Buying a car is a significant financial investment that most of us make at some time in our lives. Therefore, it's something we need to protect and keep safe and secure. There are some simple steps we can take to increase the security of our beloved four-wheeled friend.
1: Lock Your Car
First up, always lock your car. It might sound obvious – but this is the most important tip we can give. Hardened car thieves and casual opportunists alike thrive on car doors being left open. It is literally an open invitation to a car thief.
Get into the habit of locking your door every time you step out of the car. Even if you are leaving it for just a few minutes in a familiar area.
2: Keep in Mind Where You Park
Be careful where you park. You'd be amazed how often individuals lose their cars just because they simply forget where they parked. People park in bust areas such as a city centre for the weekend and have forgotten where they are by Sunday.
If you're parking in an unfamiliar location – take a note of your parking space. Maybe even take a photo on your phone. There are even apps you can get now to help you record the location.
3: Keep Valuables Out of Sight
If at all possible, avoid storing valuables in your vehicle. At least, don't have them insight from the window. While some may advise you to hide them beneath a seat or bundled under a coat in the back seat - this may actually encourage burglars to break in.
It's best to remove them altogether or at least put them in the boot where there is no chance of them being seen. To avoid problems, you should take as many items as possible out of the car when you leave.
4: Park In a Well Light Area
If you are leaving your car overnight or parking in a car park – try and park in a well-light area. If you are leaving your car in a car park at night and there is a street light, try and park close to the light.
Well-lit areas are less favorable to car thieves. If you have the option of parking in a well-light area or a dark corner of a street or car park, always choose the well-light parking spot.
5: Steering Lock
If you grew up in the 1990s you may not be familiar with steering locks. But, you've probably noticed them in parked cars around the country. They are usually a high-viz bright yellow and are a mechanical device that fastens across the steering wheel.
Potential car thieves will see them as soon as they look in the window and know that stealing your car is going to be an extra challenge. The chances are they'll just move on to another car that doesn't have a steering lock.
They are an effective deterrent. If a thief is patrolling a street and sees a few automobiles, the one that appears to be more difficult to take possession of will deter them. This can help prevent them from smashing your windows or breaking your car door to gain access.
6: Install a dashcam
Dashcams are becoming increasingly popular in recent years. You can even get one that is visible in plain sight or one that is hidden – for covert recording. One of the goals of a visible dashcam, similar to that of a steering wheel lock, is to keep intruders out. It acts as a deterrent.
It does, however, serve other uses. Other benefits of a dashcam include – they capture anything that may be of interest as you drive such as a traffic accident or if someone crashes into you and it's not your fault. They are worth their weight in gold in the other drives away from the scene before it gets reported to the police.
7: Tinted Windows
While many people believe that window tinting is just for cosmetic purposes to improve the appearance of a vehicle, it actually has safety benefits. Some individuals, for example, find it difficult to drive when it's too light outside, which can lead to accidents since they can't see what's ahead of them on the road.
If you tint your windows to the legal limit, it will make it somewhat darker for you and reduce the strain on your eyes while driving. This is another method you may make your automobile safer for yourself while driving. It also provides you with an additional degree of privacy, which is beneficial.
8: Don't Leave A Spare Key
Leaving a spare key hidden beneath your car or behind a wheel for a friend or a family member may seem like a good idea. But beware, thieves are wise to this little trick and some scout vehicles to see if a spare key has been left out. If you need to transfer a key to someone else, get it handed over. Don't leave it outside where anyone can get it.
9: Paint Protection Film (PPF)
Have you heard of paint protection film (PPF)? It's a form of polyurethane film that functions as an extra layer of protection for your car. The idea is it protects your vehicle from scratches and chipping. It's easy to apply and it guards against dirt, grime, deposits, UV rays, and dreaded scratches.
10: Car Seller's Advice
At some stage in the life cycle of your car – you're going to want to sell. You may be forced to sell your car at some stage, either to finance an upgrade or just because you no longer need it.
When it comes to selling your car, you should be cautious about going it alone since you can attract thieves. Bring a friend along with you to deter any chancers.
Also, when they ask to test drive your vehicle, be careful. Weigh up the situation and don't allow them to drive off in the thing without paying.