Phrases like “All roads lead to rome” and “more than one way of cracking an egg” is VERY applicable to the smash and grab style of break and enters that the common thief employs. The very nature of locks and doors is to restrict access for unauthorized people and let access for authorized people (key holders). If we wanted to keep everyone out there wouldn’t be a door it would be a wall! Because of this there are many different ways to gain forceful entry to a property and more than one way to protect against it! I will go few a few of these methods from the cheap cost effective options to more professional solutions.
Pretty much every door can be secured effectively by reinforcing the frame. What I like to tell customers is the lock is only as good as the door, the door is only as good as the frame. The cheapest and easiest way is to install extra long hardened screws into your strike plate (the metal plate that your lock bolt sits into) most commonplace locks have screws that only measure 20mm, which sits into your door frame only and can be ripped out VERY easily. Longer hardened screws go through the frame and back into the stud behind the frame. Turning a cheap setup into a medium security set up for a couple of bucks! In fact I do this anyway when installing locks as I think it is proper practice, after all it my job to make sure you are secure as possible and tiny screws aren’t gonna do that!
Professional door reinforcement kits are available, they are super strong and effective. Testing has shown that a frame reinforcement kit can prevent police battering rams from breaking the door and jamb! Pretty impressive….The great thing about this is these can be installed after your door and locks have been installed for a relatively low price. The downside is that these are long pieces of steel installed onto your frame and some people don’t like the look of it.
The most expensive and dare I say it, “luxurious” way of securing your frame is to replace it with hardwood. With a piece of hardened steel placed underneath the jamb before installation. Hardwood frames are beautiful, super secure and look fantastic. Your old frame can be removed and replaced and a hardwood version installed after the fact aswell.
This is an easy one….make it solid! Hollow core external doors are my pet peeve and I cant stand it! Installing a good quality lock on a hollow door just feels like putting a band aid on a flesh wound. Hardwood and steel laden doors are available but at the very least solid core should be a bare minimum!
The difference between good and bad with locks is POLARISING. Its like driving an old beat up deathtrap of a car or a modern safety features galore Volkswagen. Customers are always surprised when I turn up to let them into their home and I pull out a piece of thin plastic and shim the door in 5 seconds. Proper mechanism choice and installation isn’t hard to do. I cant stress this enough “DO IT RIGHT THE FIRST TIME!” You may pay more but you pay once! I like to do a job for my customers so they don’t have to see me again for the same issue. Its embarrassing for me as a professional tradesperson and annoying for you, the customer. Installing cheap locks will give you headaches with maintenance, insurance companies (in the event of a break in) and in general operation.
Easy, Stainless steel good quality hinges, and hinge bolts for any door with hinges mounted on the outside. All the security in the world doesn’t work if the bad guy can tap the hinge pins out with a hammer and swing your door out backwards.
Hope this was an interesting read. As always give us a call for any security concerns. We provide commercial and residential locksmithing in all suburbs of Brisbane and are happy to help!