Vehicle theft costs insurance companies approximately $500,000 dollars annually, with nearly 125,000 automobiles stolen in Canada each year. As common as stolen cars are, though, having your valuables stolen from inside your vehicle is even more common. Do your best to deter prowlers and keep you and your vehicle safe and secure.
Common Anti-Theft Devices
Your Calgary auto insurance rates are primarily based on the potential risk you pose of filing a claim with an insurance provider. In general, the lower your risk, the lower your premiums.
The following devices will reduce the chances your vehicle can be stolen, assist the police in finding your vehicle or prevent the engine from running in the event your vehicle is ever attempted to be operated without a key:
- Mechanical Anti-Theft Devices: Install an anti-theft device to keep your steering wheel or brakes locked when your vehicle is unattended. Mechanical devices make it extremely difficult for a thief to drive your vehicle, and are excellent deterrents for prowlers.
- Vehicle Tracking Devices: If your vehicle is ever stolen, police can find it by using your vehicle-tracking device. Tracking devices sometimes work in conjunction with immobilizers, which interrupt the operation of the engine parts required to keep your vehicle running, including the starter, ignition and fuel supply systems.
- Electronic Security Systems: The next time you purchase a vehicle, look for one with an electronic anti-theft device. While it may cost a little more at the time of purchase, the device will pay for itself through theft deterrence and perhaps even qualifying you for a discount on your Calgary car insurance premiums!
- Vehicle Alarms: Drawing attention to a would-be thief with a siren, beeping, loud noises and even flashing lights can be very effective.
Speak with your Calgary auto insurance broker to find out how these devices may be able to qualify you for a discount on your auto insurance.
Calgary Auto Insurance Tips: Stowing Valuable Items Inside Your Vehicle
Valuables in plain view inside a vehicle will tempt a prowler, so keep these items hidden in the trunk or another compartment. Keep personal documents, purses, wallets and electronic devices under the seat and out of sight. Whenever possible, stow your valuables away before arriving at your destination.
The most common items stolen from inside vehicles are:
- Cell phones
- Personal electronic devices (laptops, tablets, iPods, GPS devices)
- Credit and identification cards
- Stereos and equipment
- Vehicle parts and accessories
- Garage door openers
Leaving Your Vehicle Unattended
While this might sound like common sense, about 20 per cent of vehicles stolen annually had the key left in the ignition. Keep a spare set in a secure location inside your home; but never leave (or hide) keys inside your vehicle.
We’re all tempted to leave the car running with the keys in the ignition while we get ready to leave the house or when we dash into a store, especially on a cold morning. However, an unattended, running vehicle is an open invitation to a thief who only needs 10 seconds to get into your car and drive it away. Always lock your vehicle whenever you leave it unattended.
Parking Safety Tips
It’s easier for a thief to steal your vehicle if it’s parked in the dark or off the beaten path. Since more than 50 per cent of car thefts occur at night, always park in well-lit, high-traffic areas. The more people around, the better.
Record your Vehicle Identification Number (VIN)
Keep your VIN written down in a secure location inside your home. Having it etched into a part of your car like the windshield in plain sight, will make your vehicle less attractive to a thief. Your VIN allows your vehicle to be traced…even if it has been dismantled and sold for parts!
Bow Valley Insurance Brokers
At Bow Valley Insurance, our brokers have access to several leading insurance providers. Our promise is to find you the lowest rates and the best coverage on your Calgary auto insurance at all times! We are able to offer several discounts for qualified drivers, and are happy to share several ways to Save on Auto Insurance! Our Resource Centre is full of good information for understanding insurance. Request a free quote to see the immediate difference we can make for you.
Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions. We’re here to help!