Most homeowners take the security of their garage doors for granted, especially if they live in a safe, respectable neighborhood. However, most burglars tend to focus their efforts on the safest and most respectable areas, and you may be at risk if your doors are not up to par.
In addition, the interior of your garage can become hot during the summer, making it tempting to leave the doors open; however, this can actually damage freezers and other appliances that you may have in your garage.
A recent story in the Star Tribune of Minneapolis reported that during just one week, there had been almost 40 garage burglaries, many due to the garage doors clearly not being locked. One couple lost three bicycles and in all suffered a loss of $1,300 by forgetting to lock their garage doors; they pointed out that they normally did lock them but just forgot to do so one time. Unlocked garage doors are often a popular target for would-be burglars, who frequently go from one home to another, looking for open garages.
A news station based in St. Louis also had similar tales of woe from homeowners who had not locked their garage door and pointed out what they considered to be an alarming number of related burglaries. One thief actually backed his own car into a garage and managed to get away with a new edger and a blower, despite being surprised by the homeowner who investigated on hearing a noise.
Many other garage doors were left open in the same area, according to a news station investigation. A July report from the El Paso Times points out that in some areas of the city, garage-related burglaries have increased by 40 percent and an open garage door can be a big target for burglars.
One of the risks you run by leaving the garage open is in potentially allowing a burglar easy access to the rest of your house, in addition to losing whatever is in your garage. Of course, any burglar who has gained access to your garage often has the tools needed to break into your home anyway. In many homes, it is all too easy to gain access from the garage to the rest of the house, as the door may be flimsy or have a lock that is not fully working.
There is no doubt that garage-related burglaries have increased in many areas of the country, and doing all possible to deter would-be thieves is essential for your safety and to protect your belongings. You may want to call in a professional garage door repair service to check your doors to make sure they are functioning and secure, and of course, you should get into the habit of closing your garage doors especially when nobody is at home.