Install a Deadbolt Lock: Save the Cost of a Locksmith
Installing a deadbolt lock will maximize the security of any entrance door. Usually paired with spring bolt locks, a deadbolt lock will keep intruders out and you and your possessions safe. The fact that they can only be moved to the open position through rotation of the cylinder makes them different from spring bolt locks.
There are two options when buying a deadbolt: single deadbolts-which have a keyhole on the exterior and a twist knob on the interior side-and double deadbolts. The double deadbolt offers greater security. It can’t be forced open because a key is needed to open the lock on both sides. It should be noted that these locks could potentially lock people inside during a fire.
Installing a deadbolt lock above an existing lock is a DIY project that will save you the high cost of a locksmith. Following the directions below you will both save money and enhance your home security posture.
While these are general guidelines, the lock you purchase will come with manufacturer’s directions; these should be followed accordingly. When you buy a lock remember, you get what you pay for, and make sure it comes with screws long enough for the strike plate-the metal catch that fastens to the door frame- to be attached to framing. A step vital to a proper fit of latch and lock mechanisms is taking care to drill level holes.
Safety Recommendations: Wear safety goggles while drilling holes.
What you will need:
- Deadbolt Lock kit
- Masking tape
- Pencil or scratch awl
- Cordless drill
- Measuring tape
- Hole saw
- Wood Spade drill bit
- Wood chisel
- Utility knife
Installing a Deadbolt
1. Mark position of holes accurately, using the template that comes with your lock. The paper template should be taped in place on the door according to directions. Then, with your pencil, simply mark the center point of the holes to be drilled.
2. Drill a hole for the lock into the door face. Choose the correct size hole saw from the manufacturer directions. Drill carefully until you feel the tip of the pilot bit penetrate the other side. To get a clean, professional hole without damaging your door, complete drilling from the other side of the door.
3. Drill a hole in the side edge of the door to fit the latch. Using a spade bit -the wide bits designed for wood boring — making sure the it’s the size required by the lock manufacturer. Keep your drill level, ideally using a small bubble level.
4. Position the latch bolt in place. Now trace the outline of the latch plate using a utility knife.
5. Use your wood chisel to remove wood, carving to the depth of the latch plate so that it will sit flush with the door frame when installed.
6. Screw the latch bolt. When you’ve positioned it into the side edge of the door, fasten the latch bolt.
7. Position the lock cylinder by sliding the the tang or metal extension bar through the latch mechanism. Place the side of the deadbolt lock which will face inside the room, connecting the two sides, using provided screws.
8. Line up the deadbolt strike on the door jamb. First mark the end of the bolt with chalk, close the door and turn the deadbolt. That should leave an imprint. If you didn’t get an accurate print, repeat until you do. Use that mark to locate a latch hole, drilling as deep as suggested by manufacturer.
9. Again, using your wood chisel, cut out material – referred to in construction speak as a mortise – for the strike plate to fit flush. Finally, fasten the strike box and plate into the door jamb. Installing a heavy-gauge strike plate with steel screws long enough to bite into studs of the house framing will further secure your home.