Crime Prevention Advice - Shed, Garage and Garden Security

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Don't leave valuable property in a shed or garage that is either unlocked or so run-down that it's no obstacle to a thief. If you suspect it might not stand up to attack by a thief then don't leave valuable items inside, such as your lawnmower or bicycle.

Fit decent locks to your shed door. The fittings should be bolted through the shed door and reinforced at the back with a steel plate. Any hasp should have concealed screws.

Padlocks used externally should be no less than 6cm wide and made of hardened steel. A "closed shackle" type is best, as thieves cannot get the likes of a crowbar through the shackle to break it. The locks themselves should have no less than five pins.

For sheds that have exterior door hinges - replace existing screws with security screws. They are designed so that they cannot be unscrewed once they are screwed in. Or alternatively bolted through as with the door lock.

Chicken wire or welded metal grilles fixed to the inside of shed windows with wooden or steel batons will deter the burglar.

Don't be fooled into thinking your garage is any more secure than your shed. Many up-and-over style garage doors are easily overcome, but a padlock with a hasp and staple on the inside is an effective way of improving security.

Consider adding a mortice lock to double garage doors with a rim latch.

Another option to secure an up-and-over garage door is a garage defender lock. This is a heavy-duty metal arm, padlocked to a base plate that is bolted into the concrete outside the garage door and prevents the door from being opened.

Alternatively you can fix bolts to the runners of an up-and-over garage door that can be locked from the inside. This is a particularly good idea if you tend to enter your garage from inside your home, and not from the outside.
If your garage door is attached to the main house, ensure any connecting doors are made secure.

If your gardening equipment or tools are especially valuable, consider using special security devices inside your shed or garage. Items can be locked down using chains through eyebolts secured to the floor or walls. There are a number of specialist systems available for this purpose.

Considering fitting security cages inside sheds or garages and keep valuable equipment inside them. It's well worth locking down ladders and tools that could be used to break into your house. Best not to encourage an opportunistic thief.

Mark all your garden equipment and tools with your postcode and house number/name.

Finally, check with your household insurance company that your policy includes cover for items stored in garages, sheds and outbuildings and remember, if you fail to put your equipment away or lock-up, your insurance company probably won't pay up anyway.

Your garden, as well as your house, has valued possessions that thieves would love to steal. It also has equipment that could help them break into your house.

Most burglars are lazy. They look for easy ways of getting into a house or garden. By taking a few simple precautions you can reduce the risk of being burgled and make your house and garden more secure.

Consider natural protection of your property

Stop garden thieves:

If you see or hear anything suspicious, dial 999

If you have a burglary, don't move or touch anything, just ring 999.

If you have any information about a burglar or burglary and don't want to give your name, ring Crimestoppers, anytime day or night, on 0800 555 111

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