Types of Door Locks - Residential Locksmith Tips

By in
Types of Door Locks - Residential Locksmith Tips

If you visit a home improvement store today, you’ll see that there are many different types of door locks available. There are different aesthetic variations, as well as different functional variations. Certain kinds of door locks may be better suited to certain kinds of construction, doors, and so on. In other cases, the choice of type of door lock may be entirely aesthetic. But each of these different kinds of door locks offers different locking mechanisms, which translate into different levels of security.

Whether you are looking to buy some new door locks as part of a door lock replacement, or are just curious about the different kinds on the market, our guide below provides a thorough walkthrough of the different types of door locks available. The next time you need to do a door lock installation or door lock replacement, or are looking to change your locks following a loss of a key or moving into a new home, you’ll be a regular expert!


A deadbolt-style door lock is one of the most common in use today. It provides a moderate level of security, that is suitable for most home owners. A deadbolt works by using a solid piece of metal, usually a cylinder, which extends out from the door lock into the door jam and wall. They almost always require a key to lock them and unlock them (although some electronic or keyless locks use the same mechanism, coupled with a keypad or other means of unlocking the door).

Most residential homes have deadbolt door locks on the exterior doors of the home. These kinds of locks provide sufficient security for the average homeowner. However, it is important that a deadbolt be properly installed. A door lock installation from a professional, such as a residential locksmith service, can often be the best way to ensure a proper and safe installation of your door lock.

Door Handle Locks

Door handle locks are some of the most simplistic kinds of door locks around. As a result, they provide very little meaningful security. They are most often used on things like bathroom doors or cabinet doors. Essentially, a door handle lock does nothing more than prevent the door handle from rotating, and consequently from unlocking. This is usually accomplished via spring mechanism, such as a button or rotating switch.

They are very easy to break or pick, and are often used more for convenience and discretion than for serious security. Many deadbolt-style door locks also have door handle locks, as an added, secondary layer of protection. But by itself, a door handle lock shouldn’t be used for security purposes. If you have a door handle lock on an important door that needs to be secured, then a residential locksmith service or commercial lock replacement service should be hired to perform a lock replacement for better security.

Keyless Locks

Keyless locks may use deadbolts or other locking mechanisms internally. They are really characterized by the lack of a physical key (hence the name). Typically, these kinds of door lock will use a code or combination entered into a keypad. It may be electronic or mechanical in nature. Keyless locks are ideal for commercial buildings, and offer a high level of security without the need to manage keys or changing your locks often.

Likewise, many cars today are using keyless lock mechanisms, that can be remotely opened or closed with a key fob or a combination of numeric inputs on the door itself. More exotic options for keyless locks can assign and provide individual codes for each employee or access level, allowing for more accurate tracking of entry and exit activity.

Combination Locks

A combination lock is similar to a keyless lock. However, rather than electronic controls or keypads, a mechanical, push-button mechanism is used for input. The proper selection of the combination, in the right order, releases the deadbolt and allows the door to open, all without the need for power to the door or a key.

These are often found in businesses where some privacy and security is required, but is not a major consideration for a given area. Examples include the employee-only areas of grocery stores, libraries, and so on. Because of their limitations in the number of codes or combinations, they are not ideal for high-security applications.

Electric Locks

Electric locks can refer to any kind of door lock that uses electricity to lock and unlock the door. It may use a deadbolt or other means of securing the door. But the actual opening and closing is done electronically, and not with manual force. These kinds of locks may be keypad-based, have a physical key, card swipe, fob, or other designs. They can incorporate deadbolts (controlled by electronics), as well as more exotic security setups. They are most often found in commercial settings, where security is extremely important.

Door Lock Replacement, Door Lock Installation, and Changing Your Locks

If you need help choosing the right kind of lock for your particular application, and this guide isn’t enough, don’t worry. Expert professionals from residential locksmith services or commercial locksmith services are available to help. They can ensure you use the right kind of door lock for the level of security you are looking for. Additionally, they can help with door lock replacement, door lock installation, and changing your locks – whatever you may require.

Quality locksmiths, such as Carmeli Locksmiths in the Silver Spring area, have extensive experience, knowledge, and expertise in using, installing, and servicing door locks of all types. Carmeli Locksmiths has the tools, personnel, and reputation you can count on to keep your home or business safe and secure.