A resource for consumers, locksmiths, and security professionals.
Posted On by Ralph Goodman
The best places to buy door locks might not be as obvious as you think. To some, it may not even be obvious that there was a bad place to buy door locks. There are several places that you do want to avoid, beyond knowing the best places to buy door locks, but people are right to think that this is not always a necessary distinction. First, find out what you are looking to buy, then take a look at the places that you want to avoid while you are shopping. Finally, we will discuss the best places to buy door locks.
Depending on what you are looking to buy, you might have a range of products that you can choose from. Bathroom locks, latches, and chain locks are more privacy products than security devices. These are to be used in the instances where you don’t care about security. For that reason, if you are looking to buy a product like that, you can pretty much choose whichever looks most pleasing to you (this could be based on the price tag or the visual aesthetic of the lock).
In this case, you are not looking for the best places to buy door locks, you are just looking for the lock that seems best to you. Because quality does not matter beyond not wanting the lock to fall apart, you just have to be sure that the locks are not excessively light or flimsy.
However, if you have any desire to attain any meaningful level of security, you want to get a high-security deadbolt. There is a lot to consider about the role deadbolts play in your home security, so it would follow that there is a lot more to make sure you are getting from your deadbolt lock. There are all types of things to consider about your particular security needs. If you are looking to stay safe while living alone, you will only have to think about what works for you. But in the case of roommates, you might be restricted to locks that work better for multiple users.
A lot of people are interested in finding the best locks at Home Depot, or a similar hardware store chain. These chains are not the best places to buy door locks. This is because these places are associated with home improvement in people’s minds. They are also convenient because chances are there is one relatively close to you. It is not an out of the way trip, you know where to go because you trust the brand, and you are relatively familiar with the store layout. There is something comforting and easy about turning to these places when you know you need a lock. The issue is that their selection has more to do with moving units than it does with providing a range of security possibilities.
You may be overwhelmed by the apparent plethora of options, but these selections are actually very limited. In terms of security, very few of the lock products being sold at establishments such as OSH, Lowes, ACE Hardware, etc., are going to have measures to prevent lock bumping. The cheap price points will also be sacrificing the quality and amount of metal the lock uses, which is guaranteed to affect the amount of force a deadbolt can withstand. Very rarely will these stores stock products that offer higher, let alone the highest, level of security. The range is often restricted to low and moderate security.
There are certainly good places that you can buy quality locks online, but you need to be wary of who you are buying from and where you are finding your deals. Firstly, if you are giving your address to the seller (and chances are, you are), then you need to know who they are. You do not want to buy the locks you are going to use on your doors from just anyone. The purpose of a lock is that it is one of the ways you can keep your home safe from criminals. If you purchase your locks from just anyone, then they have your address, and they can certainly have your house key.
Beyond the risks of having the same person who sold you your locks rob you, there is the issue of getting door locks that are not in proper working order. Without a good reputation, an online distributor cannot be considered one of the best places to buy door locks. If you are looking to make a purchase online, you should investigate the section below on “Reputable Online Distributors”. That will detail when such a method is ideal, and how to be sure your online lock source is the best place to buy door locks. You can also be easily overwhelmed by a selection of truly abysmal lock choices.
There are many big box stores that dabble in locks. Nothing about these places could have them considered among the best places to buy door locks. In fact, these are often the absolute worst place to purchase a door lock from. Often, these are places that you will get the Chinese knock-off lock products and find a litany of subpar security brands. Recently I have even seen that Target has begun to stock door locks that are made by Master Lock. To me, this was a clear sign that in big-box stores the main concern is how cheap they can sell a lock for.
It is true that all locks can be picked, but not every lock is as easy to pick. Some locks are so simple to pick that they can only be said to provide the illusion of security. It seems as though these locks are the only type that most big-box stores will carry. In the best cases you will find a smart lock, but as for lock cylinders, you are only likely to encounter the lower end Kwikset and Schlage products.
In terms of the best places to buy door locks, there is no better resource than your local locksmith. The reason that a locksmith is the perfect person to buy door locks from is that they have access to any type of lock you could need. But perhaps more important than that, they can help you discover what lock you need. Going to a locksmith takes out all of the guesswork of, “will the lock I buy work for my door?” It also assures that you will have something that fits your price constraints and gives the security you need. Any of the most trusted lock brands are available from a quality locksmith.
So if you need a little help finding out what you need, a local locksmith has to be top on the list of best places to buy door locks. It is also a way to know what it takes to complete the task of getting new locks. The cost of changing locks must be considered. And when you buy your door locks from the best possible locksmith, you can be sure that they will be able to install the products properly. There is no need to worry about anything when you choose a quality locksmith. You get the best price, service, insight, installation, and anything else you could want.
If you feel comfortable assessing your security yourself, one of the best places to buy door locks can be through an online distributor. These will not be the online stores of the manufacturers themselves, who will often charge the list price for an item. This option gets you a cheaper option for quality door locks than going through the lock company itself, but you will not have the most refined personal insight and the installation ease of choosing a locksmith. But to make this one of the best places to buy door locks, you will need to make sure that you are not falling into the trap of just anything you find online.
The first thing is that you need to know what locks you are looking to investigate. This means that you need some level of industry knowledge so that you can cut through the noise of all of the low-quality lock offers. On Amazon’s door locks page, for example, you are going to be overwhelmed by products priced to sell. Even if you see something like the “best sellers” on the deadbolts page, just because of their popularity, you can hardly assume any level of quality, let alone security.
For example, though something like the Kwikset Single Cylinder Deadbolt is popular, it pales in comparison to something like the Mul-T-Lock Hecular Deadbolt with the MT5+ core. Though one is extremely more expensive than the other, the point is if you did not know what to search, you would never be aware of the option of having something better. Knowing the market is important to finding the right model or even manufacture you would like to purchase from.
From there you can then look for companies that have partnered with the manufacturer. The name of the seller will be the official company name on the distribution site. So you can search for a company like Medeco (so I am not over plugging Mul-T-Lock) and get the results for Medeco on Amazon. Then you can see that the product page is sold directly by Medeco, like on this page. But things do get a little muddy when you see another product sold by Medeco Security Locks and third product sold by Medeco ASSA ABLOY.
You also have options like Security Snobs, that give users access to all of the best lock brands. You will need to know what you need/want, but you can get it online without having to sacrifice security. If you have any reservations about your choice, either do more research into the products you are considering or else perhaps online is not one of the best places to buy door locks for you.
This will likely be the most expensive option out of all of the best places to buy door locks, but it will give you certain quality assurances. If there is anything wrong with the lock itself, you will have an order number and experience dealing with the manufacture so you can take the issue up with them. If something like this does happen, you will have to take care of the issue yourself, as there was not a locksmith or online third party that made the purchase. The responsibility of dealing with any issues at all will come down to you.
If you are going to chose to go with a smart lock over more traditional door locks, you may end up needing to purchase the lock through the company itself. This is true with all products that are relatively cutting edge. No one else carries them, so the company is not just one of the best places to buy door locks, it may be the only place to buy the lock. I would not recommend getting new products second hand because I would not recommend using any security that is second hand. The main downside is that you are not be guided through this process, just as if you were buying online, so there is a much greater chance that you may end up using the wrong kind of lock.
Now you know the best places to buy door locks and some of the places to avoid. Of course, you only need to avoid certain the retailers that do not provide the best places to buy door locks as long as you are not concerned with the security of the lock you are buying. This is certainly possible, as some locks are meant for privacy and not keeping anyone or anything safe from criminals. Locksmiths provide the most complete experience for buying door locks, but the other best places to buy door locks are right for some customers. And remember to stay away from hardware stores, disreputable online distributors, and big box stores. Enjoy buying your new door locks!