How can I improve my door security?

12 ways to improve front door security

There are several measures you can take to improve your front door security. As a minimum, installing a door that meets Secured by Design or PAS 24: 2022 standards will help to keep your home safe.

How can I improve my door security

When was the last time you improved your front door security? Or, even thought about how secure your front door is?

Keeping your home secure is a top priority for homeowners and families. Especially as the majority of break-ins happen when the owner is at home. The impact of this means that 84% of people who experience a break in- are emotionally affected.

Most people might be surprised to find that the front door is the most vulnerable part of their home. With 76% of intruders coming through the door and 59% entering through the front.

There are several measures you can take to improve your front door security. As a minimum, installing a door that meets Secured by Design or PAS 24: 2022 standards will help to keep your home safe from a would-be intruder.

Keep reading for 12 suggestions of how you can improve your front door security with many of these cost-effective solutions.

How to improve front door security infographic

How to improve front door security infographic

Everest does not supply sash jammers or hinge bolts. Letterbox fishing guards and door chains are an optional extra.

Buy a Secured by Design front door

Everest doors have industry-leading security and meet British standard.

1. A Secured by Design or PAS 24: 2022 accredited doorset

Cost level ****

All new build homes are required to have doors that meet PAS 24: 2022 security measures to be compliant with the new security-focused Document Q part of Building Regulations.

If you have an older uPVC door it might be a good idea to consider upgrading to a new uPVC or composite door that has Secured By Design accreditation.

Be aware that not all uPVC or composite doors are made the same. So, look out for PAS 24: 2022 or BSI standard that all doors must carry as a minimum or the Secured By Design accreditation that is recommended by the police.

2. Front door security lock

Cost level **

The most fundamental part of your door's security is the locking system. If someone wants to force entry into your home, they must first breach your locks.

Older uPVC doors with multi-point locking were thought to be ultra-secure but the cheaper euro cylinder locks were vulnerable to lock-snapping and burglars could gain entry in less than 30 seconds.

When buying a new door make sure the euro-lock cylinder is anti-snap or has a cylinder guard to prevent the cylinder being removed. If you have an older uPVC door check the cylinder or get a locksmith to check it to ensure it is still in good working order.

A Euro-lock cylinder should meet the following:

  • BSI Kitemarked – TS007 3 Star Rating
  • Master Locksmiths Association - SS 312 3 Star Sold Secure Diamond
  • Be fitted with a cylinder guard

Be aware, changing the euro-lock cylinders or altering a door can invalidate the manufacturer’s warranty. So, always check before you make any changes.

The 3 star lock cylinders used in Everest doors are designed with anti-snap, anti-pick, anti-bump and anti-drill protection.

Also, look for Secured by Design accredited doors, where the complete door set, the door leaf, the frame and lock, is Secured by Design, the Official Police Security Initiative.

3. Sash jammers

Cost level *

In addition to locks, jammers and bars (below) will make a door more resistant to being kicked or forced open.

A sash jammer fits at the top and bottom of the frame and twists across the frame and door to add resistance.

Some sash jammers are key-operated and can be set from the outside making the door more secure when you are not home.

If you do fit jammers to a uPVC door, make sure that the screws used meet security standards and will resist being kicked open. The best solution would be to fit the jammer in the wall at the side of the door for more resistance, if this is possible.

As with changing locks, be aware that adding sash jammers to the frame could invalidate the manufacturer’s guarantee.

4. Front door security bar

Cost level ***

Apart from the locking systems a door also has vulnerability at the frame. Where locks are fitted into timber frames this can weaken the frame meaning it will splinter with some force.

If a door is kicked hard enough, the wooden frame will splinter at the strike plate and the locking bolt is rendered useless.

Composite and uPVC doors usually have reinforced frames as part of their doorset.

For timber doors and door frames, a door bar, also known as London Bars or Birmingham bars can be fitted to the door frame to add reinforcement. They offer extra resistance from being kicked open.

The police recommend London bars for additional protection on timber frames.

5. Front door security chain or restrictor

Cost level *

On a basic level, a door chain or restrictor is a great security measure you can add to a front door, at a minimal cost.

Burglaries don’t just happen at night with a break-in. There are many opportunist thieves who will target vulnerable and elderly people to gain access to a house. Once inside, the confidence trickster will steal valuable items when the homeowner is distracted.

For vulnerable people, using a door chain also stops anyone from pushing their way into your home when you answer the door.

Make sure that the chain is well-fitted into a solid wall using specialist security screws. The chain is only as good as the fixings it uses.

Make sure that the chain is tested and approved to TS003 standards.

For uPVC doors, you can also get restrictors that fix into a wall and loop around the door handle.

6. Front door security gate or grill

Cost level ****

As an extreme measure, one of the most secure measures you can use is a specialist made metal door gate or grill.

For a gate fitted with a lever mortice lock, anything short of an angle grinder is not getting through.

The only downside to a gate or grill is the aesthetics, but some grills are made with an ornamental pattern that can be attractive.

The plus side of a security gate (apart from being almost impenetrable) is that you can answer the door with the gate closed and locked from the inside

A security grill gives the maximum peace of mind that your doors are secured, but you will also need to consider how secure your windows are.

As a note, any fire door must have a lock that is thumb-operated from the inside for escape.

7. Door alarm

Cost level *

Another quick and easy feature to add to a door is a sensor alarm that beeps when the door is opened.

A door alarm can be fitted relatively easily and quickly. The quality and options of alarms vary a great deal, but even a basic model can alert a homeowner to an intruder.

8. Letterbox cage - fishing guard

Cost level *

Using a retractable rod to hook keys from a hallways table or key rack is a favourite trick of thieves. Not only can a thief gain access to your home in a few seconds, but they can also have the keys to your car.

Never leave keys on display anywhere in your home. If a burglar gains access to your house through a window, they can take your keys and escape through a door. Possibly taking your car with them.

Get into the habit of putting keys in a safe place.

A letterbox cage will cover the back of the letterbox so that a burglar can’t see into the house or push a rod through the letterbox.

Make sure your letterbox guard has a security standard of TS008.

Don’t forget pet doors. Intruders can get access through large pet doors, or use a retractable rod to hook valuables. Although, a dog is probably the best anti-burglar device you can install.

9. Laminated glass

Cost level ***

Many entrance doors feature glazed sections that allow natural light into a dark hallway, or allow observation of who is standing at your door.

Building regulations stipulate that for any glazing within 1500mm from floor level and within 300mm of the edge of a door must be safety glass. Any glazed areas in a door with a dimension more than 900mm must also be toughened safety glass.

Laminated glass can also be fitted in glazed doors or secluded ground floor windows vulnerable to break-in.

Laminated glass has a core PVB layer that holds the glass together, making it difficult to gain access if broken. Everest Entrance Doors are fitted with this glass as standard.

10. A highly visible entrance door

Cost level *

A burglar loves a secluded door where they can work in private without being seen. Doorways obscured from the road or neighbours by high hedges or fences are vulnerable areas.

Assess your front door space to see if you can make it more visible from the road or by neighbours. Trim hedges, remove high fences at the front of the house and install doorway lighting. Also, make sure that you don’t park a large van or even a caravan on your drive that hides the main entrance door.

11. Front door security light

Cost level **

Security lighting works on two levels. If it has a motion sensor, it will alert you to anyone approaching your house. Or, as above, keeping your main entrance door well illuminated so it can be clearly seen from the street or by neighbours is a big deterrent to a would-be burglar.

Ideally, motion sensor lighting around your home will keep away intruders trying to gain access at the side and back of your house. Alongside, a motion sensor light, a fixed light that stays on your entrance door will make sure that an intruder can’t dodge the motion sensor timing to work in the dark.

12. Front door security camera

Cost level ***

A burglar looks for houses that have the least amount of security. The more layers of deterrent, the more likely your house will be passed over for break-in.

Burglar alarms and security systems will put off most intruders. And, even a wall-mounted fake alarm box can be enough of a deterrent.

A visible security camera should be enough to deter a burglar from trying to approach your house. Smart camera systems and doorbells also have motion detectors that can be triggered as an alert to your smartphone. The alert and system will allow you to have a live feed to your front door wherever you are.

All statistics quoted are from ONS.

Everest Doors

At Everest, our doors are designed and manufactured to the highest industry standards. Our uPVC, composite and aluminium doors have Secured by Design accreditation and meet BSI standards.

An Everest entrance door has:

  • PAS 24: 2022 certification
  • Secured by Design accreditation
  • Anti-snap, anti-pick, anti-bump and anti-drill locking cylinder
  • Multi-point or shoot-bolt Yale locking systems
  • Professional installation with a focus on improving home security

Secured by Design Doors

Composite Doors →

Made from fibreglass (GRP) with steel reinforcement. Everest composite doors are 70mm thick.

uPVC Doors →

Fitted with multi-point locks and laminated glass which is tougher to break.

Aluminium Doors →

Fitted with a multi-point locking system, toughened safety glass and internal glazing bead as standard.

Front Door Security FAQs

  • +
    How can I make my old front door more secure?

    To secure an old door, make sure that a uPVC door has an anti-snap euro cylinder lock. Or, a timber door has a five-lever mortice lock with a BSI kitemark of BS 3621.

    A door frame can be reinforced with a London bar and all doors can be secured with sash jammers.

    A simple door chain is highly effective and all doors should have letterbox fishing guard cages fitted.

    Make sure your door can be clearly seen from the road and fit a motion sensor bright light.

  • +
    What is the most secure front door?

    The best front door to keep your home secure would be a door with a metal security grill gate. Although for most people, the aesthetic is not appealing.

    Most doors are only as effective as the lock so ensure that any door you install has a lock with either BSI kitemark or Secured by Design accreditation.

    When looking for a new door, check the lock in your door has one of the following standards:

    BS 3621 or EN 13309 - for five-lever mortice locks on timber doors TS 007 3* or SS 312 diamond anti-snap euro cylinder locks for a uPVC door.

At Everest, our Windows and Doors are tested to meet British Standards for Security

Our doors and windows go through rigorous testing to meet standards. Our uPVC, composite and aluminium doors meet PAS 24: 2022 and Secured by Design accreditation.