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.