Choosing Digital Door Locks for Your Smart Home

What are Digital Door Locks?

If you’ve ever been locked out of home because you forgot your keys, you’ll appreciate the convenience of digital locks. Using a passcode, biometric input, smartphone app, or card-based unlocking methods, digital locks are popular alternatives to their traditional counterparts.

With the wide range of products available in the market now, you should be able to find a digital lock to fit your budget and needs. Start by learning the kinds of digital door locks available:

Types of Digital Door Locks

Door with smart digital lock

When choosing a digital lock for your home, consider the unlocking method that best suits your family.  

1. Passcode Digital Locks

G-Swipe 2019 digital lock
The G-Swipe 2019 supports a passcode combination of up to 30 digits, providing an extra layer of security

User-friendly and affordable, passcode digital locks are one of the most common types in Singapore. Just key in the passcode and you’re good to go (or enter)!

2. Biometric Digital Locks
Homeowners can also opt for biometric locks. These options are quickly gaining popularity for their convenience – you just need to register your fingerprints, no need to remember passcodes!

The Yale Intelligent YDM 4109RLalso comes with the scramble code – a feature that allows homeowners to enter random combinations before keying in the actual passcode, to reduce its exposure to individuals who might be in close proximity

As the “passcode” for these locks is a fingerprint that cannot be easily replicated, this extra level of security also means that access is limited to homeowners – a double-edged sword, especially if your family members were to make unannounced visits.

3. Bluetooth Digital Locks
These locks are configured to work with a companion smartphone app. With just a few taps, you can unlock your door from your smartphone. But this also means that you won’t be able to lock or unlock your doors if your device runs out of juice.

4. Key Card/RFID Digital Locks
Instead of a passcode, physical key cards are used to grant homeowners and anyone else with the card (family members, close friends) access to homes.

Yale YDR 3110 digital lock
Offering both passcode and key card access, the Yale YDR 3110 features an invisible touchpad that omits potential fingerprint marks, to prevent anyone from guessing the passcode

While this digital lock system is convenient and allows easy access, the cards, as with conventional house keys, run the risk of being misplaced.

DIY or Professional Installation?

For popular digital locks, typically DIY installation guides are available online. While not overly complex, installing the locks on your own might require some time (and effort!), especially if it’s your first time. Also, do note that some brands may void the warranty of their locks unless they are installed by their approved contractors.

The easiest and most time-effective option is to have the locks professionally installed. While in some cases installation charges are waived, some may require an additional charge of S$100 to S$200.

This process is usually quick and fuss-free, where the vendors may also provide you with tips to make the most out of your new lock.

Changing the Batteries of Your Digital Lock

For battery-operated locks, expect to replace the batteries on a yearly basis. The battery compartment should be easily accessed from the inside of your door. It’s also important to check that the batteries aren’t leaking as this can cause your locks to malfunction.

More than just a lock and key, these affordable smart devices offer both convenience and security, making digital door locks worthy investments for your home.

A version of this article on digital door locks was first published on HomeRenoGuru, an online renovation platform that connects homeowners with interior designers.