External-van-shields - Pros and cons

Exploring External Shield Kits for Vans: Pros and Cons


External shield kits have emerged as a popular solution for van owners seeking enhanced protection. These kits, designed to fortify the external structure of a van, offer a unique approach to security. In this blog post, we will delve into the advantages and disadvantages of external shield kits for vans, comparing them to other van security solutions to help you make an informed decision about safeguarding your van.

Advantages of External Shield Kits


  • Advantage: External shield kits are an affordable option that offers substantial security. They are commonly used in addition to other security measures, such as deadlocks or statement locks, to enhance overall security. Although some customers have these installed as a standalone solution; they are recommended as an extra layer of protection.

Physical Barrier:

  • Advantage: External shield kits provide an additional barrier that increases the difficulty for thieves to break in without authorization. The shields are made from stainless steel and are bolted through the door, to add an extra layer of protection to the weak areas on commercial vans. Some shields have an enhanced security option, featuring both the external stainless steel shield and an internal manganese plate. The internal plate is significantly more resistant to drilling compared to the external shield alone. As a result, this configuration establishes a higher level of security, making drilling through the shield considerably more challenging

Visible Deterrence:

  • Advantage: One of the primary advantages of external shield kits is their visible presence, which sends a clear message to potential thieves that the van is well-protected. This visible deterrence can be a powerful tool in preventing break-ins.

Customisation Options:

  • Advantage: Many external shield kits can be supplied in stainless steel or powder-coated black finish, allowing van customers to choose a colour to suit their van. Van owners can also choose internal manganese plates for added security.

Disadvantages of External Shield Kits

Installation preparation:

  • Disadvantages: Unforeseen installation preparation for internal and external shields is often neglected, and many van owners are unaware of the importance of clearing certain areas in the van before installation. This involves either moving tools or temporarily removing racking, if necessary, to clear the spaces where ply lining and door cards need to be removed to fit the internal shields. It also ensures that the external shields can be properly bolted through the door.

Limited Effectiveness Against Electronic Threats

Aesthetics and Visibility:

  • Disadvantage: The visible nature of external shield kits, while serving as a deterrent, may also affect the aesthetics of the van. Some van owners prioritise a sleek and inconspicuous appearance, and the addition of external shields may not align with their aesthetic preferences.

Comparisons with Other Van Security Solutions

Traditional Security Systems:

External Shield Kits vs. Traditional Security:

  • External shield kits offer a more visible and physical deterrent compared to traditional security systems. While after-market locks provide a baseline level of protection, external shields add an extra layer of defence against forced entry.

Making an Informed Decision

Choosing between external shield kits and other van security solutions depends on various factors, including your budget, aesthetics, and the level of security required for your van. Consider the following when making your decision:

Security Priorities:

  • Assess your specific security needs and priorities. If you prioritise a visible and physical deterrent, external shield kits may be the ideal choice. For those concerned with a broader range of security threats, a combination of solutions may be necessary like Deadlocks, Van Slamlocks, Ultimate locks and Statement locks .


  • Evaluate your budget and determine the amount you are willing to invest in van security. External shield kits are relatively inexpensive for the amount of security they provide. Stand-alone or a combination with additional security solutions would be a worthwhile investment.  The visible deterrent they provide could justify the cost for those seeking a robust physical barrier.

DIY vs. Professional Installation:

  • Consider your skills and comfort level with DIY projects. While some external shield kits may offer DIY-friendly components, professional installation may be necessary for certain features.


  • Even though the external shielding is more visually prominent than most other van security solutions, the option of either stainless steel or powder-coated black finish helps with aesthetics. 


External shield kits for vans offer an effective solution for individuals who want a noticeable and physical deterrent against potential dangers. Nevertheless, like any security option, they have their benefits and drawbacks. By thoroughly considering the factors discussed in this blog post, you can make an informed choice that aligns with your security priorities and budget limitations. Whether you opt for external shield kits, key-operated security, or a combination of solutions, Lockwell Van Security is here to assist you in making the best decision for your needs.


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