Deadbolt, gotta gotta have It

Deadbolts aren’t hyped up; they really are superior to regular knob locks. Though we keep shaking our head in amazement whenever yet another news story comes out about a burglar or rapist who waltzed through an unlocked door and committed mayhem, it remains a hard fact that many criminals gain entry via physical force.

1BYes, what you see in movies and TV shows is true: People CAN kick open a locked door—that’s either missing a deadbolt, has a faulty one or simply because a door jamb itself is just half inch pine. In that case, door reinforcement technologies are needed. Read on.

Nearly 60 percent of burglaries are forced-entry. Many occur during the day. Face it; at a minimum, you need a deadbolt. It can be either single-cylinder or double-cylinder (check the legality regarding doubles).

The door jamb will have a hole for the bolt to extend fully into—partially isn’t good enough. A metal strike plate should reinforce the hole. If both of these factors are not in place, an intruder can force open the door.

In addition, the strike plate should be fastened into the studs of the door frame with three-inch screws.

Finally…the deadbolt needs to be USED. It’s easier to always ensure this if you have a single-cylinder because it requires just a turn of its knob (from the inside). The double-cylinder requires a key from the inside—in place of that little knob. So every time you come home and lock the deadbolt, you’ll need a key. Every time you want to step outside…you’ll need a key to unlock it. Double deadbolts are a little dangerous too due to fires as well. So not recommended.

However, if you have the single-cylinder, and your door is right beside a window, an intruder could smash through the window and reach in and turn the knob of the single-cylinder, unlocking it.

Door Security

  • If you don’t want the hassle of a double-cylinder, consider replacing the door so that windows aren’t close enough to it for an intruder’s arm to reach through.
  • The decision isn’t whether or not to get a deadbolt; it’s what type of deadbolt and door…because it can’t be said enough: A door with only a regular lock can easily be kicked in—by a slight woman—because the standard lock involves a few little screws, one or two little strike plates and a thin pine wood door frame with thin molding.
  • However, this thin wood can be empowered by the Door Devil Anti Kick Door Jam Security Kit. It’s a four-foot-long bar of steel that’s one-sixteenth-inch thick. It gets installed on the center of the door jamb, over the little strike plates. An intruder must get past this; fat chance, because four feet of the door frame will absorb the intruder’s attempted force.
  • The Door Devil’s thick screws are three and a half inches long, and when placed into the 2 x 4 studs (also part of the kit) behind the frame, reinforce the door hinges.
  • You might be thinking, if an intruder is determined enough, he’ll keep kicking till the door busts. What do you think an intruder is, a kickboxing instructor? If he can’t dismantle the door after two, maybe even one, kick, he’ll move on to the next house.
  • Of course, he might not want to even try to kick down your door if he notices a surveillance camera above it—after the motion detector light beams onto him.

Robert Siciliano is a home and personal security expert to discussing Anti-Kick door reinforcement on YouTube. Disclosures.