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Deadbolts are one of the most undervalued yet fully necessary lock hardware items. In our opinion, every home in Dorchester, MA should have one installed on at least the front door. Our Dorchester Locksmith pros are often asked, which is the best kind of lock to have for home use? As there are many kinds of valuable locks and hardware products on the market, it can be difficult to give one answer that fits all needs yet one simple lock always stands out; the deadbolt! This is true no matter what size or type of dwelling unit you have. Here in the greater Boston, MA area, we find housing that ranges from condos and mobile homes to luxury homes and mansions. Each and every one of these dwellings can benefit almost immediately by simply having a strong deadbolt installed on the front door.

There are more exciting locks

Sure, there are locks that offer more “pizazz” and flair than a simple deadbolt. Our Dorchester, MA locksmiths know that. After all, we install and service those locks all day long. But for the money spent, deadbolt locks can be a high valued item that can do wonders for both your home security and your peace of mind. In other words, deadbolt locks work. When installed correctly and purchased smartly, they work well. There is a catch, though; they must be used in order to be effective.

What am I missing?

People are sometimes surprised when we tell them all this. They start to wonder if they missed something. They might have invested in an alarm system or special security shutters. Some have added a dog, hoping that it will guard them well. In truth though, their homes are not as secure as they can really be until a proper deadbolt is added.

So, what is a deadbolt?

A residential deadbolt is a lock that is installed in the front door that has a steel bolt that goes directly into the door jamb and strike plate of the door frame. Most deadbolt locks are single cylinder bolt locks with a key slot on the outside and a knob in the inside for twisting the lock open. What makes this deadbolt lock so special? A correctly sized one that is functioning properly will not allow the door to be simply kicked in like you see in so many crime television shows. Since most home invasions or residential burglaries happen to be forced entry occasions, this kicking in the door to gain entry just won’t happen.

Another way that deadbolts help secure your home is by frustrating the crook. Let’s say a would-be burglar manages to somehow pick your main door lock. His triumphant moment is short-lived though. Now, he must bypass your deadbolt, as well. This is often too frustrating and time consuming for the burglar and they usually give up altogether or move on to another, easier to enter property. Still another problem for them is that this deadbolt barrier also buys you time to call for help or even to arm yourself. Seconds count when committing a crime (or preventing one!) and a good residential deadbolt can play a huge role in this.

One big problem!

What? There’s a problem with deadbolts? No, not really; the problem is that many people don’t use theirs. They get lazy and simply use the main door lock, if at all. There was a time, not too long ago, when it was quite natural to NOT lock your doors or windows, even at night. Neighbors freely went into houses, often without knocking. Of course, they also looked after each other’s houses and property. Now, with a majority of homeowners living in cities, people often never meet or get to know their neighbors. It’s not just the men that go to work now; women do too. For many, the act of actually locking the doors is rare or only done at night. Too many burglaries, home invasions, kidnappings and even rapes have occurred when crooks manage to simply walk into a home and accost the residents. Many of these can be prevented by simply having and using good locks on front and back doors. Locking the deadbolt along with the main door lock only takes a mere second but it can make a huge difference in your home safety and security.

I already have a deadbolt!

Is it a solid one that is properly installed? If so, remember to use it. The best deadbolt made will do you no good unless you do. Also, teach the other members of your household how to use it every time they lock or unlock the door. Good habits are developed over time so we encourage all Dorchester, MA homeowners and renters to use their deadbolts whenever possible.

I don’t have a deadbolt!

You don’t have a deadbolt? It’s time to get one! If you are renting, ask your landlord or property manager to have one installed. They should not look at this as an expense; it is an improvement to the property itself and thus increases its value. Also, the cost of buying and installing the deadbolt can be tax deductible so save all receipts for proof. Remember; in order for your deadbolt to work correctly, it must not be a flimsy product or installation. The steel bolt MUST extend fully into the hole in the door jamb. A metal strike plate should reinforce the hole that the bolt goes into. 3 inch screws should be used to reinforce the strike plate into the studs of the house’s frame.

Where to buy your deadbolt

Local stores like Wal-Mart, Target, Lowe’s and Home Depot sell deadbolts in all varieties. So do most hardware stores. You can also buy online at E-Bay, Amazon and other national retailers. One of the best sources for quality deadbolts and their installations is your local residential locksmith. Most shops offer affordable prices, same-day installations and repair services anytime you need them, including 24-hour emergency help.