70% of burglary entries happen through the main door, while 30% through the window. So while there is a decrease in theft across the UK, residents should still be cautious. The Office for National Statistics (ONS) identifies households with young adults (16-24) and single-parent homes in urban areas to experience more burglaries than their counterparts.
Regardless of how you fit into these categories, UK residents still ought to be aware of these things and be vigilant. How? By improving their home’s safety and security and directly setting up countermeasures for the common household break-in methods.
So what should you know about household burglaries in the UK?
Most household burglaries are often accomplished with sheer brute force. Thieves rarely have the time, patience, or skill to pick locks. And given the Euro cylinders in old residential buildings and homes, that isn’t an issue. Instead of taking the time and energy-consuming task of picking the door lock, they simply resort to lock snapping.
What Is Lock Snapping?
Home invaders use the lock snapping method to gain entry into your home. First, they use locking pliers, or anything similar, to expose the mechanism by bending or breaking the latch. When the locking mechanism is exposed, they “snap” your Euro cylinder.
After snapping a lock in-half, they open your door. It doesn’t take much effort for them to gain access to your home. The moment they reach any outdated Euro cylinder locks, it will be open within seconds for experienced burglars.
When you have an anti-snap lock, this isn’t the case. Lock snapping only works with specific types of lock cylinders. Unfortunately, the outdated model happens to be the one installed across homes in the UK. The Euro profile/ Euro cylinder lock is the go-to option of UPVC doors in the country.
From front doors to back doors, you can often find the same locking mechanism. One of the main reasons for its popularity is its price and availability. It is very inexpensive and can be found just about anywhere. As long as they aren’t an anti-snap lock, this will continue to be a problem.
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How Common Is Lock Snapping?
Considering the cylinder lock in most residential homes has a weakness that can be exploited in second–lock snapping is fairly common. In fact, lock snapping is the popular entry method for 25% of burglaries in the UK.
Ever since it gained traction in 2009, cylinder snapping has become a widespread practice that persisted for almost a decade. Until today, there are still home invaders that gamble on the fact that your door lock might be one of many that can be opened with a pair of pliers and brute force.
Despite constant warnings from authorities, residents only make the switch after the theft as already happened. So even with TS 007 3-star anti-snap locks and decreasing burglary rates, you can still hear about lock snapping now and then. Only when homeowners and landlords start to invest in home security properly do these numbers go down.
How Do You Prevent Lock Snapping?
The best way to prevent lock snapping is to invest in a better one, and that is all there is to it. You can call your local locksmith and have your outdated cylinder locks with a more current anti-snap lock. It isn’t to say that the previous models are bad. It is just more expensive to make them work. If you want to keep the old Euro cylinders, you may need to look into adding deadbolt and other similar measures.
You can say that the old Euro cylinders were just not built for brute force and anti-snap locks have a better mechanism in place. They have built-in redundancies so you can’t get through on force alone. It has an impressive core with 1-2 breakaway sections and sometimes a lockdown mode, making it impossible to pick.
You should look into anti-snap locks that are TS 007-compliant and kitemarked. If you haven’t heard of TS 007, it is the standard against common breaking techniques like lock picking, drilling, bumping, snapping, and plug extraction. The British Standards Institution (BSI) tested a series of brands and models to make sure that they can withstand these types of attacks. You should either get the 3-star rating, which includes lock snapping tests, or the 3-star with a Sold Secure Diamond Rating (SS312), which goes way beyond the TS 007 testing, for your front door.
*Note: Locks with 1-star or 2-star ratings are not tested for anti-snapping. They only provide basic level protection, which is very similar to the old Euro Cylinder locks.
Some examples of TS007 3-star cylinder locks you can look into are the Ultion Euro Cylinder Lock, Yale Platinum Cylinder, ABS Master Cylinder, AP Cylinder, Schlosser Technik Cylinder, among many others. All of these models have been tested by 3rd parties and are considered the top of the line locks.
You can also prevent lock snapping by properly fitting your door handle and lock to your UPVC doors. When it is not properly installed, it only makes it easier for a stranger to gain access to your home. If you want to get the job done right, Aerialforce is a national service with technicians across the country. For new anti-snap lock installations or Euro cylinder repairs, you can contact our local locksmiths!
Other Security Measures You Can Take
If you are looking for other ways to keep your home secure, you can look into replacing your door hinges with long screws and installing a CCTV surveillance system. They can act as your contingency plan to ensure that no one can attempt a quick and quiet break-in. If they do, you have the evidence needed to help with the investigation.
If you want to learn more about home surveillance, you can check out our blog, “Best CCTV System in the UK for 2020.”
When it comes to protecting your home, you can never be too safe. The dips in lock snapping burglaries are only due to the measures residents have been taking. The moment you become complacent about the quality of your door lock and lock installation, you immediately increase the odds of a break-in.
From CCTV systems to your lock needs, Aerialforce has a well-vetted team that can help you improve your home security. We offer clients same day services for emergency jobs as well as the most competitive prices in the market. You can book our services online or call us at 0330 173 1924!