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Published March 4th, 2024

6 Common Types of Smart Locks

Written by Level Home Staff | Fact Checked by Eric Schoneberger

What are the different types of smart locks?

Home automation technology is rapidly growing in popularity among homeowners. One of the most notable types of home automation is a new take on the home security system: the smart lock. The best smart locks take advantage of new technology to provide seamless convenience to your life.

The type of lock that is best for you will depend on the features you are looking for and how you want to use it. Read on to learn about the main types of smart locks available on the market today.

6 Types of smart locks

1. Bluetooth

Bluetooth smart locks can be controlled even without an internet connection. Because Bluetooth is a short-range wireless protocol (usually between 20 to 30 feet), it is only usable when your phone is close to the lock, which provides additional security. Bluetooth hubs and other smart device gateways don’t have quite the range of Wi-Fi smart locks, though there are ways to extend the range.

2. Wi-Fi

With Wi-Fi smart locks, you can connect your lock to your home Wi-Fi network, enabling you to control your lock from anywhere. A Wi-Fi smart lock provides local control, cloud control, or both without additional hubs or integrations. Since Wi-Fi locks allow for a long-range connection (sometimes up to 300 feet), it doesn’t need to be close to a router or access point to connect.

3. Smart garage door locks

Smart garage door locks allow you to operate and monitor your garage door from your phone - which can be very useful if you tend to forget to close your garage door. Some smart garage door locks also enable secure package delivery with Amazon Key or grocery delivery with Walmart InHome.

4. Biometric

Biometric smart locks allow you to operate them with a physical part of your body, most commonly your fingerprint. There are more advanced biometric locks that do things like scan your iris or face, but those are typically not used in residential settings.

5. Keypad

A smart lock with a keypad allows you to lock and unlock the door with an alpha-numeric code of your choice. This type of lock is convenient for allowing visitors access by simply sharing the passcode, and if you forget a physical key you can still get in. Styles of keypads vary from physical buttons to touchscreens, and they often come in a set that includes a deadbolt with a handle or a deadbolt with a lever and knob.

6. Key-card-enabled smart locks

Similar to hotel keys, you can simply unlock key-card-enabled smart locks by tapping a key card to let yourself in. Some key-card-enabled locks give you the ability to touch the lock when you approach your door, as well as use geofencing to detect when you’re near and automatically unlock the door.

Choosing the right smart lock comes down to preferences and what features work best for you. Now that you know what types of smart locks are out there, you can start shopping with confidence for the best lock for your home. However, when you’re shopping for a smart lock, make sure you carefully review the features and capabilities it has because there are smart locks on the market that combine features from more than one of the types mentioned above. Some smart locks even offer optional accessory devices to expand the access control options.