Metal buildings and carports are durable and can withstand a lot of abuse from the weather. The same sturdy construction that makes them so stable also creates a minor amount of security, but you’ll need to do some upgrading if you want to store anything valuable in the structure. Metal buildings are easily modified to increase their security, beginning at the doors and windows and ending with measures that keep criminals from even approaching the area.
Alarms at All Entry Points
Start with loud entry alarms at every window, door, and other entry point. Basic magnetic style separation alarms will work since the door or window opening separates the two halves of the alarm and causes it to sound. However, avoid battery powered models since they’re all too easy to forget to keep loaded with fresh batteries, eliminating their value after a few months. Wiring in alarms may take more effort, but they’re much more reliable and don’t need regular attention just to keep functioning. For more advanced security, motion sensor alarms set up around the perimeter of the building will warn you before anyone attempts entry and can prevent brute force attacks through the wall or roof that wouldn’t set off entry alarms.
Strong Locks and Window Bars
If you’re storing very large equipment that takes time to haul away, you may be able to get away with just an alarm system. However, anyone storing valuable items that are easier to grab and dash with will need to prevent thieves from breaking in rather than relying on catching them in the act. Check the doors themselves for security features. Most standard entry doors on metal buildings are hollow core exterior models, which are relatively strong but are still easily broken by an improvised ramming device or a few strong kicks. Solid core doors, or even steel doors, will prevent criminals from getting into the building in the first place. For easily accessible windows, try internal spring-loaded window bars or install a thick metal mesh over the exterior to prevent anyone from breaking the glass to get inside.
Secure Garage Door
Any garage or rolling doors used in the bay openings on your metal buildings and garages will need reinforcement as well when you’re aiming for high security. Most garage doors are only a relatively thin sheet of aluminum, so they’re easily cut through with the right tools. Other models can be forced open by hand or portable tools like car jacks. Look for reinforced models with solid paneling and metal framing on the inside of the door. The best rolling and garage doors will have manual locks on the bottom of the door on both sides, not just one. If you can attach an anchoring point for the door locks in the concrete foundation of the metal building, it’ll become very difficult for anyone to get in without your permission.
The building itself may need some reinforcement against brute force attacks if you’re storing equipment or collectibles that costs tens of thousands of dollars each. While the steel siding and roofing used for these structures is durable against high winds and snow loads alike, it can’t resist a plasma cutter or even a pair of powered tin snips. Installing internal layers of plywood, concrete reinforcement mesh, hardware cloth, stucco, and similar hard to cut materials will slow down these attempts to the point of frustration. By making the process of cutting into the building too time consuming and noisy, you’ll keep even motivated and well-coordinated criminals out of your metal buildings.
Motion Activated Lights and Cameras
Finally, consider securing the entire area around the building rather than just the structure itself. By making the approach to the building too well-lit and supervised, you’ll discourage most criminals from even considering an attempt at a break-in. Motion activated lights need to be arranged so they light up the entire exterior of the building evenly, leaving no dark corners or paths out of the light to a back wall. The same principle goes for any security cameras you set up. Wireless and solar powered cameras are available now, but they’re too good to be true for real security. They tend to only record a few seconds of video at a time and write over this loop whenever another event occurs, usually erasing any useful footage before you can collect it. Stick with traditional wired security cameras that can record for hours without erasing any content.