Your main door could either make or break your home security. Although there are many ways intruders can break into your home, your door can be one of the weakest points if you don’t invest in a sturdy frame and high-quality door locks.
Whether you’re looking for electronic door locks or traditional mechanical door locks, you want a door lock that’s reasonably priced and prevents the most common break-ins.
In this post, we picked out the best high-security door locks we could find. They’re the ones that we believe have the best features at reasonable prices.
Here’s what we’ll cover:
- Features of High-Security Door Locks
- Types of Door Locks
- Things to Consider Before Buying A Door Lock
- ANSI Grade for Door Locks
- High-Security Door Locks: Our Top Picks
- Wrapping It Up
Features of High-Security Door Locks
Every type of door lock can offer different features and levels of protection. The features below are the ones that we believe every high-quality security door lock should have:
Security Bypass Resistance
In the past, even the well-known brands of door locks were easily bypassed by intruders. They often discover the weakness of a door lock and use that to bypass it. Newer iterations of older models from well-known brands have already been added to ensure that it’s not easily bypassed. When choosing a door lock, make sure that you know whether the lock has a bypass.
Picking and Drilling Resistance
Some burglars have learned how to drill locks to access your house because it is generally easier and faster with a cordless drill. Thankfully, high-end door locks are available that can withstand drilling.
They use hardened metal that will destroy drill bits and frustrate drilling attempts.
When choosing a door lock, make sure to check that the set screws and shear line are reinforced since they can be vulnerable to drilling. These areas are often covered with steel ball-bearings for added protection.
Patented Keyways to Limit Unauthorized Key Duplications
When you want someone to be able to get into your house and look after pets, etc., the typical solution is duplicate keys. But what if unscrupulous individuals can have your keys copied without your authorization?
High-quality door locks should have patented keyways to restrict access to key blanks. This is the best way to protect yourself in case someone wants to duplicate your keys to illegally gain access to your home.
Complexity of the Door Lock Cylinder
Unless you want a keypad door lock, choosing a complex cylinder door lock will deter criminals from trying to pick the lock. Remember that most locks can be picked, but investing in a more complex lock cylinder will increase the difficulty and time required.
Deadbolts made with hardened steel ensure they can’t be easily kicked, hammered, or forced open. Strong bolts are not easily snapped or bent.
A high-quality door lock has a high metal composition and feels heavy. It doesn’t have wide gaps or plastic parts, making it hard to wring off or break to bypass it. If your door lock doesn’t have these characteristics, then you’ll likely end up compromising your security.
Precision of Cuts and Assembly
One of the many qualities of a high-end door lock is that it is designed with precise cuts and grooves. That’s important because it makes it harder to insert tools to pry open the lock.
Types of Door Locks
High-security door locks come in many different types. Depending on your preferences, you can choose the one that doesn’t only promise protection but also fits your needs and budget.
Door knobs are often installed on interior doors and designed with locking mechanisms within the door handle.
Deadbolt locks are generally used for exterior doors and designed with a single or double cylinder.
Mortise locks are among the most durable and secure door locks because they are installed into the door, unlike other locks where you have to install them to the outside of the door.
Biometric locks use the owner’s fingerprint to gain access to the main door.
Unlike the mechanical door locks which are quite traditional, electronic locks use keypads or touchscreens where users can enter a security code to gain access to the door. Normally, they require batteries to work.
Smart locks are often used with a smartphone to gain entry. These locks are connected to a WiFi or Bluetooth so that the user can control it through a smartphone.
Things to Consider Before Buying A Door Lock
Before you make your final decision, consider these before choosing a high-security door lock:
High-quality door locks are generally not cheap compared to common simple door locks. But you don’t want to compromise your security over cost. Plus, these high-end door locks should be considered an investment rather than a loss. Some high-quality door locks can be overly expensive while other brands offer almost the same level of protection at a reasonable price. Make sure to choose the one that fits your needs and your budget.
Smart Lock vs. Conventional Lock
Do you like the convenience of smart locks or are you the traditional type who would prefer the conventional locks. While conventional locks are generally more robust, smart locks can offer convenience such as eliminating the need for keys if you are forgetful or if you have cleaners you want to let in when you’re away from home.
A door backset is a distance between the edge of the door to the door lock’s drilled hole. This is very important because you could have a door that has been drilled differently and your lock may not fit well. Most door backsets in the US have measurements of 2 3/8 or 2 3/4 inches. These common measurements can fit most locks available in the market.
Remember that a door lock that is not correctly fit on your door can be easily kicked or hammered.
Strengthen the Door Frame First
No matter how good your door lock is, a door frame that is weak or hollow-core doors can give way when an intruder tries to force the door open. One way to ensure that you have a strong door frame is to use a heavy-duty strike plate which you can install with the provided screws. Or you can use 3-inch screws to secure the hinges and strike plate.
ANSI Grade for Door Locks
ANSI (American Nation Standards Institute) standard for door locks is a grading system that determines the quality of a door lock based on toughness, longevity, and latch length. Depending on the applications, the door locks have three grade levels and these are:
This grade is the highest level for door locks and is often used for commercial security. A door lock with this grade can withstand 250,000 cycles, 10 door strikes using a hammer, and 360 pounds weight test. It also comes with a 1-inch latch bolt. An ANSI Grade 1 door lock is tested with 1 million opening as well as closing cycles, making it the toughest and most secure door lock.
The ANSI Grade 2 door lock is a mid-grade quality door lock ideal for residential security. This type of door lock should withstand 5 strikes at 75-pound force as well as 800,000 cycles. The Grade 2 door lock comes with a 5/8-inch latch bolt and exceeds the requirements for apartment buildings but may not be strong enough for commercial use.
The ANSI Grade 3 door lock is often used as an added security for a door. It comes with a 5/8-inch latch bolt and tested with 800,000 opening/closing cycles. This type of door lock is expected to withstand 2 strikes at 75-pound force.
High-Security Door Locks: Our Top Picks
In this section, we have highlighted the best brands of high-security door locks manufactured by highly trusted companies. Check out the prices, features, pros, and cons to know your best bet!
Best Smart Locks
Winner: August Smart Lock Pro
- easy to install
- works with voice assistant and home automation systems
- compatible with Bluetooth, Z-Wave, and WiFI
- DoorSense technology sends alerts when the door is not closed
- Comes with automatic lock/ unlock capabilities
- doesn’t have a deadbolt
- WiFi adapter not included
The reason why the August Pro is one of our favorite smart locks is that it is loaded with almost all the features you want for a smart lock. The August Pro can be easily integrated with your existing home automation devices such as SimpliSafe, Nest, SmartThings, Wink, and many others. You can even add a voice command using Alexa, Google Assistant, and Siri.
Another feature of August Pro is the auto-unlock / auto-lock capabilities when it detects your smartphone approaching or leaving. If you’re forgetful, then you’ll appreciate its DoorSensor technology that sends you alerts when you forgot to close the door.
August Pro is meant to work with your existing deadbolt. We highly suggest using a strong deadbolt to partner with your smart lock for an added layer of security.
Lastly, keep in mind that you will need a bridge device to enable the smart locks WiFi and smart home connectivity. You can buy the August Connect for an additional $60 to use with August Pro together.
- comes with three different alarm settings
- compatible with Z-Wave devices
- touchscreen is fingerprint resistant
- features with the highest security rating or Grade 1 (ANSI/BHMA)
- doesn’t work with WiFi or Bluetooth
- some customers report issues when exposed to extreme temperatures
Compared to traditional pushbuttons, the Schlage Connect is designed with a touchscreen display that resists wear patterns. Its fingerprint-resistant screen helps to avoid intruders from guessing your passcodes. And since it is certified as Grade 1 by ANSI, you are assured that you’re getting the highest level of security rating.
If you have an existing home automation system where you want to integrate the Schlage Connect, you can use Z-Wave to communicate with it. The touchscreen lock works perfectly with popular smart home systems like Wink, Nexia, Ring, SmartThings, as well as Alexa and Google Assistant for voice command features. When connected to your smart home, you can easily view activities or even lock or unlock your door remotely.
Another great feature of Schlage Connect is that you can generate up to 30 unique codes for people you want to give temporary access. This keyless feature is very useful if you have frequent visitors, people who would come to your home to clean or fix something, or if you have rental properties.
Keep in mind that Schlage Connect doesn’t come with Bluetooth or WiFi connectivity, so you can't control the lock directly using your smartphone.
Using the built-in alarm settings, you can receive alerts whenever there are unusual activities at your door. With a single push of a button and a backup key, you can easily lock the door immediately.
Ultraloq UL3 BT Fingerprint Smart Lock
- can be accessed via a digital touchscreen, smartphone, fingerprint scanning, or key
- works with IFTTT and Bluetooth
- premium metal construction
- no deadbolt, uses only a door handle lock
- beeps when you open or close the door
- no option for making additional copies of the key
The Ultraloq UL3 BT provides multiple options to unlock your door and these include a numeric touchscreen, fingerprint scanner, mechanical key, or smartphone using Bluetooth technology. You can also unlock the door by shaking or knocking through your phone which is quite fun!
If you want to integrate the Ultraloq UL3 BT with your existing home automation devices, you can use IFTTT.
Another unique feature of Ultraloq UL3 BT is its Anti-Peep Password wherein you can unlock the door by entering random numbers with the correct passcode in it. This clever method will prevent any intruder from guessing your password through the fingerprints.
Finally, the Ultraloq UL3 BT works for both indoors and outdoors because it is waterproof and dustproof.
Best Electronic Locks
Winner: Kwikset 909 SmartCode Electronic Deadbolt
- easy to install
- comes with backlit keypad
- lock button enables the auto-lock feature
- has eight customizable access codes
- flimsy lock button
The Kwikset 909 is one of our favorite keyless, electronic locks because of its impressive features. The sleek and modern look of the lock makes it easier for you to integrate with your home interior look. It is very easy to install and use, comes with SmartKey re-key technology, and a backlit keypad for easier access. It is powered with four long-lasting batteries and equipped with a battery monitor to let you know when it is time to change.
We’ve mentioned that Kwikset 909 is easy to install because you don’t need to drill or hardwire any of its components. All you need is a screwdriver to make the installation seamless. The deadbolt comes with a 2 3/8 to 2 3/4 backset which should fit in most doors.
You don’t need to worry about unauthorized access to your door because the Kwikset 909 comes with eight customizable access codes you can assign to individuals you want to grant access to. The temporary codes can be assigned to your household help, friends, contractor or even to a neighbor.
In case you forget to lock your door, it automatically locks after 30 seconds. Other impressive features of Kwikset 909 include a bump-proof and tamper-proof design. The front door lock can also be accessed easily with a backlit keypad. Since it is certified as Grade 2 by BHMA, you get a high level of security for your home.
Samsung SHS-3321 Digital Door Lock
- easy to install
- built with high-quality materials
- sleek and modern design
- packed with features for security and convenience
- some features included are unnecessary
If you want the best bang for your money, then the Samsung SHS-3321 will not disappoint you. It’s fully packed with impressive features as well as great performance and convenience. Although this digital door lock is a bit pricey, you get a lot of value too.
Some of the features of Samsung SHS-3321 include bump and pick-proof design, PSB fire and fire detection sensor, anti-tampering lockout, and intrusion alarm.
The sleek and modern design can add to the looks of your modern home decor. And since it is made with high-quality materials, you are assured that your door lock can withstand any forced entry attempts or extreme abuses that will last for many years.
Overall, we believe that the Samsung SHS-3321 is a worthwhile consideration despite its expensive price tag. You get the best performance, convenience, durability, strength, and rigorous construction.
Best Deadbolt Locks
Winner: Schlage B60N Deadbolt
- easy to install
- low price
- resistance to tampering, picking, and bumping
- Grade 1 certified by ANSI/ BHMA
- comes with 3-inch screws to reinforce the metal strike plate
- can only be accessed using a manual key
If you like the conventional and budget-friendly deadbolt that offers durability and high security, then the Schlage B60N is your best bet. It doesn’t come with digital or smart features compared to other modern door locks but you get more than what you pay.
The Schlage B60N comes with extra-long 3-inch screws to reinforce the metal strike plate to ensure strength and resistance from kicking and any other forced entry attempts. Overall, the deadbolt lock is highly resistant to tampering, picking, and bumping.
The Schlage B60N is an excellent manual door lock that offers a high-level of security as well as long-lasting performance and durability. You can even partner it the August Pro door lock if you want to add the smart features and extra layer of security for your door lock.
Kwikset 991 Juno Entry Knob/Single Cylinder Deadbolt Combo
- comes with SmartKey re-key technology
- certified Grade 1 for the bolt and Grade 2 for the knob
- highly resistant from bumping, drilling, and picking
- comes with a lifetime warranty
- requires extra installation
- reinforced strike plate is not included
Unlike most locksets with lower security ratings, the Kwikset 991 Juno stands out from the rest due to its high security level and impressive performance. It comes with a cylinder deadbolt as well as a door handle which is a perfect combo for security and convenience. Overall, both the deadbolt and the door handle are certified with the highest security ratings for residential doors.
The two-locking combo has a SmartKey re-key technology wherein you can re-key them yourself as well as use the same key to access both the deadbolt and door handle locks. Both locks are highly resistant from bumping, drilling, and picking, as well as any other forms of forced entry attacks. With Kwikset 991 Juno, you are assured that your family and valuables are protected round the clock.
Mul-T-Lock Cronus Deadbolt
- Highly resistant against picking, bumping, or drilling
- Keys can't be easily copied or duplicated by unauthorized individuals
- Burglars can’t unlock it from the inside
- available in 4 different designs
- very expensive keys
- difficult to install
We gave the Mul-T-Lock Cronus deadbolt a thumbs up because of its high-security features and Grade 2 level of certification. It comes with a drill-proof cylinder as well as a steel-hardened pin to provide you protection 24-7. The keys can't be easily reproduced by anyone without your authorization since you will be required to present a duplicate card to remake the keys from a locksmith.
If you love the modern look for your door lock, you the option to choose one from four different designs available - antique brass, oil-rubbed bronze, stainless steel, and bright brass. The Mul-T-Lock Cronus is keyed exterior while it is a thumb-turn lock on the exterior. Overall, the deadbolt is highly resistant from drilling and picking so that intruders trying to access your door would be the least of your worries!
Abloy Protec2 Single Cylinder Deadbolt
- made with hardened steel
- highly resistant against drilling and picking
- comes with many key combinations through its rotating disc cylinder
- reinforced steel strike box
- the deadbolt if protected with a shield to resist sawing or cutting
- features a cylinder guard collar to protect the cylinder
- Very expensive
- Difficult installation and marginal customer support
The Abloy Protec2 is probably among the most expensive deadbolt you can find in the market today. But despite its price tag, you are assured of getting the highest level of performance around the clock. This durable deadbolt is designed and manufactured by Assa Abloy from Sweden. The Yale, Sargent, and August locks are also some of the other products that Assa Abloy produces. The Abloy Protec2 is the company’s upgraded version of its Protec products.
Wrapping It Up
A sturdy door lock adds a layer of protection to deter any intruders from entering your home. With so many types of door locks available in the market today, choosing the right door lock can be confusing and time-consuming!
Here, we have summarized some of the best door locks in the market according to its categories - smart locks, electronic locks, and the traditional deadbolt locks. We hope that with the right information, you can get the right one that suits your needs and budget.
Have you found this article helpful? Kindly leave your comments below!
Hi, I’m Christy, and I’m an electronics engineer by profession. I have taught in a university for 2 years while pursuing my master’s degree in cognitive radio and worked for a company to develop wireless medical devices. Currently, I’m doing research for a doctorate degree in engineering using a wireless sensor network for smart agriculture. I’ve been active in our local IoT community, IoT Cebu, where I participate in conducting talks about Arduino, Raspberry Pi, and DIY home automation using Wi-Fi and ZigBee devices.