How to Prevent Car Theft
It's 6 in the morning on a typical Canadian winter day. Another day of going to work in the dark and coming home in the dark. The last thing you want to do is sit in a cold car waiting for it to warm up. What do you do? Pop the keys in, turn up the heat, close the car door and go back to the warm comfort of your home to wait. A couple minutes pass and as you mentally and physically prepare yourself to leave the house again, you open the door and stare at an empty driveway. Someone stole your car.
Now you're probably thinking "This is exactly what I'm trying to avoid, so what can I do?" Look no further — we’ve got a few easy to follow tips to help you protect your car against potential theft.
What are some things I can do to prevent my car from being stolen?
There’s a lot you can do to discourage someone from stealing your car. We recommend you keep these tips in mind:
- Always lock your vehicle, no matter where you are. Even if you're only stepping away from it temporarily.
- Never leave your keys in an unattended car.
- Keep valuables, especially computers and cell phones, out of sight. Better yet, try not to leave your valuables in the vehicle when possible.
- If you have a car security system, make sure it’s in good working order.
- Keep the exterior of your home well lit. It draws attention to your property and allows any unwanted visitors to be seen.
- Keep the walkway from the driveway to your door as unobstructed as possible — a clear view ensures you can always see what's going on in your yard.
- Consider installing cameras to the exterior of your home. This can prevent thieves from targeting your car and will also catch them in the act should they be bold enough to go through with It.
Canadian winters can be brutal. How am I supposed to warm up my car if I can't leave my keys in it?
Your car definitely needs to defrost before you drive off in it. But leaving your car unlocked, running and unattended isn't the safest idea. Instead, try using a remote start system. These devices allow you to start your car by clicking a button within a certain range while still keeping it locked. So now potential thieves can’t get in and your car will be nice and toasty by the time you hit the road.
My car is a push to start — there's no way thieves can steal my car, right?
Not exactly. Thieves can be pretty savvy. A keyless car may be perceived as safer, but with technology, thieves can still get in. If you have a keyless entry fob, make sure you never leave the fob unattended and always keep it away from the door or the entry of your home. For extra protection, you may also want to look into purchasing an anti-theft box/pouch that's lined with special materials to specifically block external electric fields. In other words, once you place your fob in these boxes (or pouches), it will decrease the potential of thieves being able to properly use their devices to capture the signal of your fob to open your car without you knowing.
If, however, your car starts from a key in the ignition, something you can consider purchasing is a steering wheel lock. It may seem old-fashioned, but it's been a trusty anti-theft device throughout the years. Although it won't fully protect your car, it may be worth adding as an extra layer of protection.
What if I'm not at home? Is there a way I can deter someone from stealing my car no matter where I am?
A simple thing you can do is strategically pick where you park your car. Try to park somewhere that's well lit, somewhere with higher foot-traffic, and somewhere that's constantly monitored. If you find yourself in an unfamiliar area with minimal lighting and no one around, follow your gut instinct and find another spot to park, even if it's further from your destination. Plus, it doesn't hurt to get some extra steps in along the way.
I tried to protect my car, but it still got broken into/stolen. What do I do?
If you're dealing with the aftermath of car theft, know that car (and even home) insurance will be incredibly valuable to you. How? We've answered this and all your other car theft coverage questions so you can plan your next steps.
Whether you're reconsidering your insurance needs or would like to get a better understanding of what extra protection can look like for you, simply get a quote to get started.