It’s always a terrible thing to have your car stolen. This is especially true for a city like Atlanta, where most people have long commutes to work or school. Fortunately, there are a lot of easy things you can to prevent your car from being stolen. Today, we talk about our top recommendations to help you avoid this unwanted scenario.
How to Prevent Your Car From Being Stolen
Lock Your Car
The easiest (and most obvious) way to prevent someone from quickly driving off with your vehicle is to lock your car. It’s important to get into this habit, even if you are just running into the store or your house for a couple of minutes. You’ll also want to make sure to close your windows and sunroof (if you have one).
Although though a locked car won’t always prevent your car from being stolen, a simple button press makes your car a less likely target for car thieves.
…Or Get a Steering Wheel Lock
Extremely popular in the ’80s and ’90s, a steering wheel lock works just as well now as it did back then. This heavy-duty device is designed to attach to your steering wheel and literally ‘lock’ it in place. So, even if someone were to break into your car and start it, they wouldn’t be able to steer it. This option is perfect for people who are very serious about preventing their car from being stolen.
There are a lot of steering wheel options with a wide price range to suit your budget and needs. If you do get a steering wheel lock, though, just make sure that you don’t lose the key!
Keep Your Car in the Garage
Not everyone has a garage, but if you do, don’t use all of it for storage. A garage is one of the most effective ways of keeping your car safe overnight since most car thieves go for easy targets (eg. cars that are parked on the street or are unlocked). A garage is harder and more noticeable to get into, so it’s a natural deterrent.
Just make sure to close your garage door at night!
Hide Your Valuables
Many of us use our cars like a backpack or purse – a convenient place to put everything from workout clothes to a work computer. A stolen car is already a great prize for a car thief. A stolen car with extra goodies like electronics inside is even better.
Resist the urge to use your vehicle as a secondary storage space. Or, store your valuables in the trunk (and lock your car!) when you leave it for any amount of time. Car thieves work very quickly, and even 20 minutes can make all the difference in the world. For people who have SUVs or hatchbacks, a cargo cover is an inexpensive and effective way to make your car a less likely target for thieves.
Deter Thieves With… Your VIN?
Your car has a unique Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) stamped on several locations on the car’s body. Thieves remove the VIN before selling the car to chop shops that dismantle and sell the parts.
You can deter car thieves from stealing your car by etching your VIN (discreetly) onto the window or other areas that are more difficult to simply erase. While this may sound extreme, putting your VIN on non-stock parts can also help you recover your vehicle if it is stolen.
Be Aware of Where You Park
For people who don’t have a garage, be aware of where you park. Choose spots under street lights in well-trafficked areas, if you can. Don’t park at the far end of a dark parking lot: that’s the perfect spot for a car thief to work unnoticed.
If you’re parking in a part of town where car thefts are common, consider paying for a spot in a patrolled pay lot. This way, your car will be monitored overnight and give you the peace of mind that it will still be there in the morning. The cost of a paid lot, even over the course of a year, is a lot less than the headache and cost of recovering a stolen vehicle – or having to buy a new one altogether.
Install a Kill Switch
A ‘kill switch’ may sound like something straight out of a movie, but it’s a real device that you can install on your car to help prevent your vehicle from being stolen. There are various configurations of kill switches, from pressing an extra button or needing a secondary key to start your vehicle.
Vehicle Inspections at T3 Atlanta
We hope that you never have to go through the ordeal of having your car stolen. If this does happen, however, and your car is recovered, it may be a good idea to have your vehicle inspected for any damage. T3 Atlanta inspects and services Nissan, Infiniti, Toyota, and Lexus vehicles at our Smyrna and Decatur locations. Give us a call today!