The quality of your door and security hardware is just as important as the quality of your locks
These days, many thieves seem to prefer force to finesse. In a way this makes sense. As lock technology has improved, it has become more difficult for your average thief to pick or cut open door locks. It’s simpler—and often faster—to attack the door instead of the lock. That’s why the quality of your door and its hardware is every bit as important as the quality of your lock. Here are some tips that should help you beef up your door and hardware to improve the security of your property.
Start with a Quality Door & Doorframe
The strongest lock and deadbolt set in the world won’t keep out intruders when set in a flimsy door or doorframe. To prevent someone from gaining access to your property by kicking down the door or splintering the doorframe, choose a solid wood or metal doorframe and make sure it is securely anchored to the wall studs. Your door should be a heavy-duty one made from fiberglass, solid wood, or metal. Avoid doors with windows set near the locks, as a thief could break the window and then simply reach in to unlock the door.
Hide the Hinges
Most residential doors open inward so that the hinges can be hidden on the inside of the home. This prevents a thief from removing the hinge pins for the purposes of making it easier to kick down your door. Commercial doors, on the other hand, are typically required to open outwards for safety reasons, potentially leaving your hinges vulnerable.
Consider Security Studs
One way to address the security risk posed by a door with exterior hinges is to add security studs for the hinge plates. These security studs are basically small metal posts that fit through extra holes drilled in either side of the hinge plate. When the door is shut, the posts fit through both holes to hold the two sides of the hinge plate together, preventing the door from being pushed or pulled out of the jamb even if the hinge pin is removed.
Upgrade your Strike Plates
Most doors come with very a basic strike plate (the metal piece covering the hole your deadbolt fits into) that does nothing to support your security. By upgrading to a sturdier strike plate, you can make it harder for thieves to knock down your door or bash your lock out of place.
Attach All Hardware Securely
Finally, be sure that all of your hinges and strike plates are attached securely with high-quality screws. Generally speaking, the longer the screws are the better. Also, make sure the screws on your hinge plates go all the way through your doorframe and into the studs behind it.