Friday, April 10, 2009

Choosing a Door Lock

There’s a lot to choose from when selecting a door lock. From the outset, it might seem to be a simple task, but there are simply so many options, things become very complicated very quickly. In order to select the correct door lock, you should be very aware of what your needs are, ask questions, and make sure that your standards are met.

One of the most important things to consider is how “safe” you want the lock to be. There are so-called “privacy” locks which are designed for interior doors, and then there are actual dead-bold type, chain, and other serious exterior door locks. Privacy locks are typically intended for interior use on bedrooms or bathrooms, where the primary focus is not on keeping out burglars or murderers, but rather merely making sure that nobody walks in while you’re changing your clothes or going to the bathroom. These locks are made from soft metals with an emphasis on cosmetics, and are most often made with the ability to “jimmy” them from the outside with relatively little effort, either using the enclosed key or just with a hairpin or butter knife.

Typically exterior locks are of the deadbolt variety, and actually sink a metal plug far into the door frame rather than just stopping the handle from turning. These are generally made from brass or another type of alloy. The important thing to remember with these kinds of locks is that up to a point, you really do get what you pay for, but the curve is exponential. In other words, there is a HUGE difference between a $20 lock and a $100 lock, but for all practical purposes there is not a great difference between a $100 lock and a $200 lock. Generally a mid-priced lock is sufficient for most peoples needs unless you live in an area that is incredibly unsafe, or have jewelry, antique paintings, or other items of a valuable nature stored in your home.

If you have the money, some of the pricier exterior door locks are actually combination activated, which is great, because it means that you don’t ever have to worry about locking yourself out or forgetting your key. Of course, if you don’t remember numbers and combinations well, this type of lock might not be for you.

As I said, just make sure that whatever lock you choose meets your needs, and that you don’t sacrifice quality for convenience or price. I hope to have some reviews of specific door locks up soon. Thanks for reading my door lock blog!