Electronic locks offer convenience, but offer no more security than a mechanical lock. Most have a mechanical key override. They are very useful if there are children in the home that can use a code to unlock the door – there would be no key to potentially lose. Most allow more than one code and are relatively easy to change
Locks should be rekeyed or changed if you cannot account for all copies of the key, if you do not know how many copies exist, or any time there is a change in ownership – including new homes.
The latch or bolt is the most likely part to fail. This is often caused by binding pressure from an improper installation. The bolts and latches should extend and withdraw smoothly and completely. If you need to push, pull, or lift the door to operate an entry lock or deadbolt, there will be binding pressure against the latch or bolt.
An inexpensive lock properly installed offers more protection than an expensive lock that is improperly installed. Most residential locks are graded 1 to 3. Grade 3 locks are suitable for most residential applications. Grade 2 locks usually offer better protection against manipulation of the lock parts inside the door, will sustain heavier usage, and offer longer-lasting finishes. Grade 1 locks
Handlesets look great, but offer no added security. In fact, most have only one locking point – the deadbolt. A standard entry lock and a deadbolt give you two locking points, which will offer much greater protection against forced entry than a single locking point.
As long as the locks have the same keyway (use the same key blank), they can usually be keyed the same. Most brands available at hardware stores offer one of only two very common keyways. In order to key all locks in a home the same, some locks may need to be replaced so that they can all use the
Modern locks are mounted in a 1 1/2 or 2 1/8 inch diameter hole centered 2 3/8 or 2 3/4 inches from the edge of the door. Older homes may have mortise locks, which are a box-like unit installed in the edge of the door. Updating these locks may involve a remodeling kit or cover plates on each side of
The most common method of unauthorized entry is simply kicking or forcing the door open. Generally, it is the door or door frame that fails, not the lock itself. Many locks come supplied with screws that are only 3/4 of an inch long for mounting the strike plate. We recommend replacing these with wood screws as long as 3 inches
Most locks will give you many years of dependable service. Proper installation and alignment is important. With few exceptions, locks are installed so that the pins are on top, meaning the key is inserted with the cut side up. This reduces the chance of problems caused by dust, dirt, and debris getting into the lock and interfering with the operation
Remember – even the highest quality lock may be easily bypassed if not installed correctly. Most high-security locks offer more in the way of key control than break-in protection. They often use patented keyways, usually requiring special identification and authorization in order to obtain duplicate keys. Generally, they are more useful in commercial applications than residential.