All About Locks – for your new place
Many people don’t put a lot of thought into locks. That is, until they deal with break-in. Locks are like safes, in the sense that you know you need a quality one, but you can never rewind time when you end up in a situation where you actually realize how important they are. If you are moving into a new place, buying new locks should be at the top of your lists of things to do.
Research Your Options
If you are like many others, you are probably only familiar with a few types of locks, primarily the key type that you can just switch out from a door knob. Well, these standard locks may be common and inexpensive, but they are doing nothing for your home security, and they certainly will not give you any breaks in your homeowners insurance.
You may also be interested to learn that locks have different grades. These grades relate to construction and durability. Grade 1 locks are more suitable for security while grade 2 are appropriate for closets and inside doors. The grades are determined by undergoing rigorous testing by the Builders Hardware Manufacturers Association.
Grade 1 locks are typically easy to spot because of their much larger cylindrical locks. It should be noted that there are grade 3 locks available, but if you are going to put one of these on your home, you might as well not bother with a lock at all.
Start with the Doorjamb
If you are going to go through the trouble of putting new locks on your doors, you might want to think about investing in a doorjamb reinforcement kit as well. These can be retrofit right into the current doorjamb, and they will reinforce key strike points, including the door edge, strike and hinges. They are generally made of galvanized steel and are incredibly useful in increasing the door system’s strength.
Types of Locks
- Deadbolt Locks – Nearly everyone is familiar with a deadbolt lock. They extend deep in the door frame and offer a little extra protection. The only problem is that an intruder can still pry the door away from its strike plate to disengage the throw. The best way to ensure your deadbolt is pry-proof is to choose a vertical one, because it interlocks with case metal springs to engage.
- Mortise Locks – These locks come with a doorknob, handle or lever, strike plate and the lock body. When the door is locked, it is kept aligned by the bolt that fits into the hole on the strike plate. Mortise locks have been trusted for a long time, and some insurance companies will even give you a discount for them based on reputation, providing the one you choose is a class 1.
- Cylindrical Locks – This simple design is installed in two holes in the door that intersect. The cylinder is in the outside level or knob away from the door’s surface.
- Rim Locks – The door’s inside surface is where these locks get mounted. They have a cylinder that is installed in a hole in the outside surface, and use a deadbolt or spring latch operation.
- Electromagnetic Locks – There are many different types of keyless entry systems, all offering their own unique features and benefits. Some are so advanced that you simply use a fingerprint. Audio and visual indicators are pretty standard as well as an anti-theft rolling code feature, which ensures that the same code does not get used twice. A few types include electric latch releases, alarmed or delayed exit devices, card readers, touch keys and auxiliary alarm locks. Basically, a solenoid unlocks the lever rather than a key, but some provide a key for an override tool.