With one-third of burglars gaining access through a window it pays to take any opportunity to improve your window security arrangements.
If replacing windows, you should install new ones that are constructed and certified to British Standard BS7950 Windows of Enhanced Security. Also consider glazing with laminated glass, which is much harder to break, making it particularly useful for ground floor and easily accessible windows.
Window security locks that can be seen from outside may put off some would-be thieves because the glass would have to be broken to get in.
Home security and DIY shops sell inexpensive key-operated locks to fit most kinds of windows; you may need more than one, depending on the size of the opening to be secured.
Think about fitting locks to every window in your home – this may be a condition of your insurance – and don’t ignore what may be tiny openings, such as skylights or fanlights.
As an absolute minimum, window locks should be used for:
- All downstairs rooms
- Any windows that are easy to reach
- Windows above a flat roof
- Windows near a drainpipe.
Remember to keep windows locked. Remove the keys and keep them out of sight in a safe place.
Louvre windows are particularly vulnerable because the slats can easily be taken out of their frame. You can improve security by gluing the slats into place and fitting a special louvre lock. Or, better still, replacing them with fixed glass.
Before fitting locks to uPVC or metal windows, talk to the original manufacturer or installer to make sure your warranty won’t be affected.
Consider fitting security grilles to any vulnerable window – but only if it is not a fire escape route. Many DIY shops sell decorative wrought-iron grilles that may enhance the look of your home, as well as its security.
If in any doubt, get advice from a specialist window security company.