All Ford cars and vans come complete with security systems and features to ensure your vehicle remains secure along with any of the contents inside. There are however a number of precautions you can take to make sure you vehicle remains as safe as possible, some of which we have outlined below.
It can be tempting to start your engine in the morning and leave your car running to warm up while you finish getting ready. However, this gives opportunistic thieves the chance to jump in and drive off. A vehicle theft that happens in this way is probably not covered by your vehicle insurance policy, which is also the case if you store a spare car key in the glove compartment which a car thief can use to drive your car away.
Leaving valuables on display in your car gives thieves a greater reason to break into your vehicle. Hiding things out of sight is an improvement, and it is even better to take them with you. Items such as laptops should be stored in the boot, and it is best to put them away before starting your journey instead of doing it while parked at your destination. You should also bring valuable items inside overnight, as the middle of the night is the most common time for vehicle break ins.
Every Ford model comes with a parcel shelf which covers the boot. You should always keep this in place when leaving your vehicle unattended, as it hides the contents of your boot from prying eyes and deters opportunistic thieves. This is particularly important if you have hidden valuables hidden in the boot, as advised.
When your car is parked at home and your keys are inside the house, you need to make sure they are stored in a place where thieves cannot reach them. Many car thieves have been known to use a long implement, such as a garden cane, with a hook attached to ‘fish’ for car keys, if you leave your keys on a window sill or near the letter box, they may be at risk of being ‘fished’. To keep your keys from falling into the wrong hands, put them out of sight in a drawer or cupboard, and make sure they are away from all doors and windows.
There is a simple thing you can do to stop thieves fishing through your letter box. If you fit a wire mesh cage around your letterbox, your mail will be collected in the cage, but people will not be able to fish for your keys.
If a thief does break into your house, they may start looking for your car keys. You can avoid putting yourself at risk by leaving them in a downstairs room out of sight. Do not take them to bed with you or try and prevent a thief from taking your keys – remain calm and call the police.
Making sure your vehicle is securely locked when you leave it, however briefly, is the first step to reducing your risk of break-ins and vehicle theft. You should make sure that all of the windows are closed, and if you have a sun roof you should also shut this before you get out of the car. Convertible cars should have the roof folded up and secured when you leave it for any length of time.
Most current Ford models come with double locking as a standard feature, which prevents someone from being able to open the door if they smash a window and reach inside. To double lock your car, you just need to push the ‘lock’ button twice. This simple measure can make all the difference if someone tries to break into your car. However, you should never double lock the doors if there is someone inside as this prevents them from escaping from the car in an emergency.
Once you have locked your car, always look for the sign that it is locked properly. This is usually indicated by a flash of the hazard lights, and on some models the wing mirrors fold inwards. Car thieves can use radio frequency jamming to prevent cars from locking, so if you do not see confirmation that your car is locked, always go back to check. It is best to lock your car as soon as you are out of the vehicle, rather than after you have walked several metres away.
There are many security systems that you can fit to your Ford to make it less likely to be stolen, and easier to track if it is. There is a wide range of security products available at Gates Ford, and we can advise which is the most suitable for you.
If you buy a safety system from another source, always make sure it meets the standards set by Thatcham or Sold Secure. All systems should be properly installed, either by a technician at your nearest Gates Ford dealership or by a Thatcham approved installer. This will make sure that the system is fitted safely and works properly.
If your Ford model has alloy wheels, it should have locking wheel nuts to prevent them from being removed. If these are not already fitted, Gates Ford can add this feature to make your wheels more secure. You should hide the locking nut key somewhere safe, away from the car. Do not leave it with the jack or in the glovebox in the cabin, as these are likely to be the first places a thief will look.
Additional security devices such as steering wheel or gear lever locks make it much harder for a thief to steal your car. Gates Ford can supply and fit both of these systems. You should use features such as steering wheel locks whenever you leave your car unattended, even if it is just for a short time.