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Thread: Door Locks

  1. #1

    Default Door Locks

    Ok, so this is my first real question. It's more of a hardware issue than a technical one.
    The question is what lock do you use for you front door? And does it meet any of the criteria below?

    I'd like my front door to open automatically. I don't mind if it's through my phone, an RFID tag, fingerprint or whatever, as long as it has the following features:
    - is very secure, so ideally a deadbolt of some sort.
    - can be opened manually by a normal key or other manual means - in case the system fails.
    - does not have a significant large visible panel on the front of the door or beside the door. It has to look like a normal unautomated door from the outside.
    - does not have a door handle on the front. There will be something to grip onto to pull the door closed, but no turning handle.
    - must be slam shut. i.e. it will automatically lock when you close it.
    - can be opened manually from the inside with out a key. This is important in case of fire.

    The closest thing I saw was the August lock(still not available yet). However, this potentially has two flaws I can see:
    1. it requires you to have a handle
    2. what happens once you are inside? does it stay unlocked? I'd like it to be locked until I manually open it.

    Any suggestions anyone? I would be very interested to hear what other people use.

    Thanks in advance for any suggestions you might have!

    Owen
    Last edited by linzello; 28th May 2014 at 08:02 PM.

  2. #2

    Default

    Ah, I've discovered what I'm looking for.
    It's called a Night Latch or a Rim Latch.

    Once I find some that can be remote controlled I will post them here.

  3. #3

    Default

    Ok, here is an example. Although this one is not the nicest looking and I'm sure you can find it cheaper elsewhere...

    http://www.amazon.co.uk/Cisa-11931-E.../dp/B00HZ4AQ6W

    Please let me know if you have found anything similar.

    Thanks,
    Owen

  4. #4

    Default

    Here is another one...
    http://www.sacsecure.com/home/productinfo/en/id/119

    Not sure your home contents insurers would cover you with this one though. I very much doubt it's British Standards approved

  5. #5
    Automated Home Sr Member
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    Default

    Hey Owen,

    I am not a great fan of Electric Strikes, as the door lock (night Latch) always seems to have some 'play' and the whole door can rattle (visions of entries to high rise flats).

    Deadbolts are more secure, however you have the issues of if the bolt deployed successfully etc. Most look hideous and the systems that reside internally to the door (Assa Abloy) are very expensive and require a door loop.

    If you are concerned if the Electric Lock will void your Home Contents Insurance - Have a chat with your Insurers or these guys (http://www.locksonline.co.uk/acatalo...ized-Lock.html)

    Vangelis

  6. #6
    Moderator toscal's Avatar
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    Default

    Have a look at Cyber locks
    Your problem I think is two fold. You need an automatic locking mechanism and then something to open and close the door. But also to allow manual control in the event of a fire. You can always have a control button inside near the door to open the door when you want to leave or have visitors etc.
    Your local mobility shop might also be able to help as many automatic door openers are used for disability access etc.
    Have a look at these links
    http://www.ironmongerydirect.co.uk/p...c_door_openers
    http://www.rutlanduk.co.uk/uncategor...c-door-opener/
    http://www.cdvi.co.uk/digiway.html
    IF YOU CAN'T FIX IT WITH A HAMMER, YOU'VE GOT AN ELECTRICAL PROBLEM.
    www.casatech.eu

  7. #7

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Vangelis View Post
    Hey Owen,

    I am not a great fan of Electric Strikes, as the door lock (night Latch) always seems to have some 'play' and the whole door can rattle (visions of entries to high rise flats).

    Deadbolts are more secure, however you have the issues of if the bolt deployed successfully etc. Most look hideous and the systems that reside internally to the door (Assa Abloy) are very expensive and require a door loop.

    If you are concerned if the Electric Lock will void your Home Contents Insurance - Have a chat with your Insurers or these guys (http://www.locksonline.co.uk/acatalo...ized-Lock.html)

    Vangelis
    Hi Vangelis,

    Very good point about electric strikes. I definitely don't want any play. I want a solid, precision shutting door. For this reason I may well go for a door and frame that come factory factory made with an electronic lock built in.

    I will be sure to chat to my insurers too.
    Thanks for your advice.

    Owen

  8. #8

    Default

    Hi Toscal,

    Thanks for the suggestion, but I'd like to avoid an automatic door opener if possible.
    I'm probably going to go for a pre-built door and frame with an electronic lock as I mentioned in my reply to Vangelis.

    Owen

  9. #9
    Automated Home Sr Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
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    Default

    You will still require a door loop (as the electronics will all be in the door, as opposed to the frame)

    Depending on budget and door type, I know that Yale Digital Locks can integrate with the UPVC frame locking mechanism, or if you want fort-knox, then there are some companies based in London that will do bespoke Multi-Point, Multi-Throw systems.

    As a side note - if you want to add a door intercom, have a look at DoorBot (also has Lockitron integration) - They are looking to have an API that could integrate into such systems as Loxone (but as I already mentioned, I am not too familiar with that product)

    Vangelis

  10. #10
    Automated Home Lurker
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    Linzello

    I've spent quite a long time looking at the things you mentioned. It seems lots of people are putting glossy marketing in front of their "Internet of Things Locks" but we Brits want to know solid data, dammit! Is the lock secure, what are the backups, are they *actually* suitable for external door use in a city, etc. Most of the beautiful looking solutions (August, Goji, Kevo) seem to fall down in some way.

    First of all I'd start by addressing your point about the "night latch". A night latch is nothing really to do with automation, it's simply a type of lock. It's just a latch with a spring. In most cases these latches are not long throw, which means they are not secure in the slightest (despite this, most Brits seem to leave their deadbolts undone all day using only the night latch for security - FAIL). The other issue is that many cheaper night latches can simply be undone by slipping a credit card between the door and the frame (depending on the layout of the door). Add to this the fact that most night latches are in "rim lock" format (i.e. they hang off the back of the door, rather than mortice inside the door itself) and these things (think Yale lock) are horribly insecure. It takes a foot against a door to break one open. Night latches are great for bathroom door locks... even then most hotels etc. use mortice night latches with an integrated deadbolt!

    Next up: night latch with deadbolt. Some lock cases have both in one case. Avoid. You need multiple points on the door where a bolt is thrown into the frame, a single point (i.e. single case) is not secure enough for an external door.

    That's why most UK houses have the Chubb lock. It's a beast, but at least in combination with another locking point (perhaps a high quality mortice latch, something from Assa) makes for a vaguely secure external door lock.

    Ideally you want 2 deadbolts at the top and bottom of a door, left locked throughout the day, with a thumbturn on the inside for fire safety (and a letterbox cover to prevent easy turning of the thumbturn - depending on quality of thumbturn and distance from letterbox this may not be an issue)

    Anyway I'm running late, but I will report back soon my findings as I too am looking for a way to automate my front door security!

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