Locks, bolts and alarms: adding extra security to your caravan
Adding an extra lock to your caravan door can help keep out thieves
Friday, 26, Nov 2010 09:16
by Marcus Dubois
It is an unfortunate reality that our caravans and motorhomes are prime targets for thieves. The vehicle itself is a high-value item, yet often it is the contents left inside that offer caravan criminals a bonus. Keeping your tourer on the property is no guarantee that it will be safe, as shown in a recent story on Caravan Times where a man was pictured on Google Street View next to a caravan moments before its theft from a driveway.
And this week Caravan Times community member Stevie boy got in touch with us to relay the following bad news:
"My Bailey Pegasus was forced open the other night; the alarm scared heads off and nothing was stolen. Has anyone fitted additional door security to this type of van?"
The good news for Steve is that the excellent alarm system on the caravan was an effective deterrent, yet it is unfortunate that many caravan door locks are not high security devices when faced with an expert thief. Many experts advise using preventative measures when leaving your caravan at home, such as emptying its contents, securing windows or leaving an automated light on.
Yet there are products available for the caravanner which provide the equivalent of fitting a bolt to your front door -offering that extra piece of mind and slowing down potential thieves.
Bolt and braces
It's possible to improve the security of the existing lock itself by changing the barrel for one that requires a different key. However as well as the expense it is unlikely to stop a thief able to pick locks. Therefore the recommended method is to fit a high security "bolt" style lock to the door to compliment your existing system.
There are deadlocks available such as those from Harrison Locks which can be easily fitted by the owner. Using a simple metal bolt system you can fit two locks if required, and the device can also be used for locker doors.
Yet some owners may not be entirely happy drilling or screwing into the door and potentially compromising the existing structure. For those caravanners there are some alternatives.
In our search for a non-invasive second lock which could deter thieves we spoke to Lee from CaravanStuff4U who was able to recommend the Milenco Superior Safe Door Frame Lock to us. The device fits directly into the caravan door frame surround and slides left or right to lock and secure the entrance. The manufacturer claims it can be fitted by the owner in around ten minutes and should be mounted beside the doorframe. Lee described this as "an easy to fit lock which can be removed - but when the door is shut you won't be able to see it"
Another option we came across is to fit a Fiamma Safe Door device which is a "pivoting safety block" for the caravan door. A similar kind of anti-theft device, it can be installed using bolts and internal counter-brackets, and can be found here.