Anti-theft devices to consider

Installing anti-theft devices can be the difference between having to fork out for a new car.

Having a car stolen is one of the most terrifying prospects to drivers. Regardless of whether they own a relatively cheap vehicle or have the sports car they have always had their eye on, having it stolen will be a costly affair at the very least.

Although the likelihood of a car being stolen can vary depending on a range of factors, such as the region the car is in and accidentally leaving it unlocked, it is still a real risk. During December there were 30,053 vehicle related crimes committed in England and Wales.

It is well worth taking a few precautions to stop your car being broken into and potentially driven away. There are a range of anti-theft devices on the market for cars, here are just a few of the ones that appeal to drivers.

Car Alarm

The car alarm is potentially the most obvious one on the market, not least because everyone in a three-block radius knows when one has been set off.

These work through a variety of electronic sensors that are designed to trigger the alarm if the vehicle is breached. Sensors can have a range of triggers including unauthorised entry, breaking of glass or sudden movement.

If the alarm is triggered, it will sound at 120 dBs, alerting the car owner and everyone else in the vicinity.

Be sure to check the alarm system as older ones can be more sensitive. Should a false alarm go off too often, people will become less likely to take it seriously.

Additionally, it is worth investing in a hood lock or a back-up battery for the alarm as an experienced thief will know to unplug the battery, disabling the alarm.

Whether or not you have an alarm, it is well worth putting stickers around your vehicle to act as a visual deterrent to thieves. If they are aware that the car has a security system in place, they will be less likely to try to break in.

Steering Wheel Lock

For a low-cost anti-theft option that is also a pretty good visual deterrent to thieves, a steering wheel lock is often the best way to go.

The device, which is shaped like a long bar or club, is placed over the steering wheel and locks in place with a key. While it is on the wheel, no one can drive and steer the vehicle until it is unlocked.

Mechanical Immobilisers

Like a steering wheel lock, a mechanical immobiliser is designed to physically stop a thief from driving a vehicle away although it is a more high-tech solution.

Door and ignition locks are examples of mechanical immobilisers and they are relatively conspicuous so amateur thieves will know better than to try to break into a car.

More professional thieves, however, will be more aware of the flaws of such gadgets. As a result, it is worth using these in conjunction with other anti-theft devices.

Electronic Immobilisers

For a more sophisticated way of stopping thieves from driving your vehicle away, it is worth looking into electronic immobilisers.

A large number of modern vehicles come with car keys that are integrated with electronic immobilisers.

Keys tend to come with transponders that communicate to the ignition and fuel pump systems of the vehicle. The car cannot be started if these signals are not received.

As this technology is particularly high tech, thieves often avoid trying to steal vehicles where electronic immobilisers have been installed.

Kill Switch

Another example of an electronic immobilising device is a kill switch, which can be put in as an after market installation. Therefore, it is handy for those whose cars do not come with electronic immobilisers as standard.

It shuts down certain parts of the engine's electrical systems through a wireless transmitter. Some kill switches engage as soon as the car is locked and disengage the ignition.

When installing a kill switch, however, it should be ensured that it is kept out of sight so that thieves cannot see the device to disable it.

  • On: 07 February 2014
  • By: CarShop

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