5 Easy Ways to Update Your Home Security

Most homeowners don’t think they will be a victim to burglary, but when it happens, it hits hard.

When you’re a homeowner, doing small things to keep your house safe can make it harder for burglars to break in, reducing opportunity intruders and helping your house stay protected. From security cameras to burglar alarms, here are 5 ways that you can easily update your home security and keep your family safe.

  1. Keep an eye out with home security cameras
  2. Listen for your home alarm system
  3. Keep your valuables safe
  4. Shine bright with light security
  5. Lock your home

 

  1. Keep An Eye Out With Home Security Cameras

One of the best things to consider getting for your home are security cameras. These can be for both inside and outside of the home. They are great, they serve both as a deterrent and as a way for you to keep an eye on your home.

Both indoor and outdoor security cameras make your home a less attractive target to burglars as the risk of getting caught is much higher, but it also gives you confidence since you can see what’s happening at your home when you aren’t there. Whilst outdoor house cameras can be a more obvious deterrent, indoor cameras can show the intruder closer, and you can see what items were taken.

Whether getting a security camera as part of a security system, or just on its own, they can be a fantastic way of helping to protect your home from break ins. Some of the best security cameras that would be a great addition to your home security system are Blink, Arlo, and Nest. Read more about the Best Outdoor Security Cameras and the Best Indoor Security Cameras now.

 

  1. Listen for Your Home Alarm System

Getting or modernizing an alarm system is another easy way to update your home security. There are many systems and smart devices that will suit any budget and circumstance. Whether starting with a wired or wireless alarm security system, they work as another obstacle to stop a burglar getting in your home.

 

  1. Keep Your Valuables Safe

Keeping your keys, money, laptops, and jewellery out of sight makes you home less attractive to steal from. Wondering what you should hide? Here are 5 items people often forget to hide. By making it look like you have nothing worth taking, they are more likely to head to the next house.

A useful addition to your home security that hides your personal items is a safe. This not only conceals your valuables, but it also makes them harder to steal. You can decide if you want a transportable safe or one that’s anchored, dependant on your needs.

Also, make sure to keep your items away from your cat-flap or letterbox. Anything close by can be easily grabbed near these openings. Wondering where the worst places to hide your valuables are?

 safe

 

  1. Shine Bright with Light Security

Maybe having your home lit like a Christmas tree isn’t the answer, but lights can be key to keeping burglars away. Keeping some of your lights turned on inside your home can scare away potential thieves as they don’t want to get caught red handed with the owners still inside.

Getting lights outside, whether it be ones that manually turn on or are motion sensored, can also be a major deterrent stopping those who don’t want to be in the limelight. Think about upgrading to LED lights or solar flood lights when you get your next lights installed.

Plus, when you have security lights and cameras working together, it will be easier to identify the criminal through the security camera footage. Find out what we think the best outdoor light options are and the best places to put them here.

 

  1. Lock Your Home

Not many people keep their door wide open when they’re not in, but a staggering  , so whether it’s because they forgot to lock their door or the lock is broken, it’s an easy fix.

Whether you need to get new doors and windows or just update the locks, it will make it much harder to enter for a thief, making you less likely to be a target. And always make sure all doors, including garage doors, and windows are locked when you leave so there’s no easy entry to your home.

Look out for these signs if your lock needs replacing, or find out what the best door options are if you think you need a new door. Have a look at our uPVC doors and uPVC windows and find out if they are the right fit for you.

door knob with key in and house keychain

 

Should You Upgrade Your Current Home Security System?

It’s always best to try and reduce the risk of someone breaking in and stealing from you and your family. By doing these easy points to update your home security it helps to keep your home safer and keeps you and your valuables out of harm’s way. Home security systems should be checked and updated every 5 to 10 years as this is when components can become outdated and newer systems may be available to improve your system.

Still wondering what can make your home an easy target? Then avoid these mistakes. Have a look at our Ultimate Guide to Home Security for extra tips and tricks to keep your home secure. Sometimes you need some extra help when updating your home security, if your feeling overwhelmed and need professional help, find a locksmith near you and see how they can help.

 

Further Reading

How to Change a uPVC Door Lock Cylinder 

Fixing a Broken uPVC Door Lock Mechanism 

What to Do When Your uPVC Door or Window Won’t Open 

Fixing Common Composite Door Lock Problems 

Cycling Safety 2022

Last Updated: 05/05/2022

On a beautiful day what could be more perfect than a bike ride! With so many people going on bike rides during the pandemic, it’s become a popular hobby and a fun way to exercise. While cycling has many benefits both physically and mentally, it’s important that you stay safe while riding your bike. We will go through what the law says about cycling, how to keep yourself and others safe, while also looking at how to keep your bike secure.

 

Cycling and the Law

As a cyclist it’s important to be road safe and follow the laws around cycling and the advice given by the Government on how to cycle safely.

Currently there are over 20 laws on cycling on the road, including laws for general regulations, road junctions, roundabouts and crossing the road. This includes information on light’s, cycle lanes, pavement safety, safe clothing, traffic lights, road positioning, junctions, turnings, and crossings.

In 2022 the new Highway Code was released which changes the hierarchy of the road, placing pedestrians, cyclists and horse riders above any vehicles. This gives them greater authority on the road minimising the risk on the road to those more vulnerable.

Have a read through what is and isn’t legal and what are the important rules to follow to make sure your safety knowledge is up to scratch.

 

Know Your Turn Signals

To Turn Left:

Extend your left arm out to the side well before you intend to turn. Slowly begin to break and then make your turn.

To Turn Right:

Extend your right arm out to the side well before you intend to turn. Slowly begin to break and stop if it is not safe to turn. Ensure that there is no oncoming traffic and safely take your turn.

To Stop:

Extend either arm downward in an upside down ‘L’ position and come to a stop. Ensure that there is sufficient time between when you make the signal and when you come to a stop.

 

Check Your Equipment

Ensure That Your Seat Is Adjusted to The Proper Height and Locked in Place

The very tops of your toes should be able to reach the ground whilst on the bike, but you should not be able to place both feet on the ground at the same time. If you can do this, then your bike seat is too low.

Check The Tyres Are Inflated

Your tyres should be fully rounded with no punctures or holes. You’ll be able to tell if your tyre has been punched from a wheezing sound that is made when the tyres are inflated or if your tyres seem to deflate very quickly.

Ensure You Have Installed Reflectors at The Front and Rear of Your Bike

This will increase your visibility which is especially important at night and dusk where there is very little light. For extra safety, you can install reflectors on the pedals and spokes. However, most new bikes come with reflectors on all 4 points.

Add A Horn or A Bell

If you ever are riding in car populated areas, install a horn or a bell to be able to make people aware of you. Much like a car horn, you can alert people to your presence if you have not been seen.

Make Sure Your Breaks Are Working

Perform a brake test before every journey to ensure that your breaks are working. Spin your front wheel to a reasonable speed and then grasp the breaks and measure how fast the wheel stops spinning. It should stop almost instantly, if not you might need to get your breaks check by a professional.

 

What Should I Wear When Riding a Bike?

Ultimately, your clothing should be both comfortable and practical which will keep you safe and increase your visibility to other road users.

Bright Colours

Wear bright and fluorescent clothing to increase your visibility; this will keep you safe as drivers will be able to see you better which will decrease the chances of an accident. Try to avoid dark clothing, especially at night, but if you must, we recommend having a florescent jacket on hand to make sure you stay safe.

Tight Clothing

Don’t wear loose fitting trousers or long skirts. Wearing clothing that is loose fitting can increase the chances that it will get caught in the gears and chain of the bike causing an accident. We suggest wearing tighter fitting trousers such as jeans or leggings that would allow the best movement and minimise chances of getting caught.

Safe Shoes

Choose shoes that will grip the pedals. Shoes such as heels, sandals, flip flops, and cleated shoes will not give you sufficient grip on your bike pedals which could cause harm to you and other road users if you lose grip. Trainers are great for bike riding.

 

Wear A Helmet!

A bike helmet is the best thing you can wear to protect yourself when cycling. You are not required by law to wear one, however there are many reasons why you should wear one. They will help protect your head and brain. The risk when cycling is that you may come off your bike, this can happen for several reasons and can range in severity. In some cases, a helmet may help to prevent you getting a serious injury.

This seems like a straightforward point but surprisingly there are many things you must remember when either buying or wearing a helmet.

  • Make sure it fits snugly on your head by adjusting the sizing pads or fit ring. It should not wobble when you move your head

  • Position the helmet level on your head, it should be around about one to two fingers width above the eyebrow, so it sits covering the forehead and not tipped back

  • Adjust the side straps so they can form a V shape in either side of your ears with the buckle centred under your chin. The strap should be tight enough that only one or two fingers can fit between the chin and the strap

  • Ensure that it is well vented to stop you from overheating

Bell Avenue MIPS Road Helmet

£53 from Amazon

This helmet is easy to adjust and works very well. The helmet is made of polycarbonate and features 18 vents, which helps to keep your head cool, while cycling. It also features reflective strips on the outside, to help you be visible. It is slightly heavier than most helmets, weighing 310g, but is a good price and works well to protect you.

Specialized S-Works Evade II ANGi MIPS Road Cycling Helmet

£199.99 from Tredz

This helmet is super comfy and well ventilated; it also boasts a sleek, aerodynamic design. The ANGi technology is basically a posh crash sensor. It sits in the helmet and if it detects an impact that is powerful enough to incapacitate you, then it turns your mobile phone into a beacon. A countdown will start on the app and if you do not stop it before it reaches 0 then a designated emergency contact will be sent a message with your last know coordinates. This feature is great for those who cycle off road and in remote locations. It’s not the cheapest on the list, but you get what you pay for.

Bontrager Circuit Wavecel Road Bike Helmet

£134.99 from Trekbikes

This helmet is a good all-rounder, suitable for on and off-road cyclists at any level of skill. It’s a neat, compact helmet that stands out from other with its distinctive shape. It’s well ventilated and boasts a Boa dial retention system.

 

Bike Locks

These days, bikes are not cheap whether you have a road bike, mountain bike or a child’s bike, you want to protect it. You must lock your bike up whenever it is unattended, in public or even in a garage or outbuilding. Make sure to check the Sold Secure rating of the lock that you buy, to ensure you are giving your bike the best security.

Abus Granit X-Plus 540

£100 from Halfords

Sold Secure: Diamond

The Abus Granit doesn’t have any frills or fancy features; it purely focuses on being the strongest lock out there. It has a super hard square shackle which reduces the effectiveness of any jaw cutting tool that might be used to break it. A bonus is that even if a thief does manage to cut it, its square shape prevents it from being twisted and removed. This means a thief would have to cut it twice to remove it, this would take them more time and hopefully someone would notice what they were doing. It’s quite expensive, but not as expensive as buying a new bike if yours is stolen.

Kryptonite Fahgettaboudit Mini

£88.99 from Bikeparts

Sold Secure: Gold

This D lock is a great lock for your bike, specifically designed for urban use. Kryptonite is so confident in their locks that if your bike is stolen while secured with their lock then they will give you £2,500 towards a new bike. It’s on the smaller side, but it uses this to its advantage, the narrow width makes the lock even tougher to break. It is also one of the heaviest locks on the market. This 18mm Gold standard U lock specs should reassure you of its durability and effectiveness.

Onguard Pitbull Dt Shackle U-Lock Plus Cable

£33.99 from Tredz

Sold Secure: Gold

If you are looking for a bike lock that’s not expensive, but still very secure, then look no further than this Onguard Pitbull. It has full Sold Secure rating but is half the price of its competitors. It’s relatively light at 1.77kg and has a nifty light feature that will help you unlock it in the dark. The U bar is covered in a vinyl that protects your frame and wheels from scratches.

How to Get a Car Key Replacement

Whether you have lost your keys, had them stolen, or they have broken, you may not know how to get a car key replacement. There are various ways to purchase a replacement car key, all of which vary in price, technique and time to complete. Depending on what situation you find yourself in, different options might work best for you.

 

Fast and the Least Expensive

If you are in a hurry or want your car key replaced as quickly as possible then calling an auto Locksmith might be the best option for you.

An auto Locksmith is specially trained and owns the right equipment to replace all types of keys for most vehicle manufacturers and models. The benefit of an auto Locksmith, is that they are mobile and can come to you, depending on how busy they are, they may be able to be with you within the hour.

It’s more than likely someone who advertises themselves as an auto Locksmith will carry the equipment that reprograms car keys and should be able to reprogram keys for all makes and models of vehicles. An auto locksmith should be able to complete the job in one visit as they are well stocked with the relevant equipment and blank eye. They will also be able to disable keys that no longer work.

 

Least Upfront Cost

If you want to get your hands on replacement car keys without having to pay upfront, then you may want to go through your car insurance provider. Not all car insurance policies cover replacement car keys, so you will need to check with your provider. It’s worth remembering that you may not pay up front, put if you do claim on insurance, it’s likely to increase the cost of your policy on your next renewal and may affect your no claims bonus.

Some insurance providers give you an add on of ‘Car Key Cover’ which you will usually pay for as extra alongside your standard policy. This could be a good way to safeguard yourself from a big bill if you need to replace your car keys.

 

It’s The Middle of The Night

If you find yourself without your keys in the small hours of the morning, the choice of auto Locksmiths may be minimal. If you struggle to find one, then you may have to call a breakdown service such as the RAC or AA. However, they might not be able to replace all types of keys as it will depend on what kind of equipment they have in their roadside vans.

car stuck in middle of night auto locksmiths emergency in UK local

This is likely to be a slow option, as they will be dealing with several breakdowns and if you are in a safe place, you will not be top of the list. It’s also worth noting that a lot of breakdown services use auto Locksmiths, so, if possible, it’s easier just to go with an auto locksmith.

 

You Want a Genuine Branded Key

It could be that your Mercedes or BMW is your pride and joy, and you want to have a key that is fully branded and authentic from the manufacture. To do this you would have to find and go to a local franchised dealership.

This is a very expensive option but is probably the only to get a key with your car’s logo on it. It’s also a very lengthy way of getting a replacement key, as the dealership will have to send away for a blank key that might take a long time to arrive. It’s likely that a dealership, won’t have the equipment to reprogram a car key on site, so its quite possible that they themselves will call an auto Locksmith to do the work. If you’re not fussed about having a branded key, then it will be easier to go directly to an auto Locksmith.

 

How To Get a Replacement Car Key?

As you’ve probably gathered the fastest, easiest, and cheapest way to get a replacement car key is through an auto Locksmith. Replacing your car key won’t come cheap, but there are ways to keep the costs down and going directly to an auto locksmith is one of them. To find out more about our auto Locksmiths, visit out auto locksmiths’ page.