Doors With Glass Panels - An Easy Way In For The Burglar
If the entrance door to your home is fitted with glass panels, or there is a glass panel right next to the door, you have yourself a home security risk.
Doors with glass panes allow light into what otherwise would be dark hallways, but from a security point of view they are a poor design.
It does not take much for a burglar to break that glass, reach in and open the latch, or turn the knob on the single cylinder deadbolt. Single cylinder deadbolt locks are the kind that are operated by a key from the outside but don't need a key to open from the inside.
The simple solution would be to fit a double cylinder deadbolt. These require the key to be used on both sides and would indeed prevent the burglar from opening your door.
The snag is that in the case of emergency, especially a fire, you or your family may be hampered from making an exit if the key is not immediately at hand. It is for this reason that some local building codes and regulations do not allow the use of double cylinder deadbolt locks. If your local regulations permit their use, make sure that the key is always kept near the door, but out of any possible reach of the burglar. Make sure also that all members of your family know where the key is kept and can reach it.
So what's the alternative? Window security film is a clear, flexible and impact resistant polyester sheet that is affixed to the inside of the glass. The burglar would have a very tough time breaking through that.
It takes a good deal of force to shatter glass protected by security film and even then the shattered glass is still held in place by the film. With many weighty hammer blows a burglar could make enough of a hole to reach through the glass, but that would take him a lot of time, make a heck of a lot of noise and likely attract unwanted attention.
Window security film is available in several widths and thickness and is generally sold by the foot. Some types of security film impede solar heat as well as give protection against intruders.
If you consider yourself to be a competent do-it-yourself enthusiast you may want to take on the job of installing the window security film. You will need to be precise with measurements, use the correct adhesive and have the right tools to hand. Having professional installers fit the film will naturally bump up the cost, but may get you a guarantee.
If light into a hallway is not an issue, then another alternative is to replace the glass panel door with an external quality door with no glass panels. Solid core external doors are not cheap but this would be preferable to having a door with a security issue.
Whichever method you choose to overcome the problem you have to take action. Doors with glass panels make it too easy for the burglar. Don't just ignore the problem, fix it.
Martin Underwood writes about all aspects of home security. He is a regular contributor to http://www.surveillanceforsecurity.com The site that presents reviews and information about the best in home security, personal security and vehicle security.