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How to improve your garden shed security

Sharon Amos / 07 January 2015

Read our guide to keeping your shed more secure - including tips for preventing access and how you can improve the security of tools and equipment stored in the shed.

Garden shed
Keep you garden shed secure to deter intruders

Is your shed up to the job of keeping expensive garden tools and equipment safe? Go through our checklist to find out.

Read our guide to improving garden security

Tips for keeping your garden shed secure from intruders

  • Before you start looking at locks and alarms for your garden shed, inspect the building itself. Is the roof in good shape, for example? Thieves have been known to lift off a flimsy roof to get at tools inside.
  • Make sure the shed door is in good condition – there’s no point strengthening hinges and fitting padlocks if it’s easy enough to kick in a rotting door panel.
  • Use clutch-head screws or coach screws on the shed door hinges and on the hasp and latch – these types of screws can’t be easily unscrewed. Fit two padlocks on the door: one about a third of the way down from the top, the other a similar distance from the bottom of the door.
  • Choose closed-shackle padlocks to make the shed door more secure – they have very little of the metal hoop exposed, which makes them much less vulnerable to someone wielding a pair of bolt cutters.
  • If your shed has a window, make it harder for thieves to find out what’s inside by obscuring it – cover it on the inside with bubblewrap, horticultural fleece or even an old net curtain. Fit laminated glass in the window – it’s harder to break – or fit security mesh across the outside.

Tips for keeping tools and equipment in your shed secure

  • If someone does manage to get into the shed, make it hard for them to carry off equipment such as lawnmowers and chainsaws. Use heavy-duty chain and a padlock to link items together: a lawnmower, a heavy barbecue and a bundle of garden chairs chained together will be awkward to drag away.
  • Does your garden shed have a concrete base? You could install anchor bolts and use a chain and padlock to secure equipment stored in your shed.
  • Always put away tools, equipment and bikes – anything of any value – when you aren’t using them. Be aware that burglars may find some garden tools handy for breaking into the house.
  • Mark equipment with your postcode – use a UV pen, paint the details on or scratch them onto metal handles.
  • In summer it can be a pain to have to put garden furniture every night – check whether your insurance policy covers items left out in the garden.

Read our guide to buying security lights to help deter intruders. 


The opinions expressed are those of the author and are not held by Saga unless specifically stated. The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal, medical or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.