A safe room, or panic room, is a secure room in a home where occupants can retreat when they feel threatened. Unless you are a wealthy paranoid or recent lottery winner, you likely don’t need a specific room as in the hit Hollywood movie Panic Room, starring Jodie Foster. For most people, their bedroom is the ideal candidate for being a safe room. Here are five ways to transform your bedroom into a safe room.
- Reinforce The Door Frame
If you have ever witnessed someone kicking in a door, you may have noticed one important fact. The doorframe, not the door, is usually the part that fails. The weakest area is the door jam, where the lock meets the frame because all of the force gets transmitted through this one tiny area. The ideal bedroom safe room would have a reinforced doorframe and an outward opening door so that any force is applied into the frame.
- Install An External Door
With the door frame in place, you’ll need a solid external door to turn your bedroom into a safe room. Most interior doors are hollow core, so you need a solid wood or metal door if you want to feel protected whilst in your bedroom. You can spend top dollar on a special reinforced door but in many cases, this is unnecessary.
Tip #3. Upgrade Your Hardware
You will need to install a deadbolt lock on your door. Look for a lock with mushroom pins as these cannot be bumped or picked open. A quality lock will be your major expense. Install deep screws for the hinges and buy an extended security strike plate. This plate houses the bolt when your door is locked. Long strike plates help spread the impact if someone tries to force the door open.
- Think Outside The Box
You may not have the time, money or resources to implement some of the ideas in this list. Altering a doorframe can be expensive and difficult to do. One cheap way of making an inward opening door far harder to force in is the OnGUARD™ brace. You can see a video of it here, and see how easy it is to install and how effective it is. It is installed on the ground at the base of the door.
- Install Communications and Surveillance
A peephole would be ideal for a front door, but acts as a potential point of weakness on a safe room door so it is best not to install one. You will likely need a telephone in your bedroom and ideally a CCTV camera outside with a monitor to allow you to see the situation without putting yourself in harm’s way.
These five tips show that it is possible to turn a bedroom into a safe room of sorts. If you have tried any of these tips, let us know how they worked for you. What advice would you give others? Let us know and leave us a comment below!