How safe do you think your car really is sitting in that parking gargae all day while you’re at work? What about sitting outside your house, even? The truth is without an anti-theft device installed in your car, it never really is safe. A recent study showed that every 25 seconds someone’s vehicle is reported stolen. That totals 1.2 million car thefts each year. One of those cars can be yours next.
So you have to decide if the extra money you put out for buying a car alarm system is a worthy investment compared to losing your car. This is the only question. You’re next faced with ones like, which car safety system should you buy? Which will best protect it?
A professional car thief can and will steal any car, if they want it bad enough. You’re job is to at least make them work hard if they plan on trying to steal yours. Law enforcement officials recommend using common sense combined with a good anti-theft devices to thwart thieves.
There are many different anti-theft devices out there. Here are a few tips to help you protect your car:
- First off, think about where you normally park your car at home and at work. If your alarm was to go off, would you or anyone else for that matter, hear it or notice it? If it was to go off, would it simply be ignored?
- One great way to deter potential thieves is buy a heavy gauge steering wheel lock or tire locks. They will run you about $100-$200 but it’s worth the cost in peace of mind. Another trick is use indicator lights or window stickers that give off the impression of the car having an alarm installed.
- Do some research of just how effective certain theft-prevention measures actually are. If someone is determined enough to break into your car, they will find a way. Certain systems just make it more difficult such as cutting through certain steering immobilizers or shutting off the alarm.
- What are some of the ranges of the anti-theft systems you are looking at? The most popular systems include options such as audible alarms, a concierge system or cellular alarms that notify police. Other systems you’ll find have locking steering-wheel covers, steering-column covers, locking steering-wheel bars, kill switches, fuel-system locks, tracking devices and delay devices.
- How much protection are you looking for? Do an evaluation of how far you are willing to go and how much you are willing to spend. You’ll find that some alarms, reasonably priced in the $150 to $1,000 range, will arm automatically. Some alarms come equipped with tracking devices and are priced from $400 to $1,500. These types of systems help locate the car if it’s stolen. Steering-wheel locks and column locks are priced cheaply but must be manually put on every time.
- Create a budget for how much you are willing to spend now and in the future for any additional costs. Cheaper anti-theft devices such as mechanical immobilizers don’t need to be professionally installed, but you’re also not getting the best deterrent system either.
- Low-tech, cheaper anti-theft systems can be found in nearly any auto parts store or even in the automotive section of a major retailer. However, for the more sophisticated alarms, your best bet is to find a stereo shop or parts store that specializes in automotive electronics such as sound systems, alarms and radar detectors. They can even do the install for you there.
- Once you have your new alarm system successfully installed, call your insurance company to see if you are now eligible for any discounts.