Every day, vehicles are stolen in the Chicago metro area, sometimes right from under their owners’ noses. Just last week I reported on a car theft that took place right in front of the owner’s house while she was carrying groceries inside. While that was not the most common scenario, it shows you how brash car thieves can be. Here are a few car security tips which you can use to protect your vehicle when you are not in it.
- Actually lock your car. If you do not already have a high-quality lock on your car, it is time to hire Chicago locksmith services. Once you do have a great lock, though, make sure that you actually use it. You would be amazed at how many vehicle owners walk away from unlocked cars. And guess what? About half of all stolen cars were left unlocked before they were taken.
- Do not leave your keys in the car. This should go without saying, right? Wrong. More than 10% of all stolen vehicles had the keys left right inside for the thieves to use to start the ignition. Sometimes people even leave keys in the ignition! Try not to leave anything else tempting in you car. Make sure no money or valuable items (like handbags) are left behind. You may even want to conceal your stereo if you can.
- Never walk away from a running car. Not only is this unsafe, but it also makes a great target for an auto thief. A lot of people in Chicago make this mistake during the cold winters when they wait for their cars to heat up. Always stay inside your car, even when you are warming it up in the morning.
- Get a car alarm installed. Car alarm installation is a fast and easy process, and helps to protect your vehicle in a couple of ways. Firstly, the alarm light is a deterrent, as is the loud noise that will result from attempting to enter the vehicle. Many thieves will just move on to the next unprotected, easier target. Secondly, the car alarm locks the ignition, making it quite challenging to actually drive the vehicle away. This is really the true value of the alarm.
- Install GPS in your vehicle. GPS allows the authorities to track your stolen car and pursue the thief. It is the best way to improve your odds of getting your car back if it actually is stolen, and having a GPS installed may also qualify you for lower auto insurance rates.
High quality car security systems give you a great way to protect your vehicle. Get strong locks for your doors, an ignition locking alarm system, and GPS installed. Moreover, smart practices while driving and parking your car allow you to deter car thieves and keep your vehicle safe. Use common sense and keep your vehicle in well-lit, attended lots whenever you can. Always take precautionary measures when you leave your vehicle unattended, even for short periods of time.