How To Protect Your Car From Being Broken Into
Holiday shopping during the month of December can be stressful. Busy malls with high traffic volume mean parking lots full of unattended cars, trucks, and SUV’s Whether you are heading to West Edmonton Mall or stopping for a quick shopping trip at Chinook Centre in Calgary, it’s important to keep in mind that December is a busy season for thieves targeting vehicles. Protect your car from being broken into and having valuable items stolen from your vehicle. We’ve put together easy ways for your to protect your car from thieves this holiday season.
There are many ways to protect your car from being broken into, our primary recommendation is to always lock your doors and trunk, and keep your windows firmly closed. Some vehicle models will have an automated remote that allows you to simply push a button to lock all doors and trunk of the vehicle. By having your doors, windows, and trunk locked it prevents thieves from having quick entry to your vehicle. On models with an alarm system, having your doors locked will help protect your items from being stolen. If the alarm is activated from someone attempting to break into your car, the alarm will sound drawing attention to your vehicle.
If you want to protect your car from being broken into, its important that you do not leave valuables in plain view. During busy seasons, thieves will spend ample time in parking lots for quick access to vehicles. A car thief is looking to break into a vehicle to steal items that they can easily grab. When you are leaving your vehicle unattended, removing or locking up items that can be seeing from your windows. Even small items like sunglasses, spare change, and clothing can cause a thief to break into your vehicle. It’s important to protect your car from a break in by either removing these items, or locking them up.
This brings us to the next way you can prevent a break in. Lock any valuable items in your trunk prior to arriving at your destination, this removes the items from plain view. We recommend placing these items in your trunk prior to arriving because it prevents anyone from being able to see you locking any items in your trunk. If a thief watches you arrive in a parking lot and sees you place your work laptop in the trunk of your vehicle, the will not only see what other items may already be stored in your trunk, but will also know what items you are putting in there ahead of time. If you are driving an SUV, draw the security cover since tinted windows will still show items depending on the amount of light in the vehicle.
When you are shopping, plan out your route so that you can avoid bringing paid for items back to your car in between purchases. As mentioned above, the best way to protect your car from being broken into is ensure no one can see anything to steal. If you are purchasing something heavy or bulky, plan to pick up these purchases at the end of your shopping trip. Pick up small carriable items at the beginning so you will not need to drop items off at the car in between purchases. This recommendation also related to locking valuables in the trunk prior to arriving. If a thief sees you adding a just-purchased item to your vehicle before you return for more shopping, the will know not only which store you purchased the item from and potentially what the item is, but they can now potentially see what else you have stored in your trunk and know that’s where your valuables are stored, including new packaged goods.
Shopping in cities like Edmonton and Calgary can mean you can be parking in an open parking lot where elements such as snow, wind, and ice are present. These cold temperatures cool down your vehicle quickly and at times can require you to warm up your vehicle prior to leaving the lot. If you plan to warm up your car, don’t leave your keys unattended. Leaving a warming up car in the winter with the key in ignition is the #1 source of vehicle thefts this time of year. To protect your car from having items stolen from it, make sure you stay with your vehicle while it’s warming up. A solution for this could be to install a remote starter in your vehicle, allowing you to start the engine from a distance, all while keeping the vehicle locked.
These recommendations can help protect your vehicle from being broken into this holiday season.
What do I do if my car was broken into?
If you car was broken into, its important to take photos and video of the damage that happened, you will also want to take an inventory list of what items were taken from your vehicle. A police report will need to be filed and you will need to contact your insurance broker to discuss the possibility of filing an insurance claim. Any damage to your vehicle falls under your auto insurance policy but any items that are not permanently attached to your vehicle are covered under your home policy. If you have a combined home and auto insurance policy you would only need to pay one deductible whereas if you have separate home and auto policies you are required to pay a deductible for each.
For questions on how your insurance protects you against vehicle theft or what to do after your car was broken into Contact us today and we’d be happy to help! Protect your valuables and have a safe and happy holiday season!