Front entry handleset with keypad deadbolt

Regardless of the reason – because you want to update to a modern look, upgrading to a more secure lock other than the one that came with your house or the kids just keep losing the key, there could be many reasons that a homeowner would want to change their front door locksets. There are many types of locks – from knobs or lever type to a traditional keyed or electronic lock, sometimes called a keyless door lock. Some type of door locks might be available in only 2 or 3 colors or finishes and other types of door locks could be in as many as 8 or 9 finishes. Be aware of that as you shop because if you are dead set on a particular color or finish to match your door it might limit your choices.


Entry knob with single cylinder deadbolt showing interior thumbturn

First and foremost, above all else, the purpose of a front door lock is to keep the people and possessions inside your home safe from outside elements. In addition to the lever or knob, there is also a deadbolt that is packaged with the lever or can be bought separately, however the style and color can still be matched with the lever. For an extra layer of security, some homeowners have added an additional deadbolt, it is a one-sided deadbolt and none of the parts can be seen from the outside. This is beneficial because even the best traditional keyed deadbolt can still be thwarted but the one-sided deadbolt cannot.

Lock Quality

All front door locks, locksets and deadbolts are graded, either 1, 2 or 3. Technically, any grade lock can be used in a residential application provided it is a cylindrical lock but with residential deadbolts, Grade 2 is typically used. Grade 3 costs less than grade 1 or 2 those are usually used in commercial applications. Also, grade 3 locks are usually more decorative for use in residential applications than grade 1 or 2 locksets which are usually used in commercial buildings. The grading system was developed by BHMA (Builders Hardware Manufacturers Association) for locks where they are tested for number of cycles, finish durability and impact resistance among other criteria. More information can be found here.


Kwikset Obsidian Deadbolt Keypad

Accessibility, in this case, refers to if the lock can be opened with a key, code or a smartphone app using Bluetooth. Some locks come with both a key and an electronic means of operation. This is in case the code is forgotten and your smartphone or the lock is out of power. And if you have children, the code or smartphone app is more likely a better option than the keyed lock due to kids always losing their key but will rarely lose their phone.

If you are buying new front door locks or any door locks for a residence that you will be selling or renting you might want to think about using levers throughout instead of a knob. Most public and commercial spaces by now have changed their locks to levers due to the American with Disabilities Act. Levers, not knobs, are easier to use for those with a physical impairment.

A Lock for All Types

As you shop online for front door locksets for your entry door you will see that there are multiple choices. Sometimes, with so many options it can seem overwhelming, especially if you are not prepared with the information to make a knowledgeable selection. With so many options in the marketplace for front door locks, the information provided here on is to help in your selection process and make all the options seem less daunting.