Home Window Security Checklist – What You Need to Know

Window Security is no light matter. We have these large, clear openings in our homes that if not secured, leave us vulnerable to outside forces. Burglars, animals, and severe weather can all cause damage or harm if our windows are not up to par. This is why it is critical to have a window security plan and know what steps to take in order to keep your home and loved ones safe.

The Importance of Home Window Security

It’s no secret that crime is on the rise. According to the Public Institute of California, there was a 7% increase in property crimes between 2020 and 2021. And while not all of those crimes involved breaking into someone’s home, it’s still important to take steps to protect your property.

Window Security for Family

Your windows and doors are one of the first places a criminal will look to enter your home. It is estimated that over 2.5 million burglaries occur each year in the US.

To make sure your home is safe, it’s important to have a solid window security plan in place. But where do you start? Check out our checklist below to learn more.

The Home Window Security Checklist:

Below is our checklist of steps you can take to secure your home’s windows and keep your family safe. Many of these you could already have in place but please read through to see if there are any gaps in your home window security plan.

Lock Your Windows

This may seem like a no-brainer but you’d be surprised how many people don’t lock their windows. Make sure all of your windows, including first-floor and basement windows, are locked at all times. If you have young children in the home, consider using window locks that require a key to open.

In addition, check every few months that locks are in proper working condition and haven’t become loose over time. Just like anything with moving mechanical parts, window locks can break or become worn down with use. If you have any windows that are difficult to reach, consider installing a remote control window lock.

Finally, just like door locks, window locks come in a variety of different qualities. Make sure to do your research and invest in the best window locks that will give you the protection you need for your home.

Create Visual Deterrents

One of the best ways to deter a burglar from even attempting to break into your home is by making it look like a difficult target. The more deterrents you add between your window and burglar the less likely they will even attempt to enter. Burglars typically scout for easy targets and by following the deterrent tips below they should never see your home as an easy target.

Obscure Views of Inside Your Home

It’s important to remember that windows are two-way glass. Not only can people see into your home but you can also see out. This is why it’s important to take measures to obscure the view into your home from the outside.

There are a few different ways you can do this. One is by adding window treatments like blinds or curtains. Another is by frosting or tinting your windows. This will not only make it difficult for someone to see into your home but will also help with energy efficiency.

Finally do not forget about the windows in your basement. These windows are often forgotten but can be just as vulnerable as any other window in your home. If you have a finished basement, make sure to take the necessary steps to secure these windows as well.


Consider using thorny shrubs or plants beneath your windows. This will make it difficult for someone to get close enough to even attempt to break in. Some examples are rose bushes or even cactus plants if your area supports them.

Another way to use landscaping as a deterrent is to use tall shrubs to obscure the view of windows from the street. This will make it difficult for a burglar to even know which house is yours, let alone which windows they should target.

Trim Outside Overgrowth

If you have large trees near your home, trim back any branches that hang close to windows as these can be used as a step stool for someone to climb into your home. In addition, keep ground level bushes and plants trimmed. These provide the perfect spot for a potential intruder to lurk and hide.

Install Window Bars or Grilles

If you live in a high-crime area or your home is on the ground floor, window bars or grilles are a good option to consider. These can be installed on the inside of your home so they are not visible from the street. You can also find bars or grilles that are decorative and add to the overall look of your home.

Window Security Bar and Grates

Just make sure that if you do install window bars or grilles, you also include a quick-release mechanism in case of emergency. This will ensure that you and your family can escape if necessary.

Types of Window Security Bars

When looking for window security bars there are three types for you to choose from.

Permanent Window Bar: A permanent window bar is welded or bolted to the frame of your window. This makes them very difficult to remove and are ideal for ground-floor windows.

Removable Window Bar: A removable window bar can be taken in and out as needed. They are typically held in place with pins or set screws and can be removed quickly if necessary. These are great for providing protection at night and can be removed during the day.

Swing-Away Window Bar: A swing-away window bar is similar to a removable window bar but with one key difference. They are hinged at the bottom so they can be easily opened if necessary. This type of window security bar is ideal for windows that need to be accessed frequently like a basement window.

Note: Before installing any window bars or grills, check with your local fire department to ensure they meet code and won’t obstruct any emergency exits.

Exterior Security Lighting

Installing exterior security lighting is a great way to add an extra layer of security to your home. Motion-sensor lights are a great option as they will turn on whenever someone comes close to your home, making it difficult for them to approach undetected.

Another option is to install solar-powered lights along your walkways and around your home. These are a great option as they are environmentally friendly and can help you save on your energy bill.

You can also find decorative lights that will add to the overall look of your home while providing security. These might include floodlights or even string lights.

Window Security Film

Window security film is a clear film that is applied to the glass of your window. It is virtually invisible but provides an extra layer of protection as it makes the glass more shatter-resistant. In addition to extra security, it also offers safety protection as it holds glass fragments in place if the window is broken.

Window security film is available in a variety of thicknesses, so you can choose the level of protection that you need. It can also be combined with other security measures like window bars or grilles for added protection.

Outside of crime prevention, window film offers protection from the weather and elements. If you live in an area prone to tornados or hurricanes, window film can help protect your home from flying debris.

Window Sensors

One type of sensor you might want to consider for your home security system are window sensors. These are placed on your windows and doors and will trigger the alarm if they are opened. You can also find sensors that will send you an alert via text or email if they are opened.

Window Security for Home

There are a couple different types of window sensors to choose from, including:

Entry Sensors

Entry Sensors work best for traditional windows. They are placed on the door or window frame and the sensor is placed on the moving part of the window, like the sash.

An example of an entry sensor is a magnetic contact sensor. They consists of two parts, one that is placed on the door or window frame and one that is placed on the door or window itself. These work together to create an electromagnetic field. If the door or window is opened, the field is broken and the sensor is triggered.

Glass Break Sensors

Glass break sensors are placed on the glass itself. They work by detecting the sound of breaking glass and can be used on both windows and doors. Glass break sensors are best for non-opening windows.

One type of glass break sensor is a acoustic sensor. These use microphones to listen for the sound of breaking glass. Another type is a vibration sensor. These work by detecting vibrations in the glass.

You can also find glass break sensors that combine both acoustic and vibration sensing. These are often considered the most reliable as they provide the best chance of detecting a break-in.

How to Install Window Sensors

Installing window sensors is a great way to add an extra layer of security to your home. They are relatively easy to install and can be done by most people in a short amount of time.

The first step is to choose the type of sensor you want to use. As mentioned, there are entry sensors and glass break sensors. Entry sensors are placed on the door or window frame and the sensor is placed on the moving part of the window, like the sash. Glass break sensors are placed on the glass itself.

Once you have chosen the type of sensor, you will need to install the sensor itself. This will usually involve screwing or adhesive mounting.

After the sensor is installed, you will need to connect it to your security system. This can be done wirelessly or through a wired connection.

Finally, you will need to test the sensor to make sure it is working properly.

Motion Sensors

Another type of sensor you might want to consider for your home security system is a motion sensor. These are placed in strategic areas around your home and will trigger the alarm if they detect movement.

There are two main types of motion sensors: passive infrared (PIR) and dual-technology (DT).

Passive Infrared Motion Sensors

Passive infrared motion sensors work by detecting heat. They work best in areas where there is a lot of contrast between the background and foreground, like an entryway.

Dual-Technology Motion Sensors

Dual-technology motion sensors use both infrared and microwave technology. These are often considered the most reliable as they are less likely to give false alarms.

Outdoor Camera

An outdoor camera is a great way to add an extra layer of security to your home. They can be used to monitor the perimeter of your property and can also be used as a deterrent.

When choosing an outdoor security camera, there are a few things you will want to keep in mind, like:

-The type of camera. There are several different types of outdoor cameras, including:

-Bullet Cameras

-Dome Cameras

-Wireless Cameras

-Wired Cameras

-The field of view. This is the amount of area the camera can see and is measured in degrees.

-The resolution. This is the number of pixels in the image and will affect the quality of the image.

-The frame rate. This is the number of frames per second the camera can capture and will affect how smooth the video is.

-Night vision. Many outdoor cameras come with night vision, which allows them to see in low-light conditions.

-Storage. Outdoor cameras will need a place to store the footage they capture. This can be done locally on a memory card or remotely in the cloud.

Shattered Proof and Tempered Glass

If you are looking for the most secure windows, you might want to consider using shatter proof or tempered glass.

Shatter proof glass is made with a special laminate that helps hold the glass together if it is broken. Tempered glass is treated with heat and then cooled rapidly. This makes it stronger than regular glass and less likely to break.

Install An Alarm System

Installing an alarm system is one of the best ways to secure your home. Alarm systems can be used to deter burglars and can also alert you if someone does break in.

You will also want to think about how the system will be monitored. Some systems are monitored by a security company, while others are self-monitored.

There are several different types of alarm systems to choose from, including:

-Wired Alarm Systems

-Wireless Alarm Systems

-Self-Monitoring Alarms

-Security Cameras

Professionally Monitored Home Security System

If you want the most comprehensive security for your home, you might want to consider a professionally monitored home security system.

When you have a professionally monitored system, the security company will be alerted if there is an emergency at your home. They will then dispatch the police or fire department, as needed.

Most professional monitoring services will also provide additional features like:

-Home automation

-Remote access

-Environmental monitoring

-Security cameras

Window Security Screens

Window security screens are a great way to add an extra layer of security to your home. They can be used on both windows and doors and are made from a variety of materials, like Mesh or Stainless steel.

When choosing a window security screen, you will want to keep in mind the following:

-The type of material. The most common materials used for window security screens are mesh and stainless steel.

-The size of the opening. You will want to make sure the security screen is large enough to cover the entire opening.

-The type of mount. There are two main types of mounts for security screens: surface mount and flush mount.

-The finish. You will want to choose a finish that matches the rest of the hardware on your door or window.

Privacy Window Film

Another option for securing your windows is to install privacy window film. This film is applied to the inside of the window and can make it difficult for people to see inside.

Once applied to glass window film will make it more shatter resistant. Window film can also help reduce UV rays and glare.

Have A Dog

One of the best deterrents for burglars is a dog. Dogs can be a great security measure, as they will bark if someone tries to break into your home.

Dog Window Security

It is important to note that not all dogs make good guard dogs. Some breeds, like Chihuahuas and Yorkies, are more likely to yap than to bite.

Other breeds, like German Shepherds and Dobermans, are more likely to attack.

If you are considering getting a dog for security purposes, it is important to do your research to make sure you choose a breed that is right for you.

Tips for Setting Up DIY Home Window Security Devices

As you can see, you may not need an elaborate, professionally monitored security system to secure your home windows. There are a number of DIY options that can be just as effective.

As a recap, below are some easy DIY Home Window Security Devices that can easily be installed to improve the safety of your family and home.

Window Sensors

Deterrents such as Landscaping and Window Bars

Security Cameras

Privacy Window Film

Self Monitored Alarm Systems


As you can see, there are a lot of different ways to secure your home. By following this home window security checklist, you can be sure your home is as safe as possible.

If you have any questions or need help choosing the right security products for your home, feel free to contact us. We would be more than happy to help you out.


Where Can I Find Additional Information for Window Security?

Outside of America’s Fire and Security, you can get additional resources at Brinks.com and ADT.

What is the best window security film?

There are several great companies that manufacture window security film. We would recommend looking into 3M or Madico. Stay tuned as we will be doing a full review of all of the different window films we have tried.

What is the best way to secure a window?

There are several different ways to secure a window. The starting point is always quality window locks. Next, you can look into deterrents such as landscaping or window bars. Finally, you can consider adding a security camera or privacy window film.

What is security window etching?

Security window etching is a process where a design is cut into the glass. This can be done for both decorative and security purposes. For security, you can etch your address or phone number into the glass so that it is more difficult for a burglar to sell your stolen goods.

How do I secure my windows from break ins?

There are a few different ways to do this. The first step is to make sure your windows are locked. You can also add window security film or bars as an extra layer of protection. Finally, you can consider adding a security camera to deter burglars and help with identification if there is a break-in.

How does window security film work?

Window security film works by holding the glass in place if it is broken. This makes it more difficult for burglars to enter your home through a window. The film also makes the glass more shatter-resistant, which can help protect your family from flying glass in the event of an accident or natural disaster.

What is the best window?

There is no definitive answer to this question as it depends on your specific needs. However, we would recommend looking for a window that is made of sturdy material and has a quality locking system. You may also want to consider adding security film or bars for an extra level of protection.

How to remove security window screens?

There are a few different ways to do this. The first step is to make sure your windows are locked. You can also add window security film or bars as an extra layer of protection. Finally, you can consider adding a security camera to deter burglars and help with identification if there is a break-in.

How much are window security shutters?

Window security shutters can vary in price depending on the size and type of shutter. However, you can expect to pay anywhere from $100 to $1000 for a quality shutter.

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