Three Things to Know – Purchasing a Lockset for Your Home 

40% of Americans don’t know what factors to look for when buying a lockset or a deadbolt, yet 75% of Americans have bought one.  

Purchasing a lockset for your door is a decision based on security, so it needs to be suited to your needs. Here’s what you need to know to make the best choice for your home: 

1. Is This Lock Durable? 

No one wants to buy a lockset or deadbolt that won’t hold up to daily use. When looking for a lockset, you need to consider two things for durability – how often do you or your family go in and out, and what is the weather like where you live? For example, locks in colder climates need a finish that can withstand the low temperatures as they can freeze or be covered by snow. Similarly, if you live in an area near the ocean, your locks are subject to rusting and faster deterioration from salt and wind. Plenty of hardware stores sell cheap locks, but not all of them are tested for the daily wear and tear or weather change. BHMA Certified locksets and deadbolts have all been tested for their durability.  

2. Is This Lock the Right Size for My Door? 

Sure, buying a lockset seems simple and straightforward – but it’s not. It is essential to match your lock set to your door. Not only for security purposes, but the practical use of your door will be affected if it doesn’t fit properly. Everything from the thickness of the door to the hardware on both sides needs to be exact. Before shopping around, measure the inside and outside of your door completely; this includes the thickness and width of the door, the backset or the distance between the edge of the door and the center where the latch and deadbolt fit, as well as the width of the strike plate. This step will save you time and headaches during the installation process.  

3. Does This Lock Have Proper Security for My Family and I? 

This is one of the most important questions you need to ask yourself before buying a lockset. It’s important to know what type of deadbolt you need prior to shopping. For example, the single-cylinder deadbolt is the most common deadbolt used for households. It uses a thumb turn on the inside of the door and a key on the exterior side. Meanwhile, the double-cylinder deadbolt is another common one, however, this type needs a key for both sides of the door. Consider where your door is and if there is a window. If a window could be broken to access and turn the lock, you might want to consider a double-cylinder where a key can be removed for added security.  

Finally, you may want to consider going the electronic or smart lock route. The electronic deadbolt is one of the newer choices on the market for homeowners since it uses the ability to forego a key and simply requires remembering a code. For those who aren’t sure which one to choose, consider what lifestyle you lead.  For example, an electronic deadbolt, or smart lock, is great for those who are always on the go or have a large family. With a smart lock, users can correlate a code with a specific user, meaning any time a certain code is being used, you know which member of your family is entering your house and when. Additionally, smart locks utilize back up batteries so they can be used when the power is out and often have backlit codes so you can see no matter the time of day. 

Keys on the other hand are beneficial for those who may not remember a code or simply like the reliability and familiarity that come with them. For those who have had a traditional key for years, it’s a habit to lock your door with it and may lend itself to ensure you always lock your door. 

If you are still unsure, look for the BHMA Certified label when you’re shopping. All BHMA locksets and deadbolts are tested for security, durability, and finish.   

December 1, 2023

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