How To Choose The Best Smart Lock For Your Home
Remember those times you fumbled to look for your house keys while carrying your baby, holding onto grocery bags and ended up flustering about how you will always put your key in a compartment to find it easier the next round but it never happens? Do you also remember those times when you were rushing out for a meeting and midway through your drive you suddenly asked yourself the dreaded question – did I lock my doors property?
Gone are those days with smart locks growing in popularity, and it’s easy to see why. You can unlock or lock your door with a click of a button, and you can even see the lock history and lock the door remotely. If you are not at home and you need to grant access to the housekeeper or guest in, you can do so without being there physically.
However, do take note of these 5 considerations before you make your smart lock purchase because they do not come cheap and you also want to make sure you get the best deal out there without compromising on the safety aspect!
Can you link your smart lock to smart doorbells?
If you want to have smart devices at home, make sure they are compatible to be used together. If your existing devices use different technology, you must decide if you want to streamline them either now or down the road. You may be only considering getting a smart lock now, but down the road, you may want to get a smart doorbell, so make sure they can work hand in hand.
What if your phone runs out of battery?
Maybe your phone ran out of battery, maybe the lock battery just died. Even the best smart lock system can fail you so make sure you have that figured out because you don’t want to break into your own house. In these instances, the ideal backup method is a keypad. Moreover, keypads are also highly beneficial when it comes to creating temporary keys for guest access as you are able to change the login code as and when you need to. Most importantly, make sure the smart lock can be accessed by the traditional key as well!
Very few homes run electrical wiring right to their doors, which means that smart locks rely on batteries for power. The four most common connection integrations are Z-Wave, Zigbee, Bluetooth, and WiFi.
Why does the type of wireless connection affect battery life? Z-Wave and Zigbee can both operate using very low power, whereas WiFi requires far more. Bluetooth uses relatively little power but also features a lower bandwidth.
No matter which type of wireless connection you use, then take a look at battery life and consider what is feasible for you. If this is for a rental property you don’t frequently visit, then a longer battery life may be more important compared to your home, where you can more frequently change out batteries with ease so that you don’t have to do double work of running around.
How convenient is the auto-unlock?
Not only can keys be hard to find, your phone can get lost in the bag too. Check out options such as an auto-unlock feature once your smartphone arrives at the front door.
All of our homes already come with a door, so can the lock be slotted in that easily? For instance, retrofit style smart locks can be configured to work left hand or right hand. However, smart locks that completely replace the old deadbolt must be purchased for the correct handedness. A gentle advice is that when it comes time to install your new smart lock, the deadbolt must align correctly with the strike plate. If there’s a lot of friction when you try to lock your deadbolt, your smart lock motor won’t be powerful enough to consistently lock/unlock the bolt.
[Image source: House photo created by rawpixel.com]
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