Having your car stolen is a nightmare for any car owner. 😫 Sometimes, car owners don’t realise that they left their cars unlocked, making it so easy for thieves to steal the vehicle. Car thieves are also becoming more and more creative in their ways and are able to get through technologically sophisticated lock and alarm systems. How can you avoid being a victim of car theft? Thankfully, there are steps you can take to prevent yourself from ending up in this scenario. We’ve gathered the best tips to keep your car safe.
Don’t Leave Valuables in the Vehicle
Thieves are not only after the car but also the valuables inside it. If you have a habit of leaving your gadgets, bags, coats, and other things inside your car, it’s time to make some changes. It might seem like a lot of hassle to take your things out of your vehicle and take them with you wherever you go but you just can’t be too complacent.
Sometimes, thieves may not be after your car, just the things inside it. But in the process of getting them, they could break your windows or doors, leaving you with an expensive repair bill.
Also, when it comes to your car documents, don’t leave them in the vehicle. Leave your vehicle logbook and car insurance papers safely at home. Thieves might use those documents for fraudulent activities such as scrapping or selling your car.
Double-check That You’ve Locked Your Car
Don’t rely solely on your key fob and that visual or auditory signal that the car is locked already. Go ahead and double-check that your car doors are indeed locked shut. This simple step is easily overlooked by many car owners but it can prevent you from going through a hellish nightmare of car theft.
It’s not only the doors that should be shut, all your windows should be closed as well. Even if the temperature gets really hot in the summertime, it’s not worth making your car vulnerable to theft just to keep your car ventilated. Before leaving your car, walk around it to see that all windows are closed and be sure to check the car doors are all locked.
Switch Off Your Engine
You might be in a rush so you leave your car running for a bit. This is a big mistake that many car owners make. Those few seconds or minutes are enough for thieves to make a go for it and steal your vehicle. Switch off your engine and take your keys out of the ignition. Even if you’re just going to be away for a short while, it’s not worth putting your car and other valuables in it at risk of theft.
Also, did you know that if your car gets stolen because you left your car running, it invalidates your car insurance? Many policies today exclude cover if the driver even just left the keys in the ignition. Not only will you have this nightmare of not having a car, but you also won’t get anything out of your insurance. So, even if you think you’ll just be out for two minutes, switch off the car engine, get the keys, and double-check that you’ve locked the doors.
Choosing Safe Parking Spaces
There are areas where vehicles are more prone to theft than others. Location is even considered when it comes to the calculation of your car insurance premiums. You may think that your driveway or garage is safe for your car but never be too complacent. Here’s how to choose a safe parking space in different locations.
Parking at Home
When you’re at home, make it a point to park in your driveway or garage. This discourages thieves because it will be challenging for them to get away in your vehicle quickly. If this is not possible, be sure to park your car as close as your can to your home. Keep it in line with the windows of your house so you can check it every now and again. This will also repel thieves because they can be easily seen by you or even passersby.
Parking at Car Parks
Not all car parks are the same in terms of the level of security they offer. So, when choosing a car park, pick one that has CCTVs installed. And then in selecting a spot to park, choose one that is well-lit and have other cars nearby. True, parking might be a bit challenging if there are more vehicles parked but just think of it as safety in numbers. Just remember that parking on a spot that has empty spaces on either or both sides will make it easy for thieves to steal your car.
Parking on the Roadside
When you’re in the city doing your shopping or eating out, you still have to be mindful about where to park your car. You’d want to pick a spot that’s near a public area or has CCTVs. If your vehicle is parked in an area where many people can see it, it won’t be so easy for criminals to try and steal your car because it would be too obvious for anyone walking by.
You’ll never know if you’ll be the victim of car theft. Whilst you may not want to imagine this scenario might happen to you, it's better to be as prepared as you can be. Prevent having this nightmare of a situation by being extra careful whenever you leave your car, even if you’re parking on your own property! 🚘