2020 Update

While over a year old, all of the information in this article is still relevant. Learning how to burglar proof your window air conditioner unit is important; scroll down to find out how. 

Window air conditioning units are a modern convenience many of us can’t live without. If you don’t have central air conditioning, window units can effectively cool down the rooms in your home at a modest cost. However, window air conditioning units can also make your property a target for burglars who intend to use the window to gain easy access inside your home. The following are a few ways you can burglar proof your home if you have a window AC unit.

Consider Placement of the Air Conditioner

If you have the option, you may want to avoid putting window units on the first floor of your home or apartment. However, if you need the unit in a first floor room, consider leaving the unit in place seasonally. In some cases, homeowners remove window units during the colder months of the year.

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    Mount the Window Unit Securely

    Many homeowners make the mistake of not using screws to mount the air conditioning unit. Instead, they rely on the windowsill and gravity to keep the unit in place. Instead, mount the window unit to the window sash. It is important to get a proper window air conditioner bracket. This makes the unit more difficult to remove from the outside.

    White AC units hang outside by the windows of an urban apartment building.

    Extend the Accordion Panels

    Many air conditioning units include accordion panels on each side of the main unit. When installing, extend these panels as wide as possible to help eliminate any spots a burglar can use to leverage the unit out of the window.

    Install Flaps

    To get a window air conditioner to fit properly, you typically need to install a unit that’s smaller than the actual window size. This makes the space surrounding the unit vulnerable to break-ins. Metal and plastic flaps can be installed over these spaces to better secure the window.

    Brackets and Braces

    You can burglar proof your AC unit with brackets and braces. Brackets and corner braces are extra supports that you can use when installing a window air conditioning unit. These tools serve two purposes. For one, they keep the window air conditioner securely in place. Secondly, the brackets and braces prevent the window air conditioner from being pushed out of the frame.

    Add a Window Lock

    A common misconception is that you’re unable to lock any window holding an air conditioning unit. You can add two sliding window locks directly onto the window frame. These locks will stop burglars from sliding up the window any further in an attempt to dislodge the air conditioner.

    Air Conditioner Without Window

    If you’re looking to install a window AC unit without a window you might want to look into portable AC units. The main problem with these though, is that you have to empty the water out of the water tray every so often. A better option would be to install a normal air conditioner that you don’t have to mount on a window and instead add a drain hose fitted to the sink or other drain in the house. You can also add a drain or other ventilation system to your home yourself. This is especially useful if you don’t have any windows in the room that you wish to install the air conditioning unit.

    Install a Monitored Home Security System

    Want a surefire way to keep your property safe from burglars? Install security equipment to detect illegal entry into your home. Monitored systems are preferred since authorities are alerted in the case of a break-in. Window sensors can be installed to set off the security system if a burglar tries to tamper with the air conditioner and break into the home. Indoor cameras let you catch the unwanted visitor in the act as well as dissect how they were able to access the AC unit in the first place.

    The corner view of a white AC unit that's in front of a white building.

    If you have a security system, don’t be shy about advertising the protection you have in place. Place a home security sticker clearly on any windows that house air conditioning units.

    Interested in keeping your home safe against burglaries? Allow the professionals at Protect America help you choose products and services that work best for your family’s needs. Call 1-800-951-5190 now for more information.