Move announcement

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In a first for Harry’s Locksmith, we are moving!

This is our first time moving for Harry’s Locksmith. As you can imagine this a historic moment for us. Harry’s  has been on Main Street since 1949! Our team at Harry’s has been working extensively  to give you a great experience at our new location. There are lots of new things coming your way as we unveil the new spot to you. From ample parking, to a bigger shop with more selection. There’s lots to be happy about when you come see us on December 18th! 

As you might have already known, our new location is at 508 SE 117th Ave Vancouver, WA 98683.

Here’s to a new chapter in Harry’s Locksmith History!

Our retail shop will be operating at Main Street throughout the week of December 11th thru December 13th. Our shop will be closed on December 14th-15th. We’ll see you at our new location starting Monday, December 18th!  

It’s been a wonderful time serving you on Main Street. Some things may be different as we make this change, but one thing will not – like the words of the sign in bold red letters found in our store “Please Act Important in Here Because You Are”. 

Thank you, Main Street, for letting us serve you after all these years. We hope to see you at our new storefront in the coming weeks.  Take care, and Happy Holidays from all of us, at Harry’s Locksmith! 

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Are Keypad Front Door Locks Safe?


Are Keypad Front Door Locks Safe?


Many homes and businesses are switching over to keyless locks, with some people opting for keypad entry operators and others upgrading to smart technology locks. But with any big change involving technology, you might be wondering if you’re trading some security for a more sleek and modern look.

smart lock on white door, hand holding smart phone with keypad to open door

Types Lock Grades

When it comes down to security itself, the bolts in a keyless locking system and a deadbolt can be essentially the same. The most important factor for determining safety is the grade lock. Lock grades come from the America National Standards Institute/Builders Hardware Manufacturers Association grading system.

Grade 3 is considered a residential grade, typically for home use, supply closets or offices.

Grade 2 locks are used for light commercial, such as a door leading into low traffic area. Some businesses can also use Grade 2 locks for areas that require a higher degree of security. That can include an office or doors to storage rooms housing valuable merchandise, equipment or other materials.

Grade 1 locks are considered the strongest of all. This grade is given to the most secure commercial door locks, locks that are placed at high-traffic areas like schools, hospitals and museums. Grade 1 locks are also expected to have longer lives than lower graded locks.

What Type of Keyless Entry System Works for You?

Once you determine which strength lock will best suit your needs, you can start digging in further to determine what keyless entry system will work best for you.

Regardless of which grade of lock you ultimately pick, some people feel keyless front door locks provide some additional safety measures. Keypad front door locks are pick proof, as well as bump proof. To bump a lock all someone has to do is insert a specifically-cut key into the lock and bump it with something else, like a screwdriver, forcing the pins in the lock to line up with the key and open the door. Both of those concerns can be left behind with a keyless system.

Keypad entry locks can be a great tool for families with young kids. Whether you don’t want your child to have to carry around a key, or they’ve just lost a few already, getting rid of keys altogether works around both concerns. You can program more tech-savvy locks so your kid has their own code to enter, as well as setting it up so the door automatically locks after that code is entered so you don’t have to worry about them remembering to lock up if they get home from school when no on else is around.

Another benefit in using keypad locks are the lack of repetitive friction from inserting and turning keys regularly. This makes the system more durable since all you have to do is press in the code to open it. Some worry that regularly pressing in the code can make it easier to guess because the buttons will show some wear on them. Certain locks use fingerprint-resistant touchscreens to combat that concern. They can also be cleaned off regularly to help lower that fear.

Many of them run on battery power, so even if the power goes on, the lock can remain operational for a certain amount of time. Even if the power goes out, you should be able to use your lock in person, although if it’s connected to your home or business’ internet, you might not be able to access it remotely.

So whether it’s for aesthetic reasons or security ones, making the jump to a keypad lock or some other keyless entry system should be able to fit your desires. The trained professionals at Harry’s Locksmith have more than 100 years of experience, and can make sure your home or business has the safest and most current locking system properly installed.

Five Types of Commercial Door Locks

Commercial Door Locks


You’ve put your all into building your business, so it only makes sense you’d want to keep everything as safe as possible. That’s why many businesses use commercial door locks to safely secure their offices, warehouses, storefronts, etc.

commercial glass door with pull handle and sign on handle that says close, woman in background

What is a commercial grade lock?

A commercial grade lock is one with a stronger rating, as determined by the Builders Home Manufacturers Association, the official trade association for manufacturers of building hardware. The Association is credited by the American National Standards Institute to perform such gradings. Read our article about the differences between commercial door hardware and residential door hardware.


Commercial Grade Door Locks Explained

Locks can have three grades: 1, 2 or 3. The Association looks at six qualities when determining a lock’s grade: operational (which tests to make sure the door will latch easily when pushed close), strength, cycles (the number of uses a lock can withstand before a replacement is needed), security, material evaluation and finish.

Grade 3 is considered a standard lock, typically used for residential doors. They are also often used in areas not open to all traffic, such as supply closets, offices without expensive equipment or break rooms.

Grade 2 locks are used for residential areas with more traffic, such as a door leading into an apartment building of complex. Some businesses can also use Grade 2 locks for areas that require a higher degree of security. That can include an office or doors to storage rooms housing valuable merchandise, equipment or other materials.

Grade 1 locks are considered the strongest of all. This grade is given to the most secure commercial door locks, locks that are placed at high-traffic areas like schools, hospitals and museums. Grade 1 locks are also expected to have longer lives than lower graded locks.


Deciding What Grade of Commercial Door Looks Is Best For You

Once you decide which grade of lock will work best for your business, the next step is to dive into the different types of locks available. Some of the most common commercial grade locks are: mortise locks, panic bars or crash bars, cylindrical lever locks, keypad door locks and commercial electric strike locks.


Mortise Locks

Mortise locks are known to be durable and in use at businesses with a lot of foot traffic. They come in two parts: the cylinder, which takes the key, and the body, which contains the locking mechanism. The mortise locks is widely used commercially because it has a reputation for withstanding constant use. The actual deadbolt portion of the lock is located inside the body, making it less accessible but also more resistant to forced entry. The mortise lock requires a pocket to be drilled into the door and then chiseled out even more by hand.


Commercial Panic Crash Bar

The panic or crash bar is often seen in commercial businesses. To open a door with one of these, you simply push in. They are also used to handle emergency situations. Panic bars have been known to be placed in areas with certain fire requirements. They are also long-lasting, but require quite a bit of maintenance to make sure they are working in case there ever is an emergency.


Cylindrical Lever Locks

The cylindrical lever lock travels through the entire door, and is a popular option because they are generally quick to install. The cylindrical lever is also used frequently because there are many aesthetic options, and the variety of options allows people to match the lock easier to the rest of the décor. They can also be used with a just a key, or a combination of a key and a push button placed on the handle.


Keypad Door Locks

Keypad door locks are good for those who need to give multiple people access to a secure area, but without having to give everyone a key. Some more modern options can enhance safety by automatically locking for a length of time after a certain number of incorrect attempts at entering the code. The keypad door locks can usually be installed on any typical door, but are often a pricier option than a standard lock.


Electric Strike Locks

Electric strike locks are typically used in conjunction with another type of lock, often a panic bar or keypad. Electric strikes work similarly to a door buzzer that you’d see to get into an apartment building or a bank. The door remains locked, and authorized users can open it by hitting a buzzer. The electric strike can also have a pad where people can swipe a key fob to unlock the door.

The electric strike also has two other options: a fail-secure lock and a fail-safe lock. A fail-secure lock will remain locked during a power outage. This is why the electric strike locks are often teamed up with another lock, so it can be used even during a power outage. The fail-safe option unlocks in the event of a power outage, giving anyone access to that door.


Commercial Door Lock Options

There are plenty of other options for securing your commercial space. There are other kinds of locks, or other products for additional security. One that we at Harry’s Locksmith started offering earlier this year is a latch guard, which provides full door latch protection. Whereas there is usually a plate that goes over the opening, the latch guard plate runs down and covers the entire opening of the door and frame. That can combat burglars who try to break into a business or home by stuffing a crowbar between the door and frame to pry it open.


Commercial Door Lock Installation

Regardless of which style of lock you decide will work best for your commercial space, the most important thing is to make sure it’s installed properly. No matter the kind of lock you want, Harry’s will install it professionally while providing knowledgeable and exemplary services. Harry’s offers services that are ADA compliant, services for those who need to make ADA upgrades and fire door inspections.

What Are the ADA requirements for Automatic Doors?

ADA Requirements for Automatic Doors


While the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) doesn’t require an automatic operator in order for a door to be considered accessible, using automatic doors is a great way to ensure accessibility for a wide range of people.

wheelchair inside older building lobby

According to the 2010 ADA Standards for Accessible Design, 60% of public entrances must be considered accessible. A public entrance is considered all entrances except those that are restricted or used exclusively as service entrances. According to the ADA standards, a door must have a minimum clear width, maneuvering clearance minimums and a maximum opening force and closing speed. Read our article about What Makes an Entrance ADA Compliant.

Automatic door / Automatic Door Operator Installation

When an automatic door or automatic door operator is installed, it must follow the same accessibility standards when both in use and when not in use. The ADA also uses standards for automatic doors established by the Builders Hardware Manufacturers Association.

Swing Doors

The most common type of automatic door is a swinging door, which swings in or out. A swinging door typically has one of three types of automatic operators: full-powered, low-energy and power-assisted.

Full-Power Operators

Full-power operators are found on high-use openings, including the entrance to places like grocery stores or department stores. These kinds of operators are required to have use safety sensors, along with control mats and guide rails, which precent the doors from opening if someone is in the path of the door swing. These don’t have the same restrictions on speed and force.

Low-Energy Operator

A low-energy operator is used to give a door the option of being automatically opened or manually opened. The low-energy operator gives some assistance with opening the door if needed. Low-energy doors have limitations on opening speed and force to combat the combination of the automatic door operator and the weight of the person opening the door.

Power-Assist Door Operator

A power-assist door operator lowers the opening force, which means the door can be manually opened in an easier manner. Some force needs to be manually applied to open a power-assist door operator. They are activated by pushing or pulling the door.

The low-energy and power-assist operators both have the same requirements, and each must be activated by what is called a “knowing act.” A knowing act can mean a few different things:

-a push-plate actuator or non-contact switch mounted on the wall

-an access control device, such as a keypad, key switch or card reader

-manually pushing or pulling the door to trigger the assistance

ADA Standards on Switch Mounts

There are also further ADA standards on the placement of a switch mounted on a wall used to trigger one of the knowing acts. These standards deal with distance from the center of the door, ensuring the switch remains accessible when the door is opened, placing it in a location so the user is not in the path of the moving door and a maximum and minimum height for the switch.

Motion Sensors

A motion sensor is not considered a knowing act, as it only requires someone to enter into the sensor’s field. If you want to go with a motion sensor to trigger an automatic operation, you must get a door operator that complies with the full-power standards.

At Harry’s Locksmith, our trained professionals can help install and/or repair automatic door operators, whether you’re looking to make ADA upgrades or simply put in a new door.