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The 5 Best Electronic Deadbolts (2021 Review)

The This Old House Reviews team evaluated the best electronic deadbolts on the market to help you make a smart purchase. The products included in this article are available at various home improvement stores, local home centers, and online retailers like Amazon.

Kwikset 909 SmartCode Electronic Deadbolt

Have you ever lost your house keys and had to call a locksmith for help? If you don’t like paying to get back into your own home or hiding your key under the doormat or flower pot, an electronic deadbolt lock may be a good solution. Many of these locks have access codes along with a traditional key, giving you peace of mind that you won’t be locked out of your home again.

Besides two access options, smart locks have several other features to offer, including voice control, wireless connectivity, custom codes, and alarms. We compared five of the best electronic deadbolts on the market, synthesized customer reviews, and answered frequently asked questions to help you select the best smart lock for your home.

Best Overall: Schlage Connect Century Touchscreen Deadbolt Smart Lock

Schlage Electronic Deadbolt

Specs

  • Weight: 3.8 pounds
  • Dimensions: 4.5 inches x 5.1 inches x 9.2 inches
  • Finishes: Aged Bronze, Bright Brass, Bright Chrome, Matte Black, Satin Nickel
  • Batteries Required: 4 AA
  • Warranty: 1-year

Pros

  • Compatible with Alexa voice control
  • Stores up to 30 user codes
  • Built-in alarm and vibration sensor
  • Z-Wave technology for locking and unlocking
  • Available in five finishes

Cons

  • Unable to add or remove codes via phone
  • Weak battery life

Best Value: Kwikset 909 SmartCode Electronic Deadbolt

Kwikset Electronic Deadbolt

Specs

  • Weight: 1.5 pounds
  • Dimensions: 3.5 inches x 5.4 inches x 9.9 inches
  • Finishes: Polished Brass, Satin Nickel, Venetian Bronze
  • Batteries Required: 4 AA
  • Warranty: 1-year

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Single-touch locking
  • Backlit keypad
  • Bump proof
  • Auto-lock feature

Cons

  • Only stores up to 8 user codes
  • Louder than the average lock
  • Only three finishes available

#3: Samsung Digital Door Lock

Samsung Electronic Deadbolt

Specs

  • Weight: 3.05 pounds
  • Dimensions: 2.7 inches x 1.5 inches x 7.1 inches
  • Finishes: Black
  • Batteries Required: 4 AA
  • Warranty: 1-year

Pros

  • Modern design
  • Away and silent modes
  • Battery alarm
  • Double authentication with codes and RFID tags
  • Emergency power supply
  • Bump proof

Cons

  • No Wi-Fi or Bluetooth capability
  • Only available in black finish

#4: Yale Assure Lock with Z-Wave

Yale Assure Deadbolt

Specs

  • Weight: 3.5 pounds
  • Dimensions: 5.5 inches x 5.5 inches x 10 inches
  • Finishes: Bronze, Satin Nickel, Brass
  • Batteries Required: 4 AA
  • Warranty: 1-year

Pros

  • One-touch locking
  • Keyless entry
  • Compatible with Alexa, Ring Alarm, Samsung SmartThings, Wink, and ADT
  • Volume control options
  • Stores up to 250 codes
  • Rubber seal for weather protection

Cons

  • Weak battery life
  • Unable to unlock with Bluetooth or Siri
  • Only three finishes available

#5: MiLocks Electronic Keyless Entry Touchpad Deadbolt

MiLocks Electronic Deadbolt

Specs

  • Weight: 2.56 pounds
  • Dimensions: 6.2 inches x 3 inches x 7 inches
  • Finishes: Antique Brass, Oil-Rubbed Bronze, Polished Brass, Satin Nickel
  • Batteries Required: 4 AA
  • Warranty: 1-year

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Keyless entry
  • Backlit keypad

Cons

  • Only stores up to 6 user codes
  • No automatic lock or Bluetooth functionality
  • Interior cover is made of plastic

Buying an Electronic Deadbolt: Things To Consider

Protocol

You have multiple options for connecting the smart lock to your phone and other smart devices. The most common protocols are Z-Wave, Bluetooth, and Wi-Fi.

Bluetooth

The benefit of having a Bluetooth lock is that it will consume less battery compared to one with Wi-Fi. A disadvantage is that the range isn’t as wide. Unlike Z-Wave, a Bluetooth lock will connect directly to your phone, which is convenient but, if you have many smart devices, it may be more convenient to have a Z-Wave hub.

Z-Wave Technology

Z-Wave technology connects the lock to a compatible hub such as Wink Hub, SmartThings, and Iris. The hub must be connected to the internet but your Z-Wave devices don’t need to be, instead, they use Z-Wave connectivity to communicate with the hub. The range of Z-Wave connections can be increased by connecting more devices carrying the Z-Wave signal.

Wi-Fi

Wi-Fi is available with some models as a built-in feature with some locks. Other devices offer accessories to connect the Bluetooth device to a Wi-Fi network.

Code Customization

If you’re planning to install the lock at a location with multiple residents, code customization is a helpful feature. Most locks allow several codes at a time, so you can assign a code to each person. Some devices will also track which code was used to open the lock.

Security Features

While a smart lock does not necessarily make your home more secure than a regular lock, these locks do offer a variety of security features. These include alarms, auto-lock, double authentication, bump proofing, etc. For instance, you can set the Kwikset Electronic Deadbolt to lock automatically after 30 seconds. The Samsung Digital Door Lock requires double authentication: code and RFID tag. The Kwikset and Samsung locks are also “bump proof,” which means they cannot be picked by “bumping,” a lock picking technique that involves striking a bump key to dislodge the pins inside a lock.

Keypad

Depending on the device, there may be a touch screen or digital keypad. One thing to consider with the keypad is visibility in both dark and very bright conditions. Some keyboards are backlit to help with visibility.

Design

Many electronic deadbolts are installed on front doors, so it may be important to you that the design and finish of the deadbolt match with the rest of the home’s aesthetic. Most of the locks we reviewed are available in common finishes of satin nickel, bronze, and brass. The Samsung smart lock has a modern, black finish.

Sound

The noise produced by the lock can be an important factor if you have children or adults in your home who may be disturbed by the sound. Some locks have a silent mode to minimize disturbance.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best type of electronic lock?

It depends on what type of lock you’re comfortable with and what features you value. A majority of devices have a standard lock to accompany the smart lock system. Another option is a keyless device. Once you know which type you prefer most, research customer reviews about the additional features that the lock offers.

How do you install an electronic lock?

Ask This Old House host, Kevin O’Connor, outlines the steps to install an electronic deadbolt lock as follows:

  1. Using a screwdriver, unscrew the current deadbolt plate.
  2. Remove the plate.
  3. Using a screwdriver, unscrew the back plate of the deadbolt.
  4. Match the back plates to the current back plate.
  5. Using the new back plate, insert screws into the deadbolt mechanism and secure it with a screwdriver.
  6. Match the adapter piece from the kit to correspond with the current lock, then insert it into the electronic lock.
  7. Install the electronic lock onto the back plate and clamp it down.
  8. Download the electronic lock’s app to your smartphone and follow the steps for calibration.

What are the pros and cons of the different locking methods?

Each locking method has its benefits and drawbacks. The drawback of metal keys and key cards is that they can be damaged or misplaced. With codes, the 4-digits can be confused, forgotten, or stolen. A benefit of codes is that they can be changed relatively easily. In the case of physical keys, the changing process will require the services of a locksmith. A drawback of electronic systems is that the remote capabilities cannot be used in the event of a power failure though they will still lock and unlock with battery power.