Exterior Home Security

7 Easy Ways to Increase Your Garage Door Security

Protect your home by preventing intruders from gaining entry through your garage.
Glenda Taylor Avatar
Improve Garage Door Security in 7 Steps

Photo: istockphoto.com

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Your house is only as safe as its weakest entry point, and for many, that point is an overhead garage door. While homeowners typically install strong front entry doors, garage door security often takes a backseat—unfortunate, as approximately nine percent of burglars break in through the garage, according to the National Association of Certified Home Inspectors (NACHI). So keep reading for eight smart yet simple ways to help protect your garage door, dissuade thieves, and gain priceless peace of mind.

1. Obscure the garage interior by frosting the windows.

Windows liven up the look of a garage door and let in natural light. Unfortunately, potential thieves are apt to peer in the windows, scoping for expensive tools and to see if all the cars are gone—a good sign that nobody’s home, which may prompt a break-in. Adding a layer of frosted film, such as the highly rated Window Whirl’s Privacy Film available at Amazon, to the windows will keep crooks from seeing what’s inside while still allowing light to filter through.

2. Monitor activity with a smart garage door opener or other device.

Openers do add a measure of garage door security because they lock the door when it’s in the down position. But a determined burglar may still be able to force the door open—or hack the code. With a smart opener, such as the Chamberlain Smart Garage Door Opener available at Amazon, you can monitor the status of your garage door and receive an alert on your smartphone if someone opens it, which allows you to notify law enforcement immediately.

You needn’t have an opener to keep tabs on what’s going on at your garage door. With a Wi-Fi-connected monitor, such as the Brocel GarageDoorBuddy Monitor, you can receive alerts on your smartphone when the door is opened or closed even without a garage door opener. The device attaches to the garage door frame and syncs with your smartphone via its own app to let you know the instant someone opens the door.

Improve Garage Door Security by Never Leaving Openers in the Car
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3. Don’t leave your garage door opener remote in your car.

While it’s convenient to clip a remote to your car’s sun visor or toss it into the glovebox, those are the first places a burglar will look. Make a habit of keeping the remote in your purse or coat pocket, or carry it into the house and stow it with your car keys.

4. Install motion-detecting floodlights to increase garage door security.

Many thieves operate under cover of darkness, so a sudden burst of light is often enough to deter them. Solar-powered floodlights are the easiest type to install because no electrical wiring is necessary. The best motion sensor lights that have a wide-ranging detection base; the BNT Motion Sensor Floodlights available at Amazon can detect movement up to 26 feet away, directing a bright beacon to send robbers running.

Improve Garage Door Security with a Motion-Activated Floodlight
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5. Consider a garage door lock.

If your garage door opens manually via a handle, consider installing a locking handle. An option like the Prime-Line GD Keyed T-Handle Lock available at Amazon requires a physical key to get in. You can also deter burglars by putting a lock on the inside of the garage door, such as the Accessories 22 Garage Door Slide Lock also available on Amazon. It attaches to the inside of the door and the frame, and the locking bar must be manually slid into place from inside the garage. Lock it behind you before entering your house to prevent anyone from opening the garage door until you unlock it.

RELATED: 35 Easy Ways to Protect Your Home from Break-Ins 

6. Lock the door between your garage and your house.

Many homes have attached garages that make it handy to get in and out of the house without having to walk through inclement weather, but that connecting door is a major security risk if you fail to lock it. Once a burglar gains access to your garage, he can walk right into your home. Always keep the connecting door locked, and for greater garage door security, install a steel security door with a deadbolt in this spot.

7. Reduce garage break-in risk with security cameras.

Security cameras are a huge deterrent to would-be burglars who know the cameras are recording their facial features, clothing, and other physical attributes. A motion-activated camera starts recording as soon as a car pulls into the driveway or someone approaches on foot—even at night. If you go with the easy-to-install NETVUE Outdoor Camera with Night Vision available on Amazon, the incriminating video then gets stored on a micro SD card. Plus, the camera syncs with smart home systems such as Alexa as well as smartphones, so you can check on the status of your garage door even when you’re off-site. The best home security systems, such as ADT or SimpliSafe, offer a variety of security cameras you can install in your garage for added peace of mind.