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Consider before buying a smart lock

Time:2020-08-04 Views:204

As mentioned, not every smart lock is the same – different locks use different protocols, different ways of unlocking, and more. Here are a few things to consider before buying a smart lock:


Consider why you’re buying a smart lock

Before you buy a smart lock, there’s something you should know, smart locks are helpful more because they’re convenient. But certainly, compared to a completely open keyhole, the smart lock can help extend the time for breaking into the house.  

Is your door compatible?

Smart locks are aimed for more functions and situations.

If you need to push or pull on your door to properly lock it, then a smart lock may not work properly – you won’t be there to push or pull when your door is locking and unlocking itself. 

You’ll also want to make sure the lock is able to fully extend into the jamb. Your smart lock will always try to extend fully, and if it can’t the locks motor might get burnt out more easily. Of course, both of these issues can be fixed, but you’ll want to make sure they are before you try and install your smart lock. 

How would you like your smart lock to connect to the internet / your phone?

There are a few different connection standards used with smart locks – as is the case with any smart home device. Most will use multiple standards to connect to your phone and other devices, but you’ll want to check the lock before you buy it. 

The first, and perhaps most common, standard is Bluetooth. It’s common because it doesn’t use much power, especially compared to Wi-Fi. That’s an important thing to consider, since most smart locks will be battery powered. 

Bluetooth, however, only works within a certain range. So, that said, if you’re not near your lock, you won’t be able to lock or unlock it. The good thing about Bluetooth, however, is that you don’t need another hub to use it.

Another standard is Z-Wave, and it requires a separate hub in order for you to be able to control the lock from your smartphone. Normally, that hub also connects to Wi-Fi. Z-Wave has a range of around 120 feet, however if you have multiple Z-Wave devices, they can each act as a range extender so, with enough products, the range can be extended to up to 600 feet.

The third and final common standard is Wi-Fi, and it’s normally available as an optional add-on – like our two types, FM-01 and FM-60. In that case, you’ll need to buy a separate component that connects to a power-outlet and then bridges the connection between the lock’s Bluetooth and your Wi-Fi. The plus side of that is that you can control the lock anywhere you have Wi-Fi – so if you’re on holiday and your friend needs to get in, you can unlock the door for them.

How do you want to unlock your lock?

Most smart locks also have a traditional keyhole so if you don’t necessarily feel comfortable relying on your smart lock 100% of the time, then you don’t have to.

Still, some smart locks are keyless, so you’ll need to consider whether or not that’s something you’re comfortable with. Of course, some locks use something else over a keyhole – for example, many of them have a touchpad with which you can install a PIN code to unlock them. 

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