5 Keyless Entry Options for Businesses

5 Keyless Entry Options for Businesses

We’ve all experienced that moment; you get to the door and suddenly realize you don’t have your keys. Maybe it’s just as you’re walking out of the building after work. Then, suddenly the door slams shut behind you. It’s too late to react. You’re already locked out.

It’s tough dealing with these types of situations, but your company still shouldn’t sacrifice security for convenience. We certainly understand that and we don’t believe you should have to. That’s why Harry’s Locksmith has the solutions for you. Here are our top five keyless entry options for businesses.

Biometric

Not only can forgetting or losing your keys be frustrating, but it can also compromise your security. Keys that are lost on the street can be picked up by anyone or duplicated so that you’re no longer in control of who can access your building.

If you want to have peace of mind by maximizing your building’s security, a biometric entry system may work best. Biometric locks are a secure option because they require you to verify your identity before gaining entry to a building. Additionally, such locks are able to time-stamp entries so that you know exactly who is entering your building and when.

Many biometric locks have a two-step authentication system for enhanced security. First, the device will scan your fingerprint to confirm your identity. Next, you’ll enter a code into a keypad to unlock the door. Biometric locks are great options for small business owners since they can typically be programmed with up to 100 fingerprints.

Keypads

While biometric locks work well for smaller businesses or restricted access areas, you may want to select another option if you have a large business that sees a lot of foot traffic. Keypad locks are a good option because they allow quick access into a building by simply entering a code into a keypad. With these types of locks, you select between electronic and mechanical.

Electronic keypads are battery operated and light up by touch. This is an excellent feature if you have people entering your building after dark. The light will make it easier for access codes to be entered quickly and accurately. The important thing to remember with electronic keypads is that you’ll need to change the battery every so often or you may get locked out. Electronic keypads are often equipped with a backup key for that very reason.

Mechanical keypads are a good alternative if you don’t want to switch out batteries. One downside of keypads, however, is that once someone leaves your company, they’ll still have access to your building unless you change the code. That’s less than ideal if you have a company with a high turnover rate. In that case, you may want to explore other options.

Key Fobs

Key fobs are electronic devices that can be scanned in front of a reader. The reader takes the data from the fob and transmits it to a central server, which will then grant access to the building. Key fobs are great keyless entry options for large businesses for a couple of reasons. First, the system retains the scanned information so you’ll have a record of who entered the building at that time. Second, the device can be deactivated once an employee leaves the company.

With key fobs, you can also customize access to each individual fob. That means if you want certain parts of your building to remain restricted, you can make sure only certain key fobs are activated to gain entry to those particular areas. With customization options and easy deactivation, key fobs are an excellent way to make sure your business remains secure.

Intercoms

Certain buildings, particularly those occupied by children, benefit from the use of intercom systems. Intercom systems are typically equipped with video and enhance security to make sure that whoever comes to the door is thoroughly vetted prior to entry. Once a person’s identity has been verified, the intercom system’s master user can press a door release button. That button is connected to electronic locking hardware, such as an electric strike. Once pressed, the button will disable the lock so that the person can gain entry into the building.

Another way intercom systems keep your building secure is by storing video so that it can be viewed at a later time. This is particularly important if you need to go back and review building entry footage for any reason.

Smart Locks

In today’s world, there are all sorts of smart devices. This includes door locks. With smart keyless entry, access to your building is literally at your fingertips. By using your smartphone, you can lock or unlock your building remotely. Have someone swinging by? You can unlock the door for them without having to physically go to your building. You can also give your employees digital keys and receive notifications when your building has been accessed. This will allow you to monitor the building even when you’re away from town on a business trip, for instance.

Did you have an employee unexpectedly leave the business? You can easily revoke access remotely as well. At just the touch of a button, you can lock and unlock, and track your building even when you’re far away.

Are you ready to upgrade your building locks to a keyless entry system? Unsure which is the right option? Harry’s Locksmith is here for you. We want to help you find the perfect balance between security and convenience. You shouldn’t have to sacrifice one for the other and we’ll make sure you don’t have to. Give us a call and we’ll assess your building needs so that we can unlock the right solutions.

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The Major Differences Between Electrified Locks and Electric Strikes

The Major Differences Between Electrified Locks and Electric Strikes

Businesses used to rely on the traditional lock and key, just like homes. But the security just didn’t hold up. Thankfully, tremendous strides have been made in the locksmith industry and there are options to fit doors and budgets of all sizes.

Today, a hot option for businesses is to protect their spaces via electronic entrances. The benefits are numerous. Owners can easily determine who is coming in and out of the space, are no longer regularly replacing lost keys, and don’t have to replace said keys every time there is a staffing change.

Even within electronic entrances, there are various options, but you should understand the difference between fail-safe and fail-secure locking devices.

Fail-safe and Fail-Secure Locking Devices

 

With fail-safe locks, the default state is actually unlocked. To keep it locked during normal business operations, power is applied. Should the power be interrupted or fail, the door automatically unlocks or releases to let people out of the space.

Schlege Keyless Entry electrified lock

Fail-safe locks are mostly used for main entry points like office doors or lobby access doors. A popular use for this application is maglocks which, by design, require power to operate.

With fail-secure locks, if the power is interrupted or fails, the door stays locked. Its default state is locked or secured, so the door gets locked when power is removed. Fail-secure locks are often used for IT rooms or other sensitive areas.

However, because the door keeps locked in emergencies, typically it will be used in conjunction with a mechanical override, such as a regular key. Fail-secure locks are used for fire-related doors or staircase (stairwell) doors. The reason is that in the case of a fire, those doors should remain closed to seal off a portion of the space and help reduce the fire from spreading.

To make the best decision for your location you’ll want to consider cost, convenience, and having the proper fail-safes in place. This is what you’ll want to know before visiting with the closest locksmith.

1. Electric Strikes

 

Electric strikes are generally used with metal or wood doors. They can also be used in conjunction with a deadbolt, which is good because if you are not currently using something electronic, odds are you are using a deadbolt and will need something that is compatible.

There are many ways to describe an electric strike, but the easiest way to understand what it is would be to think of it like a door buzzer in an apartment building. Electric strikes work virtually the exact same way.

No physical key is needed, but the door remains locked while only authorized users can be buzzed in. This most commonly is done in the form of a buzzer, keypad, fob reader, or key card.

Given its compatibility with wood and metal doors and general affordability compared to other electronic door security options, electric strikes are a very popular both in the home and for commercial properties.

Fail-secure and fail-safe measures can both be easily taken with an electric strike as well. If the power goes out, the fail-secure with an electric strike is that the doors remain locked, but can be opened manually either by turning the door latch or using a physical key.

 

2. Electric Push Bars or Exit Bars

 

These are generally used in order to comply with fire code. The doors are locked by default, but the push bars make a fast exit from a building possible in the event of a fire.

You will often see the push bars on side entrance doors in large buildings and they are required by law in a lot of cases because if there is a fire, people can run down a flight of stairs and push the bar quickly to get out.

A push bar allows a building to have a modern access control system operating its doors while also complying with safety and fire code regulations, making it a suitable option in many cases.

 

3. Magnetic Locks

 

These types of locks are perfect for a modern office building because most architects now design buildings with elegant glass doors and those are not always compatible with physical locks.

They operate using a powerful electromagnet attached to the top door frame at the corner with a corresponding metal plate on the door itself, meaning the locks work just like two large magnets.

Magnetic locks are a workaround for those designs and the amount of force necessary to operate the door’s opening and closing usually varies based on how large the door is in each scenario. As a result, magnetic locks can be a very classy option.

However, it should be kept in mind that they quite often require motion sensors and backup batteries to operate. They are also one of the more expensive options, so if you are on a budget and looking to cut costs, magnetic locks are probably not the way you want to go.

 

4. Electrified Mortise Locks / Wired Mortise Locks

 

These are an excellent option because they are incredibly easy to use and operate. Mortise locks operate almost entirely like a standard lock that most people have been conditioned to use all of their lives, except they have a power cable connecting the lock to the power supply.

The only somewhat complicated part is that mortise locks require a wire to go through the doors and into the main wall, meaning you either need to use electrified door hinges or on-wall cabling to make them work.

These locks can be set up to be either fail-safe or fail-secure depending on your personal preference.

Some more expensive mortise locks can be set up to switch between fail-safe and fail-secure mode, but it can be a little complicated to install it that way, so if you choose to go that route, you will want to consult with the closest locksmith.

Although mortise locks are a classy option like magnetic locks, unlike magnetic locks, they are not compatible with glass doors, so that must be kept in mind when deciding whether or not to use them.

Harry’s Locksmith has been serving Vancouver and Portland’s commercial locksmithing needs since 1949. There’s no job too big or small for our team of locksmiths who are experts in their field. Our specialties include security doors, keyless entry, ada compliance, and master rekeying.

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