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Protect Your Car From Thieves

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Protect Your Car From Thieves

Lawrence Reaves
October 18, 2012


Your automobile is a constant in your life. It's there when you head to work and it's waiting when you finish your errands. It's always there when you need it, so after a while you might just start taking the car for granted. But when your car or truck gets stolen, you'll be left with a hole in your routine and a sense of powerlessness. Fortunately, there are some simple things you can do to protect your car from getting stolen or broken into. The main goal will be to make your car less attractive as a target for auto thieves.

Basic Prevention Steps

Many cars are actually stolen because the owners left the keys in the ignition and the car idling while they ran into a store or gas station! The number one prevention step is to not hand the car over to thieves.

Locking the doors of your car should be one of the very first things you do when you get out. It seems like this would be so simple that it doesn't have to be said, but there are surprising numbers of people who don't lock up. Rolling your windows all the way up goes right along with locking the doors. A partially open window is an open invitation to thieves and even the smallest opening will make it easier for thieves to get into your car.

Don't leave tempting valuables lying around your car. Cellphones, global positioning systems, expensive toys and bags are all items that might draw the attention of an individual who is intent on stealing. Even if the bags are completely empty, the thief may break in thinking that there is something valuable. If you are transporting items of value, lock them all into the trunk of your car.

Control the Circumstances

Park your car in a safe place! Thieves don't want to be caught. Thieves will avoid witnesses. Try to park where there are other cars and plenty of people. Are there security cameras? Park within a clear line of the camera. Find a well-lit parking lot, especially if it will be dark when you return to your car. If it is dark, then park next to the lighting. If you have parked next to a curb, then you can turn your tires in toward the curb. This way, if a car thief is trying to tow your car, you've limited the amount of access to your car. You can make your car less attractive to thieves by controlling the amount of public traffic, the amount of lighting and the ease of making off with your car.

Install One or More Security Systems

There are many items available to deter the theft of your personal belongings stashed in a car and to prevent the theft of your car or truck. Some experts recommend that you use multiple layers of protection. Your interest in which devices to use, and how many, will depend upon the risk of car theft in your area. Here are some common security devices to use:

The steering wheel lock

A well-hidden vehicle kill switch

Car alarms

A tracking system - allowing police to track your vehicle after it has been stolen

An anti-theft, immobilization device - this part will disable the engine when it is removed from the car

As you take steps to decrease the temptation to steal your car and limit access to it, you'll have a better chance of avoiding car theft.

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Lawrence Reaves writes for Woodfins -http://woodfins.com/- who offer used auto parts for all your auto needs. For more information about Woodfins check out their site at http://woodfins.com/Search-By-Makes.html

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