It has become a trend – a trend that is growing by leaps and bounds in all parts of the nation. I’m talking about the topic of home security lighting. Crime rates have risen, then have declined and no doubt will rise again. One of the single, biggest targets for the petty criminal involves burglary and even robbery in residential areas.
I was reading a novel recently and one of the characters had spent some time in prison for a crime that he really didn’t commit. During his four-year incarceration, he listened to a number of hardened, experienced criminals, picking up some tips on how they looked for targets to hit.
One of these inmates told our main character that the old-fashioned way of stealing a car has been replaced by a simpler method involving playing the odds. He said that one out of fifty or so auto owners hide a key behind the bumper or in one of several other easy to access location in case they misplaced their keys. A car thief simply needed to find a busy shopping center, check out as many as fifty cars and, voila, he will find a car key hidden in one of the places that keys are concealed.
The reason for this lengthy digression from the primary topic of this article is point out a simple truth. Home intruders look for an easy mark in much the same way. If there is any kind of home security visible, they will generally move on to the next potential target.
The good news is that you don’t need to overdo it when it comes to buying and installing a home security system. Believe it or not, the single, most effective outdoor security devices are floodlights.
Floodlights, strategically placed in trees or on a wall can illuminate a large area particularly driveways, walkways, back-yard garden areas and any other areas that would normally be hidden by the darkness. It’s important to keep in mind that floodlights need to be adjusted so that they don’t intrude on your neighbor’s property or cause a problem with a driver’s ability to see the road.
Home security floodlights can be purchased with incandescent or halogen fixtures or if more intense lighting is preferred, HID or high intensity discharge floodlights can be used. HID floodlights use a variety of types of lamps including metal halide, mercury vapor and high-pressure sodium.
Dusk to dawn timers are inexpensive and easy to install and will provide the proper protection during the evening hours.
Another alternative is purchasing motion detectors that will automatically activate incandescent and halogen floodlights when motion is detected. These devices have the added benefit of saving electricity since the floodlights are activated only when motion is detected. In addition, the shock-value of floodlights suddenly coming on is a sure deterrence to the would-be thief.
While floodlights activated by motion or heat sensors are an energy-saver, the LED floodlight is quickly finding its share of the market because they provide an even greater energy savings than the more traditional floodlight fixtures. The initial cost of an LED unit exceeds that of an incandescent floodlight bulb but they last up to 25 times longer.
Besides, being an energy-saver, LED floodlights require less frequent replacement, which means greater safety for the homeowner. Floodlights are typically placed in hard-to-reach locations and usually require a ladder to replace. For most of us, the fewer trips up the ladder, the better.
The LED floodlight is not as commonplace as its incandescent counterpart, so you may have to do a little bit of searching to find a retailer that carries them. Then – there’s always the on-line marketers.
In conclusion, I suggest you start your home security program (at least the outdoors phase) with a selection of floodlights, strategically placed and controlled by dusk to dawn timers. You don’t need to light up your property like a nighttime baseball stadium. A little will go a long way in giving the would-be burglar or intruder the message to move on