With a number of burglaries in the area and dark nights suddenly drawing in, one way of improving your chances of keeping thieves out of your home is to check your locks.
In a significant number of burglaries, thieves gain access by lock snapping – accessing the lock cylinder and snapping it in two to gain access to the locking mechanism and then your home. Having the right lock, fitted correctly, can make this much harder.
Firstly, check your locks are fitted correctly. Lock cylinders should sit flush with the door handle casing and not stick out, giving thieves an easy way to snap them. The Master Locksmith Association recommend that a lock cylinder should not protrude more than 3mm.
Secondly, check what type of lock you have and consider upgrading to a more secure, anti-snap lock. Most standard UPVC doors are fitted with Euro Cylinder locks. Sadly, with some of these locks, thieves can force the lock to snap it i
Anti-Snap locks have cylinders which are designed to sacrifice the front portions when an attempt is made to break the cylinder – while leaving the rest of the cylinder intact and your door secure.
As part of burglary prevention advice, West Midlands Police recommend: “Check your UPVC or Euro cylinder door lock to see if it is snap resistant it should be stamped with a Kite Mark (1 or 3 stars), if not get the lock changed to a 3 star cylinder for maximum protection.”
If you do decide to upgrade your locks, both West Midlands and West Mercia Police forces recommend looking at the Master Locksmith Association. The MLA offers advice on how to choose a good locksmith including checking their list of accredited locksmiths, keeping it local and getting word of mouth recommendations.
Images from www.locksmiths.co.uk