Clera Windows + Doors Blog

Are Smart Home Locks Really Secure?

Like most basic daily functions, there’s now a smart way to secure and access your home with a smart home lock that could be installed on your front entryway door. Whether you like the idea and ease of keyless entry or need the convenience of being able to grant access to your home remotely, a smart home lock can offer more benefits above being safe and secure. If you’ve been contemplating this relatively new technology and are still on the fence on whether or not your should swap out your traditional lock and upgrade to a smart home lock, here are some things you should consider:

What is a smart lock and how does it work?

A smart lock is a Wi-Fi or Bluetooth-enabled smart home device that allows users to lock and unlock a door by sending secure signals from a mobile application on their smartphone, computer, or tablet. Smart locks provide a whole new home security experience by providing unique features within the mobile application. Depending on the brand, users have the ability to customize and create a list of who can access your home and when, lock or unlock your door from anywhere directly from your smartphone. Some applications even offer voice recognition whereas the lock can engage or disengage on voice command. As you can see it smart locks offer a whole new level of convenience and capabilities. This is especially a popular smart home feature for AirBnb hosts, they can virtually grant access to their guests down to specific dates and times.

What other features does a smart lock offer?

  • Keyless entry – depending on the brand and type of smart lock, it may include multiple options for remote keyless entry from your mobile device such as, voice command, pin codes, fingerprint recognition.
  • When connected to bluetooth, your smart lock can be programmed to unlock as you approach within a certain proximity of your smart lock
  • When connected to Wi-Fi, entry and exit logs can be captured in real-time. This way you are always aware of who has come or left your home which is especially useful with parents with kids arriving home safe from school.
  • With smart home locks, you can create custom entry pin codes for particular guests who require entry at certain time. In addition to this, you can set certain limitations as to when each unique pin code can be used to access the smart lock. For example, if you have a weekly cleaner or dog walker who requires access while you’re away or at work. You can set the code for your housecleaner to be active Mondays between the hours of 12pm to 2pm only and the dog walker can have multiple access times per day for a maximum of 45 minutes at a time. It can be that specific.
  • Set your smart lock to auto-lock when the authorized handheld device leaves the home and set any specified time frame that the it should remained lock.
  • Set custom notifications to your mobile device to notify you when your smart lock has been locked or unlocked. You can also be notified if your lock has been tampered with or an unauthorized person is attempting to gain access.

Potential risks with smart locks

Naturally with most products that are accessed through internet or wireless connectivity such as bluetooth, there are some common concerns that arise due to certain vulnerabilities that the internet poses. This is not specifically regarding only the concern of hackers but also for connectivity issues or issues with the hosts. People often are concerned about what if the internet is down, the app crashes, or their mobile device is not charged and they need to gain access. Well, fortunately most smart lock designs can also be accessed with the good ol’ traditional key.

With any lock, even a traditional lock, there is some element of risk that it could get broken into or hacked, in the case of a smart lock. The most important step you can take to protect your smart lock is to ensure your Wi-Fi connection is secure with a complex password. A complex password does not contain the homeowners name, address, birthday, etc. It would contain a combination of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and special characters. Ensure that all devices in the household connected to the home’s Wi-Fi are also secure.

There is no doubt that despite the potential risks of a smart lock, that homeowners are still going to use them. It really boils down to the quality of the product and brand that you choose, the complexity of the product, the durability, and how well it is constructed. You can easily compare this decision to the element of risk that is added by driving a car as opposed to riding a horse. Would you trade in your car for a horse in this day and age?

Is it time for a replacement door?

A smart lock is a unique investment for any home, but before you go installing your shiney new gadget on your door, you should certainly consider whether or not your current door is still holding up or perhaps it’s time to replace it.

Here’s some signs that might be point towards a brand new entryway door:

Are you making excuses? In other words, have you been getting used to tucking a door snake or towel at the bottom of the door frame just to keep the cold air from creeping in? That’s just not feasible anymore and moving in back and forth in place everytime you need to walk through the door is probably becoming a total hassle for you.

Are you an expert at the “shimmy”? Have you become a pro at wiggling and jiggling your door in order to get it to lock and unlock? That’s just not how the average person opens and closes the door, especially when you have guests waiting on the other side, wondering what all the fuss is about! Opening and closing your door shouldn’t feel like wandering through a complicated mirror maze nor take any critical thought. Functioning doors should be fuss-free.

Do you feel the chill? Home living should be easy breezy, not breezy. If you’re feeling a cold draft while you’re trying to enjoy your morning coffee, it’s time to replace your door. Not only is a cold draft uncomfortable, it means your energy bills are probably going to suffer a little as well. Keep the warm air, the cold air out and vice versa in the warmer summer months.

A brand new replacement door can provide optimal security comfort and security for your home. Simply knowing you have a door that is properly locked while your family is sleeping at night will provide you the utmost peace of mind. Not to mention being able to lock and unlock your door like it’s second nature and not a force of nature has reckoned on your front door.

For more information on replacement doors near you, contact Clera Windows and Doors. Get connected with an experienced professional who can answer all your questions and offer high quality custom replacement doors for your home.

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