Adding a Deadbolt to Your House Door

A popular request I receive every day from customers is “do you install deadbolts?” The answer is yes! Installing a deadbolt is one of the most basic services Suncoast Locksmith offers. Adding a deadbolt to a door is one of the biggest ways to stop unauthorized entry through a particular doorway.

A deadbolt is just that, when the bolt is extended into the door frame it falls into a deadlocked “closed” position. The bolt cannot be forced into the retracted “open” position by intentionally manipulating the bolt. It has to be extended and retracted by the key and only the key.

A deadbolt lock is much more secure than a doorknob. A door knob latch can be manipulated by forcing the latch open with any kind of tool such as a screwdriver. Door knobs are commonly opened by using a butter knife or sliding a credit card between the door and door frame. A deadbolt can not be opened this way period.

Deadbolts come in three grades, ranked by quality and construction. A grade 1 deadbolt lock is considered to be the best of the best. Usually made of hardened steel and precision machined parts. A common place to find a grade one deadbolt is an institutional application such as a bank, government facility, or highly secured facility that requires the very best security that is available.

One can expect a high dollar cost for grade one deadbolts, typical prices range from $100-$300 per lock. These locks also come in a variety of keys; normal everyday keys or high security do not duplicate keys.

Our second grade of locks is designated as Grade 2. Grade 2 deadbolts are designed with the intention that a certain budget must be met but at the same time achieve the best amount of security at a cost-effective price. Grade 2 locks are made of steel that is thicker than Grade 3 but of lesser quality steel than Grade 1 deadbolts.

Grade 2 deadbolts can be found in places like retail stores and restaurants. Internal parts are less massive yet serve a good life span and great security. The price range for Grade 2 locks is typical $85-$175 per lock and also can be retrofitted with a variety of styles of keys ranging from common keys to high-security keys.

Grade 3 deadbolts are the cheapest and lowest quality locks found in the mass marketplace. Aimed at the consumer who prefers the cheapest option. Almost all locks sold in big box retail stores are Grade 3 locks. Grade 3 deadbolts are very cheaply mass-produced.

They usually are made from inferior metals commonly acquired through recycled scraped steel. The interior parts of these locks are very flimsy and are designed for only a small life cycle. Some of these locks actually break during the installation process.  Unfortunately these locks a marketed to the consumer by means of misinformation and fancy packaging.

Packaging usually consists of brand names that use intimidating wording and symbols that represent high-security devices. This sways the consumer into thinking they are purchasing a super-strong lock when in fact they are the complete opposite. The price range for Grade 3 locks is typically from $5-$25. Yes, you do get what you pay for!

As a professional locksmith, I inform my customers of the grading system and show examples of the internal construction of these locks. After a quick discussion and recommendation, the choice is always up to you. If you are a homeowner I will always recommend Grade 2 locks.

If you are a business with a commercial building I will recommend Grade 1 locks. I simply never recommend grade 3 locks period. I believe it is my responsibility to bring this to your attention because there will be a time when your new deadbolts will be attacked by the bad guy. It’s my job to show you how to secure your home and business the right way.

Contact Suncoast Locksmith if you have any questions or to request locksmith services near St. Petersburg, Florida.
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