Welcome to the Smart Age, the time when you can talk to your devices—and some of them even talk back!
With the emergence of smart locks, physical door keys have now become an option, not a necessity. If you have a bad habit of losing keys, then you’ll be breathing a sigh of relief.
Gone are the days of being locked outside your house and having to call a locksmith to come save you from your plight, or leaving keys under flower pots to prevent the former from happening.
Not only is the keyless entry more convenient for you, but your home is safer too.
Thinking of converting to a smart wireless lock? This article will put two of the top smart lock brands side by side to help you make a decision. When it comes to Kwikset vs Schlage—who will come out on top?
Tell Us More About Smart Locks. How Do They Work?
So, what exactly are smart locks?
In essence, a smart lock works like your typical door lock—it still involves a lock and a key—but in a more high-tech, electromechanical manner.
And no, they don’t need actual keys to be locked and unlocked. The “key”, in this sense, is usually your smartphone or a key fob. Key fobs are unique to each lock.
Your smartphone and your key fob are configured to do one thing: wirelessly unlocking the door.
How Do Smart Locks Work?
Basically, once your smart lock receives instructions from an authorized device, it will unlock using a cryptographic key and a wireless protocol.
Some smart lock models use sensors. In other words, as long as you have your mobile phone or key fob on your person and arrive within a certain range, the smart lock will detect it and automatically unlock your door for you.
Other models have numeric keypads, where you enter your programmed code and the lock will open. Usually, models with keypads can store multiple code, allowing each member of the household to have their own special code.
Also, number codes can be temporarily assigned to people. For example, you can give a temporary code to the delivery guy. He can enter your house using the temporary code. After he drops off your package and leaves, you can delete the code to ensure he won’t be able to come inside again.
Another possible way of granting access to your home is unlocking the smart lock remotely via Wi-Fi. Say you’re in the office, and delivery guy comes calling to deliver an important package. You can easily unlock your home via the internet, let the delivery guy drop the package inside your home, then make sure the door is locked again after he leaves.
Some smart lock models feature both smart lock plus your traditional lock, giving you options on how to unlock your door. (In case you get hit by a wave of nostalgia and feel like whipping out your key and unlocking your door in the conventional manner.)
Smart Lock Features To Look Out For
Before you decide which smart lock to go for, here are some features you may want to consider first.
Safety comes first. So when looking for a smart lock. you should always consider the security features.
Make sure that the smart lock you are considering covers this checklist:
- Resistant to any method of forced entry
- ANSI Grade 1/2 deadbolts
- Proper authentication parameters and Secure Automation Protocol
Integration is key. To be able to connect your smart lock with other devices is not only convenient, but also boosts home security as a whole.
For example, a lot of home owners integrate their alarm systems with the smart lock for obvious reasons. Rather than replacing your entire security system, check the smart lock’s compatibility and make sure that it’ll easily connect with your existing security system.
With a free web service like IFTTT, there are endless combinations of pairing up your gadgets to work together. All it takes is a basic programming know-how.
One of the main reasons why smart locks are preferred nowadays is its remote accessibility. You can easily access and check your smart lock status no matter where you are.
A good example would when leaving the house in a hurry and you realize later that you’re not sure if you’ve locked your door. You can easily access your smart lock remotely to check whether or not your door’s locked.
And being able to lock and unlock your door remotely is quite convenient too. If you’ve forgotten your keys, you can easily unlock your door with the key fob or your smartphone.
That is, if you’ve remembered to bring them.
If in case you HAVE forgotten, you can easily borrow a neighbor’s computer and unlock it via the smart lock’s app.
Should the smart lock you’ve chosen run on batteries, then it’s very important to check its battery life. Some smart locks in the market use BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy), which helps conserve energy/battery life to prolong battery power.
Top Kwikset Smart Locks
Kwikset 910 Z-Wave SmartCode Deadbolt
The Kwikset 910 Z-Wave SmartCode Deadbolt features remote locking and unlocking. The deadbolt latch is motor-driven. It also allows users to check its status remotely, and sends notifications to your smartphone or computer when someone tries to access it.
Kwikset’s traditional locks are one of the best around, and their smart locks are no exception. For increased strength and security, this smart lock has SmartKey cylinders that feature a side locking bar, racks and pins.
This protects the lock against lock bumping, which is used to attack conventional pin and tumbler locks.
The Kwikset 910 Z-Wave SmartCode Deadbolt can hold up to 30 user codes that you can delete whenever you see fit. It also locks itself automatically in 30 seconds, should you forget to lock it.
This battery-operated smart lock operates on 4x AA batteries, making installation a breeze. It comes in three colors, and perfectly complements any Kwikset hardware.
Kwikset Kevo 2nd Gen
This traditional-looking lock can detect your phone location, so when you get within a certain range of your front door, you can easily unlock it by touching the lock. Makes you want to say “Alohamora!” - little joke there for the Harry Potter fans...
You won’t even have to whip out your phone to open your door. Kevo is also intelligent enough to determine if your phone is inside or outside your home. If it detects your phone is indoors, the one touch open feature will not work.
If you don’t want to rely on smartphones for the touch-to-open feature, you can easily purchase a Kevo Fob. One fob can be programmed to unlock up to 25 locks.
The Kevo is ANSI Grade 2, BHMA Certified and UL Fire Rated, making it one of the most secure locks around.
This smart lock features high compatibility— working with iOS and Android devices, and is also compatible with a number of smart devices such as Amazon Alexa, Nest Learning Thermostat, SkyBell and Ring smart doorbells, among others.
It is compatible with IFTTT, increasing this smart lock’s integration prospects.
You can also provide eKeys to virtually anyone with a compatible smartphones. These eKeys can be set to “anytime access” for your family and close friends, “guest access” and “scheduled access” for babysitters or cleaners.
Kwikset 916 Z-Wave SmartCode Deadbolt
If you want a proper sized keypad to go with your smart lock, then the Kwikset 916 Z-Wave SmartCode Deadbolt may be your best bet.
The keypad is an ultra-responsive touchscreen. It will respond whether you use your fingertips or your knuckles. With bright white LEDs, you can see the numbers easily any time of the day.
Like the Kwikset 910, the Kwikset 916 also utilizes Z-Wave to communicate wirelessly to your existing smart devices.
For your peace of mind, if you forget to lock the Kwikset 916 Z-Wave, it’ll lock itself automatically in 30 seconds. You can easily grant or deny access too—this lock can hold up to 30 user codes, and you can add or delete them accordingly.
You can also override everything with a master code, should you ever lose your smartphone or in emergency situations where you have to unlock the door without destroying it.
It is a very sturdy lock, and the side locking bar is designed to be bump proof and pick resistant. It is UL certified with a 20 minute fire rating, and Grade 2 ANSI/BHMA Certification. Installation is relatively easy, using a screw driver, and fits standard doors.
As in runs on battery, no hard wiring is required.
Top Schlage Smart Locks
Schlage Connect BE469NX CAM 619 Touchscreen Deadbolt
The Schlage Connect BE469NX 619 provides top security for your home. This high-quality keyless deadbolt is BHMA/ANSI Grade 1 certified, which is the highest rating for residential locks.
It features a fingerprint-resistant touchscreen to prevent intruders from guessing your code after prolonged use. The keys won’t wear out over time either.Using Z-Wave technology, the Schlage Connect connects to your other home security smart devices to work together to boost up your home security.
Z-Wave technology also allows you to remotely lock and unlock your door, and monitor it wherever you may be. But what makes the Schlage Connect truly stands out is its built-in alarm sensor. If there is any activity at your door, your smart lock will alert you.
You can choose between three modes: activity (which sends you an alert as soon as somebody lays their hand on your door), tamper (someone trying to open your lock) or forced entry.
Installation is pretty straight-forward. The lock design will fit standard doors, and as the Schlage Connect runs on battery, there is no hard wiring required. The lock also has an auto-handing feature. During installation, the lock will intuitively detect the direction the bolt needs to be thrown. In other word, it automatically detects if it’s a right-hand door or a left-hand one.
Schlage Sense Smart Deadbolt with Century Trim in Satin Nickel
Paired with the Apple Homekit, this lock responds to Siri. You talk, and the lock listens! This is just like Ali Baba yelling “Open Sesame” to open the magic cave - ok we'll stop these terrible jokes right now!
As with most smart locks, the Schlage Sense can fit any standard door, so other than a handy screwdriver, you won’t need any more tools.
The Schlage Sense App allows easy set up and programming of the lock, so you can use your iPhone, iPad or other Apple device to open your door within Bluetooth range.
Using the app, you get additional features such as creation and deleting access codes, and checking your lock status and any activity. The Schlage Sense, like the Connect, has also been given the highest certification of Grade 1 BHMA/ANSI.
Schlage vs Kwikset Smart Locks: Conclusion
Schlage locks are BHMA/ANSI Grade 1 certified. If you want the best quality locks, then Schlage may be your best bet.
However, this is not to say that Kwikset locks are in any way inferior. They are BHMA/ANSI Grade 2 certified, and possesses a whole lot of features that amp up your home security as well.
If you want hands-free entry, then you should consider the voice-controlled Schlage Sense that works with Apple Homekit or the second generation Kevo with the one-touch open feature. If you are more comfortable with using keypads, then consider the Schlage Connect or the Kwikset 916.
One notable feature of the Schlage locks is the built-in alarm. This extra security measure makes these smart locks stand out.
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