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Keeping Your Home Safe: An Overview Of Common Locking Mechanisms

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As a homeowner or renter, understanding the various types of residential locking mechanisms is key to keeping your home safe and secure. You need to know your options so you can make an informed decision on which locking devices work best for your home.

Here are some of the most common types of locks. 

Deadbolt Locks

Deadbolt locks are among the most popular and common types of locks for residential use. They come in two main varieties—single-cylinder and double-cylinder.

The single-cylinder deadbolt lock is opened with a key on the outside and with a thumb turn on the inside. It is one of the most secure locking devices, but it may be vulnerable to break-ins if the door is not made of a solid material. This lock also works best when the door has an additional security measure, like a strike plate attached to it.

The double-cylinder deadbolt lock is opened with a key on both sides. This lock style offers superior protection from burglars as it requires two separate keys for entry. In other words, the lock requires a key on both sides because it cannot be opened from the outside without a key. 

However, double-cylinder locks can also be a potential hazard in the event of an emergency, as they can make it difficult to escape quickly. But that's why it's always a good idea to have an emergency key hidden outside the home in case of such an event.

Knob Locks

Knob locks are another popular option for residential use. They are generally easier to install than deadbolts and are typically used as auxiliary locks on doors, such as those leading into bedrooms or bathrooms.

Knob locks come in several different styles, including passage knobs (which do not lock), privacy knobs (which have push-button locking mechanisms), and entry knobs (which have keyed cylinders). They also come in various materials, such as brass, bronze, and stainless steel.

Knob locks are not as secure as deadbolts, so they should not be used as the primary locking device on the entry door. However, they can provide additional security and peace of mind when combined with a deadbolt.

Mortise Locks

Mortise locks are another type of locking mechanism that is commonly used in residential settings. These locks are installed into door frames rather than onto doors themselves, which requires more installation time but offers greater security benefits.

In addition to being harder to pick, mortise locks often feature removable cores, allowing easy rekeying if needed. A locksmith just needs access to the removable core, so they can easily change out the pins inside it. This allows them to use a new key in the lock without having to replace the entire lock. 

Contact a local locksmith to learn more about residential lock mechanisms.