Category Archives: Security in Portugal

Though much safer than most countries, it still pays to be prudent. So helpful advice is on offer to help your house and contents stay safe.

Doors

Having a house renovated or built from scratch allows us the opportunity to install new back and front doors.

We tend to think about style first, then maybe the material it’s going to be made from and then cost and finally security features. Which is a little out of sync with what a door is supposed to do. Secure your home and keep out the weather!

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What kind of door to choose

If you ever watch the Police programs on TV where they carry out raids on suspects homes you will have no doubt noticed that even a very strong UPVC door with a multi locking system is only able to stand 30 seconds of real force before it buckles and bursts open.

Thankfully in Portugal we are very unlikely to have our homes attacked with such ferocity. Unless you are a part time drug lord or gun runner that is.

Install strong locks in your doors

Install strong locks in your doors

You door is probably (if ever)  only going to suffer the attentions of an opportunist thief or someone may attempt to drill out the lock which requires time and makes a lot of noise.

Most modern external doors here in Portugal are made from either wood, UPVC or aluminum.

 

The aluminum doors and windows are broadly similar to the UPVC products that you will have experienced in the UK. They have multi point-locking systems and are usually trouble free in operation.

One word of caution – make sure that you have hardened lock barrels fitted not the normal ones. These are cheap to buy but resist being drilled out very well.

Aluminum doors come in all sorts of colours and are available in many kinds of wood grain finish. I prefer aluminum because it withstands the huge range of temperatures experienced in Portugal and also withstands the summer heat without buckling or jamming. In the case of an emergency like a house fire the doors and windows will not jamb shut.

If you are about to choose windows or doors for your home in Portugal why don’t you request our free check list so that you can be sure each supplier is pricing for the same standard of product.

A quick look at wooden doors. The reason for the “quick look” is that in general I don’t recommend them. Unless that is they are made of well-seasoned, good quality hardwood. If you’re paying less than 1,000 Euros a door they wont be.

Inferior doors including those made by your local friendly carpenter will not be made of the correct quality or properly seasoned timber.

As a result this will happen.

The door will expand and stick in the frame making it hard to open and close. When it is shaved a little to make it fit. It will become loose and rattle in the summer. It will also twist and bow because of the high temperatures and high humidity.

The yacht varnish, micro porous eco paint, traditional gloss paint or teak oil that you decorate the door with will need to be taken off and replaced every year or certainly every three years even if the door is located under a porch.

I say this as an experienced carpenter and disappointed home owner who has in the past succumbed to the temporary charm of a nice wood front door!

Grand Entrance

We may not all have the charisma to carry of the “Grand Entrance” when entering a room but we certainly can have a Grand Entrance when it comes to designing our home in Portugal.

There is something special about arriving at a home positioned behind a large set of gates or a door.

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Large wooden door

Another advantage is that apart from security you can surround the drive to your front door with colourful plants which add to the impact when the doors are opened.

The style and type of timber used needs to be selected carefully of it will split and warp. But if you get it right you can have an entrance to your home like this –

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Give your home a real entrance

If your finances dont run to the cost of one of these doors Castelo Construction can help with advice on the best type of entrance for your Portuguese home without breaking the bank.

 

contact info@casteloconstruction.com    We work throughout Portugal

Front Door

Most of our clients spend a lot of time choosing the style and materials that make up their front door.


Obviously it is one of the first things people encounter when they come to your home so it is important to create a good impression.

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modern Front Door


But where to start or clients are often baffled by the huge range to choose from.


50% + would go for a traditional wooden front door the rest are open to suggestions. Most have a fear of solid glass (like a shop door) from a security stand point.

Modern glass is both very strong and tough. Tougher than wood thickness for thickness.
You have the normal extruded aluminum windows and doors which are by far the favorite.

 

Then there is powder coated steel and glass front doors which are very secure and can be made in very large sizes if you really want to impress. I like them because they can have integral metal wrought iron work which adds to the attractiveness and also the security.


Front doors with a wood face front and back incorporating a steel sheet sandwiched inside provide the beauty of natural wood and the added security of steel. Be prepared to pay a lot for these doors.


Any door that you choose of course is only as strong as its lock/locks which in most cases is not very strong at all.
A typical front door lock can be drilled out in under ten minutes so consider fitting a toughened lock to your front door. Oh and don’t leave the key under the mat.

Buy a key safe.   you can do it mail order at http://www.screwfix.com/c/ironmongery-security/key-safes-cabinets/cat810230

Castelo Construction work with clients all over Portugal why not contact us for a chat about your home.  kelvin@casteloconstruction.com we are happy to call you back.

Visit our website to see some of the projects that we have done in Portugal

www.casteloconstruction.com