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Door and Window Security

The majority of burglaries are the result of thieves gaining entry through open or unlocked doors and windows. Locks are only effective if they are used. Keep your doors and windows locked, even if you are elsewhere in the house.

door security icon Windows

Around a third of burglars get in through a back window. Thieves are deterred by window locks, as breaking glass is noisy and draws attention to them.

  • Replace rotten window frames using items manufactured to BS PAS24 - 2012.
  • Check that the glazing is secure. If the putty or bonding is old and split, it's easier for a burglar to remove the glazing.
  • Check external beading. If it is loose or not securely fixed, it can be easy for a burglar to remove.
  • Use frame locks if you only have a single lock point. If your windows only have a single latch, fit frame locks to the top and bottom third of the opening side of casement windows and to each side of an sliding sash window.
  • You can fit sash windows with specialist screw locks and sash stops.
  • Use extra frame locks if your UPVC window does not have side bolts. Older UPVC windows are not very secure even though they appear to lock in several places. There are several designs of frame lock that you can use with UPVC windows but take care when installing them.

Don't underestimate a burglar - if they can get their head through the window, the rest can follow.


If your front and back doors are not secure, then neither is your home. You need to consider:

  • Doors and frames must be strong and in good condition.
  • Glass panels on or around the door are very vulnerable - replace them with laminated glass at least 6.4 mm thick.
  • Fit rear exterior doors with mortise bolts, top and bottom.
  • Get specialist advice when fitting locks to patio, metal or PVC doors as incorrect fitting could actually weaken the door rather than strengthen it.
  • French doors should have mortise bolts near the top and a third from the bottom.
  • When buying new doors or windows, make sure they are kite marked for security.
  • Fitted glass in doors must reach the British Safety standard. Laminated as opposed to toughened glass is a little more expensive, but far harder to break in through.

Remember - your insurance policy may not cover you if your home security is poor. Don't lose out twice. Check the wording of your policy, as many will insist on certain standards. If in any doubt, ask. 

Fire Safety

NEVER use a keyed frame lock on windows that you would use as your intended fire escape. There are many designs of keyless lock that can be opened by pressing a button.

If you lock your windows using the handle, keep the key out of sight, but in a place that is close by. Make sure that EVERYONE in your house knows about the location and that EVERYONE can reach it.

Visit Staffordshire Fire - Home Safety for more information.

Choosing an Installer

We recommend that you use manufacturers and installers accredited by Secured by Design and locksmiths who are members of the Master Locksmith's Association

When selecting a product or installer with Secured By Design, check which of their products carry the accreditation.