$6 billion was lost to auto thefts last year. And whether that be the car or personal property inside, decking the halls for crooks is the last thing we want to do this holiday season.
But that’s what thieves are counting on. They know people are out holiday shopping or distracted with their to-do list. And they want to cash in.
So how do you keep a crook from stealing your holiday cheer this year? Let’s find out how to prevent car break-ins from happening to you.
1. Make Your Car Look Empty
It’s pretty simple. If a thief can’t see anything they want to steal, there’s no point in breaking into your car. Making your car look empty is a huge deterrent.
That means placing your gift items in the trunk between shopping trips. Also, don’t leave your purse in the car when you run into the store for “just a moment.” And bringing everything into the house when you get home will also help.
It’s even a good idea not to leave spare change or sunglasses lying around. Because if a thief has any use for it, they will take it!
2. If You Can’t Empty the Car, Hide Your Stuff
Sometimes you don’t have a choice but to leave items in your car. If you don’t have a trunk, it can make it harder to keep stuff out of view.
Find hiding spots in your car. It can be the glove box, center console, maybe one of the seats lifts up to reveal a hidden compartment inside. Whatever it may be, any spot is a good hiding spot.
But try not to hide anything under a jacket or blanket. It’s not fooling anyone. Plus, the thief may see your jacket as an easy trade in for extra cash anyway.
3. Park in a Safe Spot
When avoiding car break-ins, it like real estate… it’s all about location, location, location! Finding a safe spot to park your car may be all the deterrent needed to keep a crook out of your vehicle.
And there are several different types of parking spots that will help.
Obviously, if you can get your car into a garage, that’s the best kind of protection. But don’t think it’s fool-proof.
Keeping your garage locked is important. Secure any doors that lead into the structure. If you have an automatic garage door opener, you can keep that locked or unplugged to prevent any universal remotes from gaining access.
Creeping around in the shadows is the ideal environment for thieves. It’s easy to hide and to keep unwanted attention away.
But parking in a well-lit area will leave them feeling exposed. They’ll be much more likely to go for the car parked in the dark rather than your vehicle.
The last thing a thief wants is an audience. Parking in a high-traffic area is another way to make them feel exposed.
Busy streets, shopping center parking lots near the entrance, and in front of your apartment building are all areas that make a break-in more difficult for a thief.
Anywhere you can park that has added security is a good choice. Whether it’s a security patrol or surveillance camera, it’s an extra set of eyes helping to protect your car.
You can even have a camera installed in your driveway to help watch activity at home.
And if the worst should happen, at least you’ll have a video showing the people who broke into your car.
4. Have a Car Alarm (And Use a Window Sticker)
Installing a car alarm will make a thief’s work that much harder. And they know it!
Especially if you also have an alarm sticker displayed in the car window. A thief will see that and know your car may be more trouble than it’s worth and move on.
Window alarms, ignition shut-off systems, and even a steering wheel lock are all great ways to keep your vehicle safe this holiday season.
5. Tint Your Windows
Tinting your car’s windows is a great way to make it hard for thieves to see in and search for any valuables. (Plus, it keeps your car cooler in the summer and just looks good!)
Before you install, you’ll want to find out the darkest level of window tint that the state allows. Installing anything darker will get you a ticket.
But a good window tint may be all you need to send a thief off to a car that’s easier to see into.
6. Lock Your Doors and Keep Keys with You When Fueling Up
Most people don’t think about their car being vulnerable while they’re actually with the vehicle. But it happens more and more at gas stations when you step out to fuel up.
Why? Because thieves are counting on you to be distracted by the task at hand and not notice them.
Keep all car doors locked. Especially on the side opposite your fuel tank, since it will be out of your view.
And don’t leave the keys in the ignition. It makes it all too easy for a crook to slip in and take off with your car before you have any idea what’s going on.
7. Don’t Leave Your Car Running
Heating your car up before you take off for some holiday shopping is tempting. But it also makes it tempting for a thief to break into your vehicle.
Don’t leave an unattended car running. Even if you have a remote start. A thief can still break through the window in an attempt to steal it.
In some cases, they can override the kill switch and successfully drive off with your car.
Knowing How to Prevent Car Break-Ins Can Save Your Holiday Season
Don’t let a crook take off with your holiday spirit. Learn how to prevent car break-ins from happening to you.
Making it difficult for thieves to take advantage of you this season is enough to give anyone some holiday cheer!
If you’re needing to get a window replacement or repair done, contact us today! At Dealer Glass Company, we’re happy to give you a free quote and answer any window questions you have.