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Window Security Bars: Are They Right for My Home?

28 Jun 2019

Window security bars are an excellent way to secure your home with a strong physical deterrent for a relatively low cost. Your home insurer may also offer you a discount or reduced rate for having bars or other security measured installed on your home.

There are many reasons why you might want to consider installing burglar bars on your windows to protect your home, including;

  • High crime/burglary rate in your neighborhood
  • Lack of neighborhood watch program
  • Basement or ground level windows
  • Fear that your home will be broken into
  • A lack of home security companies in your area

If any of the above apply to you, you may want to consider installing window bars on your home’s windows to protect your home, yourself and your family.

Types of Window Bars

Burglar bars are basically metal grids that are screwed or bolted onto your window’s framing. There are several options available, from DIY options that you can install yourself to professionally fabricated designs that require professional installation.

Some common types of window bars include:

  • Permanent security bars - these are meant to remain in place for long term use.
  • Swing away bars - these are hinged for easy window cleaning and emergency escape route use.
  • Removable bars - commonly used for residential store fronts where they are placed on the doors or windows at night and removed during the day.

Do Burglar Bars Work?

Yes! Just the sight of a home with barred windows is usually enough to deter burglars from even attempting to break into your home. Most criminals target homes that appear to lack basic security measures like a home security system, allowing them to be in and out in just a few minutes at minimal risk of being caught.

If you live in a neighborhood where safety is an issue, burglar-proofing your windows should be your second priority after you finish reinforcing your door.

Where Should I Install Window Security Bars?

You will want to start by installing bars on the windows that are lowest and that may be obscured by bushes or trees. If you have basement windows, this is usually a good place to start. Your basement windows are down low and usually hidden well.

How Much Will Installation Cost?

The answer to this question will depend on which route you decide to take when installing your window bars; do it yourself or professional installation. It also depends on how many windows there are in your home that you'd like to protect.

If you're handy with a toolbox and feel confident about installing your own window bars, by all means, save the installation costs and do it yourself. Otherwise, hire a professional.

Smaller Windows
If you are looking to make installing burglar bars a DIY project, you can pick up kits designed for small windows, such as your basement, for around $100-$200 each depending on the quality and design of the bars. These can be installed in about an hour.

Installing window security bars involves mounting a pair of framing brackets on either side of your window. In order to do this, you will need long screws and access to a drill to get the job done right.

Larger Windows/Doors
If you are looking to secure larger windows or doors in your home, it will cost you on average $300-$500 per window for the supplies. If you choose to have them professionally installed, you are looking at adding on another $150ish per window plus the cost of the materials.

Before installing any type of bars on your home’s windows or doors, be sure to check with local codes to see what their requirements and restrictions are for barring windows.

Many local municipalities dictate that the bars need to have a quick-release feature that can be engaged from the inside to allow occupants of the home to escape in the event of a fire or other dangerous situation.

While installing bars on your home’s windows is highly effective at deterring crime, they work best when used in conjunction with a monitored security system. Unlike window bars, a security system is designed to protect you in an emergency by contacting the police automatically, even when you're not there to respond.

Talk to a security system company near you to see whether window bars, motion detectors, or glass break sensors will be a more cost-effective security solution.

The Ultimate Home Security Guide

A comprehensive list of steps you can take to protect your home and your loved ones.

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