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Things Installers Need to Know About Smart Locks

Smart locks have become more popular as home automation technology has grown in recent years and dealers should take notice since extra revenue can be gained by simply including connected locks in their home automation offerings. We live in a technological world where old, traditional things of the past such as phones, watches, and homes are now smart. Locks are no different. Smart locks are easy to install and becoming safer than traditional keyed locks. They offer various features that integrate the use of smartphones so that homeowners can easily enter their homes without having to use an actual key. Plus, offering customers smart locks can actually help them feel more comfortable interacting with their home automation and security systems, which is a great way to gain their trust and repeat business.

Like various types of home automation systems that use various protocols to communicate with other smart devices, smart locks are the same. Z-Wave, Zigbee, Bluetooth and WiFi are just some of the protocols most often used. Smart locks also come in a variety of designs, including key free, deadbolt, and leverset – some have push button keypads while others offer touchscreens. Almost all of them offer a way to provide personal security codes and the ability to lock or unlock the door via a home controller or a smartphone app. Smart locks can also communicate with other smart home devices. The home security system can be armed as soon as the front door is locked at night and it can be disarmed as soon as it’s unlocked. Or the lights at home, including the thermostat, can be automatically turned on as well just by unlocking the front door. These are just several examples of what smart locks can do. For a deeper look into their features, we listed several of them below that could be considered in any home automation installation.

Kwikset Smart Locks

Protocols: Z-Wave, Zigbee, Bluetooth
Types: Deadbolt, Leverset, Touchscreen
Battery Powered: AA Batteries

kwikset_locksHome Connect Technology: Not only will Home Connect Technology allow Kwikset smart locks to communicate with other smart home devices, but also provide homeowners complete control of their smart locks from anywhere using smartphones, tablets, or other Internet connected devices. Home automation systems can be activated just by locking or unlocking the front door. For example, using a home controller or smartphone, a scene can be created to have the home security system turn off while having certain lights turn on whenever the Kwikset smart lock is unlocked.

SmartCode Technology: Homeowners will be able  to create personal codes for family members or temporary codes for visitors, eliminating the need for keys. Smart locks include back-lit keypads for increased visibility and a one-touch motorized locking mechanism for remote locking or unlocking using a home controller or smartphone app. Homeowners will also be able to keep track of who enters or exits their homes by receiving notifications on their phones whenever certain codes are used – a feature parents will appreciate because they’ll know exactly when their kids arrive home from school.

Kevo Lock: Kevo deadbolts can be locked or unlocked with the touch of a finger whenever the Kevo detects the presence of a Bluetooth device that has an authorized virtual eKey. By keeping a smartphone in a pocket, the homeowner will be able to touch the deadbolt to open it. Kevo locks can also be controlled by a smartphone, keep track of who enters a home, and communicate with other smart home products.

Schlage Smart Locks

Protocols: Z-Wave
Types: Deadbolt, Touchscreen
Battery Powered: AA Batteries

schbe469nxcenxSchlage Connect: Having the highest residential security grading (ANSI Grade 1), Schlage Connect smart locks offer numerous smart features that will help secure homes all while communicating with other home automation devices using Z-Wave technology. Some Schlage smart locks come with built-in alarm functionality that allow homeowners to moderate and select from various types of alarm modes (activity, tamper, and forced entry). Once the selected alarm mode detects an occurrence, a loud audible alert will be emitted to notify the homeowner. Schlage smart locks also have fingerprint resistant touchscreens to keep unauthorized users from seeing which digits were pressed and they’re designed with an anti-pick shield to protect against lock tampering. Up to 30 access codes can be used for family members, friends, or visitors and the smart locks could be controlled remotely when paired with a third-party home automation or alarm system.

Yale Smart Locks

Protocols: Z-Wave, Zigbee
Types: Deadbolt, Leverset, Touchscreen
Battery Powered: AA Batteries

yale_locksAssure Lock: Yale smart locks can be integrated into most home automation and security systems with a Yale Network Module for advanced smart home features and remote access using Z-Wave or ZigBee technology. Unique pin codes (4 to 8 digits long) can be created for family members, friends, or visitors, and up to 250 codes can be created when using an integrator.

Assure Lock with Bluetooth: Smartphones are the keys of the future when using Assure Lock with Bluetooth deadbolts. To unlock the door, homeowners will use Twist & Go technology, a unique and easy method that consists of rotating the smartphone in landscape orientation then back to portrait. This rotation wakes up the lock and gets the digital key ready for use. Once the rotation is done, the only thing the homeowner has to do is tap the checkmark on the lock keypad to unlock the door. Twist & Go technology prevents unwarranted or unintended access, which can occur often with other Bluetooth enabled locks.

T1L: No keyhole, no problem. The T1L deadbolt uses touchscreen technology to gain access and has a built-in Z-Wave module for easy integration into a Z-Wave network. Up to 250 user codes could be created for family members, friends, or visitors. As one of the smallest residential keypads on the market, it doesn’t include a keyhole in its design, which gives it a sleek modern look and prevents lock picking and bumping. It also incorporates a battery proof design in case the battery dies. A 9V battery could be connected directly at the base of the unit for enough power to enter the code and unlock the door.

LockState Smart Locks

Protocols: WiFi
Types: Deadbolt, Leverset
Battery Powered: 6V, AA Batteries

lock_stateRemoteLock: LockState smart locks are WiFi enabled to connect directly to homeowners’ existing routers. This means homeowners will be able to lock or unlock their door remotely from anywhere in the world just by using a web-enabled device. With the use of the LockState Connect App or an online account, homeowners will be able to control and manage their LockState smart lock to create user access codes or temporary codes (up to a 1,000), view lock history, and set up scheduled access times for users (Eg. Monday – Friday, 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.). LockState smart locks have illuminated keypads for easy viewing and include two standard cut keys for manual use.

Ring Doorbells: LockState smart locks are compatible with Ring WiFi enabled doorbells. This allows homeowners to remotely unlock their doors for visitors or delivery personnel that activate the Ring doorbell. For example, if the homeowner is away at work but is expecting an important UPS delivery at home, the homeowner can remotely unlock the front door to allow the package to be placed in the house after receiving a phone notification by the Ring doorbell that the UPS delivery personal activated.

If you’re interested in installing smart lock devices but need assistance, please call our toll free number at 800-266-8765 (7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Pacific, Monday – Friday) for free support and product advice.

1 Comment on Things Installers Need to Know About Smart Locks

  1. Good article – and good that you bring up the options. However, the article needs to be augmented, since two additional sources of error, due to cross-Atlantic incompabilities, have to be considered as well:

    1) The difference in US and EU z-wave frequencies. More often than not, this important information is left out of product descriptions, and the buyer may end up with an automation that won’t work.

    2) The differnce between US and EU standard form factors for door locks/levers. It’s a roayal (or presidental…) pain, but nevertheless a fact that does inhibit cross-Atlantic applicability – and hence it needs to be contained in the product description.

    Yours
    Per Hertz

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