From credit cards to bags full of merchandise, people keep more valuables in their vehicles this time of year, making for easy thieving. As holiday shopping picks up speed, here are some tips to help protect vehicles from break-in.
Break-in prevention tips
- Keep valuables out of sight
If your vehicle is free of items like sunglasses, shopping bags, and phone chargers, thieves may not be inspired to break in. Plus, most thieves want your valuables more than your vehicle and may damage windows and interiors to get what’s inside.
- Lock your doors
Sounds obvious, but it’s not. Locking your doors is a great way to prevent break-ins. Get in the habit of locking your vehicle anytime you are not inside. Thieves look for easy targets. Many will walk around parking lots or streets testing doors to see if they are unlocked.
- Hold onto your keys
Don’t hide a key in or on your car. Not on top of your tire or on your vehicle visor or anywhere else. Thieves know these tricks and will look there first. Like your valuables, keep your keys on you.
- Use the garage
If possible, avoid parking on the road at night. A garage will add a layer of protection, as most thieves are looking for targets that can be accessed quickly and easily.
- Park close to entrances
Learn to look for security cameras when you’re finding a parking spot. Well-lit areas and proximity to store entrances are also great deterrents.
- Empty your glove box
Just because it has a lock doesn’t mean it’s safe. Don’t leave credit cards, IDs or personal information in your glove box or anywhere in your vehicle. Take the registration and insurance card with you. Just be sure you have them when you return or request electronic copies from your insurance agent and keep them on your phone. Electronic copies of auto insurance certificates have been accepted by law enforcement since 2017.
What if it happens anyway?
Despite all your best efforts, you may still experience a break-in. In this event, schedule a windshield replacement. Then use crash wrap or collision wrap—a self-adhesive film—to seal the opening and protect your vehicle’s interior until your scheduled appointment.
Courtesy: Tips provided in part by Safelite.