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Secure Your Windows

 
 

To delay and, ideally, deter thieves, you need more than the standard window or patio door latch. Because you may need to exit through locked windows and doors yourself in an emergency, keep the key near the lock, but hidden from outside view. When possible, buy all latches from the same manufacturer so that the keys will be interchangeable.

 

If local fire code permits it, further improve security by replacing single glazing with polycarbonate or wire-embedded glass. In some cases, you may even want to install security shutters, a grill, or a security gate.


 

WHAT YOU NEED FOR THIS JOB:

TOOLS:

MATERIALS:


 

Locks for sliding windows

 
Step 1: Casement windows can be closed with a door-bolt-like device Casement windows can be closed with a door-bolt-like device that operates with a key. Screw the lock to the window and slide the bolt into a metal cup that mounts in the sill.
 
Step 2: Drive a screw into the top of the upper track to keep thieves from lifting a gliding window out of its track Drive a screw into the top of the upper track to keep thieves from lifting a gliding window out of its track (see inset). To keep the window from sliding, drive a screw horizontally through the track.
 
Step 3: Level locks for sliding windows Several companies make locks for sliding windows. On this one, a stop slips over the window track. Turn the lever one way to lock the window; turn it the other to allow it to slide. Other locks use a thumbscrew instead of a lever.
 
Step 4: A key track stop is a locking stop that you can attach anywhere on the track A key track stop is a locking stop that you can attach anywhere on the track. You can position it to lock the window shut, or so that the window opens only a certain amount, allowing for ventilation and safety.

Double-hung window Locks

 
Step 5: On double-hung windows, you can install a locking pin On double-hung windows, you can install a locking pin that goes through one sash and into the next to keep intruders from lifting the sash. Some pins screw through a hole you drill, while others drive in and out with a special key that comes with them.
 
Step 6: Ventilating locks screw to the side of the top sash an inch or so above the meeting rail Ventilating locks screw to the side of the top sash an inch or so above the meeting rail. When the pin is positioned as shown, it allows you to open the window until the pin strikes a plate screwed to the other sash. Slide the pin around the corner and you can raise the window the full amount.
 
Step 7: A hinged wedge lock nails in the window track of a double-hung window A hinged wedge lock nails in the window track of a double-hung window. Choose a position for the wedge that lets you open the window enough to get fresh air. When the wedge is in place, the window will only rise up to it (see inset). When you swing the wedge out of the way, the window opens freely to any height.
 
Step 8: A keyed turnbuckle replaces the normal latch A keyed turnbuckle replaces the normal latch, so you’ll need a key to open the window. A child-safety latch also replaces the original latch. It’s similar to the childproof caps on medicine but easier to use. In order to open the window, a child has to be able to squeeze a lever while turning the latch.