Is the club steering wheel lock effective?
Car theft: the good steering wheel lock, artificial DNA & Co.
Car thieves have stopped working with wire loops and screwdrivers for a long time. They use jammers, intercept codes or hack the entire vehicle. So you can still protect yourself from car theft.
More than 16,000 cars were stolen in Germany last year, most of them in Berlin and North Rhine-Westphalia. However, the actual number is likely to be far higher. How can you best protect your car from theft?
Steering wheel lock only discourages amateurs
Various technical aids are supposed to make life more difficult for thieves. First and foremost is the electronic immobilizer, which has been mandatory for all new vehicles since January 1, 1998. It already offers very good basic protection, which is activated automatically when the ignition is switched off. The vehicle can then simply no longer be started because the fuel and power supply are interrupted.
However, older cars are only required to retrofit a mechanical immobilizer - such as a steering wheel lock or a steering wheel claw. The Auto Club Europa (ACE) warns against expectations that are too high: The often simple locking cylinders of these systems would put off amateurs to the maximum. Rather, a massive parking claw on a bike could offer some protection. However, it is more unwieldy in everyday life. At around 40 euros, steering wheel and parking claws are relatively cheap.
A bit cumbersome, but effective: a parking claw can at least deter casual thieves.
GPS transmitters are not worthwhile for everyone
Another possibility are modern GPS positioning systems, which can be used to determine the location at any time. However, many stolen cars are quickly dismantled into their individual parts. And then a location system is no longer of any use.
Modern defense methods also include artificial DNA, in which the vehicle identification number is chemically etched into the side windows. In addition, individual components of the car can be marked invisibly. The individual coding, which is stored in a central database, enables the vehicle and parts to be clearly assigned at any time. This makes the car less attractive to thieves. Red stickers in the side windows can identify the DNA coding from the outside. Prices start at around 70 euros.
SMS from the alarm system
One of the classics of car surveillance is the alarm system, which is available in the automotive accessories trade in all price ranges from around 40 euros. For example, contacts are used to report if someone is tampering with the bonnet or trunk. In other systems, interior surveillance registers suspicious movements. Depending on the version, the electronic guards also establish a cellular connection and provide information via short message.
Just don't leave the key in your jacket pocket
Rules of conduct that every driver should observe are at least as important. The police crime prevention advises to always click the steering wheel lock and to insert the key and lock the vehicle even during short stops at the petrol station. Objects such as cell phones, navigation devices or other valuables should never be left in the interior, not even in the trunk.
Many drivers are also too careless with their car keys. For example in a restaurant: Here the car key has no place in the coat pocket by the cloakroom. If a key is lost, car owners should have the key data in the control unit deleted from their authorized workshop. Then the immobilizer can no longer be bridged even with the lost door opener.
The storage location is also decisive. The safest way to park your car is in a locked or monitored garage. Darkness and little traffic, however, make it easier for thieves. In addition, the spare key and papers do not belong in the car. Be careful with remote controls and keyless systems: professionals can capture and replicate the signals. This also makes it difficult to prove to the insurance company that you have not acted negligently.
Garage saves insurance costs
The place of parking also plays a role in the amount of the insurance premium: a garage or carport has a positive effect on the insurance premium in the comprehensive insurance.
Theft protection for classic cars
Older vehicles without complicated on-board electronics can be effectively protected against theft with just a few simple steps. The battery can be easily disconnected from the on-board network using a battery switch with a knurled screw, which you can simply put in your pocket. This type of theft protection is often built into classic cars in particular.
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