Car break-ins aren’t necessarily an uncommon phenomena. The FBI reported 721,053 thefts of motor vehicles in 2012, or 229.7 break-ins per 100,000 cars. In 2017 it was reported that 773,139 motor vehicles were stolen. Although crime rates have been dropping in the country, motor vehicle thefts have been on the rise.
Yet there’s evidence that the reasons behind these break-ins may be changing. Across the country, it’s no longer your car’s stereo system thieves want — these days, thieves are looking to snatch the garage door opener you keep on your sun visor. That makes sense as once they have access to your remote control garage opener, they will also have access to your garage and probably even your house. Even if you have a secure anti theft garage door, once they have access to the opener they can get in.
According to a March 18 KHOU article, police are noticing a growing trend of thieves going from driveway to driveway to see which cars are unlocked. If a car is unlocked, the thief can use the garage door opener to conveniently break into the home. With the popularity of automatic garage door opener installation, thieves know most homes have easy access through the garage door.
This happened to Lisa and Pablo Armendariz of Houston, TX, whose home was burglarized while they were asleep. After using their car’s remote control garage door opener, the suspect stole a bike, some money and a pair of cleats from their home.
“It’s always a good idea to keep your garage door opener out of sight of thieves, as well as any other valuables in your car,” says Corey Glackin of CGX Overhead Door. “Always keep your car locked, as well as your home.”
However, your car doesn’t have to be parked in your driveway for a thief to take your garage door opener. According to the Bellingham Herald, car break-ins have been reported where the only item missing is the garage door opener. The thieves are able to get the victim’s address from paperwork in the glove box, police said.
To prevent this from happening, police are advising people to keep their garage door openers out of plain sight while parking their vehicles, especially in places like mall parking lots. For even more security, it’s best to bring your garage door opener with you when you park your car.
“It’s a good reminder so you know to do your checks at the end of the night and make sure everything is locked up tight,” Armendariz said.
If you see damage to your garage door, especially around the locking mechanisms, enlist in garage door opener repair service. Having expert garage door repair means you can trust your home stays secure. Any garage door installation problems can leave your home vulnerable to break-ins. Having trusted professionals provide accurate garage door repair is a crucial home safety decision. If your garage door opener was stolen it is important to immediately disable your garage door opener’s access. Enlisting garage door repair service to have a professional come over and reprogram your garage door for a new garage opener remote can ensure your home stays safe and secure. Changing garage door remote should be the very first thing that is done since you do not know the timeline or intentions of the thieves.