While some people oversimplify the process of choosing a lock for their home, it is important to understand that your family’s safety and security depends on the lock you choose. The right lock provides the first line of defense for your family and your personal belongings.
As much as 90% of all break-ins are done by means of forced entry, which means that locks are picked, broken or kicked in, and therefore it is important to choose the right lock. Professional locksmiths and members of your local police department have first-hand experience in seeing how easily locks can be picked or broken.
Most homeowners thing buying a lock is as simple as going to the nearest hardware and buying a lock. But there’s so much more to it. No two locks are created equal, and many can easily be compromised with some basic burglar skills and a cordless drill.
When buying a lock for your home, it is important to ensure that it is tamper-resistant to ensure that your family and possessions are safe. Here are some of the important features to evaluate:
1 – Deadbolt: Some people think that any old deadbolt would do, but that’s not the case. It has to be a free-spinning, hardened steel pin, and it has to extend at least an inch into the door jamb to ensure that the door is secured in the event of it being struck or kicked in.
2 – Keying System: Choose a lock with a six-pin keying system, which is easier to pick than the average five-pin system.
3 – Strike Plate: A strike plate is the metal part of the lock that is mounted inside the door from. It holds the bolt and should be made of heavy-gauge brass or steel. Screws must be at least three inches long and must securely affix the lock to the door frame.
4 – Plug: The part of the lock which is turned by the key (this is the plug!) should be made of forged solid brass, as should the cylinder. If a lock is made of brass-plated zinc, it is best avoided. Brass plated zinc is softer and can be compromised more easily.
5 – Housing: The lock housing should recess into the door, rather than sitting flush on the face of the door. A flush lock can easily be sheared off along with the deadbolt.
6 – Door: A sliding door has always been a favorite target for burglars, as the lock in the handle can easily be compromised. Professional locksmiths can add an auxiliary lock that uses a steel bolt, attached to the door frame instead of to a sliding panel, to prevent both vertical and horizontal movement.
A double-cylinder deadbolt used on doors with glass panes will require a key to unlock it. That means that the burglar can’t simply break the glass, reach inside and unlatch the thumb-turn to unlock the door. However, it is important to check fire safety regulations and building codes before installing this type of lock.
In addition to a good lock, you could also add other security measures. Speak to XXX Locksmiths about your options.