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Old 05-26-2014, 02:47 PM   #1
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Alarms, GPS, locks? What do you do when storing your AS to prevent theft?

I am wondering what others are doing to try to prevent theft of their Airstream when they are stored? Wheel or hitch locks? If so, which is best? Anyone have a GPS tracker in their AS in the event it does get stolen? Or am I just paranoid?
Thanks!
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Old 05-26-2014, 02:52 PM   #2
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Yes, yes, and yes.
Telling secrets is like leaving keys in the open.
Do what you think will secure it best for you.
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Old 05-26-2014, 03:36 PM   #3
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Better question and I don't think I've seen it on the forum is how many Airstreams are stolen on average per year? Prior to my AS I had a Camp-Inn teardrop trailer. Over the 10+ years, thousand or so trailers, only 1 was ever reported stolen. Common sense with a hitch lock to discourage some thieves for a 1500# trailer. But other than that what are the odds? Especially on an AS.
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Old 05-26-2014, 03:43 PM   #4
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Hi, insurance.
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Old 05-26-2014, 04:28 PM   #5
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Lots of Airstreams are stolen.
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Old 05-26-2014, 07:08 PM   #6
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It is at home. I feel a little more secure because of that. I also use a tongue lock.
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Old 05-26-2014, 09:54 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kellykellyi View Post
I am wondering what others are doing to try to prevent theft of their Airstream when they are stored? Wheel or hitch locks? If so, which is best? Anyone have a GPS tracker in their AS in the event it does get stolen? Or am I just paranoid?
Thanks!
Everyone's situation is different.

My situation is that I have my Airstream in a shed at my old farm. I have the farmhouse rented out to a retired ex-army gun nut who owns several coon hounds. Great guy. He rarely leaves the premises. Accordingly, theft during storage is simply not a major concern for me.

I do have a security chain and heavy padlock that I use to immobilize the wheels, which I sometimes use on the road if there are risk factors present. Usually, when leaving the trailer unattended where there are few other people present.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AtomicNo13 View Post
Yes, yes, and yes.
Telling secrets is like leaving keys in the open.
Do what you think will secure it best for you.
Security through obscurity is little security indeed

Quote:
Originally Posted by ROBERTSUNRUS View Post
Hi, insurance.
One of the best answers. I have really good insurance.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AtomicNo13 View Post
Lots of Airstreams are stolen.
Yes they are. And I'll say it again: They are nearly always stolen from commercial/industrial sites, mostly in states close to the Mexican border. Usual victim is some small business owner who parks the trailer in a fenced yard behind his shop. I've never heard of one being stolen from a campground, I've never heard of one being stolen while parked adjacent to its owner's residence, and I've never heard of one being stolen from a commercial RV storage yard where there are many RVs.

The problem with commercial/industrial sites is that there is usually no one around at night, at all, so thieves can come in with impunity at 2:30 on Tuesday morning and spend half and hour fiddling around with an angle grinder, hoist, and dolly to defeat basically anything. These crimes are planned in advance and the trailer is typically taken to a nearby indoor location where identifying marks and signs of theft are removed before it is taken over the border and sold.
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Old 05-28-2014, 10:18 AM   #8
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Before we started heading south for the winters, I used to store my LY motor-home in a fenced-in lot with a combination entrance. The old guy who lived there was often gone, but every night and when he wasn't there his pack of Rottweilers patrolled the area (they were not people friendly). Other than some dog poop, nothing was disturbed.
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Old 05-28-2014, 11:17 AM   #9
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When buying our '59 Overlander, another fellow thought he should have it--although I had paid for it a day before he showed up--and he was one scary dude. He Googled us, noted our line-up of 5 vintage A/Ss in the overhead shot of our house, and threatened to a) come with the police, have us arrested for theft (??) and take what he wanted, or b) come alone and just steal it. (And he did cause us some grief by filing a complaint with the DMV that held up the title for thirty days.)

Fortunately the overhead photo was old and by that time we had a secure building with all the oldies safely stored away. Even so, we have serious hitch locks on each of them inside the building, heavy locks on all the overhead doors and the people door, and since it is a metal building, any attempt to break in will make a lot of noise. For the next several months, we also had the county sheriff's office make more frequent passes and look more carefully as they went by.

So even though here in rural Idaho we feel pretty safe against most "normal" crime, there are always the crazies out there and it doesn't hurt to take all reasonable precautions.

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Old 05-28-2014, 12:01 PM   #10
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Ok, I will reveal the secret. I take the fuse out of the electric tongue jack. My is stored in a commercial lot, twice in three years someone has tried to back a truck up and make off with her. They tried the electric jack, did not work, tried jacking up the front end but in both cases, two different people could not figure out how to drive off with the tongue down. I also chain the wheels together on both sides, 30' dual axle and use cable that cannot be cut (easily) and a special lock.

When stored if someone wants it bad enough to circumvent all this they can have it, it's insured and empty.

Both parties were caught in the act as the facility has cameras and an intrusion alarm after hours. Both charged with grand theft.

Works for our situation.
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Old 05-28-2014, 01:34 PM   #11
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I keep a pitbull locked inside.

Seriously, my storage yard is next to a sheriff substation. It is coded, but that only helps a little.

In the past, I actually have a spare Durango I park in front of the trailer. I think thats a great solution.

That truck isn't currently running, so I can't do that. Now I lock the hitch, turn off the power, and drop the 4 stabilizers.

If someone attempts a snatch and grab, they are going to make some big noise until those jacks rip off.
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Old 05-28-2014, 03:18 PM   #12
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I retired from the security industry many years ago, but the principles still hold: there are crimes of opportunity and others of targeted approach.

Door locks are supposed to reduce crimes of opportunity: the bad guy decides to break in next door where it is easier, and most of the suggestions above will help thwart this motivation: if they can't hitch up it will be a lot tougher to take your second home and tow it away. Wheel locking, chaining them together or to an "immovable" object also help.

A LoJack or GPS-type unit will help recovery if the bad guys go ahead anyway. Each of us has to decide if that is necessary based on the general trend where we live and store our stuff and the specific location your are parked. "Lots of Airstreams are stolen" may be true in Telluride but not where you are. I have not asked and have no data for my region, but you could ask the local PD and also your nearest dealer.
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Old 05-28-2014, 03:39 PM   #13
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Ours is stored out of sight behind a security gate that's manned and video controlled 24/7.

The storage lot is surrounded by a 10ft earth berm plus a 10ft fence and is set back about 500 yards from the road. The space between road and storage facility is wooded. Not a single theft in ten years.

Still, I do have a GPS tracker hidden away in the trailer.
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Old 05-29-2014, 01:20 PM   #14
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I contacted my insurance company (BlueSky) who contacted their underwriters. This is the response from the underwriting company.

"The complete theft of a RV is a rarity. Going back in my 14 years in the RV insurance business there have been less than 10 total thefts that I can recall and that encompasses hundreds of thousands of insured units. There is no market for the parts if one were to disassemble the stolen unit, and the theft for “joyriding” purposes doesn’t happen with a motorhome, so there really is no attraction to steal one."

Of course this only applies to trailers that have insurance. So anything with no insurance or no insurance claim would not be included.
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