, fill the gap at the top or bottom with wood putty, and refinish.

 

Doorknob Is Loose

Doorknobs may become loose over time. Methods of tightening them depend upon the type of lockset. You can tighten a simple interior mortise lockset like the one shown at left as follows:

 

1) Loosen the setscrew on the knob’s shank.

2) Hold the knob on the other side of the door, and turn the loose knob clockwise until it fits snugly. Then tighten the screw until you feel it resting against the flat side of the spindle. The knob should turn freely.

3) If this does not help, remove the knob and check the spindle; if the spindle is worn, it must be replaced. If the whole lockset is worn, it is best to replace it entirely.

 

Door Lock & Key Problems

Door latches and locks are somewhat complex pieces of hardware with several working parts that can go wrong and cause them to be unworkable or balky. For helpful do-it-yourself repair techniques for fixing common lock and latch problems, please see How to Repair Door Locks.

 

Door Key Doesn’t Work

If your door key doesn’t work right, the first and most obvious step is to be sure you’re using the right key. Once you get the door open, try the key again. If it works easily, the deadbolt isn’t engaging the strike plate properly. If it doesn’t work any easier, lubricate the lock with graphite. Then spray a little graphite onto the key and try it several times.

 

If the key turns but doesn’t unlock the lock, disassemble the lock so that you can be sure the cam or tang is properly engaged with the bolt. Replace any broken parts and reassemble the lock.

Is the lock frozen? If the key won’t go into the lock, ask yourself if the weather is cold enough for the lock to be frozen. If it is, you can heat the key and insert it gradually into the keyway. Repeat heating and inserting the key until the ice has melted. Or you can use a lock de-icer, as discussed below under Door Lock Works Slowly.

 

Is the key new? A new key that won’t go in or work properly may have rough spots that need to be filed off. To find them, hold the key over a candle to blacken it with soot and then turn it very slightly in the lock and remove it. File down any shiny areas where the soot was removed by the rough spots.

 

To continue reading, visit Repairing Door Knobs, Locks & Hardware.