Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of … Your Car?
8 Tips to Prevent Car Theft
Today is the most important day of your life. Today is the day you fight back against the thieves and scoundrels of America’s underbelly. It’s the day you hold fast our resolve and defend your unalienable right to mobility. That’s because today is the day … that we teach you about auto theft.
So that was a bit of an exaggeration. But in all seriousness, you probably don’t spend much time thinking about car thieves. Whether you’re thinking about it or not, auto theft is a real possibility for many Americans, especially in urban environments. In 2013 alone, almost 700,000 cars were reported stolen. But did you know that there are some really easy steps you can take to minimize your risk? Below are 8 easy steps to reduce your risk of auto theft.
- Store your car in a garage: You don’t have to leave home to have your car stolen. A car can be stolen right out of a front yard. To make your car more difficult to access, store it in a closed garage. This means renting if you live in the city, but it’s an investment worth considering. If you can’t park your car in a garage, park it as close to your home as possible, preferably under a streetlamp. Which brings us to number 2…
- Park your car in a well lit area: Obviously, you wouldn’t want to leave your car in a seedy part of town, but car theft can happen anywhere. It’s important to remember that thieves don’t like to be seen doing their thieving. To make your car a less likely target, park among other cars, preferably near a door or window. A car on its own is more tempting, but if it is stolen, being near a door or window will allow for more witnesses. You should also strive to park in an area that’s well lit. Cars parked under streetlamps are far less likely to be stolen than cars parked in a dark alley behind a roadside cafe. If you have the option to park your car under a streetlamp during the day, do it. That way, if you end up leaving it longer than expected, you’re still covered.
- Keep your car looking nice: You might be thinking, “But if my car looks nice, won’t someone be more likely to steal it?” Not necessarily. By keeping your car looking nice, you alert would-be thieves that you care about your car. If an owner cares about his or her car, he or she is much more likely to install an alarm and much more likely to notice its absence. To a thief, the worse a car looks, the less chance of being caught.
- Have an alarm sticker: Like number 3, this is an obvious way of stating, “I care about my car. Leave it be.”
- Actually have an alarm: It’s not all about looks after all. If the sticker doesn’t stop a car thief, loud screeching will certainly help.
- Hide your valuables: Never leave anything tempting in plain sight. A thief would much rather steal a car with a laptop in the front seat than an old fast food bag.
- Don’t leave your windows open: You might think leaving your windows open just a crack will let a little more air in, but that crack may be just enough for a thief to pry the window and unlock the door. Leaving that window open “just a crack” might let a little more than air into your car.
And last but not least…
- LOCK YOUR CAR: This one goes without saying, but we’ll say it anyway. Locking your car is your first line of defense. Don’t do the thief’s job for him. If you use a fob to lock your car, make sure to double check that the doors have locked. Occasionally key fobs can malfunction, leaving your car unprotected—or worse—thieves can actually jam the signal, preventing your doors from operating properly.
So there you have it—8 easy tips to help prevent auto theft. Start building safe habits now, and reap the benefits in the long run. For more safety tips, subscribe to our blog or follow us on social media!