A house blanketed in snow.

The arrival of another chilly winter season often means one of two things: staying inside and getting cozy, or traveling (whether it be to see family for the holidays or going on vacation), leaving your home unattended. Regardless of which of these applies to you, it is crucial to take a few extra steps to layer up with home security in the winter time.

Not sure how to do that? Luckily for you, your local Pop-A-Lock experts have some helpful tips on how to stay safe and secure this holiday season.

Three people's sock-clad feet held out to the fireplace.

Your Security System

If you’ve just moved into a new home, or there is a different reason that you don’t yet have a security system, consider investing in one. This is especially crucial if you are planning to leave town for the holiday season, as you will not be able to respond immediately if something were to happen. Installing a security system that fits your home and its needs is the first step to ensuring your peace of mind, whether you are staying in or getting out this winter.

In addition to simply having one, there are extra steps you can take to increase the effectiveness of your alarm system:

  • Glass break sensors: These sensors monitor for the sound of glass breaking. These can be especially helpful if  your home has a lot of windows, or if there are several windows that are prone to break-ins (close to the ground, in a hidden area).
  • Open/close sensors: Not only are these handy to remind you when you’ve left a window open, they can also alert you to unusual openings and closings of windows and doors.
  • Security signs and stickers: Burglars may be deterred by the presence of a security sign or sticker on the windows.
  • Security cameras and doorbells: Many smart doorbells come with a motion-detecting camera. These doorbells and additional outdoor security cameras can be useful to let you know when someone unwanted is poking around outside.
  • Electronic locks: The key benefit of electronic locks is that they can be locked and unlocked from afar, allowing you to check and double check (maybe even triple check) whether a door is locked or not from a greater distance and without having to walk to the door inside the home.

Speaking of outdoor security cameras, there are several other things you can do to protect the outside of your home this winter.

Person taking the cover off of a motion detector showing the circuit board inside.

The Outdoors

The area around your property, such as the back and front yard, side yards, garages, or natural areas (forests and bodies of water) is just as important to keep an eye on as the inside of the home. As previously mentioned, security cameras are the first step to securing the outside of the home. Here are a few more things you can do:

  • Lights, lights, lights: There is almost no use for security camera systems if you cannot see what is happening on the video footage. Lights can also deter burglars, since entering a home that is well-lit is a deterrent.
  • Keep the exterior clean: If a home has snow build-up or an overgrown lawn, it will seem as though the home is not lived in. Intruders are more likely to want to enter a home if it seems as if the owners will not be back for a while.
  • Secure gates and fences:  If there is a gate in your back or front yard, secure it with a lock. Additionally, you can protect your yards or gardens by making it more difficult to climb the fences. This can be done by either making your fences taller, or adding obstacles (such as spikes) to the tops of fence posts.

Don’t forget the garage: The garage is also a vulnerable entrance point for intruders. If you tend to keep the garage open, consider installing a security camera inside the garage or simply closing it when nobody is home.

Two floodlights on a brick wall.

Inside the Home

Though installing a security system and securing the outside of the home seem like good enough precautions for home security, you cannot forget the actual home. All of your belongings, furniture, electronics, and even family heirlooms are at risk when you leave your home for long periods of time. Here are some things to think about when layering up with indoor home security:

  • Lock up small valuables: Valuable items such as jewelry should be hidden away, even locked in an inconspicuous drawer somewhere in the home. This is where it is important to think like a burglar; where is the last place they would think to check?
  • Invest in a safe: Important documents such as birth certificates and passports, as well as firearms and medications, should be kept in a locked safe that is bolted to the floor. If the safe is not bolted down, it still runs the risk of being carried out of the home.

Prepare a bright surprise: Motion sensor lights can be useful inside of the home as well as the outside. Intruders are likely to be startled by a light turning on in a room in a home they thought was empty.


Pop-A-Lock’s main goal is our customers’ security. If that means installing, inspecting, or repairing an alarm system or camera system, give us a call, we’ve got you covered. We want you to have the peace of mind you deserve this winter, no matter where you are.