Five ways to protect your car from theft and vandalism

Dan Powell, Heycar senior editor, shares his five top tips on keeping cars safe

Dan Powell, Heycar senior editor, shares his five top tips on keeping cars safe - Credit: Neil Didsbury/heycar

With vehicle-related crime soaring across the city - whether it's cars themselves being nicked or parts pinched - people are being urged to protect themselves from becoming a statistic.

But what can drivers do to try and prevent harm from coming to their vehicles?

Experts say that even the way people park their car can deter the thieves from breaking in or stealing your vehicle altogether.

Norfolk Police has urged people to be vigilant after a rise in catalytic convertor thefts across the county.

Catalytic converters contain metals such as platinum, palladium and rhodium, which can be worth between £500 to £1,000 in scrap value.

Dan Powell, senior editor at Heycar, said: "Catalytic converter theft can be quite common, especially with hybrid cars.

Dan Powell, senior editor at heycar

Dan Powell, senior editor at heycar - Credit: heycar

"Hybrids produce less pollution and the valuable metals in the catalytic converter is in a better condition than that of a petrol or diesel vehicle, which means it has a higher scrap value.

"There are a number of methods that can be used to deter criminals, from third-party devices to even how you park your car."

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How to prevent theft and vandalism

  1. Parking techniques
    In order to steal parts, thieves need to slide under the vehicle and use cutting tools. Parking close to walls or fences can make this difficult, but remember not to block pedestrian access.
  2. Mark your territory
    Get a serial number marked on car parts like the catalytic converter, so it can be easily identified if it is stolen.
    Drivers will also be provided with a sticker to be displayed in their window that indicates their catalytic converter is marked which may discourage offenders
  3. Easy modifications
    Ask a garage to weld the bolts shut around certain parts that are generally easy to remove when it comes to wear and tear.
  4. Park in well-lit areas
    Thieves are often opportunistic and act under the cover of night. If drivers park in an area that's well lit they're less likely to come back to find parts of their car - or the car itself - has been pinched.
  5. Get protected
    Buy add-ons that make car parts harder to nick, like clamps which makes stealing a catalytic converter very difficult for a thief in a hurry.