A resource for consumers, locksmiths, and security professionals
A resource for consumers, locksmiths, and security professionals
Electronic door locks for homes have continued to grow in popularity over the last couple of years. At the time of their inception, many homeowners shied away from these locks due to their novelty and their price point. Over time, the prices of many of these electronic door locks for home have leveled out. This essentially means that more homeowners will be able to afford electronic door locks for homes as an option.
There is a common misconception that all electronic locks are smart locks, but this is not true. Although, almost all smart locks are electronic locks. I discussed the true definition of smart locks at length in a previous article, so I will not take up too much of your time by diving into it, but I will give a brief recap. In order for a lock to be considered a smart lock, it has to have the ability to connect and communicate with other devices. This does not necessarily mean other smart devices, but devices like smartphones that allow you to further control the lock.
Brushing up on some of the topics discussed in that article will elevate your understanding of the best electronic door locks for home. Without further ado, I am going to break down the criteria with which I assessed the best electronic door locks for home use.
I believe that electronic door locks for home use have to satisfy some criteria that helps set them apart from other door locks. Taking the time to outline this criteria makes it much easier for homeowners to see the benefits of a particular electronic door lock for their home. In order for homeowners to work their way through the article without getting lost, you have to give them the appropriate tool. This is why I want to take the time to outline my selection criteria and explain the things that each of these locks can bring to the table as electronic door locks for home use.
I believe that security should be the primary factor that is considered when you are looking for electronic door locks for home. People often get swept up in many of the additional features that these locks have to provide (which is understandable), but you cannot do this at the expense of security.
Sacrificing your security just so that you are able to operate a lock with your smartphone could potentially leave your home vulnerable, and your family exposed. After all, keeping a specific location secure is the primary mandate of any lock installed on a door. It matters very little if your lock can communicate with multiple devices if it is not able to guard against unauthorized access. This is why security is the foremost perspective through which I will be viewing electronic door locks for home use.
Whenever you are discussing the best electronic door locks for home, you should always take stock of how easy the lock is to use. In this instance, ease of use is somewhat synonymous with accessibility. Essentially, how easy is it for homeowners to operate the electronic lock?
People interact with their door locks everyday, and so do their guests and visitors. If a lock is not easy to use, it spells trouble for homeowners and it leaves the cornerstone of your security measures uncertain. It is for these reasons that the ease of use of an electronic door lock for home should always be considered.
The installation process also has to be factored in when dealing with electronic door locks for home. This is especially important if a homeowner decides to install multiple locks. It is often the case that the ease of installation for a particular lock is a reflection of the ease of use of the lock itself. Locks that are extremely hard to install usually prove to be hard to use as well.
The installation process can be carried out by the homeowner themselves, or they could request the service of a locksmith. The overall cost of the installation is also affected by the installation process that a homeowner chooses. The cost of the lock is also somewhat influential in determining whether or not the lock is considered the best electronic door lock for your home.
Device integration is the final criteria considered and it ranks below all the issues discussed above. The reason for this is the simple fact that not all electronic locks are smart locks, but most, if not all, smart locks are electronic locks. Integration with other devices is an essential feature that homeowners look for. However, since integration does not apply to every electronic door lock, it meant much less in the grand scheme of things that were taken into consideration. This should not be viewed as a knock on device integration. It is still a very useful feature to many, but in the context of this article it is not the most important factor.
Toledo locks might not be a name that homeowners will be familiar with when they are looking for electronic door locks for home use. I will say that Toledo locks are not necessarily the kind of heavy hitters that many of you have become used to reading about. However, the electronic Jaen Lever lock still has a lot to offer to homeowners who are looking for an electronic door lock that gives them several different access options without breaking their budgets. Here’s the breakdown of the Jaen Lever lock from Toledo locks.
Security – As far as security goes, you should not expect the resilience or strength of a Medeco brand lock, but you should not fear that it might be as weak as a master lock or any other such deplorable locks that you may have heard of. The main security feature that sets this lock is the anti-bump measures that it enforces. Lock bumping is a danger that most residential locks face on a consistent basis. A lock that manages to guard against this places an additional layer of security around your home.
Ease Of Use – Many of the users who have installed the Toledo Electronic Jaen lever lock have nothing but praise for the way the lock operates and the ease with which it carries out its basic functions. The lock gives homeowners 3 control options which come in handy when you are looking for the best electronic door locks for home. Many users stated that the additional options made the lock much more accessible and user-friendly. The access options that are available for use include a traditional key, an electronic keypad and an infrared remote that allows you to operate the lock remotely.
Ease Of Installation – The Toledo electronic Jaen lever lock is not a relatively complex lock to install, but you have to install it in a rather unorthodox way if you wish to maximize your use of the deadbolt that comes with the lock, or a deadbolt of your own. Many users reported that installing the mechanism upside down allowed them to maximize their use of the deadbolt and it made the lock function better.
Integration With Other Devices – This electronic lock is one of the locks that does not double as a smart lock. It is a solely an electronic lock that utilizes a keypad, a mechanical key and an infrared remote that allows it to be opened from short distances away. The lock is mostly controlled through the keypad, and it does not have any additional features that allow it to communicate with other smart home devices.
Any lock that gives homeowners and property managers the tools they need to restrict and authorize access to their homes in a seamless manner should be considered a good option, as far as electronic door locks for home use goes. This is what the Lockstate RemoteLock 5i accomplishes. It is not as flashy or as popular as some of its other electronic door lock counterparts but it is still able to have a great impact as an electronic door lock that homeowners can take advantage of. The Lockstate RemoteLock 5i is a Wifi controlled smart lock that is available as either a deadbolt or a lever lock.
Security – The security benefits of the Lockstate RemoteLock 5i are very different than that of other electronic locks for home use. The primary security focus of the lock seems to be in making the keypad more secure and user-friendly. This is not to say that the physical security measures that it employs are ineffective.
The 5i lock boasts the ability to retain up to 1000 user codes, which extend the ways in which homeowners can implement key control. It also allows users to set up privacy mode, which temporarily disables all the aforementioned access codes, except the master one that can be used to access the lock. The lock also makes use of a lockout functionality that is engaged if a user or intruder enters the wrong code 5 times in a row.
Ease Of Use – The Wifi connection that this lock uses makes it easy to operate and control. Also, this lock comes in handy during power outages, and it helps homeowners regulate their power usage through its unique ‘heartbeat’ feature. Essentially, the heartbeat method allows the lock to ping for a user signal every half hour or so. If no signal is detected, then the lock is put back into sleep mode which helps it preserve power. In terms of usage, this means that the lock will last much longer and will give homeowners less hassle when it comes to maintenance.
Ease Of Installation – The installation process for this lock is somewhat traditional, and mirrors the installation methods that would be used to install any other deadbolt lock. The only difference in this installation process is that the lock will have to be connected to the Wifi network, and the door will have to be configured to work with the access codes of the homeowners choosing. Each of these processes is easily carried out by following the instructions that Lockstate provides.
Integration With Other Devices – The 5i lock does not have as many integration features as some of the other electronic door locks for home use, but the ability for it to connect to a Wifi network helps extend the way in which it can be used and accessed. This Wifi connection allows the lock to be monitored remotely and controlled through mobile applications, some of which might be 3rd party applications.
Schlage might sound familiar to some of our long time readers because some of their products have been discussed on the blog before. Of course, there is also the possibility that you heard about some Schlage products outside of our blog. Schlage has built a reputation for providing top quality security products without charging extremely high prices. The Schlage Sense Smart lock is no exception to this rule, and this is part of the reason why it made its way onto the list. Here are the ways in which it should be considered one of the best electronic door locks for home use.
Security – The Schlage Sense Smart Deadbolt lock is a rather secure lock in comparison to many of the other electronic door locks that exist on the market. The primary reason is that the manufacturer placed core emphasis on security, rather than some of its additional features. The deadbolt is a certified commercial Grade 1 deadbolt that is able to withstand excessive amounts of force. Furthermore, this electronic smart lock boasts of built in alarm technology that allows it to sense and work to prevent impending attacks.
Ease Of Use – This electronic lock is fairly easy to use and many of its features lend themselves to an enhanced user experience, which makes it one of the best electronic door locks for home. The lock can be controlled via the use of a traditional key, or it can be controlled through the lock’s keypad. To make things even more exciting for homeowners, this lock also responds to voice commands that can be used to operate the lock.
This simple feature elevates the ease of use and the ease of access for the lock. Furthermore, the lock is able to store up to 30 user access codes, which makes the process of giving guests access to your home a much easier task. This is something that many homeowners have to contend with on some level and why so many of them are drawn to using electronic door locks for home.
Ease Of Installation – Installing a lock can either be a very easy process or a somewhat complicated one. This will depend on the method that you used to install the lock. Regardless of the choice you make, it is important to make sure that you are not using the wrong lock for the wrong purpose. Essentially homeowners have the option to carry out the installation themselves or contact a locksmith for the job.
There are some electronic door locks that simply allow you to remove your old lock and fit your new one on top of it. The Schlage Sense smart lock doesn’t work that way because you will have to replace the entire bolt, so you are pretty much installing a new lock from scratch. Luckily enough for homeowners, the installation instructions are very straightforward and comprehensive.
Integration With Other Devices – The Schlage sense deadbolt is able to accomplish integration extremely well. The lock is designed to work with Bluetooth smart technology, while also being accommodating Apple HomeKit technology which allows it to be controlled by Apple devices.
Many people should be somewhat familiar with the Kwikset Kevo bluetooth electronic deadbolt. For those of you that already know it, I hope you do not have a sour taste in your mouth from an experience with the 1st generation kevo. I do not blame you if this is where you stand in regards to Kwikset and the Kevo smart lock, but I do encourage you to give the second generation of this lock your consideration.
Security – Security was one of the top flaws of the older Kevo model and there were many people who tried their hand at cracking the lock, and did so successfully. The second model boasts of increased methods of security that are meant to keep homeowners and their property safe. This lock features advanced military grade PKI encryption that should quell many of the fears surrounding the potential cyber vulnerabilities of the lock. The lock also equips advanced smart key technology, which will aid in preventing lock bumping or lock picking attacks that can be used to compromise the lock.
Ease Of Use – Although the Kwikset Kevo is very easy to install, as you will see below, there seem to be mixed reviews and notions about whether or not the lock is actually easy to use. Most of these reservations stem from the application that is used in conjunction with the door lock. Many smart locks that double as electronic door locks for home, make use of mobile applications to make their daily operation easier. However, some homeowners claim that the mobile application does not work very well when it comes to controlling the lock.
Ease Of Installation – As Kwikset will tell you on their website, the new generation Kevo is “engineered for easy installation”, and I find no reason to doubt this declaration. The only additional tool you will need to install the lock is a screw driver, as it is built to work in place of your existing lock without having to worry about changing any of your door specifications etc. However, there is always the possibility that the specifications of your door might not match those needed to install these electronic door locks for home use.
Integration With Other Devices – The Kevo is great when it comes to integration, but there are a few caveats that you have to take into consideration whenever you are dealing with this integration. The Kevo smart lock is able to integrate with a wide range of home automation devices, which means that you have much more control over the way your lock behaves and the actions that it can carry out. Some of these devices include the the Nest Thermostat and the Ring Video Doorbell among others.
The KABA Oracode 660 Electronic Keyless Lock is a product that is more popular among property managers than it is with your average homeowner. However, I believe that the average homeowner can get a great deal out of the Oracode 660. If they are looking for an electronic door lock for home that gives them more power over their locks through increased oversight, this is the right lock. The lock comes in a basic version and in an upgrade that allows for wireless connectivity to extend the reach of your security features and the actions that your lock can carry out.
Security – One of the main flaws that most locks have to combat is the fact that they are keyed. A keyed lock means that a burglar will always have a point of access through which they can attack and compromise your lock. This does not mean that every single keyed lock is extremely vulnerable, but given enough time most keyed locks can be picked.
The KABA Oracode 660 is a keyless lock, and this makes it more secure because there is one less vulnerability that homeowners will have to contend with. As far as electronic door locks for home use goes, a keyless lock is always a great option. The lock can be ordered as a mortise lockset or a cylindrical lockset, and each of these have a very high commercial grading that have been tested for security and durability.
Ease Of Use – The lock is fairly easy to use on multiple fronts. KABA achieved this by focusing on making it easy for the primary homeowner to operate the lock and then making it easy to use for any guests and auxiliary users. The lock is able to store up to 128 user access codes. It can also accommodate time sensitive codes that allow visitors and users to come and go during allotted time without having to bother homeowners all the time. This is a great lock for homeowners who utilize the services of cleaning companies or babysitters.
Ease Of Installation – KABA is very well known for putting their customers first in a variety of ways. This could be by giving them a lock as secure as the Oracode 660 or by making the lock even easier to install. Everything that is required for the lock installation is made available when you purchase the lock. At that point you will have to decide whether you want to follow the instructions and install it yourself or have it installed by a residential locksmith or a technician from KABA.
Integration With Other Devices – The Oracode 660 is much more of a pure form electronic lock than it is a smart lock. As such, it does not integrate the same way smart locks do. Like I said early on, most smart locks are electronic locks, but not all electronic locks are smart locks. This does not mean that they cannot integrate in some way or form. The Oracode allows for integration through its web based keyless access system, which I alluded to in the introductory paragraph to this lock. The web based system is an additional feature that can be added on to boost these electronic door locks for home use.
These are obviously not the only locks that homeowners have to choose from when they are selecting electronic door locks for home use, but they are some of the best ones out there. Since every home is different, and every user will have different needs, it is important to make sure that you are aware of what you want to get out of your lock before you purchase an electronic door lock. Take the time to assess where the lock will be placed, and the way it will be used and accessed. Doing so will help guide you to choosing the best electronic door lock for your home.