How to Secure a Front Door

An average of $2,416 is lost in every burglary, and residential properties account for 67.2% of burglary offenses.1 In 2017 alone, there were 2,538,170 reported household burglaries.2 With gadgets like automated locks, door jammers, and doorbell cameras, it’s easier than ever to secure your front door from the inside.

Install security accessories

When it comes to front door security, sometimes the simplest option is the best. You don’t need to be a licensed contractor to know how to secure your front door. In just a few minutes, you can install a door reinforcer or replace the screws going into your doorframe. These quick fixes don’t take much know-how, and they reinforce your current front door from the inside.

If you take a look at your door frame, you might notice a small metal plate screwed into the side. This metal piece holds the locks or latches on your door in place to keep it closed. Chances are the screws that hold this plate in place are far too short to withstand forced entry. By swapping these screws for three-inch stainless steel screws, you can reinforce your front door for a few dollars.3

Add new locks

If your door is already sturdy and in good shape, you don’t need to replace the whole thing. New locks and deadbolts are an easy way to secure your front door and boost front door security. There are also a variety of standard locks and electronic locks to choose from.

While smart locks like the August Smart Lock cost more, you can lock and unlock your house remotely. So it’s no problem if you head to work without locking your front door first. These are also a good solution if you’re prone to losing your keys or accidentally locking yourself out. If you’re renting and can make only minimal adjustments, check out locks that can help boost apartment security.

Replace your front door

Your door may be properly installed, but the right material can withstand invasion and years of severe weather. Some of the best security doors are made of solid core wood or metal.

There’s a lot of beauty and craftsmanship that goes into wooden doors, but they can be expensive and high maintenance. If you decide to go with a wooden door, look for one made of heavy material like mahogany or oak.

Thankfully, cheaper alternatives like steel or fiberglass are also secure front entryways. They’re both weather-resistant but can dent or crack upon severe impact.

Avoid doors with a lot of glass—intruders could shatter the glass in your door to enter your home. You can also add a security door or screen door with security bars for extra reinforcement. These added doors can lock just like your main front door and provide an extra barrier to your home. You can find them anywhere from $100 and up in a variety of designs and colors to match your home’s exterior.

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Pro Tip

Many burglars don’t use force to get into your house.4 That’s why you should always lock your front and back doors. Don’t forget to secure your sliding glass doors too.

Improve visibility from the inside

Installing a peephole or doorbell camera makes it easy to know who’s knocking before you answer. Like deadbolts, peepholes are easy to install with the right tools, and they’re one of the best ways to secure a door from the inside.

Doorbell cameras are a new solution to the same old security problem. Standalone cameras like the Ring Doorbell Camera can stand alone or pair with a home security system for the ultimate line of defense. When someone rings your smart doorbell, you can see and speak to them through the app on your mobile device. So whether it’s a friendly neighbor or a suspicious character, you’ll know who’s coming.

Front door security FAQs

Deadbolt locks are sturdy, easy to install, and effective. A standard deadbolt costs under $40 and works better in tandem with your door’s existing lock. Deadbolts are especially effective because they can’t be tampered with or moved from the outside. They’re also much harder to pick than spring bolt locks.

Small reinforcements to the door’s frame, like new screws or a deadbolt, can keep your door safe from a home invasion. It also helps to check the condition of your door and its frame to make sure the wood or metal around it isn’t damaged.

It depends on how much you want to do. A new door can cost anywhere from $100 to $1,400, while longer screws and hardware range from a couple of dollars to $50 or more. We recommend starting with the cheapest, simplest solutions first before investing in more complex, expensive repairs.

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Sources

  1. FBI Criminal Justice Information Services Division, “2017 Crime in the United States.” Accessed November 16, 2021.
  2. The U.S. Department of Justice, “Criminal Victimization 2017, page 4, table 3,” December 2018. Accessed November 16, 2021.
  3. Dayton 24/7 Now News, “$1 Fix That Can Stop Burglars from Kicking in Your Front Door,” May 2017. Accessed November 16, 2021.
  4. KTVB, "We Asked 86 Burglars How They Broke Into Homes," March 2019. Accessed November 16, 2021.
Katie McEntire
Written by
Katie McEntire
As a renter, pet-owner, and woman living alone, Katie McEntire takes safety seriously. She’s tested devices like pet cameras, home security systems, and GPS trackers in her own home and devices in the name of safety. In addition to testing, writing, and reviewing for SafeWise, she also makes videos for the site’s YouTube channel. She’s been featured on publications like TechGuySmartBuy, Forbes, Healthy Moms, and Digital Care. Katie has a Bachelor’s degree in Technical Writing from Austin Peay State University in Clarksville, Tennessee. She’s held previous writing positions at Overstock.com and Top Ten Reviews.

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