Doors Windows

How we secure doors in the digital age

Those times when we broke the key in the door or waited outside because we had lost the key or ran home to open the door for visiting relatives will remain as stories "from our time". Soon we will all be able to use digital locks. Access will be by using a code to open or close the door and can be changed whenever we want so that those who have found out can't get into the house. With modern technology and Wi-Fi connectivity, the phone will be able to be used as a key. Locking and unlocking can be operated remotely from anywhere in the world or by sending a time-limited access code to others. Digital solutions are everywhere, so it's hard not to find them here. Such open-locks are already being used in public spaces accessed by many people or in hotels, and it won't be long before they become commonplace.

Digital locks

Digital locks are programmable, keyless locks that can be used to secure any area of the home, from the garage to the front door or office. They are now mainly used in places where a access control you can rely on and where the use of normal keys is impractical due to the large number of people coming and going. They can be fitted to any kind of door - wooden, aluminium, glass or PVC. The important thing is to match the level of security provided by the door. It is pointless to fit a high performance lock on a simple door with average or even low resistance.

Advantages and disadvantages of digital locks

The demand for electronic and intelligent locking systems has been increasing lately because access to an enclosure is becoming much easier and faster for those who have permission to enter, but much more difficult for the unwanted. Entering the house is as simple as pressing a button, typing in a code or sending a code from a mobile phone.

Every digital door lock has advantages and disadvantages, just like standard locks. Here are some of them:

  • Advantages
    • Ability to change codes often for greater security
    • No possibility of losing the key as with standard locks
    • Automatic locking function on most locks so there is no possibility of "forgetting" the unlocked door
    • It is not necessary to carry the key continuously.
  • Disadvantages
    • Battery or electronic locks become useless without electricity
    • Spare key locks can be broken or attacked
    • Some electronic locks are not outdoor resistant.
Types of digital locks

Digital locks can be categorised in different ways, depending on what they need to open, how they are connected to the home or how they work.

Locks that can also be opened with a normal key. These locks use a keypad in combination with a standard key or a digital key. The door can be opened either by keying in the code or by using the key. They are ideal in cases where there are multiple users or where users are more likely to use keys, or for those who travel frequently and allow a neighbour temporary access. In the latter case there is also the possibility of giving the neighbour an access code which will be changed when the owner returns home. However, it also has disadvantages: it can be locked and they are easier to open.

Locks with batteries. One of the most common ways of operating locks is by using batteries. Battery-operated door locks usually have an LCD screen that lights up when touched. They are easy to reprogram using a master code. Their main disadvantage is that the batteries have to be changed once a year. If the battery is flat, the keyboard does not work. Most locks, however, have a way of warning you if the battery is about to run down completely. Battery-operated locks are mainly used indoors and in most cases have a key release option.

Mechanical digital locks. They are locks that do not depend on battery or electricity to operate. Instead, they rely on a special part like a standard key to unlock the door. Mechanical locks are shock-resistant and do not wear out even under heavy use. Their disadvantage is the limited number of codes that can be used to both lock and unlock. They are mainly used for outdoor locks in high-traffic areas where resistance to heavy use is a must.

Alarm locks. Alarm locks emit a loud signal if the wrong code is entered more than once or an attempt is made to break it. They can be connected to your home's alarm system or have their own alarm system that works solely on the lock. They are almost always connected directly to the home's electrical system. They do not run on batteries because loss of power can make them inoperable.

Fingerprint locks. Those who don't want to carry a key or remember an opening code can consider a fingerprint lock. Fingerprint locks scan your fingerprint to unlock the door, without the need for a key or code. These are among the most expensive digital locks. They are, however, sensitive to the outdoors and may need weather protection.

Digital locks
AGB electronic system
Installing and programming digital locks

Mechanical or battery operated digital locks installs almost identically to a standard lock. They are sized so that they can be adapted to any locking mode, without the need for system or door or frame modifications. Alarm or electric locks must be installed either by the manufacturer or by a licensed electrician. Alarmed locks may require a special alarm box installed on the wall next to the door.

All locks are sold with a master code that allows programming. Most allow up to six different codes to be used simultaneously on a single lock. But there are also special locks that allow unlimited codes. Almost all mechanical locks allow codes between one and six digits, while battery-operated and alarm locks can have longer codes. For mechanical locks there is also the possibility of customisation. In this case longer codes can be used.

Digital door locks are, along with window security systems,an innovative way to help keep our home safe. Whether you opt for a mechanical version or an alarm lock that communicates directly with your home's alarm system, a digital door lock comes with more options so you can find peace of mind when it comes to home security.

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