How to Find Right Locks for You
Are you shopping for effective locks for your business or home? You’ll quickly find out that there’s a nearly endless selection of locks to choose from. To best evaluate your choices, ask yourself the following questions:
- What level of security do you need?
- Where will you install the lock?
- What are the surroundings like where you will install the lock?
- Who will use the lock?
Let’s look at some of the most popular locks and their security features.
Deadbolts are the safest and most secure locks you can get for your home, as any expert locksmith will tell you. They’re “dead” because there aren’t any springs to operate the bolt; a deadbolt is operated manually - that is, with a thumbturn or key.
Deadbolts are installed on external doors in four kinds: single-cylinder, double-cylinder, lockable thumbturn, and jimmy-proof.
A single-cylinder deadbolt is the basic deadbolt lock we usually think of, with the key cylinder on the outside. A thumbturn on the inside shuts and opens it. They’re commonly used on solid doors, of metal or wood. The one drawback to this kind of deadbolt is that if there’s any potential access to the inside (through a nearby window, or through the peephole, which a professional criminal knows how to do), the door can be opened using the thumbturn.
The remedy for this problem can be a double-cylinder deadbolt, which has a key cylinder both outside and inside the door. That means, if your door’s locked, the double-cylinder needs a key to open it from the inside. This deadbolt is good if your door has a window anywhere in it, or if you have a window close to the door, because it keeps an intruder from breaking the glass and reaching in to unlock the door. Its downside is that it isn’t safe in case of fire. If you use this type of deadbolt at your place, therefore, be sure there’s always a key available whenever you’re home. That way, in an emergency you’ll all be able to leave quickly.
The lockable thumbturn deadbolt combines, in essence, a single-cylinder and a double-cylinder deadbolt, providing optimum security and flexibility. It has a thumbturn inside, which functions like a regular single-cylinder deadbolt, but it can be locked with a key, so it can’t unlock or lock the door - which means that the thumbturn can be left in an unlocked position while you’re home, but it will operate like an ordinary single-cylinder deadbolt. When people leave, especially for an extended period, the thumbturn can be easily locked, so even if a person gains access to the door from the inside, the deadbolt itself can’t be unlocked.
A jimmy-proof deadbolt is a surface-mount lock, often found on double doors and at apartment complexes. Folks who prefer this deadbolt like it because minimal door modifications are required. The way this lock works is that the deadbolt interlocks with the jamb bracket, which prevents it from being pulled apart or forced from the outside by a robber. A surface-mount lock means that the lock screws into the door’s inside, instead of with a drill pattern, like a standard deadbolt does.
Knob locks are generally used as the sole source of security at home for exterior doors, although they’re often also installed along with deadbolts. A knob lock by itself isn’t totally secure, because the lock cylinder is in the knob itself, instead of in the door. The disadvantage is that a knob lock can be broken off of your door by an expert thief with a hammer. It can also be forced open with pliers, or by using a wrench behind the knob, bypassing the lock cylinder. If you use deadbolts along with your knob locks, you’ll be exceptionally secure.
Rim cylinder locks are another way to increase your security. You frequently see these locks on commercial doors, any sort of entry glass door, and sometimes at apartment buildings. They’re usually used in rim latch locks, mounted on the inside of a door. Rim cylinder locks have a long metal piece extending out from the back of the lock, running through the door into a locking mechanism on the opposite side.
Lever handle locks are often used on interior doors in commercial buildings. When you need accessibility for the disabled, a lever lock is your best bet. They’re easier to open than knob locks, because the push-down handle doesn’t have to be grasped and turned, the way a knob does.
A rim latch lock has a rim cylinder on one side, with a surface-mount latch lock on the other. Popular for apartments, a rim latch locks automatically when the door shuts behind you.
Cam locks are for mailboxes, cupboards, and file cabinets. They are available in various lengths, with numerous tailpieces or “cams,” which interface with another lock mechanism.
Mortise-cylinder locks are threaded, screwing into mortise hardware that’s mounted inside a door. These locks are held in place by a set screw; the cam activates the lock mechanism. Mortise cylinders are available in several lengths, with many options for the cams, depending upon the hardware used.
A wall-mounted lock is mounted in the wall, as its name says. One example is a firefighter's box-style lock, which is common at larger businesses, giving emergency access to the building’s keys. A wall-mounted lock can be a small safe, for guarding important items. They’re typically installed at the time of construction, but it’s also possible to install one at your existing location. A wall-mounted lock has an alarm sensor, allowing for networking into a building’s security system, which means that any unauthorized access will be immediately detected.
Beyond all these locks, there are so many more, with all sorts of uses. To find the lock that’s suitable for your purposes, bring all your questions to a professional locksmith. If you’re anywhere in Hialeah, Florida, it’s a good idea to hire a mobile staff professional locksmith at Hialeah Locksmith.