Friday, August 12, 2016

One Of The Best Reasons To Keep Your Car Clean

For years I was a block captain on our Neighborhood Watch committee.  We met several times during the year, kept an eye on things and, occasionally, reported suspicious behavior to our neighborhood contact officer.  For the most part our neighborhood is relatively crime free.  We are very fortunate in that respect.  But sometimes crime does happen.

In one of the classes our police department gave us they touched on automobile theft.  It is one of the more common crimes, but a few simple tricks can help you avoid being a target.

First - Always lock your car!

Second - Keep it clean!

Why does a clean car matter?  Well I'm going to tell you.


Criminals look for cars that are easy to get into and look like they have something valuable in them.  Having a bunch of garbage and clutter strewn about inside is an invitation for a thief to want to bust in and look for valuables.

Coats, jackets, hoodies, gym or duffle bags all have pockets and potential money or something of value stuck inside.  Shopping bags and boxes, even empty ones are just too good to pass up.

Not so tempting

Also, a dirty car filled with trash leads a thief to believe you don't really care about your vehicle, therefore you are less likely to have your car armed with an alarm system.  On the other hand, a clean car may suggest you care and have set the alarm.  Thieves don't want to risk attracting attention by setting off an alarm.

Remove everything from inside, stash CDs in compartments so they are out of sight (I personally only have copied CDs in my vehicle, in a case, out of sight).  Don't leave any electronics in your car.  Not even an MP3 player or your cell phone.

Lock it up!

The thing is, if they look in your car and see there is nothing in it they will be much more likely to move along to the next one.

Although nothing is 100% fool proof, anything I can do to avoid being a victim suits me just fine.


  1. I worked for several years on a govt project. I went to all the inner city schools in B'ham, AL. Most of the time, I was a lone white woman 3 or 4 miles from safety. I parked my car behind a 12 foot chain link fence at one school. At another school, the principal had a police radio on him and several other pieces of communication equipment. At another school a black woman begged me not to go to the most dangerous school in the city. It was so dangerous that cable men refused to service the housing projects even with two men in the van.

    I never washed my newish car, EVER. As I sat at lights, I wanted no one to see me. I have dark hair, so I did not immediately stick out as out of place. My life depended on anonymity. The only thing in my car was the book bag that looked like a laptop bag. I unzipped it and forced it open to show notebooks for class, hoping that reveal would keep my windows from being smashed.

    I developed the habit of locking my car doors at all times when in parking lots. I even started locking my doors to pump gas or to step out to buy a paper from a paper machine.

    A filthy car was a good thing for me.

    1. Wow! I can't even begin to imagine what that must have been like. Or having to live in those conditions. At least you got to go home at the end of your work day. I can see where dirt on your car was like having camouflage for you I suppose.


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