Types of Garage Door Locks

Table of Contents

Types of Garage Doors

Overhead Garage Door Locks

Exterior Entry Garage Door Locks

Interior Entry Garage Door Locks

Types of Garage Doors

When most people think of a garage door lock they’re referring to one that secures the overhead door. However, there are other garage doors to consider – exterior entry and interior entry. The exterior entry door needs to be locked to prevent access to your garage from the outside. Most people overlook the interior entry door. This is the door that leads from your garage to the house. It needs to be locked to prevent access to your house from inside the garage.

Overhead Garage Door Locks

Slide Garage Door Locks

Slide locks or latches are the most common type of overhead garage door lock. The latch, handle or bolt slides into a hole cut in the metal door track. This prevents the door from going up or down. This type of lock is inconvenient if you frequently use the garage door. You will have to manually unlock the door from the inside of the garage every time you want to use the door.

T-Handle Keyed Garage Door Locks

T-handle keyed locks are the second most common type of garage door locks. The lock has a T-shaped handle that is installed on the outside of the garage door. Inside the door, a cable system is attached to bolts on the track, The cable is released only when the handle is turned. Turning the handle requires unlocking it with the correct key. Many homeowners who are in a hurry to get into their house are against this type of lock because it requires physically getting out of the car and unlocking the handle.

Electronic or Digital Garage Door Locks

There are numerous types of electronic and digital garage door locks on the market. Most operate on the same principle as the T-handle keyed lock except the handle is unlocked automatically. Once the handle is unlocked, the door should raise on its own.

J-Arm Garage Door Locks

Most automatic garage door openers have a built-in lock feature called the J-Arm. The moving arm on the trolley automatically locks into place when the garage door is fully in the closed position. This prevents the garage door from being opened by hand. Some manufacturers of garage door openers call this feature PosiLock. Regardless of the name, the feature is available on almost every brand of garage door opener.

Exterior Entry Garage Door Locks

Keyed Entry Garage Door Locks

Keyed entry door knobs are still the most common type of door locks in the United States. Insert and turn the key in order to unlock the door. Most criminals will attempt to open the door by sliding a stiff object (even a credit card) between the door knob and striker plate. If you use a keyed entry lock, be sure to add extra protection such as a latch shield.

Keyless Exterior Entry Garage Door Locks

Keyless door knobs are similar to the keyed versions except there is nowhere to insert a key. This type of knob can be unlocked only from inside the garage. Most people use their garage exterior doors to exit the garage from the inside. If you use a keyless door knob, be sure to unlock the door on your way out.

Garage Door Deadbolt Locks

Garage door deadbolt locks have a solid bolt that must be activated by a key or by turning a thumb lock This type of lock offers a higher level of security because it is not spring activated and cannot be pried open with a stiff object or credit card like the keyed entry lock can

Deadbolt locks should be installed on sold doors such as solid wood, steel or fiberglass. The bolt slides a couple inside the door frame to ensure the strength of the device. This requires a solid door as well as an extremely solid door jam.

Garage Door Padlocks

Garage door padlocks are detachable locks that normally slip into U-shaped bar that’s hinged at one end and designed to be passed through an opening of a hasp. If your exterior entry garage door is out of sight, you should consider installing a padlock on the inside of the door. The padlock/hasp combination effectively locks the door and door frame into a solid unit.

Interior Entry Garage Door Locks

When considering the overall security plan for your garage, don’t overlook the interior entry door. If a burglar gets into your garage, the interior entry door will be the only means by which you can keep the thug out of your house! At the very lease the interior entry door should have a keyed-lock or a digital lock with a keypad. Be sure to lock the door from the inside of your house at night, especially when you go to sleep.

The most common downside to securing interior entry garage doors is forgetting that the door is locked. Many door knobs will open from the inside even if the outside knob is locked. If you’re extremely forgetful be sure to install a door knob that will not turn if it’s locked from the inside. Once you try to turn the knob and find it locked, you’ll have to unlock the knob to open the door. Assuming your interior entry garage door lock requires a key, it’s wise to hide a spare key somewhere in the garage. Find an uncommon place where burglars are unlikely to look for the key.