Important considerations when choosing a smart door lock
There are a number of important points to consider when selecting a keyless door lock, also called a touchscreen deadbolt or keypad deadbolt. These considerations include security features, compatibility, installation, and user-friendliness. A Vivint tech can help you compare features to make the selection process effortless.
In addition to basic security and saving you from being locked out, smart keyless door locks have many security features to increase your peace of mind. You can check the status of the lock remotely and lock the door if someone forgets to lock it.
Many smart locks also offer enhanced security features such as one-time access codes and date-limited access codes that allow access only during scheduled times and days. These limited access features are excellent for owners who rent out their home for short-stay vacationers.
Some smart locks also use biometrics such as a fingerprint scanner for quick entry. Biometric entry smart locks also protect against unwanted eyes watching you enter your code on the keypad.
To further enhance your lock’s security, two-factor authentication should be used for the lock’s phone app and website login. When shopping for a smartphone connected lock, make sure the door lock you choose supports two-factor authentication, and then remember to set it up on the app and website login screens.
Another tip for keeping your keyless door lock secure is to clean your lock’s keypad buttons or touchscreen keypad regularly. Top-quality backlit digital keypads and touchscreens are constructed from durable materials, but repeated use can wear out pads or leave smudges on touchscreens, potentially exposing your access code. A quick wipe down every so often will keep your buttons and screen clean and secure.
Smart assistants like Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and Apple Siri offer the convenient ability to use voice commands for locking and unlocking doors. However, it's important to consider the potential security implications before enabling voice control. By weighing the benefits and risks, you can make an informed decision about whether or not to use voice commands for your home security system.
Compatibility with your door
Different keyless deadbolt door locks can have different physical installation requirements and limitations. The most important dimensions are the door thickness, the distance from the center of the key tumbler to the edge of the door, and the diameter of the existing holes.
Most keyless door locks fit standard doors that meet these requirements:
- 1 3/8 inches to 2 inches thick.
- The deadbolt hole in the door hole is 1 1/2 inches or 2 1/8 inches in diameter.
- The backset is 2 3/8 inches or 2 3/4 inches.
- The bolt hole at the edge of the door is 1 inch in diameter.
If your door isn’t the standard size, there’s no need to worry. Vivint offers professional installation with its smart locks to ensure proper fit and optimal security.
Smart locks are a convenient and innovative way to secure your home and can be easily integrated into your current door setup by replacing or attaching to the existing deadbolt. However, it’s important to note that installation can be challenging if your door is warped or if your current deadbolt is non-standard.
If you suspect that your door hardware or deadbolt may not be standard, or if you simply want to avoid the frustration of a challenging installation process, have a professional from Vivint perform the installation for you.
Vivint’s trained technicians have the expertise and experience to install your smart lock quickly and ensure your smart lock is fully functional and secure. By choosing professional installation, you can save time and hassle while also enjoying peace of mind knowing that your smart lock is installed correctly.
When shopping for a keyless door lock, it’s helpful to find one with a backlit keypad or touchscreen that’s easy to operate. The same is true for the lock’s phone apps, especially if you plan on using advanced functions such as one-time access codes, scheduled or time-limited codes, entry/exit log review, and more.
Unless your keyless deadbolt door lock is externally powered, you will also have to change or recharge the batteries that power the deadbolt door lock. The steps to do this should be user-friendly and not require special tools or be so cumbersome that you’d rather let the battery go dead and revert to using the backup key.
Keyless entry door lock installation
Two of the reasons why people purchase keyless door locks are ease of use and peace of mind. For these same reasons, you may want to have your Vivint keyless door lock installed by a Vivint professional, even if you’re skilled at DIY.
Professional installation is especially important for smart locks that operate through your internet router, home security system, or home automation system. Configuration errors can create vulnerabilities for hackers, so making sure your smart lock is properly installed will help keep your family safe.
Additionally, electronic door locks that require a power source should have a backup source of power or a backup key in case of power failure.
Maintenance and troubleshooting
Every keyless door lock is different, so you should consult the manual for your lock or contact customer support to make sure you are following all of the manufacturer's guidelines.
You should test your lock as recommended and be aware of the charge level of its battery. Unless your lock is externally powered, the single most important thing — and the most common point of failure — is the battery.
Smart locks with Bluetooth, wi-fi, or z-wave communication allow you to check battery status via smartphone or website, and also send low battery notification alerts to your phone. For smart locks without a network or smartphone connection, status lights or low battery warning tones indicate the need for battery replacement or recharging.
Sometimes firmware updates are needed for smart door locks with built-in Wi-Fi or Bluetooth connectivity. It is extremely important to keep your smart lock’s firmware up to date in case security patches are needed.