I think just about everyone has hidden a key or two in their day. I’ve seen them stashed everywhere over the years. Some ideas were good, while others…not so much.
I certainly want you to use all of the services Northern Security has to offer…I just want to help you avoid the discomfort of calling us at 9 p.m. on a Sunday when you’re stuck outside. That’s why I want to offer these solutions to help keep you and what matters most to you safe.
Ideally you’ll use one of our keyless push button solutions and avoid keys all together. We have plenty of options so don’t hesitate to reach out to me for some great ideas. If you don’t want to go that route and decide to keep with keys, there are a few do’s and don’ts when it comes to keeping a spare handy.
Don’t hide them
- Under a cheap looking fake rock
- On top of the screen door
- Under the door mat (does anyone even still have them outside?)
- With the sketchy looking kid down the road
Places to hide them…just make sure no one sees you retrieving it
- Taped under a real stone in a flower garden, rock garden, or large planter.
- Concealed in the siding on your house (seriously…check this out!)
- Using a magnetic or velcro key hider to keep it stuck somewhere out of sight
- With a trusted neighbour
Another option to help reduce your chances of leaving your keys inside, add extra protection, and likely save some money on your insurance is to install deadbolts. If you remove the locking door knob and just install a passage set, you’ll need your keys to lock the door behind you and be less likely to get locked out. Our deadbolts have a 1″ throw and you can usually get a reduction on your insurance for installing them.
Just some things to consider to avoid that Sunday call.
If you want to discuss this or any other security tips, I’d love to hear from you.
I don’t try to hide the fact that I’m not a fan of cold weather. I’ll tolerate it if I’m bundled up and prepared. I have bad news for you. Locks are the same…especially padlocks! They’re sitting on the outside of (usually unheated) buildings or on gates. Completely exposed to the elements.
I’m entering into my 21st year of being a full time security solutions provider. That means 20+ winters of customer feedback regarding padlocks…most of it is contradicting!!
All winter long, I have customers coming in telling two types of similar stories.
Customer 1 tells me: “This is an awesome padlock! It never freezes!”
Customer 2 tells me: “This padlock is terrible! I carry a torch and my key all winter long!”
Same padlock…opposing stories. How can this be?
The answer is simple. It’s all how you treat the lock when the weather hits and what you do if (and when) it does freeze.
- Cover the lock with a physical barrier to keep it out of the elements
- Spray the lock and its internals with a water repelling fluid
- We sell Lock Saver which keeps water from settling in the components
- Solution – For when it does freeze
- Warm up the lock
- Putting a torch or lighter to the lock will get it open. Putting it right back will only let it freeze back up again. You need to do more…
- Dry out the lock
- Allow the lock ample time to dry and get the moisture out otherwise it’ll just freeze up again
- Displace the moisture
- WD-40! Honestly! WD = Water Displacement – It gets any remaining moisture out of the crevices and lubricates the lock.
- See Step 1…Prevention
I’ve used this simple process for years to get customers into their homes and gates. I don’t believe there is anything on the planet that is completely freeze proof. We can’t control the weather. We can just better prepare for it.
If you want to discuss this or any other security tips, don’t hesitate to reach out to me. I’d love to hear from you and help keep what matters most to you safe.
This is the time of year, when many gain some independence. Perhaps they’re an early teen letting themselves in after school or a young adult moving away to attend post secondary. Either way, being home alone can be intimidating at first. That’s why I’m passing these tips along to you so we can work together and help keep what matters most safe.
In keeping with the theme of my last email and school bus safety (here if you missed it) I figured I’d touch on leaving young ones at home. The interesting fact here is that Ontario does not have a minimum age listed in the law books. The CBC offered a great article about kids at home in March of 2016. There are courses offered to teach them the skills they need to start off on the right path. Here’s one course at the Sudbury YMCA if you want to pass it along.
There are several useful strategies for anyone who is living on their own. One of the easiest is to simply have a “check in” plan. It can be a casual daily wave to the lady across the street or an evening call to a loved one. By making friends with your neighbours, they’ll help to keep an eye on things when you’re home and away. They’ll also learn your routines and schedules as you’ll learn theirs.
I’ve gone over many tips in these emails and they can almost all be found on our blog. I can’t stress enough the importance of good locks and an alarm system. Combined together, they offer peace of mind for anyone on their own.
Give me a call or email so we can discuss some of the many options we have available to help you keep what matters most safe while you’re home or away. We have everything from smart phone enabled alarm systems to deadbolts.
Family vacations are something I think we all look forward to. It’s a time to just be together as a family. I’m sure everyone has that one trip they’ll never forget. I’ve sat through countless slide reels of my grandparents vacations from when my mom was a kid. The process of documenting and sharing those moments sure has changed. According to Statista in 2016, there were 21.3 million smart phone users in Canada. That’s a whole bunch of cameras ready to take pictures and post them on social media without even leaving the beach.
Here’s a couple cool social media facts for you:
Facebook – 1.94 billion monthly active users as of March 31, 2017
Twitter – 313 million active users – 2017
Instagram – 700 million active users – May 29, 2017
What does this have to do with security? Let me show you an example:
People constantly post pictures of their loaded up car, tweet about how they’ll miss their pets, or share an article about things to see at the Grand Canyon before a vacation.
Lets say you have 200 Facebook friends and post that picture of your luggage at the door.
All 200 of your friends can see it. They can also like or comment.
Sally comments “Have a great trip!! We’ll see you in two weeks” – Now all of her friends can see it – Add all 350 people who she’s friends with.
Frank (who knows Sally but not you) gives it a like – His 150 friends can now see it.
You just told 700 people that your house is going to be empty for two weeks. What if Frank has someone in his friends who’s a bad guy?
How’s that for a breach in security? I encourage you to think twice before posting details about your vacation before you leave. You never know who’s looking at those posts.
Give me a call or email so we can discuss some of the many options we have available to help you keep what matters most safe while you’re away. We have everything from smart phone enabled alarm systems to chains and padlocks.
May is the time to think about opening up!!
Winter is over and it’s time to thaw out our summer homes. Several of our friends have second properties that range from summer un-insulated shacks to beautiful year round homes. My family and I love going to visit and enjoy the fact that everything is there set up and waiting for them to arrive. My wife and I have had several discussions over the years about purchasing a camp. We’ve decided that we like our option. We have a camper and enjoy the “nomadic” lifestyle it provides us. We enjoy travelling from place to place and watching new sunsets. Each option has its merits and advantages. Unless you have the fully insulated year round second home, you’ll need to prep for winter if your summer “home” is in Northern Ontario. Have you or someone you know ever arrived at camp or their camper and “stumbled” through the opening process? I know we have.
Here’s a link to a checklist on opening up the camp and on de-winterizing your camper to help get you started.
One thing I’ve suggested over the years is that customers really like having their summer homes matched to the same key as their house. It saves starting a relaxing weekend by forgetting your keys behind. I’ll give you tips on hiding keys in a later email.
What are you doing to keep what matters most safe? Do you have checklists in place for your security?
Give me a call or email if you want to talk about anything security related. I’d love to hear from you.
Cover photo credit goes to my awesome wife, Stacie Pagnutti.