Featured Doors Article


´╗┐How To Install A Dead Bolt On An Exterior Door

Installing a new dead bolt to an existing exterior door will increase your home's security.

The first thing to think of is, is the door a solid door, half glass, or full glass door? For a solid door, you can use a single keyed dead bolt, which has a key on the outside and a manual latch on the inside. For a half or full glass door, it is recommend to use a dual keyed dead bolt. This is a dead bolt that uses a key on both sides; so if someone breaks the glass, they still can not unlock the door. When get the new dead bolt, get a lock set drill kit. This kit will have the drill bit to drill the large hole to mount the dead bolt, and a smaller drill bit to drill into the door to mount the latch. The other important tool needed is a sharp chisel. Also note that you can purchase a new doorknob and dead bolt combination kit so one key will fit both; so keep that in mind.

With all the tools and hardware at hand, it's time to measure and mark where the new dead bolt will be mounted. The new dead bolt typically will come with a mounting guide so the dead bolt is placed the proper distance from the edge of the door. With the dead bolt position marked, use a power drill and the new drill bit, and carefully start to drill the hole. Drill only until the pilot drill start to come out the other side, and then finish the drilling from the other side. This is done to prevent 'blow out', which is chips flying off from the edge of the hole, or cause other damage to the door. With the dead bolt hole finished, mark and drill the hole for the latch. This is done second, so you can tell when you have drilled deep enough.

With the drilling done, slide the latch in and trace around the end of it. Remove the latch and, using the chisel, slowly chisel out the wood so the latch will sit flat and even with the door edge. When that is complete, mount the latch and dead bolt with the proper mounting hardware.

Now position the door near the jam to mark the latch placement. Again, use the template supplied with the new dead bolt. Follow the manufactures guideline and the proper screws, and chisel out the jam and attach the new strike place. When screwing the new strike place, you should be using long screws to go through the door jamb and into the actual framing. This is to prevent the door from being kicked open easily. Now, close the door and make sure everything aligns and locks securely.