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9 Ways To Fortify Your Home Before All Hell Breaks Loose


9 Ways To Fortify Your Home Before All Hell Breaks LooseYour home is your fortress, and it is your first and most important line of defense against someone who intends to do you harm.

In the current world, locked doors and perhaps a home security system is more than enough to deter most burglars. However, disaster breeds desperation, and once the SHTF, many people will suddenly be willing to work a lot harder to enter a home if they think there is anything worth stealing inside.

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Before disaster strikes, it’s important to have a plan in place for how to fortify your home in order to protect against burglars and looters. In this article, we’ll look at nine things that you can do to fortify your home before all hell breaks loose.

1. Reinforce Your Doors

Points of entry are obviously the weakest links in a home’s security and therefore must be thoroughly fortified. The unfortunate reality is that a single knob lock is not enough to deter a determined intruder for more than a couple of minutes. A strike or two to the doorknob with a hammer is all it takes to render this type of lock useless. Knob locks can also easily and quietly be picked using something as simple as a knife.

To ensure that your doors are secure, you will want to equip them with deadbolts, reinforce the hinges with longer screws, reinforce the jamb with longer screws, and reinforce the strike plate with longer screws.

Here is some more information on how to fortify a door.

2. Reinforce Your Windows

Windows may not be designed to be a point of entry, but they are arguably an even weaker link in your home’s security than your doors since windows can easily be broken.

One solution for fortifying the windows in your home is to install metal security bars. If you’re worried about making your home look like a prison, you’ll be happy to know that many window security bars come in decorative designs that won’t ruin the aesthetics of your home.

Another option is to cover your windows with security film. This transparent film prevents windows from shattering when they are struck. Keep in mind that glass doors present the same security issues as windows and must also be reinforced in the same manner if you really want to fortify your home.

Burglar Breaking In Through Window

3. Install An Alarm System

In many instances, the sound of an alarm going off is enough to scare away would-be intruders. In an SHTF scenario, though, the sound of an alarm by itself is probably not going to be enough of a deterrent.

With that said, alarm systems serve a second, even more critical function – alerting the occupants of the home when someone tries to break in.

Many people mistakenly assume that they will be able to hear an intruder breaking in even if they are sound asleep. While this might be true in some instances such as an intruder trying to kick down your front door, there are many instances where intruders are able to break in without making much noise at all. If you are even somewhat of a sound sleeper, the problem is even more exaggerated.

With an alarm system installed, you can ensure that any break-in attempt will be met with piercing noise that alerts everyone in the house. This can provide you with the precious seconds you need to arm yourself and address the threat.

4. Block Off Your Chimney

Few people ever consider their chimney as they plan to fortify their home. However, if an intruder is desperate enough, entering a home via the chimney isn’t out of the question. It’s no doubt a risky and somewhat tricky maneuver, but shimmying down a chimney is possible if the chimney is large enough and the intruder is small enough. To prevent this from happening, you may want to consider blocking off your chimney.

There are several different products on the market designed to close off the top of a chimney, many of which are able to secure the chimney while still allowing smoke to escape.

5. Secure Your Garage Door

In most cases, intruders won’t be able to access your home through your garage since they have to get through both the garage door and the door into the house. With that said, it is still essential to secure your garage if you plan on storing any supplies or valuable items in it. Even if you leave your garage empty, securing your garage door still provides an extra layer of defense for your home.

There a number of products you can purchase to fortify your garage door and make it impossible to force open from the outside. These products include things such as lock kits, door stops, and fortification bars that you can attach to your garage door.

For more information on how to effectively secure a garage door, check out this article.

6. Plant Deterring Plants Underneath Your Windows

Windows may be the weakest point in a home from a security standpoint, but they do take some effort to enter. Suffice it to say that it isn’t all that easy to break a window, hoist yourself up onto the ledge, and climb inside when there is a cactus or a thorny rose bush planted beneath the window.

This method of fortifying your windows certainly isn’t fool-proof and should be combined with window security measures such as bars or security film. However, planting things such as cacti or other thorny plants underneath your windows can make life that much more difficult for an intruder who plans to enter your home through a window.

Check out this list of plants for home security.

Prickly Acacia Bushes

7. Put a Fence Around Your Property

Putting a fence around your property provides you with an outer layer of defense that an intruder must conquer before he is ever able to reach your home. Most privacy fences are relatively easy to scale, though, so you will need to be selective about the type of fence that you choose.

There are several different qualities that a good security fence should exhibit. First and most importantly, a good security fence needs to be difficult to climb. This means you will want to choose a fence that is at least eight feet tall, has few if any horizontal rails, and is spiked or pointed at the top.

A good security fence also needs to be difficult to bypass. This means securing your fence to the ground with concrete and equipping it with a padlocked gate.

Lastly, you will want to choose a fence that you are able to see through in order to prevent intruders from being able to hide behind it.

There are a number of metal security fences that fit all of these qualifications while still being decorative enough to not stand out in an urban neighborhood.

8. Fortify Your Walls

Very few break-ins involve busting through the wall of a home. However, if someone decides to open fire on your home, drywall and wooden studs are not going to do much to stop bullets from shredding through your walls.

The bad news is that the only way to really fortify your walls is to have walls that are made of stone or brick on the outside. If you live in a stone or brick house already, you don’t have to worry too much about your walls being a weak point. If you don’t have stone or brick walls, though, you’ll need to have a plan in place in the event that someone decides to open fire on your house.

9. Keep Firearms Accessible

In many cases, the best defense is a good offense. While all of the tips discussed in the previous sections will make it very difficult for an intruder to enter your home, there is no way to make an ordinary house impossible to break into unless you have an enormous amount of money to spend and don’t mind your home looking like a prison.

Fortifying your home may be enough to convince most intruders to try for an easier target, but it isn’t going to stop someone who is hell-bent on entering your home. Given the right tools and enough time, a determined intruder will eventually be able to break into your home no matter how well fortified it might be.

When and if this happens, you will either have to hide away or meet the threat head-on. In both cases, it is essential that you are armed. Hiding away in a locked bathroom in the hopes that the intruder will simply steal all of your stuff and leave is both a risky gamble and a good way to lose everything you own.

Even if you do decide to hide once an intruder enters your home, you’ll still want to have a firearm on you in case they enter your hiding place. Of course, trying to confront an intruder without a firearm is an even more deadly risk.

Once you have fortified your home, make sure that you keep at least one firearm that is loaded and easily accessible. It may be your last line of defense, but a firearm is also the only defense capable of stopping an intruder who is willing to do whatever it takes to get inside your home. Here’s our list of the best guns for home defense.


As I said, if a criminal is determined enough, he will find a way into your home. However, there are other things you can do to make it more difficult for him. For example, you could get a dog (or dogs), a decoy safe so your most valuable things don’t get stolen, or you could build a safe room so you can at least keep your family from harm.

Here are some more home security tips for life after SHTF.

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  1. patrick kelley on August 8, 2019 at 11:03 pm

    You forgot Cholla cactus, Very nasty. long spines { thorns} with barbs on the ends. Used to hunt in area that had lots of them ,they go right through your pants,gloves and skin !

    • patrick kelley on August 8, 2019 at 11:09 pm

      they drop off these balls, they stick in your pants,and as walk they will flip up and sick right through your pants and stick in YOU !!!

  2. Who Cares on August 8, 2019 at 10:37 pm

    Things to remember. And remember good. If you live in Cal/Mexico.
    1. They must be in your home if you shoot them.
    2. They must have something that can kill you// harm you.
    When 5-0 comes. Have your hand up. Do not move.
    Do not! Do Not! Talk with 5-0. Just give your name & ask for a lawyer.
    Then shut the hell up. Don’t talk yourself into jail.
    Know your rights & use them.
    Just facts.

  3. arkansawyer on June 9, 2019 at 9:35 pm

    Forget your Hollywood scenario. There will always be enough law and order to punish you for shooting trespassers. Just not enough law and order to actually protect you.

  4. runnamuck on June 6, 2019 at 3:23 pm

    look online get some electric fuse detonators,go to hardware store buy 4 to 5 inch by 1/2 inch threaded on both ends,buy caps for both ends.cap 1 ens fill with pyrodex drill hole in 1 cap place detonator in pipe with leads passing thru cap. tape pipes at waist hight around property.use speaker wire to connect pipe to fighting position. get lawnmower battery to set off pipes at will as target presents it self.thank you x ranger live to fight another day

    • runnamuck on June 6, 2019 at 3:25 pm

      firework electric fuses whole thing should cost less than 75 bucks for eight

  5. Illini Warrior on June 6, 2019 at 6:49 am

    in regard to fortifying your windows – when it comes serious SHTF time and barricading – for God’s sake do it correctly – forget about the Grey Man “tricks” and fooling looters – painting windows to look “burned out” is just a freaking joke …

    largest mistake I see constantly is barricading from the inside – leaving the actual window exposed – worst yet leaving that “window well” of the wall open to arson – also, it takes minimum effort to kick in barricade materials vs prying it off the outside frame …

    many ways to fasten those window barricade panels – but an inside DIY bracing system will make their removal almost impossible short of a chainsaw – if screwing them from the outside >>> use a mixed variety of screw heads to confuse their simple removal …

    if you can’t much of anything else – just keep the looters from reaching in broken windows and zippo liting your curtains and sofa …

    • Alan on June 7, 2019 at 5:54 am

      Really good advice, thanks for sharing!

  6. pete dickson on June 5, 2019 at 2:50 pm

    IF there is any power consider running 220 power to the doors. Install netting over doors along with barbed wire. Then you can “shoot fish in a barrel”. Booby traps of various kinds everywhere. Here you can get grusome, evil and deadly; remember this post SHTF. There will be no laws except to come out alive, and the invaders will leave you with no food, water, defenses, medicine, shelter and may leave you and yours dead. No P.C. needed.

    • Wendell Nelson on June 6, 2019 at 2:25 pm

      Booby traps are great ideas!!!!!!! No holds barred!!!!

    • Chainsaw on April 22, 2020 at 7:33 am

      I did this at friends condo. Entry two flight stairs with landing…made “Art Work” out of Tangle Wire, hung over landing with rope/pulleys to upstairs. Knee wall at top of stairs was made bullet “proof” including the floor.
      IF the need came, flick of the wrist drops tangle wire slowing down the perp and like shooting fish in a barrel.

  7. Bill tramontana on June 5, 2019 at 12:03 pm

    I’m an old man. My plan is not to be home ,I have a good place to hide outside my house. My valuables ,food and water etc. will also be under a pile of leaves.Oh ,leave the doors open. Saves me ,supplys And repairs. another day. Don’t be so fast to shoot your neibors or kids.

    • prsmith on June 5, 2019 at 8:20 pm

      You will be home and asleep because that’s how it works unless you’re living elsewhere. Hopefully you’re hardened enough to hear them coming before they’re standing over your bed with knives in hand. ANYBODY who breaks into my home gets shot and my kids know that. Change your thinking…stay alive.

      • Jake on August 9, 2019 at 1:37 pm

        Have two dogs, one yapper and one big and trained if possible. My boxer told to patrol if something wakes me, goes patrols if the chihuahua mix gets nervous, weather or noise. And I keep Pistol and two knives on my wheelchair and others weapons side of bed and hung back of door. Yes I fortify my windows don’t open and doors. My kids come visit my homestead they call before leaving and when on dirt road! So I can prepare for grand child. You need to prepare but also safe

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