Simple tip can protect your garage from thieves - WECT, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Simple tip can protect your garage from thieves


Something as simple as a wire hanger is all a thief needs to break into your garage and get into your house. Online videos showing how to do it are going viral and the solution is easier than you think. It can happen fast.

Garage doors  are one of the most vulnerable entrances to your home. A criminal armed with a simple coat hanger can hook the emergency release cord. Then all they have to do is lift the door, and they're in. 

To see just how easy it really is, we asked Troy Andaluz, who owns a door business, to try for himself. He admitted it took a few minutes the first time he tried. But the second time, he was inside in seconds.

There is a surprisingly easy fix, and it's a simple as a plastic zip tie. Just thread it through the emergency release latch. The zip tie is strong enough to prevent the latch from being pulled open by a hanger. It adds about 10 to 15 pounds of pressure, where the hanger would straighten before it broke that zip tie.

Authorities say while this method is growing in popularity, most crooks are still kicking in doors or breaking windows. They're not using a lot of technique, they're just using brute force. And the best solution for that is to start a neighborhood watch program or organize with your homeowners association.

But just to be safe, don't forget about the zip ties. Consider them a $5 insurance policy leaving thieves and their hangers bent out of shape.

More safety tips:


  • If you have a garage door with windows, consider covering the windows over, or have them frosted so burglars can't see inside.
  • Clear the area in front of your garage. Things like bushes might allow a burglar to break in without being seen.
  • If your garage is attached to your home, lock your door.


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