Smart locks are a revolutionary new way to keep your home safe and protected. Whether you commonly forget to lock up after you leave or need to let people into the home when you’re not there, smart locks offer a world of benefits. In this article, we’ll take a look at the features and benefits of popular smart locks.
How To Choose Smart Digital Lock
- Door compatibility: First and foremost, you should ensure that the lock will be compatible with the door you use. The most common types of locks in Singapore are both mortise and deadbolt locks.
Deadbolt locks have no spring in the bolt, and it does not automatically return to its original position. You will need to unturn the key to lock the door. It is commonly installed together with a separate handle or knob with a latch. This allows you to shut the door without locking it.
A mortise lock is different and instead requires a rectangular pocket (aka mortise) that has to be cut into the door to fit the lock into it. Most new BTO HDB and condominiums come with a mortise lock for their main door. It often comes with a sprung latch on the top and is typically connected to a handle. This makes it, so when you pull down the handle, the latch itself will retract.
- Connectivity Protocol: Decide whether you want a Bluetooth, WiFi, or Zigbee protocol for your smart door. Each one comes with its smart lock protocols. So it is important to understand each protocol’s pros and cons to ensure a seamless connection with your other smart home devices.
Bluetooth has low battery consumptions but with a limited range of 10 meters. It connects directly to your Bluetooth-enabled mobile devices. You will need to purchase an additional hub if you want your Bluetooth lock to communicate with your other smart devices.
Zigbee is a protocol mainly used for home automation. It connects your mobile phone and other smart home devices within the same WIFI network through a Zigbee hub. Z-Wave has a range of 77 meters. You can control your lock or Zigbee compatible devices remotely on your phone. And you can still access your Zigbee Hub even if your internet is down.
WiFi, which most of us are familiar with, has a wide range and allows you to control your smart lock remotely. However, it consumes more battery.
Smart Features: There are certain features you should look out for as well. This includes alternate entry likes physical key, number pad, or biometrics such as fingerprints or facial recognition; Activity Log to track access history; Temporary digital key for guest access; Geofencing to automatically lock or unlock based on your vicinity to the door.
4 Best Digital Door Locks
1. Best Retrofit For Deadbolt: August Smart Lock Pro
Why We Love It
The August Smart Lock Pro is the best option for those looking to retrofit their existing doors with a new smart lock, especially if those doors are using a deadbolt. Once it’s in, you can control how it opens and closes the doors to others from a distance. You can set it automatically to lock up when you leave, and upon arrival, it recognizes you and unlocks while you approach, meaning you no longer have to worry about digging out your keys.
You can also grant guests access to the house for minutes, hours, days, and beyond so that they can come and go as they please. This also applies to certain trusted individuals, such as house cleaners, babysitters, dog walkers, or even extended family, to allow them to come and go as they please without having to pass them any extra keys.
Some August Smart Lock Pro reported occasional connectivity issues to some smart homes and home assistance. Future software updates should fix the issue. It also has a warranty that lasts only one year. This is a bit shorter than other smart locks and maybe a drawback to some.
2. Best Overall: Samsung WiFi Digital Door Lock
Why We Love It
The Samsung WiFi Digital Door Lock stands out among some of the others due to fingerprint recognition. This gives homeowners who are particularly concerned about privacy and safety the peace of mind they need that no one will get in without their say. It is easy to install, and once it’s in & operating, you can choose from one of five different ways to unlock and lock the door.
Not only can you use the fingerprint function, but you can also use the RFID card, smartphone app, mechanical key, or number pad options. Once the lock recognizes the authorized party, pull on the lever to open it with one hand. When you’re away from home, you can let anyone in just by using the app. The app also lets you check and make sure the door is locked in case you forget.
Once the door has been authorized to unlock, you still have to pull a lever to get in. This could be inconvenient for those looking for truly hands-free ways of getting in and out of the house. Even so, tugging on it requires little effort and does not add any real extra steps.
1. Best for Metal Gate: Yale RFID Gate Lock
Why We Love It
While many locks are well-suited or specifically designed for wooden doors, there aren’t as many made with metal doors in mind. The Yale RFID Gate Lock is different. This Yale digital door lock allows you to lock up your gate with the same ease as your home using smart lock capabilities. It comes with a Magic Mirror feature that enables you to see the keypad lock numbers as soon as you touch the mirror, making it especially useful for guests.
The modern, sleek design of the Yale RFID Gate Lock makes it perfect for any HDB or condo metal gates. It even allows you to enter fake numbers before entering the pin code to protect them from prying eyes.
The Yale RFID lock is ideal for metal gates, but outside of that, it is not necessarily the most intuitive for use on the front door. For this reason, you only have one place you can efficiently use, unlike smart locks for doors that are versatile and can be applied in various places.
4. Best Smart Padlock: Igloohome Smart Padlock
Why We Love It
Some people prefer the classic padlock locking system they know and love due to convenience and familiarity. With the Igloohome Smart Padlock, you can enjoy padlock functionality with the added security benefits and features of a smart lock. Best for locking up sheds, gates, bikes, and beyond, this secure padlock lets you unlock it from your smartphone without having to press any of the numbers on the padlock manually, making it perfect when you’re on the go and stopping you from having to keep track of numbers and codes.
It can withstand both wet and dry weather conditions without taking on damage, making it quite versatile in its use. You can even generate one-time pin codes to send to friends and family so that they can get in once, but not over and over.
Due to a padlock’s nature, it does not work well on standard doors that use a deadbolt-style lock. It works only with latches and loops, such as on garages, lockers, and bikes–anything the hook can wrap around. This may limit where you can use it around the house.
Regardless of the reason for wanting a smart lock, there is no denying they are quite useful and efficient. Perfect for letting people in on the go, locking up from a distance, or just giving you peace of mind, in this article, we’ve shown you the many benefits of owning a smart lock.