Padlock Buying Guide

Padlocks have been around for thousands of years, originally used my travelling merchants to secure their wares as they went from place to place, they have developed and become more and more advanced over the years and are still one of the best ways to secure property and possessions.

What are Padlocks?

A padlock is a lock made up of three parts: the body, the shackle, and the locking mechanism. The body protects the mechanism from being tampered with, the shackle is the U-shaped part of the padlock that secures around the item you want to secure and into the body; usually secured by a key or code and the locking mechanism is made up of the spring, keyway design and the locking pin.

What are the different types of Padlocks?

The type of padlock you need will depend on what you will be using it for. There are 4 main padlock types, open shackle, closed shackle, long shackle, and straight shackle.

 

Open Shackle

This is the most common type of padlock and the one you probably think of when you think of padlocks; it can be used for moderate to high security purposes. It provides straight forward security and easy access through the use of a key or combination – making it a popular choice for many people securing their home and valuables.

You need to be mindful however, as the longer the shackle the more vulnerable it will be for cutting or snapping.

 

Closed Shackle

Closed shackle padlocks are ones where the amount of exposed shackle is minimal to make the padlock more secure. Used mainly for high security purposes due to the design, there is the issue that there is not an abundance of space available to secure something large, which makes these an uncommon selection for many people domestically.

 

Long Shackle

Similar in design to the open shackle but with a significantly longer shackle, these are best used when you have multiple items to secure. However, like with the Open Shackle padlock, the longer the shackle the more at risk it will be for thieves to tamper with and possibly force open.

 

Straight Shackle

The simplest in design, a straight shackle is designed in a U shape with holes at the end where a bar passes through to secure the loop. This type of padlock is used for securing containers, gates, or bike chains and often for commercial use multiple can be bought to be used with the same key, which is beneficial for those with lots of good to protect or a business.

 

Which Type of Padlock is Most Secure?

This is not a straightforward answer, as the right padlock for you depends on what you need it for. There are some different security features that padlocks can change how secure a padlock lock is. We will go through the different aspect of some padlocks to help you decide which one you might want to buy.

 

Laminated Steel Padlocks

This type of padlock is made up of a stack of steel plates attached together to make the padlock body. The steel shape is extremely strong, so it’s perfect for protecting the locking system against attacks like hammering or drilling. They come in all shapes and sizes, so be sure to bought to secure pretty much anything.

 

Combination Padlock

These padlocks, unsurprisingly, are fitted with a combination lock rather than a keyed lock. These are best used when you have multiple people needing to open the lock as anyone that knows the code can have access. Plus its more secure for people to know the code, rather than having multiple keys.

Combination locks usually have 3- or 4-digit combination and can be reset at any time, this is especially good for a business who has a turnover of staff. You can change the code easily if a member of staff leaves.

 

Discus Padlocks

Discus padlocks are known as the most secure, as the shackle is almost completed shrouded, meaning it’s harder for a thief to break open with bolt cutters. They often have high corrosion resistance and anti-pick features that make them suitable for outdoor use.

However, like we mentioned before, due to the covered shackle they can’t secure large or multiple items, so be sure what you need to secure will fit in the discus padlock before you buy it.

 

Weather-Proof Padlocks

These are perfect for securing items or doors that are exposed to the elements. Weather-proof padlocks are made with thermo-plastic sheathed brass, hardened steel or sometimes aluminium. These do tend to be more expensive than non-weather-proof locks, but you get what you pay for and having to by multiple padlocks that degrade, might be more expensive than paying out for a weather-proof padlock. Depending on where your padlock is going and what type of weather it will be exposed to, you can find various levels of protection with weather-proof padlocks.

 

Brass Padlocks

Padlocks make from brass are the most popular type of padlock by far, this is because they wont shatter when hit with a hammer. This means they provide high security whilst also being affordable. As they are so common, they come in almost every shape and size, meaning you will be able to find one that fits your needs. The brass also makes them resistant to degrading and general wear and tear. They are suitable for securing entrance ways as well as small gadgets.

 

Shackless Padlocks

Confusingly, Shackleless padlocks, do in fact, have shackles but they are just completely covered and protected by a solid body.  They normally have a heavy-duty clasp and are made with high strength and high durability metals, to offer the maximum security.

 

Keyed Alike Padlocks

These are classed as a group of padlocks (two or more) that have the same key. Keyed alike padlocks are easier than having to keep track of multiple keys, especially if you have a business with several members of staff. Everyone having a key that opens all the padlocks, will ultimately save you time and money, however, if you lose track of who has a key your security could be at risk.

 

What Type of Padlock do I Need?

The type of padlock you need will depend on what you are using it for; outside or inside, entryway or possession, high security, or low security, these are all considerations when choosing a padlock. We will go through what you might need to consider when choosing your padlock.

 

What Size of Padlock Do I Need?

Padlocks are usually measured by their body and generally start at 50mm and go to 80mm.

The size you need completely depends on what you are securing. The most important this to look for is the thickness of the shackle, you need to make sure that whatever you are putting the shackle through (eyelet or bike chain etc) will fit. You also need to check that the horizontal and vertical clearance are greater than the thickness of anything you want to thread through.

 

What Are You Securing?

Essentially what is the thing you are securing worth. If you are securing an entry to a shed that’s housing an expensive item, or padlocking a bike worth thousands of pounds, then it’s best investing in a high security lock, such as a closed shackle or shackless. However, if you are just securing some chairs somewhere, like at a beach hut or in a garden, then you’re best sticking with a basic budget padlock such as a brass or open shackle.

 

Is it Internal or External?

It’s standard practice that most padlocks come with some form of water resistance, so can be used outside. However, they are likely to rust or corrode over time due to the hardened steel brass coating.

If you know that your lock is going to come into contact with water often, then you may want to consider getting a specific waterproof one. Water isn’t the only thing you need to contend with, outside factors such as dirt, mud or grit can cause your padlock to become difficult to use. If your padlock is likely to encounter these substances regularly then you may need to consider getting a covered padlock.

 

Do You Need Keyed or Coded Padlock?

This depends on how many people will be locking and unlocking the padlock. Padlocks that are keyed alike have one generic key that works on a group, this would be ideal for commercial spaces where you want easy access to everything.

Combination padlocks, however, are good for situations where you have multiple users and don’t want to worry about keys going missing. The plus is that you can change the combination at any time, if a staff member leaves, for example.

 

 

All these factors will contribute to what padlock that you need to buy. Take time to access what you need your padlock for and do some research before going out and buying the first one you see.

 

FAQs

 

Why are Padlocks Called Padlocks?

The term padlock comes from the late fifteenth century, the origin of the word ‘pad’ is unknown, however the work ‘lock’ comes from the Old English ‘Loc’ which originates from the German term ‘loch’ meaning hole.

 

Are Padlocks Expensive?

This will depend on what type of padlock you buy but a standard padlock should only set you back a few pounds. However, a high security padlock can start from around £25.

 

Which is Better, a Keyed Padlock or Combination Padlock?

This also depends on what you are using if for. If there are going to be many people using the padlock then a coded lock might be the better option, as if a key gets lost that’s bad for security. However, a keyed lock could be considered more secure, as its possible to guess a code.

 

Is it Hard to Break a Padlock?

A basic padlock with an exposed shackle can be broken with bolt cutters relatively easily. However you can invest in some high security options which are manufactured to withstand this kind of attack.

 

 

 

 

Tips To Choosing a Deadbolt Lock

What Is a Deadbolt Lock?

A deadbolt lock is a type of lock that has a bolt which is moved by using a key or another access control system. A deadbolt lock does not use a spring, which makes it different from other lock types.

Traditionally, deadbolt locks are made from steel or brass and are not angled or rounded at the end of the lock and are a good way to advance your home security without having to spend an unreasonable amount of money.

 

How Does a Deadbolt Lock Work?

As deadbolts don’t operate using a spring, just turning the key slides the bolt in and out of the strike plate attached to the door frame. The lack of spring makes deadbolt locks harder to tampered with and prized open with a crowbar, or other tools. The locking mechanism, on a deadbolt is very strong, this offers you an extra layer of security compared to other types of locking mechanisms.

 

What Are the Most Common Types of Deadbolt Lock?

Euro Cylinder and Turn

This is the most common type of deadbolt lock and contains the simplest mechanism. From the exterior side, you open it with a key, extracting the bolt as you turn it. On the interior side they can be opened without the use of a key but with the use of a thumb turn mechanism. We do not recommend that a single deadbolt be installed on a door with breakable glass windows or a large letter plate. This is because a key isn’t required to open it from the inside, so an intruder could simply break the glass, reach in and turn the thumb screw mechanism to gain entry. For more tips on stopping break ins, read our security tips blog.

 

Double Cylinder

Where a double cylinder differs from the Euro Cylinder and Turn, is that it requires a key to be opened on both sides of the door. This makes it more secure than a single deadbolt as it can be placed near breakable glass, as it’s not possible to open it from any side without a key. One downside of a double cylinder deadbolt lock is that they can pose a fire risk. In an emergency you will need to locate the key to open the door, and in a panicked sate you might not be able to do that. You can read more about fire safety on the Keytek Website. 

 

5 Lever BS3621

If you are looking for the most secure option, then the 5 Lever BS3621 might be the deadbolt for you. They are insurance complaint and use a lock on both sides to gain access. They can be used in conjunction with a yale type night latch on a wooden door, for extra security.

 

How To Choose The Best Deadbolt

Try to find a deadbolt with key control

Key control is a security method for making sure your key is only used by the people you choose. This has many different levels and is unique to each company that issues them. But essentially, it should stop your key from being copied without your knowledge. It can be as simple as having a key that has ‘do not copy’ printed on it. These means if anyone wanted to copy it without your permission, they shouldn’t be able to find a key cutter who will copy it. The next level is installing a deadbolt that comes with ‘patented keys’ this means that any person or company that is found to have copied this key will be at risk of receiving financial penalties. This prevents your key being copied without your knowledge, it will not stop someone giving the original key to another person.

 

Look for saw resistance

You can find deadbolts that are resistant to saw attacks. This makes it a lot more difficult for an unskilled burglar to force entry to your home. Burglars like to work quickly to avoid detection and this type of lock will delay them. The hope is they will give up and be unsuccessful at gaining entry.

Think about a deadbolt with a hardened case steel

As well as sawing, burglars will use a number of tactics to gain entry to your home; that include pilers, hammers or other similar tools to remove or damage the lock. Choosing a deadbolt with a handed steel case should hopefully protect you from these kinds of break-in attempts. Casing like these will also stop a burglar from tampering with the lock’s mechanism itself, giving you added security.

 

Get a double cylinder

As we have spoken about, some deadbolts only require a key for the external lock. This can cause security issues if your door has breakable glass in it. A burglar can simply smash the glass, reach in and open the door. A double cylinder deadbolt means that you need a key to work the lock from both side, this would stop a burglar from gaining entry via smashing the window and engaging the lock.

 

Choosing the right deadbolt for you

It’s important to do your research before buying a deadbolt. You need to consider your budget, the type of door you have and the amount of security you require. Installing the wrong lock could be detrimental to your home security, so always seek out advice if you are unsure. We would never recommend that you install new locks yourself, as if installed incorrectly, your home is at risk of a break in. installing the locks yourself can also make your home insurance invalid, as often insurers require locks to be fitted by a professional locksmith. To find out more about keeping your locks insurance complaint, then read our insurance article.

How to Open a Locked uPVC Door Without a Key

Whether your key isn’t turning, you’ve lost the key or you managed to lock yourself out, you may find yourself wondering how to open a locked UPVC door without a key?

If you go to Google and search ‘how to open a locked UPVC door without a key?’ then you are going to see a lot of YouTube videos and articles showing and telling you different ways to open a door without a key. However, all these methods tend to be destructive and will mean that you need to pay for someone to fit a new lock afterwards. So, its quicker, easier, and safer to just call a professional Locksmith to do the work for you.

If you need a locksmith then go to our Find a Locksmith Page to find an engineer near you.

 

How to Open a Locked UPVC door… with a Drill

This will be one of the most popular techniques you will see explained. However, likelihood is if you are locked out, you won’t have access to your drill. Even if you do have access to a drill, drilling your lock will definitely break your lock, meaning you will have to pay for a lock replacement. The other most likely thing to happen is that it won’t work because locks are made to withstand forced entry methods like this, especially if your locks are British Standard.

Also, unless you are a professional Locksmith, you probably won’t drill in the right place. If you call a Locksmith instead, they may be able to get you back into your home without breaking the lock.

 

How to Open a Locked UPVC Door… with a Screwdriver

This is another popular way to try and get your door open without a key and involves removing the escutcheon plate from the door. This technique will not work for you if you are locked out, however, as you need access to both sides of the door.

how to open a locked upvc door without a key

It also calls for you to fiddle with the pins inside the lock with a hair pin or another thin object. However, juggling a lock with a bobby pin is not as easy as it seems in the films, it’s unlikely that you will be able to expose the pins and move them to the right position to get the door open. It’s likely that you will break your lock or get something stuck in there.

As before, we would recommend you call a professional Locksmith to open your door, as you will probably end up calling them to replace the lock anyway.

 

How to open a locked UPVC door…by Lock Snapping

This is a favourite technique of burglars, as it essentially uses brute force to snap the lock and leave the mechanism exposed, so it can be tampered with. This will leave you needing to have your locks replaced, even if it’s done by you. This technique won’t work if you have anti-snap locks installed, as these are designed to snap in a certain place, without exposing the mechanism. There is also the risk that if you are seen trying to enter a home this way, then passers-by will be suspicious and call the police.

To find out more about lock snapping then visit our blog on lock snapping here.

If you are interested in having anti snap locks fitted to your door then find out more information British Standard.

 

How to Open a Locked UPVC Door Without a Key

Our advice is that you call a professional locksmith to gain entry to your home, or to replace the lock if you’ve lost keys.

This is the most effective and straightforward way to open a UPVC door without a key. Any method of entry you try yourself is most likely going to end up with you calling a Locksmith anyway, so why not just start by calling one out. The more damage you do to your lock yourself, the more you will need to pay the Locksmith to fix and/or replace your locks. This price will sky rocket if you do so much damage that your door needs replacing.

For more information on locksmith prices visit our locksmith prices page.

How To Open a Locked Window Without a Key?

It’s very difficult for someone to open a locked window without a key without breaking either the window or the lock mechanism. If you Google how to open a locked window without a key, you’ll find lots of videos with titles like ‘how to open a locked window with a paper clip’ or ‘how to open a locked window with a knife’ however the technique shown in these videos is often fake and won’t work.

If you need a Locksmith urgently then go to our find a Locksmith page to search for a local Locksmith near you.

How to Open a Locked Window Without a Key….and Without Damaging the Window or Lock?

The only answer to that is to call a professional Locksmith who will have the tools and knowledge to open your window non-destructively. Locksmiths are highly skilled and are trained to open a locked window without a key, without breaking or damaging it. However, depending on why you can’t open your window, for example it’s broken or jammed, then a Locksmith may have to cause damage to force entry.

If you have lost your keys, or suspect they have been stolen*, then a Locksmith can replace your window locks and provide you with a new key.

*If you believe your window key has been stolen we suggest you inform the police on the non-emergency line.

 

How to Open a Locked Window using a Knife

Short answer is… you can’t. Opening a locked window with a knife is not something we would recommend. There are some videos and articles claiming that you can open a locked window with a knife, but these are misleading.

Once you read the article or watch the video, you will realise that they are only talking about one type of lock and even if it is the type of lock you have, it’s doubtful you will be able to successfully follow the technique. Using a knife to open a locked window, is dangerous for both yourself and the window, one slip of the hand would mean you could injure yourself or break the window. Your safest bet is to call a Locksmith and have the window lock opened or replaced professionally.

 

How to Open a Locked Window Using a Screwdriver

Again, this is not something we would recommend. If you are seen trying to open a locked window from the outside, using a screwdriver, then its likely someone will call the police. You are also likely to damage either the window, or the lock itself, if you attempt to open it using a screwdriver. If you have lost the key for your window, then your best bet is to call a professional Locksmith to have the window lock replaced.

 

How To Open a Locked Window With a Paperclip

The principle of this technique is that you would pick the window lock with a straightened paperclip. However, lock picking isn’t as easy as it looks in the movies. Locksmiths spend a long time training and practicing their lock picking skill, so it’s unlikely that you will be able to open a window using a paperclip. There are videos online showing you how to do this, but the validity of these videos comes into question, as many people have found the process impossible to follow to successfully pick the window lock.

 

How to Open a Locked Window Without a Key…in an Emergency

If an emergency occurs, such as fire or a small child is trapped inside your house, then it could be your only option is to smash the window itself.

We would not recommend this, unless the situation is life threatening and you cannot wait for a Locksmith. We do suggest that you firstly call the emergency services if you are able and wait for them to respond. When any emergency event occurs, you always need to call the relevant authorities such and the police or the fire service.

Smashing the window should ONLY be done in an emergency. For all other situations we would advise calling a professional Locksmith to gain entry and replace the window locks.

 

Call a Professional Locksmith

The only guaranteed way to open a window without a key, is to call a professional Locksmith. Even if you need to gain access quickly an Emergency Locksmith is still your best option.

They can often get to you quickly and fix or change the lock in one visit. To find out more about locksmith window service then go to our Locksmith services page.

If you need a Locksmith, then visit our find a Locksmith section to find a local Locksmith near you.

How Much Does It Cost to Change the Locks on A House UK?

Whether you are moving house, have a broken lock or have been burgled, there is bound to be a time in your life where you will need a Locksmith. Needing a Locksmith is not a common event (unless you own multiple properties) so you might be unaware of how much it will cost to change the locks on your house.

The cost of changing the locks on a house in the UK can vary depending on several factors. We will go through some of the factors that can affect the cost to change the locks and give a general overview of what it could cost.

If you are in need of a Locksmith then find one here.

 

How Much Will a Locksmith Charge for Different Jobs?

Replacing a mortice lock

The mortice lock itself will cost anywhere from £45 and upwards. This does not include the labour charge.

 

Changing a euro cylinder

The price for a euro lock will be minimum of £35, plus the labour charge.

 

Emergency boarding up

This can depend on the amount of damage, but prices should start around £200

 

Changing all the locks on a property

Depending on how many doors and windows your property has, this will start at approximately £350.

 

Door and window adjustment

If no parts are required then you will, most likely, just pay the hourly rate the locksmith charges.

 

Gaining entry

If this is done non-destructively and requires no new parts or replacements, then you will pay the locksmith’s hourly rate.

 

How Much is a Locksmith Per Hour?

As it currently stands there is no regulation in the Locksmith industry in terms of standardised labour charges. However, getting multiple quotes from different Locksmiths can give you an idea of what you are likely to be charged.

There are a few factors that affect how much a Locksmith will charge you. If you book in your Locksmith in on a weekday within standard working hours (8am-6pm) then you are likely to pay a normal day charge. The nature of needing a Locksmith means that you may need to call them to arrive outside of social hours. If you call after 6pm then you are likely to have to pay a premium rate. Locksmiths may charge more on weekends and bank holidays and may also charge you more if they are travelling a long way to get to you.

 

What is a Labour Rate?

Its important that you don’t get confused between labour rate and a call out charge. A labour rate is the cost to perform services rendered. Typically, you will be charged by the hour or any part of that hour, and this will cover the time onsite for completing the job.

How Much Does It Cost to Change the Locks on A House UK?

When you call to book a Locksmith, they should quote you an hourly rate. A labour rate will not cover the cost of any new or replacement parts. A Locksmith will not be able to guarantee how long a job will take until they get onsite.

A call out charge is a fee for attending the property and nothing else. This will normally be separate and charged on top of the labour rate. This means a Locksmith could arrive at your home, assess the issue, and decide he cannot fix it, but still charge you. Most trustworthy Locksmiths shouldn’t charge you a call out fee and will only charge you their hourly labour rate.

Our advice would be to always ask the Locksmith for a breakdown of charges, so you can be sure of how much you can expect to be billed. A reliable Locksmith should have no issue in explaining the charges to you in detail.

 

How Much Does it Cost to Change a Door Lock?

Wooden doors

  • Yale cylinder replacement from £119+
  • Complete Yale Replacement from £140+
  • Mortice Lock Replacement (5 lever) from £145
  • Mortice Lock Replacement (2-3 Lever) from £145+

 

UPVC Doors

  • Standard Cylinder Replacement from £125+
  • High Security Cylinder Replacement from £150+
  • Multi-point Locking System from £220+

All parts pricing is an estimate and is the start from price. The exact cost of replacing your locks will depend on size, make, model, finish and star rating and are subject to individual locksmith costs.

 

How Much Does an Emergency Locksmith Charge?

An emergency Locksmith will probably charge you in the same way as a non-emergency locksmith; for hours of labour and any parts required. However, the nature of an emergency Locksmith means that you may be calling one out of sociable hours. This is where you could be charged more, as Locksmiths tend to increase their labour rates outside of normal working hours (8am-6pm Monday to Friday). Its shouldn’t be a huge amount more than when calling in daytime hours, but it is something you need to be aware of.

 

How Much Does it cost to Change the Locks on a House in the UK?

We have given you a breakdown of what factors could affect the price you will pay to change the locks in your home. The amounts we have stated are only estimates and the actual cost may change due the individual Locksmith and they make and model of parts you require. Visit our Locksmith prices page for more information on the cost of a Locksmith, or to find out more about Locksmiths in general find your local Locksmith.

August Smart Lock Vs Yale Smart Lock

Smart locks are fast becoming the most popular home security tool out there and if you are looking for a smart lock for your home, then you will find a huge range on the market. It can be confusing to navigate all the different options and prices ranges in the smart lock industry. Two of the biggest, and best, brands of smart locks you will find is August and Yale. These two powerhouses are dominating the smart lock market and you will struggle to find a better smart lock for your home. But how do you choose between? We will go through the features, positives and negatives of both brands, to help you make the right decision for you when it comes to picking between them.

August Smart Lock

August have been in the smart lock game for a while now, so you aren’t going to find a smart lock with more features than the August, however, it’s one of the most expensive smart locks on the market. We break down what features it comes with, what we like about the August Smart lock and what we think the potential drawbacks it has. This should help you decide if spending your hard-earned money on an August Smart lock is the right move.

  • August Smart Lock Features
  • Can be voice controlled
  • Fits to existing dead bolt
  • No additional bridge to connect
  • Unlock door remotely
  • Hands free unlocking

What We Like about the August Smart Lock

What we particularly like about the August Smart lock is the hands-free locking and unlocking that comes as standard, this is called ‘Door Sence’. You can set up the August Smart Lock so it locks after a specific number of minutes once you leave the house. The maximum time is 30 minutes, which we agree is the longest your door should be unlocked. Using Geo-Fencing with your phone, the August Smart Lock also knows when you get close to the door and will unlock automatically, so you don’t have to scramble around to get your keys if your hands are full.

The August Smart Lock also comes with 4 different ways of unlocking your door; your phone, your smart watch, an optional keypad, or for emergencies; the actual key. This means that if a member of your household doesn’t have a smartphone or isn’t technologically minded, they won’t struggle to gain entry to your home. The August App is available on both IOS and Android so you don’t have to worry about not being able to access it.

One of the biggest positives about having any smart lock is the ability to lock and unlock your door remotely. Meaning you can let your teenager in after school if you are still at work and they have forgotten their key, or you can let a service provider into your home without actually having to be there. This saves you having to distribute or hide spare keys, which is a huge plus for your home security. You can also have peace of mind that your door is actually locked as you can check the status of the August smart lock from your app and if you find its been left open, you will be able to lock it from wherever you are.

The August Smart Lock App also comes with, what they call, an ‘activity log’ so you can see the comings and goings within your home. The August smart lock will be able to tell you who has accessed the front door and at what time which is bad news for those coming home after curfew, but good for those looking to make sure a cleaner or other service provider has arrived on time. You can have these come up on your phone as alerts, so you are always in the know about the activity in your home.

One thing that we really love about the August Smart lock is that the instillation is super easy. They claim it takes less than 10 minutes and whilst it might take a little longer for those not DIY savvy, it’s still pretty quick. You simply install the August smart locks on the inside over your existing deadbolt, you do nothing to the outside lock and keep your existing deadbolt and keys. You don’t really have to worry about your lock being compatible with an August Smart Lock as they are compatible with most single cylinder deadbolts.

 

What We Don’t like About the August Smart Lock

As we mentioned before the August smart lock is pretty pricey. You can currently get the latest model of the August Smart Lock from Amazon for £337.30 and unfortunately Amazon is pretty much the only place in the UK that you can buy an August smart lock. Being that August is a US company, you might struggle to find customer service in the UK if you run in to any difficulties.

For those who are more interior design conscious, the August smart lock is a bit cumbersome. The new generations are smaller, but it’s still sits at 72mm diameter and 46mm depth on the inside of your door.

To find out more about how the August Smart Lock works and how to install it, visit their website.

 

Yale Smart Locks

Yale are one of the most well-known lock manufactures in the world, so it makes sense that they would have the first Smart Lock that has the British Standard Kitemark. Being that Yale have been making locks since the 1800s you can trust that they know what they are doing. The new Yale Conexis is a smart lock that gives you full control of your home security whilst giving you peace of mind. It’s a bit cheaper than the August Smart Lock, but on the other hand it does come with less features. We will go through the features it does have, what we like about the Yale Smart Lock and what are its drawbacks. Hopefully, this should help you decide if a Yale Smart Lock is right for you.

 

  • Yale Smart Lock Features
  • Check the status of your lock remotely
  • Send virtual keys to friends and family
  • Takes 4 x AA batteries (included)
  • Integrates with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa
  • Simple to install

 

What We Like About the Yale Smart Lock 

What we like about the Yale Smart lock is that it’s a whole lock and handle, which gives it a sleek and stylish design. As with most other smart locks you have remote control of your lock via an app that you can get on any smart device and is compatible with both IOS and Android. You can also receive alerts to your phone when someone enters or exits your home, meaning you have a complete picture of the activity in your home. The Yale app will also let you know if anything unusual happens, like the door being left ajar or unlocked. 

It’s great to see that a Smart Lock has been awarded the British Standard Kitemark and it’s no surprise that it’s the Yale Smart Lock. This means that is has gone through a rigorous testing process that includes attack testing, durability, and quality tests. What British Standard has added to assess a smart lock is electronic manipulation assessments to see if it could withstand advanced hacking methods. The Yale Smart Lock clearly met all these standards as it now bares the British Standard Kitemark, so rest assured that it’s one of the most secure smart locks out there.  

The Yale Smart Lock is compatible with most UK ‘lift to lock’ multipoint locks, so unless your door has a very unusual locking mechanism then you needn’t worry about it not working for you. The Yale Smart Lock has various methods of letting you gain access to your home, you can have a key card, key tag or use the app on your phone. You can also purchase a Yale Smart Lock that has an inbuilt keypad, so you can use a code to get in.  

What is also a very useful feature is the ability to send family and friends virtual keys, eliminating the need to have physical spare keys hidden around your home as you can grant visitors access via the app. This works particularly well if you have a regular service provider coming to your house, a cleaner or dog walker for example, not only can you grant them a time limited key, you can log the times they come and go.  

The price of the Yale Smart lock is pretty good, it’s currently selling for £250 for the whole bundle, which is almost £100 cheaper than the August Smart Lock. The August smart lock is more technologically advanced but you do get most of the same features in the Yale Smart Lock. As Yale is a UK company you can expect to access lots of support if needed, or you incur a problem.  

 

What We Don’t Like About the Yale Smart Lock

The Yale Smart Lock does come with a Wi-Fi bridge that needs to be plugged in within 3 metres of the device, unlike the August Smart Lock that is a self-contained unit. Depending on the layout of your home, this could cause you issues.

It’s also doesn’t come with Geo-Fencing, so the door won’t unlock automatically on your arrival, if this is a feature that is very important to you then the Yale Smart Lock isn’t the one for you.

The instillation is also a little more involved as you will need your whole door handle replaced and could need to hire a professional Locksmith to make sure this is done correctly, which would involve spending more money. For an idea on how much it might cost for a Locksmith to come out take a look at our Locksmith Prices Guide.

 

What To Take Away

Both the August Smart Lock and Yale Smart lock are of good quality and do everything you would want a smart lock to do. When choosing between the two you need to have a clear vision of what your home needs in terms of security, what features are the most important to you and who will be using your smart lock. You need to weigh up the cost of installing a smart lock vs the results you will get from it. Smart locks do tend to be a better choice for home security, as you can monitor the status of your lock remotely, so this could make spending the money worth it for you.

To find out more about smart locks read our other Smart Locks Blogs.

Keyless Entry Door Locks 2022

It’s becoming more common place for home and business owners to use keyless entry door locks. The technology for keyless entry isn’t a new thing, car manufactures have been using it for the past few years to allow you ease of access. This means the technology we are now seeing be used for homes and businesses has been improving and developing where it has got to a place now where it’s reliable enough to be used for home and business security.

We will go through some of the way keyless entry door locks can be beneficial to your home and improve your overall home security.

1. No Physical Key to Keep Track Of

We are all used to putting the key in the lock and opening the door and have all also struggled to get the key in the lock and turn it with our hands full of shopping or children. Keyless entry door locks mean you just have to pull down the handle and open the door as with many of these systems your physical presence near the door will unlock it.

You also don’t have the worry of losing your physical key. With most keyless entry door locks being activated by an app on your phone, it’s one less thing to keep track of. This also goes for handing out spare keys, with keyless entry door locks, you can ‘send’ your friends and family digital keys, so they can let themselves in when needed.

 Keyless Entry Door Locks

2. No Spare Keys to Worry About

If you have recently moved house, or not had your locks changed in a long time, then you might not know who has a spare key. This not only poses a security risk but also can be an insurance breach. With keyless entry door locks, you can give out a ‘key’ that only works for one day or even one hour. This means you have complete control on who has access to your home at all times and can even restrict access if need be. Having a keyless entry door lock also removes the temptation of hiding a spare key on your property, which is one way a burglar might gain access to your home.

 

3. It Can Save You Money

With a keyless entry door lock, the risk of getting your key jammed in the lock or the key snapping in the lock is gone and all of the other issues associated with normal locks are minimised. So, the need to have your locks changed or repaired will be minimal. You might have to pay more for keyless door entry locks, as they are more expensive than regular locks, but in the long-term, you should save money.

 

4. You Can Keep Track of Children or Tradespeople

With a lot of the keyless entry systems, you can set it up so you receive notifications to your phone when a key is used. If you have multiple children, they can have their own ‘key’ meaning that you will know who is coming in and out and at what time. Same goes for any tradespeople that you let into your home, if they have a digital key, you can track when they enter your home and when they leave. This can give you peace of mind that everyone is where they are supposed to be.

 

Keyless Entry for Businesses

So, we know that keyless entry door locks can be beneficial to your home, but what can it do for business? We will go through some of the ways keyless locks would be good for a business properties.

 

1. Better Security

Physical keys are easily lost, stolen, or copied and are fast becoming outdated in the modern security world. For businesses, keyless entry systems offer every authorised person their own unique credential that grants them access to the building which means that every member of staff who enters the building can be identified by their digital key. This allows you to monitor who is coming in the building and when.

2. Easier to Manage

Every business will have some level of staff turnover, so every time an employee leaves, there is a chance they will retain a copy of the key. This could mean that you have to get your locks replaced every time a member of staff leaves. A keyless entry system will stop the need for this as you can reconfigure their key to not have access with minimal effort and the whole system doesn’t need to be changed. With all the freedom of a keyless entry system you can revoke permissions and add new users without a major disruption to the security of the building.

 

3. Remote Access

There are certain keyless door systems that will allow you to grant remote access. This would be a good feature for a company who have a number of different locations, as those with access can make changes to access and lock and unlock doors without being on site.

It’s also a reliable and easy way to keep track of your employees. With a traditional lock, you have no idea who arrived where and when. But with keyless entry systems you’ll be able to view which credentials have accessed which doors, most come with time stamps, so you can be sure everyone is in the right place. It is also a helpful feature if any incidents happen within your business as you have a record of who was in the building at the time.

With remote and flexible working being more common place, remote management is being relied upon more and more. You can keep an eye on who is coming in and out of your work buildings.

 

So, with keyless entry systems becoming ever more popular, it’s worth doing some research into whether it will be a good investment for your home or business. They can improve the security of domestic properties as well as work spaces. Being able to remotely change access permissions and have a real time log of who has entered a property means you can peace of mind that you and as secure as possible.

 

What to Consider When Choosing a Keyless Entry System for 2022

When choosing the best keyless entry system for your home, there are a couple of things that you will need to consider:

 

What Level of Security You Need

There are a wide range of keyless entry systems that offer differing levels of security. Depending on what level of security you are looking for may narrow down your choices. High net worth homes, with many valuable items inside may require the highest level of security, so features such as biometrics and facial recognition software may be best suited. Whereas a standard UK family home may only need the option for virtual keys for various members of the family, there is no need for them to splash out an expensive feature such as double authentication or biometrics.

 

Budget

This could be one of the biggest factors when it comes to your choice of keyless entry systems, as they can be very expensive. Although it’s always worth investing in the security of your home, you don’t want to stretch yourself to something you can’t afford. Not only will there be upfront cost of the hardware, but you’ll also have to pay out for installation and pay for regular services and maintenance.

 

The Best Keyless Entry System for Businesses 2022

 

Paxton Access Control Systems

Paxton Access have been making IP access control and door systems for over 30 years, so they know what they are doing. Paxton offer the following security systems for business:

  • Door entry
  • Control units
  • Monitors
  • Proximity readers
  • Mounted readers
  • Energy saving readers
  • Access cards and fobs
  • Hands-free interface
  • Exit buttons
  • Reader connection modules

 

They offer three different types of access control products: the Net2, the Switch 2 and the compact ranges. All of Paxton’s products are PC only based, which means it’s not ideal for those looking for a more mobile solution to keyless entry. Their keyless entry systems comes with full colour touchscreen monitors, which are easy to use and can be accessed with a handset or can be set in handsfree mode. There are also video voicemail options and you can expand the package with IP and PoE. What makes this good for a business is the fact the software can handle up to 50,000 users and thousands of doors.

There’s also a cloud-based option with Paxton, that’s called Paxton BLU. The BLU system can be accessed by anyone that has a smart device or PC connected to the internet. This system is designed more for remote working sites that have limited access control options. This will allow you to grant access without having to physically go down to the site.

What we like about Paxton:

  • Multiple product lines, so you can pick the one that best for your company or home
  • Could based options for remote work sites
  • Lots of optional extras, meaning you can tailor what you buy, to make Paxton work best for your business
  • You can up the scale easily by adding more to an existing system, so the system can grow as your business does.

 

Videx Access Control Systems

Videx is widely known and is one of the top suppliers of door entry and access control systems in the country. Starting as a small company based in London, they now provide entry solutions across the UK and use their wealth of experience to create entry systems to suit you and your business. They break their products down into three sections: applications, systems, and series.

Applications

For business Videx provides access control and secure door entry packages for small and large sites and offices and can meet every companies’ specific needs and requirements.

Systems

Videx has a huge range of systems, that all come with a range of unique feature that provide the best solutions for any businesses security needs.

The systems include:

  • IP Systems:
  • Digital GSM intercoms
  • Traditional intercoms
  • Standalone systems
  • Web access solutions
  • Vprox
  • S-PROX
  • Portal plus
  • VX2300
  • VX2200

Series

The systems that Videx provide are further separated into series, such as; 4000 and 8000 series and the VR4K series. They all come with a huge choice of entrance panels and videophone design.

 

The Best Keyless Entry Systems for Homes 2022

 

August Smart Lock

One of the biggest and best keyless entry door lock for your home is August. Once fitted to your door, it’s easy to use and comes with its own app. It can also connect to Google Assistant, Apple HomeKit and Amazon Alexa.

Design

The most recent model of the August lock is 45% smaller than its predecessors, sitting at around 2.8 inches in diameter and only 1.8 inches in depth. The August has always had a sleek design but making it this much smaller has just added to the overall stylish appearance of the keyless door lock.

Installation

Another thing we like about the August is it’s easy to install. Most DIY minded people can install it quickly with only a screwdriver. To install you’ll need to remove the thumb latch on the interior plate to fit the August smart door lock with the correct adaptor, then you can clip on the smart lock with the two lock wings.

If you’re not comfortable with this level of DIY then it’s always best to hire a professional Locksmith, to make sure the lock is fitted correctly. It’s also worth checking your home insurance requirements, as they can often state that all locks must be installed by a professional.

Price

They are on the pricier side at around £300-400 depending on what make and model you choose but they are one of the big players in the smart lock game and you’re unlikely to find another lock with as many features or an app that works as well.

Connectivity

The August smart lock uses both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connections so you can control it from anywhere in the world. The August smart lock also connects with Alexa, Google, and Siri for not only voice commands but also for setting up routines and automation. This means the August smart lock is great for anyone who has other smart systems in their home already.

 

Wyze Lock

Wyze is on the list because it’s the most affordable keyless door lock on the market, perfect for those on a budget. Although it doesn’t offer as many features as some of the more expensive keyless entry door locks, it does the main job you want…to open your door without a key.

Design

The lock itself isn’t dissimilar to the August in shape and size being circular and 2.2 inches wide and 1.2 inches thick. There’s an LED indicator at the top that flashes different colours to indicate different things and like all other smart locks the Wyze uses an app to work.

The App

There’s a large lock/unlock button within the app which makes it very easy to use and the app can also tell you if the door is open or closed, even if you aren’t at home. Within the app there’s a running log of who unlocked the door at what time and how long the door has been left open for. You can also set it to automatically unlock when your phone is near, using locations services.

Installation

The Wyze lock uses your doors existing cylinder, deadbolt and latch assembly and comes with everything you need to install it. As we warned before, you need to make sure you have the skill level to successfully install it yourself and you need to check your home insurance requirements.

The lock itself runs on four AA batteries, these are easily installed and replaced by removing the magnetic face plate. Wyze has connections through Bluetooth and Zigbee radios imbedded, however, the Wi-Fi connection is included in the plug-in wi-fi gateway module that you connect to your home network.

Connectivity

On the downside, the Wyze lock doesn’t yet connect with Alexa or Google voice commands and it’s limited on the other smart devices, it can interact with. So, you will be limited if you have other smart devices in the house that you want to connect.

 

So, whether you are installing keyless entry systems to your home or for your business, there a lot of options out there. You need to consider your budget, who will be using it and what features you might want. With a bit of time and research you should be able to find one that meets your security needs. To find out more about keeping your business secure click here to read our tips and for more information on home security, visit our home security hub.

To find out more about Door Security Tips, read our blog.