What is Unplasticised Polyvinyl chloride?
Unplasticised Polyvinyl chloride, otherwise known as uPVC, is a hard and non flexible material that is known for its excellent performance and durability. It has become increasingly popular over the more traditional wooden door due to its longevity and availability to be manufactured in an array of colours which present a more stylish and presentable look. Modern uPVC carry the benefit of galvanized steel cores which makes it extremely difficult to break, adding extra protection and security to your home.
Is uPVC safer than wood?
The reliability of uPVC is one of its biggest assets. Rot won’t be found in the frames, it’s solid and impenetrable structure cannot be broken without the use of heavy power tools which is the perfect deterrent against burglars. Compared to wooden doors which need continuous maintenance check for rot and weak points in the frame, which can be a big sign to burglars that your home might be vulnerable.
Another feature of an uPVC doors is the use of 5 locking points, over the traditional 2 in wooden doors. When locking uPVC doors the handle must be upturned, this deploys a variety of hooks and bolts in the doors multi point strip. This effectively creates 5 locking points throughout the strip, thus creating a more secure locking system. Compare this to a wooden door which is usually fitted with 2 locks; a Yale and a mortice, uPVC creates a better assurance of safety and is far more secure.
One of the most popular methods of forced entry are kicking or ramming the door, these are forceful methods that anyone can use with a bit of brute strength. uPVC combats this by containing galvanised steel cores which would be extremely difficult to break without tools, this means that kicking through the door wouldn’t be an option for intruders. Wooden doors are also useful in this sense as they are often thick timber, which would also be difficult to kick through, meaning that these doors also carry the same level of security in this respect. One thing to consider would be that the reliability of the door is dependent on its state, so a door which is worse for wear could not be held to the same standards.
How can an uPVC door be made more secure?
British standard anti-snap cylinder lock
The majority of uPVC doors are fitted with a euro lock barrel, which can pose a problem to security. These locks can be vulnerable as they can be easily snapped and pulled from the handle, granting access to an intruder.
A solution to this would be the installation of the British standard anti-snap cylinder lock, although a pricier option it provides another layer of protection. An anti-snap lock has a line cut into the body of the cylinder, that when force is applied the cylinder it will snap at this weak point but the mechanism will stay intact. This prevents the lock from snapping and thus denies access to any intruders. Another benefit of Anti-snap locks is the added protection that they are also anti pick, anti bump and anti drill.
uPVC door styles such as patio or French doors that are predominately glass can be an easy access point for intruders, it also poses a risk that they could break the glass and grab any valuables nearby such as keys . We suggest laminated glass panels to give the best security to your home.
Laminated glass consists of two panes of glass with a plastic interlayer in-between that holds them together, the PVB layer holds the shards in place should the glass break creating a protective double layer design. This design means that this glass can withstand immense heat and shock whether intentional or accidental and creates a safe exterior for your home.
Door chains and limiters
Door chains are a fairly cheap and effective way of making your door that little bit more secure. Fix them to the door and doorframe with long screws, or even coach bolts, and the security of the door has been greatly increased. You can even get a variation called locking door chains, which allow you to open the door from the outside with the chain on. This type of chain allows you to enter a key into the cylinder of the chain bracket which will realise it. This is a great option if you are worried about getting into your home, or an elderly relatives, in an emergency and the door chain is on.
Another option is the use of a door limiter; it works relatively in the same way as a door chain but is often referred to as the stronger option due to the solid metal latch over a chain.
Install a wide angle peephole
Installing a wide-angle peephole viewer will allow you to do a larger screening when you get unannounced visitors, which will prevent any surprises. This paired with good lighting will give you the best advantage in home security.
Seek professional advice
The most effective way to secure your home is to have efficient locks. Locks are what will prevent a burglary or unwanted guests entering your property. Consulting an experienced and qualified locksmith (like ours here at Keytek) will allow them to check your home has:
- Efficient locks that offer security
- Meet British standard
- Are compliant with your insurance policy
By getting a professionals opinion, it can give you peace of mind that your home is secure. They will also be able to identify any weak points that need attention or can recommend security upgrades to your home if you are still wary.
To find out more about door security, you can find more blogs here