What is van door peeling and how do you protect against it?

Van Door Peeling, or “Peel and Steal” is a big issue in the UK right now. It’s a very destructive way to break into a van without triggering the factory alarm (if there even is one).

Peeling is the simple act of folding the top of a door open with brute force to see if there are any valuable contents.

It has come to my attention via some of my Twitter feeds, Check out Vans Under Attack twitter page which is a big eye opener!

Here’s a link to a Daily Mail post which has some horrid images and a video showing how the peeling is being done… **

Van Door Peeling

Ford Transit Door Peeled

I’m not aware of it being a problem in New Zealand as yet, partly because we don’t have many panel vans as most of our vans have glass windows! Arguably this makes them even easier to look and break into, I’ve never understood why so many are sold here. Most dealerships don’t seem overly concerned about content security. On the bright side, glass is cheaper to fix!

It’s easy to look on the NZ police website to find out which vehicles are stolen but I’m sure that content theft is a far bigger issue, sadly there is no public data that I know of.

Securing the Obsessive Van from Door Peeling

With the Van having factory deadlocks and a partition from the main cab the only way into the back without the remote is by brute force.

The ultimate goal was to minimise the potential for damage being done in an attempted break-in. It’s also an attempt to stay ahead of the game and learn new tricks. In my opinion, there’s no better way to learn then to keep an eye on what others in the industry are up to, along with experimenting on your own vehicle and living with the results.

Van internal protection

PIR Sensor with internal sirens

It’s all very well having a PIR Sensor or a Microwave Sensor to detect and scare off an intruder, but that’s not really much comfort if your door has been folded in half! It’s much better if the scumbags get warned away before any damage is actually done, or better still catch them in the act.

Keeping things Clean

First off I did not want to drill any holes if possible. I wanted to mount a switch and get a cable into the vehicle without it looking crude. The obvious location was by the rubber door stopper which is held in place with two M6 bolts.

Existing door stopper and M6 fixing bolts

I did some homework and found that I could source some hollow M6 bolts which I could run a cable through.

Waterproof Micro Switch with wires run through hollow M6 Bolt

Next came the microswitch which I made a bracket up for. The hole in the bracket is the mount point which is secured by the other existing M6 bolt.

Microswitch mounted on a custom-made stainless steel bracket

Having the bracket on the top bolt allows for minor adjustment as it can be tilted when fitting. The cable then runs down inside the panel to the factory door switch.

Van door fold protection

Installed Micro Switch with no new holes drilled

Here’s a video of it in action:

More details on the Obsessive Van security system can be found here…


Foot Note: ** I accept that the Daily Mail is gutter journalism of which 50% of linked content is Cleavage Click bait rather than actual news,  but it’s the best I could find today!

About Julian

Owner and Installer at Obsessive Vehicle Security Limited. More details here... Please keep Comments relevant to the post and use the Contact form for enquiry's
This entry was posted in Alarm Accessories, Car Security News, Obsessive Installs, Obsessive Van, Sensors and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to What is van door peeling and how do you protect against it?

  1. Stefan krautschun says:

    I have just purchased a 2017 Ford transit custom van. Can you give me a quote for an alarm system similar to your video to avoid peeling. As I have no glass sides on both side doors. I’m a builder with tools inside so it’s a priority to protect them.
    Also can you do onsite installs at my building site?

  2. Julian says:

    Hi Stefan,

    This post covers the Transit:

    I’ve sent you an email too.


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