How To Choose A Combination Door Lock That Is Fit For Purpose

By | February 12, 2018

When it comes to choosing the right type of combination lock there are a number of points you should consider, to ensure the lock will provide the level of security you need and provide ongoing durability. This quick guide discusses the main factors that determine whether a lock will be fit for purpose.

Mechanical & Electrical Locks

An electrical lock requires a power source, whereas a mechanical lock is operated using buttons on a keypad. A mechanical lock will still be accessible should the power fail; whereas only a keyholder will be able to gain entry to an electrical lock with key override in the event of a power cut.

Creating Secure Access Codes

Both mechanical and electrical locks incorporate a keypad, with the number of possible combinations determined by the number of buttons available. While a shorter combination may offer enough security for certain facilities within a building; such as cupboard and internal office doors, greater security is provided by creating longer combinations.

How Easy Is It To Change The Code?

Regular code changes are vital for maintaining security, ensuring members who no longer require access cannot gain entry. Many mechanical pushbutton locks use coded tumblers which must be manually repositioned to change the code. An on-door reprogrammable lock, that can be updated using the keypad, will be faster and easier than a lock that must be removed from the door to perform the code change.

Types Of Lock Mechanism

The two main types of locks are deadlatches and deadbolts. A deadlatch ensures the door locks automatically when the door is closed. The door can be opened from the inside by turning a handle or knob. Deadlatches are ideal for securing internal doors, where forced entry is a low risk.

If you wish to allow unrestricted access at certain times; for example, to accept deliveries or during high traffic times, you may want to consider a lock with passage function. This feature allows the door to close, but not lock automatically.

Deadbolts require manual locking and unlocking, either with a key, or by turning a knob on the lock. While deadbolts provide additional strength, they can take longer to open in an emergency. In commercial building deadbolts are well suited to external doors, glass doors, or door positioned near windows; to prevent forced entry if the glass is broken by an intruder.

Single & Double Sided Locks

A single sided lock has a keypad on one side of the door and a handle on the other. Double sided locks have a keypad on both sides, so the secure combination must be entered both to access and exit the area. Double sided locks are used to increase security for gates and on doors surrounded by glass.

Types Of Handle

For high traffic areas, a lever handle may be easier to open than a knob. Heavy duty locks are often accompanied by a lever handle. If you decide on a knob design for light access areas, choose an easy grip, anti-ligature knob.

Type Of Door

It is important to select the right type and size of lock for the door thickness and material. Always confirm these details with your supplier to ensure you receive the correct fittings.

Style & Finish

Choosing the right finish should be based on the location of your lock and whether it will be exposed the elements. The internal components of marine grade locks are manufactured from marine grade steel to resist salt corrosion, with a protective e-plated coating applied to the outer housing. For internal doors, choose a complementary finish, such as satin stainless, chrome or brass.


To ensure longevity and satisfaction from your locks, choose products with high strength housing and buttons, supported by a guarantee or warranty. We also recommend checking the manufacturer’s website for evidence of extensive cycle testing.

Help & Advice

At Borg Locks, we offer an extensive range of locks, to suit a wide variety of applications and doors. You can browse our range on our website, to view products images, specifications and prices. If you’d like to discuss the best type of lock for your specific requirements, please give us a call on 0800 44 88 377, or email with your enquiry.

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