Think for a moment about how digital everyday life has become for many. And one of the growing areas where people are replacing conventional products for electronic, or “smart,” ones is none other than locks. Yes, locks. While keyed locks are still popular today, more and more homes and businesses are replacing said locks with electronic, or smart, locks. There are a variety of benefits to installing smart locks, such as:
(Note: Some smart locks work with key fobs.)
As you can see, convenience is key (no pun intended) when it comes to smart locks. But just like any other type of lock, if you want it to do its job of deterring theft, you have to make sure that it is maintained and cared for properly. That’s the purpose of this post – to share some proper care practices and tips to keep your smart locks operating safely and at peak efficiency for many, many years.
Electronic/Smart Lock Maintenance 101
Here are some frequently asked questions – and answers – regarding smart lock management and maintenance:
What do I do if I lose my phone?
Since your smartphone essentially acts as your “key” to the electronic lock, it’s obviously not a good thing if your phone gets lost or is stolen. So just what should you do? Either log into your account from a computer or from a friend or family member’s phone and disable access from your missing phone. Most smart locks offer this feature, which helps users easily log out of the device from their missing phones so that they don’t have to worry about their homes being compromised. To regain access to your home, just install the app onto your new phone or a friend/family member’s phone and follow the prompt.
How often should I change the lock batteries?
While battery life varies between smart lock, generally speaking batteries last anywhere from 6 to 9 months before expiring. Most smart lock models also have a way of notifying the user when batteries are running low, whether it’s a light on the device itself or a message that is sent to the user’s phone. If you really want to be proactive, we’d recommend changing out the batteries every six months or so, or every time you check your smoke detector’s batteries, which is a recommended every six month chore.
How often should I change the lock code?
There’s really no recommended frequency at which to change your code, just situations that may warrant it. For instance, if you’ve just ended a relationship and your former significant other is now not living in the home, that’s a good time to change the code. If you’re on vacation for the week, but you’re dog sitter needs access to the home, consider setting a temporary code that expires after you’re back for this individual, should your lock model offer such. Bottom line: use common sense as to how often you need to change and adjust access codes.
Where should I store the backup key?
Most smart locks come with backup traditional keys, which can gain access the old fashioned way. These are also used to rekey smart locks. On that note, you want to be sure that your backup key is in a place where you can easily access it at all times. Some ideal places include in your wallet, on a key ring with any other keys that you have and carry and possibly even in a secure place in your car or garage.
What are some other tips I should follow?
There are several other things to keep in mind:
Smart locks may be the future of home and office security, but they’re certainly not devices that can be ignored. Like any product or appliance, you have to make sure that you’re taking good care of it to ensure that it’s keeping your premises safe. At Great Valley Lockshop, we’ve installed and conducted maintenance on all different types of smart locks. For more information on smart locks, and for more information on how to best care for them and keep them secure, contact Great Valley Lockshop today by calling 610-644-5334.