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Don't Let Them Steal Your Car
Having your car stolen can be a major emotional trauma as well as a significant financial headache. It is also a whole lot of inconvenience as you then need to make alternative transport arrangements or arrange for someone to pick up the kids from school.
Even if the Insurance Company picks up the final tab, you still have the upset to your daily routine to put up with.
While there is no single foolproof method of beating the car thieves, you can take a few simple precautions that will dramatically reduce your chance of becoming a car theft victim.
First off, make sure that your car is locked securely. Yes, I know that I'm stating the obvious here, but it never ceases to amaze me to hear just how many people leave their car engine running as they defrost the windscreen in winter, or pay for their gas. A number of cars have been stolen as the driver gets out of the vehicle to open gates or barriers.
Park your car in a well lit supervised area, especially at night. CCTV is a great deterrent to most thieves so if possible, park where your car can be seen by the camera. While we're on the subject of CCTV, with prices continuing to drop, it is worth investing in a simple CCTV system for your own home. Anything that persuades would-be thieves to look elsewhere has to be worth the small investment.
Make it hard for thieves to steal your car. Many cars are fitted with immobilizers by the auto manufacturer and thieves are starting to get wise to the models which are simply too much trouble to steal. If your car doesn't have an immobilizer, fit one!
Don't keep your valuables on show. When you leave your car, hide or remove all items of value, including any detachable radio fronts, video screens or sat-nav systems. Also, remember to remove the brackets or window suckers that the sat-nav fixes too as thieves now break into the car on the off chance that you stowed the unit in the glove box.
Keep your keys safe. Don't leave them where they can be seen, such as on your restaurant table, at the top of an opened purse or hung up of a key rack at home. In the UK, where letterboxes are cut into the front door of the home, a growing number of thieves are taking along a telescopic fishing rod and literally fishing for the car keys through the letterbox!
For extra peace of mind, install a tracker system to your vehicle. Then if it is stolen, the police can locate it and hopefully catch the thieves.
These are just a few simple, commonsense precautions that you should turn into habits to help to keep your car safe from thieves.
About the Author: Mark Heywood enjoys all things automotive and runs Premier Kit Cars, a website about building your own car from scratch.