Front Door Security
Growing up in New York City, my family always locked the front door and I'm glad that the habit stuck with me. However, living most of my life in the suburbs, I know many people who rarely lock their front doors and think nothing of it. They apparently don't think that they'll be victimized but they basically extend an invitation to everyone. However, burglaries occur everywhere in this country and statistics show that about 30% of the time, the front door was unlocked.
Most burglars aren't invited in with an unlocked door but still easily get in through a locked door that isn't quite doing its job. More often than not, a door gets kicked or pushed in as the lock won't withstand much force. I'd immediately run to buy a deadbolt lock if you don't already have one as only a properly installed deadbolt will do the job. This investment may save you many times over from losses and grief.
The door and frame must also be strong. Rotted wood, a hollow-core door or an ineffective lock strike make it very easy to push in the door even if it's locked. Notice that I mentioned 'properly installed deadbolt' as it's very important. The bolt should extend at least an inch into the strike on the frame and that strike must have screws at least 3 inches long to reach the stud or beam behind the door frame.
An entrance door also needs to be mounted properly. Although not common, I've seen exterior doors mounted to swing out, with the hinges on the outside. Simply removing the hinge pins will remove the entire door. If you have this situation, get a carpenter fast!
Everything just mentioned are the bare necessities of door security. There are a number of devices on the market that can make it impossible to break into your front door. Various bars and metal plates that are easy to install are a great way to sleep with peace of mind - at least you'll not worry about the main entrance!
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