11 Questions About Smart Locks Answered
In case you’re hoping to outsmart hackers with the help of the high technology factor in your home, you should need to think about a smart lock.
These smart locks can easily eliminate the requirement for physical keys and can be controlled through an application on your cell phone.
Plus, they offer you comfort and an additional layer of home security & privacy.
As you know, the technology in the market keeps on advancing day by day, the locks continue getting smarter and more intelligent, and they’re a popular choice for individuals looking to secure their families & homes.
Now, you need to think about purchasing a smart lock for your home.
I would love to help you with those questions & provide you with the exact answers or factors, you need to know before getting a smart lock.
Down Below, I’ve tried answering the top unanswered questions in every detail.
- What does a smart lock do?
- Are smart locks waterproof or weatherproof?
- Are smart locks a good idea?
- Are smart locks reliable?
- Do smart locks need Wi-Fi?
- Do smart locks need power?
- How long do batteries last in smart locks?
- How to improve the battery life of your smart lock?
- Do smart locks have cameras?
- Should my smart lock have a camera?
- Reasons why your smart lock isn’t working?
- Final Words
What does a smart lock do?
All traditional door locks, from those old ones that open with a physical key to the modern ones, smart locks have two sections, a locking component to make the door and the key secure.
However, the key doesn’t generally need to be physical. Smart locks are a kind of electronic locks that utilize Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, or both to give you virtual control of your door lock by using an application on your cell phone.
Different locks offer various functionalities & features. However, here are a couple of essential things smart locks can do:
Safer access to your home
These locks give you access to your home through an entrance code, which you can change whenever you want.
You don’t need to get stressed over additional keys floating around or about the threat of lost keys.
Whenever anybody needs to get in, you can give them access with just a tap on your application. You can set boundaries concerning how long those entrance codes work as well.
Easier access to your home
If you’ve ever remained at your front door, arms stacked down with bags, frantically digging your pockets for your keys, then you got to realize how disappointing that can be.
With smart locks, as far as you have your cell phone with you, the door will unlock automatically when you’re in the range of that lock. In different cases, you’ll need to tap something on your application.
Provides e-keys to your guests
Did a relative appear early, or would you say you are stuck at the workplace when somebody urgently needs to get into the house? Do you have a partner visiting your company?
With smart locks, you can send e-keys to the individuals who need to enter your home.
These e-keys can be erased as needed.
Just imagine, having the option to “copy” keys and delete keys without an additional expense! Smart locks offer numerous comforts, yet this might be the best one.
Works with your outdoors & indoors as well
If you have a workroom or a wine room that you need private and secured, just select the individuals that can enter inside, Indoor smart locks are available too.
You can ensure just those with the password can open them. You would now be able to have confidence your indoor and outdoor regions are secured.
There is an assortment of designs, styles, or, sizes including the kinds of door handles and doorknobs, available to improve or mix flawlessly with your current stylistic decor.
Provides a safety net to your home
Traditional locks may appear to be a safe option yet, even the most solid of locks can be picked.
Smart locks are a lot harder to mess with.
Since smart locks depend on advanced codes rather than physical components, it’s tough to get in without the correct combination.
Monitor your home
Smart locks likewise permit you to monitor who’s going and coming to your home and how long they remain there.
Some likewise work with smart cameras and doorbells so you can perceive what’s happening while they’re in your home also.
Most of the smart locks likewise permit you to monitor, if the door is unlocked or locked which implies that there’s no need to stress about it, even if you forgot to lock the door.
Smart locks give you the ability to keep an eye on your property without being there.
Even if you’re out of the city, you can still handle the monitoring of your homes like check-ins and check-outs of visitors and property managers.
Along with you have an internet connection, you’ll have the option to check lock history, offer and share e-keys and considerably do more.
Coordinate with other smart appliances of your home
Many smart locks can be coordinated with other smart home appliances.
That implies you can likewise control your locks with voice orders through your Google Home, Siri, Alexa, or other smart home gadgets, you just need to pair these apps with your home devices.
Works with your existing system or provides a new one
Some smart locks can be combined with existing deadbolt systems as an additional layer of security.
You additionally have the choice of completely changing your system, permitting the smart lock to serve as the only lock.
Even some models still incorporate a conventional keyhole for instances where you may require one.
With one of these options, it is so simple to find the right smart lock that is ideal for your home or office.
Gives a modern look to your home
With smart locks, you can have both, the security & the high-tech visual appearance for your home.
The design of the smart lock is super modern, an impression of their super modern comfort.
Smart locks come in a wide range of styles: silver, dark matte, chrome, and so on. Regardless of your home decor or style, you can easily find a smart appealing lock, that is perfect for your home.
Are smart locks waterproof or weatherproof?
It might sound weird, one of the most widely recognized culprits for the poor performance of lock is changing climate conditions.
Throughout the spring months, rising temperatures can cause door edges to grow or expand, putting a crush on deadbolts and frequently making them to stuck.
At the point, when the winter season is there or the weather is rainy, cool temperatures can cause door edges to contract, which can make a slight misalignment between a door and its lock.
Therefore, it can turn out to be significantly harder to bolt the door with a key, and in many cases, it probably won’t be possible to bolt or open the door by any means.
Changing to keyless locks can limit these kinds of issues since you’re managing an integrated unit that doesn’t need a key to be embedded to work.
You should simply need to enter the code, and the lock will automatically get secure or open the door without any problem.
To the extent climate-related issues go, there are a few smart locks that are extraordinarily built to overcome climate conditions issues. Some of these are mentioned below:
Strattec Advanced Logic RTS-P
This commercial-centered lock with a retail cost of up to 599$ is intended to be climate safe with its front body weatherproofed and a working temperature of – 40°F to 150°F.
Extra features incorporate a keypad that can uphold up to a thousand users and a variant with a fingerprint feature.
The base version can be controlled with distant programming and there is additionally a Z-Wave Plus adaptation that can coordinate with your smart home hub.
JWM Electronic Padlock
Electronic padlock unlock should be equipped with an extraordinary electronic key, and this electronic key can open different locks, lock more productively, settle the key mess, the board challenges.
Electronic encryption technology is used in these electronic keys, two-way verification, can’t be duplicated.
Its appearance is like a mechanical lock, yet with a standard smart lock system installed in it, which is a smart access control system.
Plus, it was designed considering the changing weather conditions. High security as well as a more prominent level of adaptability. Makes it conceivable to easily handle access authorizations.
Kaba E-Plex E2031LL626
This is an authentic titan, offering great strength and a lot of valuable functionalities including a hundred users limit, programmable auto-locking, and four diverse authority sections.
Not exclusively is the E-Plex pick proof and bump proof, however with an external temperature range of – 31°F to 151°F, it is more than equipped for withstanding the components.
A genuine keyless lock, the Kaba E-Plex is the ideal decision for securing schools, banks, eateries, drug stores, clinics, and fundamentally whatever another region that requires solid access alongside robust security.
Z-Wave Magnetic Sensor
This contact sensor combination will permit you to mount and shield your sensors from the climate and give you cautions on when your door is open utilizing your Z-Wave empowered smart home hub.
Trilogy T2 DL2700WP
This system of keyless access is a well-known decision for offices, schools, emergency clinics, air terminals, and. retail locations.
With its tough development and super adaptable customization choices, the Trilogy T2 DL2700WP offers exceptional flexibility for a wide range of commercial applications.
Most definitely when weatherproof quality is concerned, the T2 DL2700WP can confront extraordinary temperatures from – 31°F to 151°F, and its barrel-shaped hook flaunts a 3-hour UL fire rating.
The only thing you need to worry about is a failing lock system due to critical climate conditions.
Keep the above waterproof or weatherproof locks in mind when you’ve decided to go keyless.
Are smart locks a good idea?
For the majority, no doubt they are a good idea.
Smart locks can make your home more secure and safer than a conventional lock, and they do everything while at the same time bringing an enormous measure of comfort.
For some individuals, the possibility of a remotely controlled door lock evokes an instinctive, automatic response; who might think connecting physical admittance to your home to an application is a smart thought?
In any case, while talking about the advantages and disadvantages of a smart door lock, I imagine that for the vast majority they’re a great option, a reliable tool that can bring peace to your life and security benefits a conventional lock can’t even match.
The main idea behind the smart lock is that it’s an advancement of the conventional door lock, one that associates your door to the rest of the smart devices or your home’s high-tech system and makes it simpler for property holders to make sure about their properties and provide access to themselves as well as other people they want, while still limiting the access for the individuals who are unwanted in your home.
For internal use, having a smart door lock system to limit access to specific rooms of your home, for example, a home office, makes more sense.
Although, for keeping the property’s exterior protected, you should settle on a safety-first method. Regardless of how advantageous it may be, if a smart lock doesn’t enhance, or, if it doesn’t match the level of security of the conventional lock you’re already utilizing, it’s not worth the time.
Mostly, traditional locks get picked, it’s a reality. It’s a lot simpler to pick a normal lock or break a door or a window than to hack a smart lock to enter a home.
If somebody is hell-bent on accessing your home or your flat, they’ll discover a way regardless, and it will probably be more manual and less required than hacking a smart device.
That doesn’t mean the security of smart locks can’t be damaged, however, you simply need to gauge the upsides and downsides and choose what is more important for you & your home.
Are smart locks reliable?
It’s truly easy to include some smart speakers or smart lights in your home, yet choosing a smart lock is a considerably more genuine choice.
The locks on your doors secure your family and your assets, and to harm, all it takes is one weak door lock to provide criminals easy access to your home.
A standard lock is an old gadget, based on simple technology. These locks are just as secure as their body and the kind of key they utilize, yet smart locks are viewed as both reliable and secure, and they’re not too pricey.
This technology has been around for quite a while and combines solid equipment with biometrics verification, utilizing one of the unique parts of your body, to give security.
Yet, these locks are generally used to secure sensitive zones.
When it comes to reliability, you need to consider the following situations:
- With a smart lock, you need to know about various potential issues that may keep you from getting in the door.
If the batteries are dead, at that point, the lock won’t work. But most smart bolts additionally have key openings, so you can open your door with a key if necessary.
- Some smart locks rely upon wi-fi for their activity; this permits you to open them remotely. In any case, if your wi-fi is down, then you can’t control them.
But others use Bluetooth, which implies they don’t rely upon any network, yet rather an immediate connection between the lock and your cell phone; you should be in a range around 30 feet or 10 meters for Bluetooth to work.
- Also, imagine a scenario where you have lost or forgot to bring your cell phone. While many smart locks offer fingerprints, or, keypads, to handle this kind of situation as well.
- The Internet advances conventional hardware functionalities. While it makes security challenges, it additionally gives incredible safety options.
In the smart lock case, one can execute far-reaching reporting, or, monitoring, for instance, to detect any unwanted entry, lock damage, send a notification or an alert to the homeowner alongside a broken lock picture, or hacker picture, and so on.
For basic IoT gadgets like smart door locks, extensive monitoring, and reporting is imperative to guarantee hardware and software integrity to identify any malicious hardware or software attacks.
Now you might have a better understanding of the “reliability” from the facts, I’ve mentioned above.
Which states that against every issue, they’re providing a solution. You just need to understand what’s the right solution for a particular problem.
Do smart locks need Wi-Fi?
A smart lock can go way beyond the capacities of a common lock. Most of them have the feature of Wi-Fi connectivity, which expands the capability to utilize the remote features.
But there are some non-wi-fi-enabled smart locks. While the basics are simple to understand, but most people don’t know about the difference between Wi-Fi-enabled and non-Wi-Fi-enabled smart door locks.
Wi-Fi-enabled smart locks
Wi-Fi, the most popular one, it’s the most impressive regarding data transmission ability; it has boundless range given satisfactory network connectivity.
This implies that you can communicate with your lock from any place. Wi-Fi-enabled smart door locks are managed and controlled through a Wi-Fi network somewhat.
It’s appropriate for those looking for coordination abilities as the lock’s capacities are additionally improved when connected with the Internet.
Non-Wi-Fi- enabled smart locks
Non-Wi-Fi-enabled smart door locks are generally incorporated with the Bluetooth connection.
This connects the lock to your cell phone, permitting the two gadgets to communicate with one another.
Its functionalities, features, capacities, and execution aren’t influenced by an Internet connection.
There are some main points to observe when you’re choosing between those two types I’ve mentioned above and those points are:
Non-wi-fi-enabled smart door locks are considered to have expanded security norms when contrasted with wi-fi-enabled locks.
Without the requirement for the Internet, Non-wi-fi-enabled locks are less vulnerable to wi-fi hacking.
Wi-Fi-enabled smart locks are helpless against a large group of tech issues, and it’s simple for an experienced hacker to hack into your wi-fi network with which your smart lock is associated.
The hacker can unlock your door without waiting to be nearby.
Non-wi-fi-enabled locks are less reliable than wi-fi-enabled ones. You ought to consistently have the option to access your home remotely & even operate your home appliances easily.
There are a lot more features of wi-fi-enabled smart locks that make them a reliable option to choose from.
Those utilizing non-Wi-Fi-enabled locks aren’t connected by the internet so, they might miss those great features that make them reliable.
It’s an incredible choice only for those living in far-off regions with an unreliable internet connection because your lock still functions typically.
Wi-Fi-enabled smart locks can have more far-off capacities than non-wi-fi-enabled ones.
Mainly, you can monitor the intricate details of your home at any place or anytime you want.
You can likewise give visitors access to your home by opening your smart door lock remotely from your cell phone.
Non-wi-fi-enabled locks require additional means to perform comparable functions.
Regardless of working disconnected, you can give access to visitors through and Bluetooth keys and PIN codes remotely. Furthermore, you can see access logs when you’re in the Bluetooth range.
If Bluetooth keys are utilized to open your door, you’ll be informed immediately.
Integration with other devices
In case you’re enthusiastic about smart homes and smart homes automation, this is a significant factor.
The integration with smart gadgets normally includes a smart hub. Wi-Fi-enabled smart locks permit you to integrate with other devices.
The smart hub goes about as an all-inclusive resource to control the different smart home appliances via an application, streaming various third-party applications.
Generally, you’ll need to connect to smart speakers to control your lock using voice. lock or open your door remotely or check access logs utilizing voice commands and for a more convenient experience.
That doesn’t mean that non-wi-fi-enabled smart locks can’t coordinate with different gadgets.
Some smart locks work with Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa; obviously, they can’t open doors remotely except if a smart hub is available.
Numerous wi-fi-enabled smart locks require an outer hub. These hubs are generally an extra 100$ to the expense of the lock.
Subsequently, a non-wi-Fi-enabled lock is moderate because of no additional expenses.
There are more points to explore like the brand and maker. Regardless of whether you pick a wi-fi-enabled smart lock or not is reliant on your preferences and requirements.
Smart locks bring a comfort level to their users and upgrade their lifestyle just by paying a little attention to the one they pick.
Do smart locks need power?
At the point when you activate the engine in your smart door lock, it draws a lot of power from the batteries to retract or broaden the lock.
So, the nature of the batteries you use can affect how frequently you have to replace them out with new ones.
How long do batteries last in smart locks?
You may need to do your own experimentation with various batteries to see which one works best for your smart lock.
Obviously, if you don’t lock and open your door multiple times every day, battery quality may not be as significant, and numerous clients have reported success with even the least expensive batteries.
How to improve the battery life of your smart lock?
Ensure your lock is installed perfectly
The incorrectly installed smart door lock may drive the engine to work more diligently than normal.
That could prompt decreased battery life. Ensure that you are utilizing the right rear end connector and that the wing hooks are appropriately seated.
Decrease deadbolt friction
Ensure that your smart lock and the strike plate in your door jamb are appropriately lined up without any friction during the bolt movement.
Resistance from the movement of the bolt will drive the engine to work more diligently than normal and decrease battery life.
Attempt to improve your Wi-Fi signal
The poor signals of your internet connection will make the Wi-Fi chip in the lock work harder to catch and keep up a connection.
That could prompt to reduce battery life. If possible, attempt to bring your Wi-Fi switch nearer to your front door.
Utilize an August Connected Wi-Fi Bridge
Your lock’s battery life might be contrarily influenced by the performance of your wi-fi network.
This wouldn’t influence your wi-fi gadgets that are not battery fueled, yet it could affect your wi-fi-enabled smart lock.
It might be better if you utilize August Connect instead of your lock’s internal wi-fi to distantly control your smart door lock.
It’s impossible to check the battery level of your August smart lock in the application, yet you will be notified when the batteries should be changed.
When a lock’s batteries arrive at 25%, a low-battery warning shows up on your cell phone’s home screen.
You may need to change the batteries when you see this warning. If you don’t change the batteries at that time, you will start getting messages and pop-up notifications as the batteries approach their life limit.
Do smart locks have cameras?
Yes, they do have built-in cameras or if they don’t, you can even integrate one with your smart door lock.
There are a few different ways to get a camera working with your smart lock available in the market today:
These generally use wi-fi and unfortunately, there are not very numerous models with this functionality available yet.
Right now, there is just 1 model of smart locks available that have a full camcorder as a built-in component in the lock.
The Gate Labs camera
- Wi-Fi availability.
- The free setup incorporates everything like recording video, remotely locking, and two-way audio.
- Scheduled admittance codes, a video history of 30 days, and sharing can be included for an extra 4.99$-7.99$ per month.
Incorporate directly with a camera or add-on video doorbell
These smart door locks will uphold the camera simply in their own application and you will have a few controls generally from the lock application.
This kind of integration will include a video camera device separately that communicates with your bolt and can be controlled from the application.
Hope to see a scope of capabilities between sets of gadgets.
For instance, some will allow you to open and lock the door utilizing the camera’s interface where others would just let you see the video feed of a camera in the locks interface.
Augusts’ doorbell camera
- This product will feature tight integration into their application Android, iOS, keypad, and their locks.
- The essential Free version gives you access to live-feed and talks through two-way audio. The paid version gives you between 15-30 days of video recording for 4.99$ per month and 7.99$ per month individually.
- This doorbell cam requires a complete changing of your current doorbell and utilizing its wiring for the installation process.
Coordinate utilizing an external hub or full smart home system
If you have a camcorder and smart lock you can make them cooperate utilizing a smart hub and application like SmartThings or as a component of a full home security system.
By utilizing the smart hub (or a smart home all-inclusive application) as your primary control point for both your lock and video camera system you can open up some additional opportunities for your home.
- Set both the lock and security came up as a major aspect of automation schedules for your home (e.g. night mode, vacation mode).
- If you have more than one smart lock or one security camera their application interfaces of the centers will in general make it simple to explore.
- Regularly, if you need to store your video film you will in any case need a monthly membership plan. A few hubs offer this directly or it will be through your camcorder supplier.
- In some cases, a list of capabilities will be restricted on your lock dependent on the locks API, for instance, you may have the option to open or lock the door yet not ready to completely control the entrance codes from the external smart home hub. Or on the other hand, see 20 seconds of camera feed from the application yet not have the option to get to the video history.
Should my smart lock have a camera?
Yes, if you’re more concerned about the security level of your home. Smart locks with cameras are an incredible use for your high-tech smart home’s security.
Get video clips of the times when your door has been opened or closed or see who’s at your door & give them access automatically. All from your cell phone from any place you are.
Reasons why your smart lock isn’t working?
I incorporated all the potential causes concerning why these smart lock issues were happening and after experimenting, I accumulated all the possible causes & came up with the solutions as well.
A portion of the causes to “Why Smart Lock isn’t working” on your device are:
Compass not aligned
As all of you may know, Android utilizes your built-in compass to choose and recover location.
If your compass isn’t adjusted or there is an issue with its equipment, Android won’t have the option to decide if it is in a trusted area.
Solution: Something else to if you can’t utilize a smart lock at your location is adjusting the compass on your gadget.
All cell phones utilize the compass utility to enable the cell phone to choose what direction it is confronting and where it is. The more adjusted your compass is, the more accuracy you will accomplish in Maps.
The more accuracy you accomplish on maps, the more possibilities there are that you won’t have any issues with a smart lock.
Accuracy of location
If your area accuracy is set low, there may be situations where Google neglects to decide your exact location and doesn’t open your device expectedly. Setting the accuracy of your location as high resolves the issue.
Solution: It’s quite obvious, high accuracy is the most exact location utility which permits users to utilize pinpointed area.
If you don’t have high accuracy, Android probably won’t have the option to decide if you are at the right location and thus won’t open your device.
By this setting, you will explore your settings and turn on the high location accuracy.
Work email is related
When you are enrolled in your device with your work email, your work rules will override all the lock settings of your device which incorporates the smart lock.
For this situation, you need to eliminate the work email and sign in utilizing your typical Google email.
Solution: At the point when you are enlisted with your work email, all the lock screen settings which you set physically are overridden with your work policy.
The work policy is the same for all clients having their cell phone enrolled with a work email address.
I suggest you, check whether you have a work email address utilized on your cell phone.
If yes, consider replacing it and afterward checking whether your cell phone functions as expected or not.
Different devices utilizing google account
If you have numerous devices utilizing the same google account, there may be cases where google gets confused and doesn’t operate any device appropriately.
Solution: You should check whether your Google account is being utilized on numerous devices.
This should not influence the working of smart lock yet it appears it does. You need to explore your google account settings on the site and afterward check if different devices are connected to your Google account.
Here, you should ensure that just a single device i.e. the one which you are utilizing is matched up completely with Google and eliminate every other device.
Battery optimized play services
The modules liable for dealing with Google’s smart lock are play services present in android.
As of late, Google has included a component where applications get ‘battery optimized’ which rests the applications when not being used.
I ran over situations where play services were advanced and consequently were not working when the user needed to utilize smart lock.
Solution: The important service liable for dealing with the smart switch in your android device is the Google play service.
Generally, nothing turns out badly with these services, yet there are situations where your cell phone may put the service in the ‘battery optimization’ list.
At that point, when the service is listed in this, it doesn’t work properly as android continues putting it to rest. You should explore the battery optimization settings and ensure this service isn’t enabled.
There are likewise a few situations where third-party or external applications strife with the smart lock and caused it not to work.
Here, you need to boot your PC in safe mode and afterward analyze which one was causing the issue.
Solution: There are a few third-party applications that display this conduct and are known to be hazardous.
Rather than deleting every application individually, you can take a stab at booting your cell phone in safe mode and check whether the smart lock works or not. If it does, it implies there was an application causing the problem.
Each cell phone has its particular manner of booting in safe mode. You have to explore your manufacturer’s site and afterward adhere to the directions there.
When you boot in safe mode, you can check the smart lock whether it works or not.
With regards to ensuring your home’s security, a typical traditional front door lock carries out the responsibility fine.
Proven, its internal functions have been perfected for about two centuries. But thanks to the latest technology, like a “smart lock” can add a new dimension to a lock’s security, and utility.
All smart lock applications additionally permit you to send virtual keys that can be utilized by friends, family, guests, or laborers just for a predefined time.
The application can likewise notify you about who’s going out, coming in, and keeps a complete history of who goes in or out and when.
If your house is equipped with a video doorbell, you can likewise give access to guests that you visually recognized through a video camera.
Smart Lock is a cool component that will make your life simpler inside your ‘trusted’ place. But before getting one, you need to know about the questions I’ve mentioned above.
Plus, note that it protects the spot, not the individual who is operating the device. Be cautious when you have unknown individuals around.
Morten has been working with technology, IoT and electronics for over a decade. His passion for technology is reflected into this blog to give you relevant and correct information.Read more...