Some vehicle owners tend to overlook vandalism as potential damage. Most worry more about possible accident-related damage or auto theft. Having your car vandalized, however, is incredibly frustrating. This ruins the appearance of your car and forces you to shell out hundreds or even thousands of dollars to repair your car.

When someone vandalizes your car, you may begin wondering why anyone would do this horrible crime to you. The culprit may be a misbehaving kid or an upset neighbor looking to get back at you – or you may just be a victim of a random act of violence. Regardless, you now have to face a problem that will cost you time and money.

The good news is that you can take steps to better protect yourself and your car from vandals.

Here are a few suggestions you can follow to make your vehicle less of a target:

  • Keep Your Car Clean and Tidy

Make a habit of keeping your vehicle clean and free of clutter. Potential thieves stroll around park areas checking through car windows to find out if there’s anything valuable worth stealing.

If your vehicle contains valuable items, such as laptops and nice clothes, the thief may try to break into your car and steal your personal possessions. As much as possible, keep your valuables in your home or out of sight.

  • Install Paint Protection Film

The purpose of this type of film is to make car cleaning easier, reduce the likelihood of the exterior paint sustaining scratches and other damage and keep your vehicle new and shiny for longer. Take your car to professional clear car protection film installers to give your vehicle exterior the additional protection it needs.

  • Lock Your Car After Parking

An unlocked auto is like water in the desert for thieves and vandals. If you do need to park your vehicle in a public place, don’t forget to lock your car after you step out of the car.

  • Keep Your Car Windows Closed

Even if the car door is closed, vandals can still mess with your vehicle if one of the windows is open. An open window is an invitation to vandals to throw in the garbage, as well as flammable items like cigarettes. Some of these are a headache to clean up, while others may be enough to destroy your auto.

Before you leave your car, make sure to close all windows.

  • Use Your Garage

A garage is a place for homeowners to store their cars. Sadly, they use this part of the house to store other stuff. A report published in PR Newswire revealed that nearly one in four Americans say that their garage has too much clutter. As a result, they leave their car outside the house.

Parking your car inside your home is an excellent way to keep your vehicle out of reach from vandals, thieves and other criminals. If the garage in your house has ample space, create a habit of parking your car after using it.

If your garage is too cramped, get rid of the clutter. Take a cue from Marie Kondo and throw out the things in your house that no longer spark joy.

Once you’ve parked your car in your garage, remember to lock the garage door securely.

  • Light Up Your House

Vehicle vandals don’t like their crimes seen. They usually strike when there’s no one around, which means that they often strike during nighttime. You can deter vandals from your car and your home by keeping your driveway illuminated.

  • Install a Dash Cam on Your Vehicle

Many modern dash cams on the market have a “parking mode” feature. This enables them to continue recording even when you’ve turned off the ignition of your vehicle. This helps act as a deterrent to would-be vandals, as you can pull up the evidence to make the claim and ideally catch the culprit.

Note: if you’re driving a Tesla, you’ll enjoy a better version of this technology through “Sentry Mode.” This feature uses the onboard cameras to record criminals and even warn them to stay away from your vehicle.

  • Implement a Security System

You’ll find many security systems on the market, including aftermarket car alarms. Even installing a tiny blinking red light on your dashboard can fool a vandal into thinking that you have an alarm. Although these systems won’t eliminate vandalism, they can certainly cut down the amount of time a vandal messes with your car. This translates to less time to cause damage and steal the contents of your vehicle.

Don’t let vandals get away with messing up your car. Follow these tips to help safeguard your vehicle.