Deadbolts – Do You Need One and How to Choose the Right One
Thousands of homes are burgled every year, with many criminals using forced entry to gain access. Your locks are one of the first barriers to entry, but are they good enough to keep criminals out?
Deadbolts have become a popular way for homeowners to improve security. In this blog, we will look at whether a deadbolt could benefit your home and how to choose the right lock.
How Deadbolts Work
A deadbolt is a type of lock that can’t be moved unless you have a key. A metal bar dives into the door frame in order to keep the door secure and any unwanted visitors out. The only way to manoeuvre the bolt is to use a key.
While a standard spring bolt lock can be moved once the doorknob is unlocked using a key, a deadbolt requires its own key.
Do You Need a Deadbolt?
A deadbolt and spring bolt lock might seem similar, but there is one main difference in terms of security. Spring bolt locks can be pried open because the spring can be released without a key. In fact, even something as simple as a credit card can be used to open these bolts – they’re also quite susceptible to brute force.
A deadbolt doesn’t have an extension that’s easy to pry open from the outside of a door – they’re also not angled, which also helps.
In reality, both deadbolts and spring bolts can be picked, but deadbolts are a lot more resilient.
If you want an extra layer of security or want better protection against forced entry, deadbolts are the way to go.
Choosing the Right Deadbolt
A standard deadbolt works with a single cylinder and doesn’t have a doorknob on the outside, so you need a key to work the bolt. On the inside, the single cylinder generally has a thumb turn, which can be operated without a key.
Single cylinder deadbolts do offer extra security, but there are two other options that tend to be more secure.
- Double cylinder deadbolt locks. This type of deadbolt has a key cylinder on either side of the door. There’s no knob on the exterior or the interior, which means criminals aren’t able to use the thumb turn to gain access. In the event of a fire or any other emergency though, you should know exactly where your keys are as you will need them to get out of the house.
- Vertical deadbolt locks. The bar of this deadbolt ends with a set of rings, which mesh with another set of rings on the door frame. A vertical shaft is what slips through these rings to keep the door secured. It’s incredibly difficult to break open a vertical deadbolt.
Understanding the Lock Grading System
The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) has created a door lock grading system that many of today’s manufacturers use. Locks can receive one of three grades: 1, 2, or 3, with Grade 1 locks offering the highest level of security. If you’re unsure about how much security your locks currently offer, you can get a locksmith to assist you with a professional evaluation. In fact, you may even want to use this as an opportunity to perform a full security audit – especially if you’ve recently moved into a new home. A professional locksmith can also recommend deadbolt lock brands for your home.
Once you’ve selected the deadbolts and decided where you want to install them, we can assist you. Many people attempt to install deadbolts on their own, but often end up having to call a professional installer anyway – it’s much better to do it right the first time around. Your security is the last thing you should leave to chance.