How to Zombie-proof Your Home

Keep the undead minions at bay with low-tech perimeter security

Zombie attack
The Power of Forever Photography/E+/Getty Images

Are you prepared for a zombie apocalypse?

Sure it sounds silly, but even the US Center For Disease Control now has a page devoted to preparing for a zombie apocalypse. The CDC's page mainly covers items you should have on hand for any disaster but doesn't really go into how to defend your home. What's a homeowner to do?

Alarm systems won't stop zombies

While a home alarm system is a great addition to your overall security posture, it will not prevent a zombie from breaking into your home and feasting on your brain.

An alarm system is only good for notifying the police and your neighbors who may have already been turned into zombies. I would rather keep the undead out of my house entirely rather than being alerted by a shrill alarm as they are preparing to eat me.

I had a break-in several months ago where thieves (not zombies) made off with some electronics. They were probably in and out of my house in less than 3-4 minutes. They kicked through a dead-bolted door, grabbed some stuff, and were gone. Most people's alarm entry delays may not have even finished counting down by the time these criminals were in and out of my house.

Your first thought following a break-in, after you have gotten over the initial invasion of privacy feeling is: how can I keep this from happening again? The door was locked and dead-bolted. If I install a new door, what's to keep someone from kicking the new door in and robbing me again?

My Shih Tzu dogs proved to be highly ineffective during our previous break-in. They probably led the robbers to where the expensive stuff was and held the door for them on their way out.

In my post-break-in research, I found that most criminals (and zombies) don't bother trying to pick your lock or break your window, they just give your door one or two strong kicks and drive your deadbolt through your door jamb.

Simple, effective, and quick.

So what can you do to keep zombies (and thieves) from breaking into your home?

1. Kick-proof Your Doors

Zombie's love to kick things and use the sheer force of their undead will to break down your door. I didn't want to buy another door just to have it kicked in again, so I did some Googling and found a product from Armor Concepts called Door Jamb Armor.

Door Jamb Armor is sold in kits that range from about $70-$100 per door and should effectively kick-proof your door once installed. It works by reinforcing the weak points of a door such as the door jamb, hinges, and the area around the locks. Armor Concepts has kits for do-it-yourselfers and can either be installed during a door replacement or retro-fitted onto a door that is already installed.

Judging by the Youtube videos on their website, Door Jamb Armor appears to work as advertised and their warranty seems to indicate that they will pay your insurance deductible (up to a certain amount) should their product fail to do it's job (although I'm not sure the warranty covers zombies).

2. Baseball bat-proof Your Windows.

Both thieves and resourceful zombies love to smash their way into things with baseball bats.

If they can't get in through your door their next choice is a window. If your house is like mine, you probably have a lot of windows that might even go from floor to ceiling as seems to be the trend for houses built since the '90s.

You are also likely to have side-light windows by your front door. Windows by the front door make it even easier for someone to break in because they just have to break a small pane of glass, and reach in to turn the deadbolt. Unless you have a double-cylinder deadbolt without a key in it, they will easily get in.

Windows are notoriously easy to break. We all know that zombies feel no pain so they won't care if they get cut by the broken glass.

Fortunately, A.C.E Security Laminates 400 has just what you need. A.C.E makes what is called a Security Laminate which looks like window-tinting ​film, but is many times stronger. The security laminate is installed over your existing window panes and is virtually invisible once it has bonded to the glass.

The "burglar-resistant" version of the security laminate should offer ample protection against zombies, but for the ultra-paranoid, A.C.E also makes bullet and bomb-resistant versions of their laminates as well. Look up "Ace Security Laminates" on YouTube to see how their security laminate-protected windows hold up against guns, bats, news reporters, and all kinds of other stuff.

Zombies can pound their heads and fists at your security laminate-protected windows for days and your windows will likely still hold up without breaking. You can have the laminate installed professionally or you can purchase a DIY kit for about $500 US that should cover most windows in an average sized home.

There is also a version of the film available for installation on your car windows to help prevent zombie carjacking as well.

3. Remove Potential Zombie Hiding Places

Some zombies may saunter around your yard aimlessly, but others may hide behind shrubbery. Keep bushes and shrubs trimmed low around windows and doors. Add landscape spotlights to keep your home well lit at night. Add motion detecting lights to your porch, carport, and garage areas.

If you heed the advice above, hopefully the zombie's will move on and seek an easier house to get into.

Just remember, an ounce of prevention now may be worth a pound of flesh later. Keep up with all the latest zombie outbreaks and zombie-related news by visiting the Zombie Research Society's website.