Here are some signs that your deadbolt will protect you.

How To Know If Your Deadbolt Is Effective

January 24th, 2017 by

Here are some signs that your deadbolt will protect you.

If your front door doesn't have a deadbolt, it isn't secure. In fact, a normal latched door that lacks this type of lock can be broken down with just a sharp kick. This certainly isn't enough to keep burglars out.

Most locksmiths will recommend securing your front door with a steel bolt mechanism that extends into the frame. But it's worth noting that not all deadbolts are created equal. Some cheap or poorly-installed models may not offer much more protection than nothing at all. 

Here are some tips for determining whether your door will withstand force:

  • Look for a strong strike plate. While the steel bolt is important, it's only half of a lock mechanism. The bolt needs to extend into the door jamb, and the strike plate surrounds that hole to improve strength. Strike plates should be secured into the wooden jamb with at least four screws that are long enough to extend into the frame itself.
  • Make sure the bolt can extend all the way. Deadbolts are designed so when they are fully extended, they cannot be pushed back in except by turning a key or a latch. However, poorly drilled holes may not be long enough for the bolt to extend. This means that a burglar could, in theory, use a thin object to work the bolt back open.
  • Get a bolt of the right length. At a minimum, deadbolts should be at least 1 inch long. The longer it is, the harder the door will be to breach.

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