We have put together a guide to roof window security to help you lower the threat of potential break-ins. Burglars will always look for the easiest ingress point to avoid making noise and drawing attention to themselves. This is why you should do everything possible to reduce their options by taking care of the security basics associated with your roof windows.
Whether you have a pitched or flat roof you will need to consider if the security measures you currently have in place are strong enough to protect your property. Read through our guide to roof window security and we will reveal the best methods to use, the main risks to look out for and some general tips on warding off potential intruders.
Which Security Methods are Available for Roof Windows?
There are two main ways to secure your roof window, whether old or newly installed. Burglars will look for vulnerabilities wherever they can find them, so it pays to keep ensure you have done everything you can to deter them from attempting to break in.
Reinforcing the glazing will provide another layer of protection to stop potential burglars from forcing an entry via roof windows. This is done by using toughened glass on the exterior which is manufactured to be more resistant to breakage compared to standard glass. In the very unlikely event that a burglar was able to break the toughened glass, it does so in much smaller pieces. This makes it a far safer choice for the home. This will also mean there is less chance of any sharp, dangerous shards falling into space below.
By laminating the inner pane this will mean that when struck it will not shatter. Instead, it cracks and lowers the chances of jagged glass fragments falling into the room. Laminated glass also continues to support itself after cracking, so it won’t fall out of the frame. A polymeric material is placed between two layers of normal glass to form this type of laminated glazing.
If you have a roof dome on your property, polycarbonate glazing provides an extremely tough security barrier that is almost impossible to break. It can be also be combined with glass which will keep your home secure while offering all the usual benefits that come with the installation of a roof dome.
As with any windows in the house, ensuring the roof window is fitted with security locks will act as a deterrent to any burglars looking for an easy way inside. If the window in your roof is old, it may be worthwhile reviewing if a more up-to-date model might be required. They should also feature internal keys that can be used to lock the window from the inside to further tighten security.
How Do I Secure my Roof Windows?
The position of the window will help to dictate the type of security you put in place. Roof windows that can easily be reached from floor level should be fitted with internal locks.
For roof windows that require a pole to open and close them as they cannot be reached without climbing up a ladder, a catch mechanism should be sufficient. A lock can be installed, of course, but this may make it more problematic to operate the window on a day-to-day basis. Remember, if you require a pole to open the window then it is also likely to be too high for burglars to consider entering.
What are the Main Security Risks Associated with Roof Windows?
In most cases, security risks are created by homeowners themselves who simply forget to close or lock their roof window(s). Unless you are using the room on a frequent basis you may not have a regular routine when it comes to opening and closing the window.
It can also be the case that during the summer roof windows are left open to help lower the temperature inside the house which can reach high levels of humidity. While the risks are greater on flat roofs compared to pitched roofing, any window that has been left open presents a security risk.
Securing a Flat Roof Window vs. a Pitched Roof Window
Burglars will generally tend to avoid attempting to locate a point of vulnerability on a pitched roof because of how dangerous it will prove to access. However, an open window will prove enticing for any potential thief so keeping it closed when outside of the house or late at night should not be overlooked.
Flat roofs, on the other hand, offer an easier entry point as they are accessible by scaling drainpipes or even using nearby properties. This is why it pays to have standard security measures in place to prevent anyone from trying their luck or taking things even further to force an entry.
The Best Ways to Check & Maintain Roof Window Security
You need to make sure you put in enough preventative measures that will secure your property without hindering your quality of life at home. A few suggestions could be:
- Have a daily routine that includes checking the roof window(s) are closed and locked late at night. Also, remember this when you leave the property.
- Check the window for any cracks or damage that could weaken the structure of the glazing.
- If you do spot any damage, get it repaired quickly. Don't leave it to become weaker and more vulnerable to potential break-ins.
- Good lighting on the outside of the home. Look at solutions such as motion sensor floodlights which react to movement occurring around the exterior of the property.
- Keep any valuable possessions locked out of sight. Put cars, bikes and any expensive tools safely inside the garage. Keep the interior concealed with blinds, shutters or net curtains.
- Install a security system and place any stickers provided on the outside of the house as a deterrent.