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Patio doors and French doors are often targeted by burglars because they can be the easiest entry point to your property.
And it’s not always necessarily about the locking mechanism itself… burglars know that people often forget to lock their patio doors. So, when this happens it doesn’t matter how strong your lock is.
The main issues with patio door locks are that the much older style uPVC door handles with clasp can be very easily broken.
And if you only have a basic lock, a burglar can easily lift the door off its runner and gain entry that way. A burglar could also smash through the glass, but the noise and the effort mean this is usually a last resort.
Even if you have UPVC French doors, if these have external hinges, it offers a burglar a potential entry option. A burglar can simply crowbar the door from its frame at the hinges.
So, What Are the Options?
From simple blinds to hi-tech alarm systems, you can secure your patio doors with a range of locks and devices.
And of course, you can always set a reminder in your phone to make sure you lock those doors every night.
Blinds might seem a strange option, but burglars prefer to see into a house. It helps them see what’s there and plan a way out too.
A blind can get in the way, and while it’s not true security, it’s a deterrent and will help prevent opportunist burglars. If an intruder can’t see what’s on offer the temptation to break in won’t be as strong.
Alarms can work, but can’t stop someone actually breaking in.
Choosing Door Locks
Older sliding doors tend to come with very basic locks that deteriorate with time and it takes just a few seconds to break one.
There are a host of products available for patio sliding doors but be sure to use one that prevents the door from being lifted off its frame too.
For example, door braces or security bars are some of the options available, but these aren’t always the nicest to look at, and won’t stop the door from being lifted off its slide rail.
If you have uPVC French doors with a central divide these can be a problem. The divider provides a weak spot. It’s common to see handle locks that fit over the uPVC door handles on French doors, to prevent them from being forced open.
Hinge Protectors, Bolts, and Catches
For sliding doors, a system with a catch and chamber is very effective (and they work on other window and door types too). Here a catch is fitted to the frame and a chamber to the frame. When the door is shut the chamber fits inside the catch, allowing a security pin to be pushed down through the catch and into the chamber.
It holds the frame fasT, preventing movement in any direction.
Other options include bolts that are fitted at the top and bottom of the door frame. The bolt uses a key operation and when turned the key pushes a bolt into the frame.
For those doors with external hinges look to a hinge protector for extra security. It stops a burglar from being able to prise open your door from the hinges.
When you’re looking to improve the security of your doors, look to the weak points. That means old, standard locks and the less modern types of uPVC door handles, the central divide, and hinges. These all provide an opportunity for security weaknesses.
Choose multiple lock mechanisms and additional bolts. And update the standard fittings for more modern, tougher ones. And add a blind.
If a burglar thinks your door is too much hassle, they’ll probably move on to the next one. No one likes that sort of challenge.