New Lock and Deadbolt

New Lock and Deadbolt

I Got a New Lock. Should I Install a Deadbolt Too?

Believe it or not, we get that question a lot in the locksmithing industry. This is our short answer: We definitely recommend installing a deadbolt (or even two) for extra security. However, there are some things you should consider. There are two kinds of deadbolts:

  • Single steel deadbolts
  • Double steel deadbolts

What is the Difference Between Single and Double Steel Deadbolts?

While the basic workings of both types of deadbolts are similar, single-steel deadbolts only need a key to get in the house. Double steel deadbolts have locks on both sides. Double steel deadbolts might seem like a good idea, but they are actually a potential hazard. That’s why building codes in some states and even some municipalities have made double steel deadbolts illegal to install. They can actually prevent you from leaving your house in the event of an emergency. How? Consider the scenario below.

Why Double Steel Deadbolts are a Hazard

Let’s imagine that someone has accidentally started a kitchen fire. The fire is rapidly spreading throughout your house, sending you and your family into panic mode. Worse, the fire has burned through the walls, destroying the electrical wiring that was inside the walls, so now you have no power in your house! Although a deadbolt may only take seconds to unlock in ideal conditions, fumbling through a dark room looking for the key to a fire in your house is a scary experience. By the time you find the key, the fire will probably have already burned your house, and you and your family with it!

This scenario happens a lot more than you might think! According to data from the National Fire Protection Association, over 166,000 kitchen fires were reported between 2010 and 2014. That’s an average of 41,500 kitchen fires per year. The number one cause of these fires was unattended cooking equipment, accounting for 33% of kitchen fires and almost half of the civilian deaths and injuries caused by these fires.

I Got a New Lock. Should I Install a Deadbolt Too?

Single Steel Deadbolts are Good Enough

We recommend getting a single steel deadbolt. Single steel deadbolts, when installed correctly, provide more than adequate protection against most burglars without causing any egress issues. Then, if you really want to make it hard for burglars, you can have wrought iron security bars installed on your windows. Although it’s not a perfect solution, it’s certainly better than just depending on a small block of wood and glass standing between a burglar and your valuables. Locks are easily picked, doors can be kicked in, and glass is easily broken. Remember that most burglars want to get in and out of your home as quickly as possible. Burglars don’t want to spend time defeating proper security measures. Furthermore, in the kitchen fire scenario mentioned above, you and your family would be more likely to live to see another day, and that alone is worth the cost of having the deadbolt installed. Remember that possessions can easily be replaced, but you and your family are irreplaceable.

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