Best Door Locks for Home Security

We compared traditional deadbolts and door locks to find the toughest options for a secure home.
Best for security
Medeco Maxum
  • Icon Pros  Light
    Unique angled key design
  • Icon Pros  Light
    Drill-proof hardened steel
  • Icon Pros  Light
    Pick-proof lock
Easiest installation
Schlage B60N626 Deadbolt
Schlage B60N626
  • Icon Pros  Light
    Low-profile face
  • Icon Pros  Light
    Universal latch
  • Icon Pros  Light
    Easy installation
Best for storm doors
Wright Products VMT115PB
Wright Serenade Mortise Set
  • Icon Pros  Light
    Attractive design
  • Icon Pros  Light
    Universal fit
  • Icon Pros  Light
    Storm door deadbolt
Budget pick
Kwikset 99800-090 980 Deadbolt
Kwikset 980 with SmartKey
  • Icon Pros  Light
    6 finishes
  • Icon Pros  Light
    Fits standard doors
  • Icon Pros  Light
    Lifetime warranty
Keyless pick
Defender Security Satin Nickel U 10827 Door Reinforcement Lock
Defender Security Door Reinforcement
  • Icon Pros  Light
    Prevents forced entry
  • Icon Pros  Light
    Inexpensive
  • Icon Pros  Light
    Affordable

We knew our top pick would have to be "The Rock" of traditional locks: big, tough, and unmovable. The Medeco Maxum's solid, hardened steel construction and unpickable locking mechanism checked all the boxes. The price tag on the Maxum is definitely higher than the other locks on our list, but for everything it offers in protection, we think the triple-digit price is well worth it.



Compare the best door locks

Product
Price
Lock Materials
ANSI GradeIcon Tooltip  Dark
Link
Best for security
Medeco Maxum
Brass and hardened steel 1
Easiest installation
Schlage B60N626 DeadboltSchlage B60N626
Steel and brass 1
Best for storm doors
Wright Products VMT115PBWright Products Serenade Mortise Set
Solid brass N/A
Budget pick
Kwikset 99800-090 980 DeadboltKwikset 980 with SmartKey
Steel and aluminum 1
Keyless pick
Defender Security Satin Nickel U 10827 Door Reinforcement LockDefender Security Door Reinforcement Lock
Extruded aluminum N/A

Amazon disclaimer: *Amazon.com list price as of 6/17/2021 at 11:30 a.m. (MT). Read full disclaimer.

Best door lock reviews

1. Medeco Maxum: Best for security

Best for security

*Amazon.com list price as of 6/17/2021 at 11:30 a.m. (MT). Read full disclaimer.

The Maxum is the next generation of lock security. Its solid, hardened steel casing and inserts make it drill-proof and impervious to attacks from crowbars and other common tools.

Pro Heading
Pros
Pro Bullet Pick-proof lock
Pro Bullet Unique key design
Pro Bullet Hardened steel casing
Pro Bullet ANSI Grade 1 rating
Pro Bullet High security strike plate
Con Heading
Cons
Con Bullet High price tag
Con Bullet Deadbolt only

We especially liked that the unique lock style means unique keys, making them hard to duplicate. But keep in mind that if you need a duplicate key, or if you ever need to get the lock re-keyed, its uniqueness means you'll have some hoops to jump through.

The Maxum lock is available in a variety of different finishes, and it comes with a high-security, box-style strike plate with two-inch, high tensile screws—not as long as the three-inch screws we prefer for a truly secure door, but better than the standard one-inch. Installation can be difficult, so you might want to have a locksmith on call just in case. You can order several Medeco locks for your home and have them keyed the same or differently.

Medeco locks are deadbolt only, so you'll have to find a matching doorknob lock, but the deadbolts come in more than a dozen finishes, so you can find just the right match. Medeco is by far the priciest door lock on our list, but it's top quality, and it comes with a two-year warranty.

2. Schlage B60N626: Easiest installation

Easiest installation

*Amazon.com list price as of 6/17/2021 at 11:30 a.m. (MT). Read full disclaimer.

As someone who’s been in the sweaty trenches of deadbolt replacement myself, I wish I'd had something like the Schlage B60 series to make the process a little easier.

Schlage designs its deadbolts to fit most standard pre-drilled deadbolt holes, and it uses a unique “Snap & Stay” ring to hold the locking mechanism in place while you screw it in.

Pro Heading
Pros
Pro Bullet Snap & Stay design
Pro Bullet Universal fit
Pro Bullet Quick installation
Pro Bullet Tamper resistance
Pro Bullet AAA BHMA rating
Con Heading
Cons
Con Bullet Weak screws

Since there’s just three pieces to install with a standard Phillips head screwdriver, you'll be looking at less than 10 minutes total work time.

This lock isn't as impervious to attacks as the Medeco, but it is pick- and bump-resistant, and at around $30, it won't break the bank. It's available at most local hardware stores, and it comes with a AAA rating (best of the best) from BHMA for security, durability, and finish.

3. Wright Products Serenade Mortise Set: Best for storm doors

*Amazon.com list price as of 6/17/2021 at 11:30 a.m. (MT). Read full disclaimer.

If you're a neighborly person who likes to see what's going on outside, but you don't want to leave your door unlocked for intruders, a storm door lock like this one from Wright Products is a good way to beef up your security.

This lock has an adjustable backset, so it will fit most storm doors, and its built-in deadbolt keeps your door firmly locked.

Pro Heading
Pros
Pro Bullet Attractive design
Pro Bullet Universal fit
Pro Bullet Storm door deadbolt
Pro Bullet Solid brass construction
Con Heading
Cons
Con Bullet Tricky installation

The simple, curved handle design fits most décor styles, and it goes with other locksets from the Wright Products line, so you can match it to your front door.

The only drawback to this lock is that it's tricky to install. The instructions that come with it aren’t very clear, so if you're not mechanically minded, you might want to enlist a friend or professional to help with the job.

On the bright side, one reason mortise locks are hard to install is because they're designed to be more complex than cylinder locks, so they're also harder for intruders to beat.

4. Kwikset 980 with SmartKey: Budget pick

*Amazon.com list price as of 6/17/2021 at 11:30 a.m. (MT). Read full disclaimer.

The Kwikset 980 looks great on paper: it has solid steel construction and BumpGuard technology, plus it's tough to pick and you can rekey it yourself. But we couldn't put it into the top three because the jury is still out on how reliable the SmartKey rekeying technology really is.

Pro Heading
Pros
Pro Bullet 6 finishes
Pro Bullet Round and square shapes
Pro Bullet Fits standard doors
Pro Bullet Lifetime warranty
Pro Bullet Can rekey yourself
Con Heading
Cons
Con Bullet Rekey technology may fail

Some users say their key stopped working in the lock after a few years, and some say the rekeying failed altogether.

The good news is that it's an affordable option, and if you run into any trouble with your Kwikset lock, it's covered under a lifetime warranty that covers mechanical problems and finish blemishes.

Light Bulb
Interested in a smart lock?

We devoted a separate page to our favorite smart locks to give them the attention they deserve.

5. Defender Security Door Reinforcement Lock: Keyless pick

*Amazon.com list price as of 6/17/2021 at 11:30 a.m. (MT). Read full disclaimer.

The Defender Security Lock isn't like the other locks on our list because it doesn’t have a key. It works more like the devices you'd find on our Best Door Jammers list by preventing a forced entry while you're in your home.

Pro Heading
Pros
Pro Bullet Prevents forced entry
Pro Bullet Very affordable
Pro Bullet Pick-proof and bump-proof
Pro Bullet Easy to install
Con Heading
Cons
Con Bullet May not hold up to repeated use

No keys means it's pick-proof and bump-proof, so it's a great way to put an extra layer of security on exterior doors that have windows next to the locks. At under $20, it's inexpensive, and it's easy to install and use, but users say it doesn't hold up well with repeated use over time.

Things to consider before you buy

What's your backset?

The backset on your door is the measurement between the center of the drilled hole for your lock and the edge of your door. This is an essential measurement to have before you go shopping for locks to ensure you get a lock that fits.

Most backsets on US doors are either 2 3/8 in. or 2 3/4 in., so most locks are designed to fit those measurements. Still, every once in a while, you'll get a door that's drilled differently, so be sure to check.

Single cylinder vs. double cylinder locks

The deadbolt locks we've included here are single cylinder locks, which means they have a keyhole on one side and a thumb turn or lever on the other side.

You can purchase double cylinder locks that require keys on both sides, but needing a key to unlock the door from the inside could delay or prevent you from getting out of your home in an emergency.

For that reason, we recommend using only single cylinder locks for your home security.

Security doors

Before outfitting old doors with new locks, consider whether you might want the added protection of a security door. Security doors are much sturdier and more kick-resistant than standard builder-grade doors, and they can provide extra security at your home's most vulnerable point.

Today's security doors come in a wide variety of stylish finishes to match your décor, so you won't have to feel like you're living in a bank vault.

Adding door sensors

If you're focusing on beefing up your door security, it's a good idea to think about adding door and window sensors to your home. These sensors are included in many home security systems and will alert you whenever a door or window is opened when the system is armed.

How we reviewed door locks

To choose our top picks for the best door locks, we studied each lock's construction and security features to find locks that were not only built to last but also designed to foil even the most talented lockpicker. To find out more about how we review security products, check out our full methodology.

FAQs

Believe it or not, changing a deadbolt on your door is pretty easy. All you need is a screwdriver and your new deadbolt kit. 

Unscrew the screws on the deadbolt to remove the faceplate and the lock. Next, remove the plate on the inside of the door. 

Replace the lock inside the door with the new piece and screw it into place. We recommend longer screws for a more secure fit. Be sure to install it with the "up" side in the correct position. 

Finally, line up the new deadbolt with the internal lock and screw into place.

Most keyless door locks work like garage doors: they have a keypad where you enter a code to open the door. In recent years, devices like the August smart lock have come on the scene, turning your smartphone into a key fob so you can lock and unlock your smart lock using only your phone. Some smart door locks will even sense when you (and your phone) are near, locking or unlocking the door automatically. Keyless door locks require batteries or hardwiring for power.

It depends. Some of the locks we mentioned on our list are easier to install than others, and it depends on how comfortable you are with tools. The main reason you might need a lock pro is if your locking mechanism doesn't fit your door properly. Services like Thumbtack can help you find someone to lend a hand if you need it.

Both ANSI (American National Standards Institute) and BHMA (Builders Hardware Manufacturers Association) test locks based on their level of security and quality of construction. An ANSI Grade 3 indicates that a product is good for basic residential security, a Grade 2 is a higher level of residential security, and a Grade 1 is considered the highest quality grade for residential or commercial security.

Lock bumping is a technique used by both locksmiths and lockpicking intruders to open a lock using a special "bump key" and a blunt object like a hammer or screwdriver. Once the bump key is inserted into the lock, hitting it at different angles with the hammer will jostle the inner workings of the locking mechanism until it unlocks. Getting a bump-resistant lock is essential to ensure home security.

Disclaimer

*Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on Amazon at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product. Safewise.com utilizes paid Amazon links.

Certain content that appears on this site comes from Amazon. This content is provided “as is” and is subject to change or removal at any time.

Kasey Tross
Written by
Kasey Tross
Kasey is a trained Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) member and a freelance writer with expertise in emergency preparedness and security. As the mother of four kids, including two teens, Kasey knows the safety concerns parents face as they raise tech-savvy kids in a connected world, and she loves to research the latest security options for her own family and for SafeWise readers.

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