Door hardware with electric strike

I'm building a new house and plan to have electric strikes on two doors. I'm having trouble getting my head around how the door hardware should work.

For egress I don't want to have to unlock the door to get out, nor do I want to have to engage the strike, so this presumably means a knob (or lever) that will turn on the inside even when locked.

I'm not really sure what to do about a dead bolt either. I don't want to have the situation where the dead bolt is locked and now I can't get in the house (using an RFID card or punching a code in an external keypad). I'm considering forgoing the dead bolt entirely on the theory that with an alarm system a dead bolt doesn't really add a great deal of security.

Just to put this in perspective, the family's normal way of entering the house will be by driving a vehicle into the attached garage. The man doors won't see a huge amount of use. Guests will be let in this way when we are home. Extended family and our cleaning lady will have RFID cards and will come in this way. I would be willing to accept (and might prefer) a solution that doesn't have a way to mechanically leave the doors unlocked.

I'd really appreciate any insight from the folks here. Thanks.


Reply to
Doug Meredith
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That is correct. Electric strikes have a "keeper" that holds the latch in place. When current is appled, a solenoid releases the keeper and it swings away, releasing the door. The keeper then snaps back ready to receive the latch when the door closes or (in styles intended for deadbolt locks) remains open until the door closes. When the extended deadbolt engages the keeper it clicks shut again, locking the door.

Typically, the key-in-knob or combo knob and deadbolt can be released from the exterior with a key in the event of a power outage or system failure. From the inside a turn of the latch of knob opens the door.

In addition to electrik strikes, there are numerous makes of electric door locks which will open with a code, proximity card or even a finger print. Many of our customers use coded locks with batteries in them. Battery life typically runs several years with "average" use. I sell a fair number of electric strikes though most are used with telephone access controls or fulol-blown access control systems.

There has been some discussion in this newsgroup of hacking RFID access control systems. While that is a possibility, the likelihood of it affecting any given private residence is close to nil. If it is a concern though, consider using a code or code-plus-card system.

Reply to
Robert L Bass

I haven't tried to keep up with this area but, for a few years, I used an automated deadbolt that was operated with a small keychain IR remote. I have a spinal cord injury which impedes my mobility and I gave remotes to everyone who needed to get in regularly. Inside, operation was the same as a normal deadbolt - the only difference being a housing which held the batteries. Outside, it also could be opened with a key and looked like a normal deadbolt except for a small IR target and a small LED that flashed when the lock operated.

I live in a small 4-unit apartment building and, after there was an incident where the police were called about someone being in the building who had no business in the building, the landlord installed a lock and door-closer on the main entrance to the building. That made my automated lock obsolete.

However, I suspect you will find that RFID and biometric locks are available that also operate more or less like traditional key operated locks.

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Reply to
Dave Houston

Mr. Houston errs in his definition of "easily compromised". RF operated locks can be compromised by someone having the right hardware and knowledge. Fortunately, neither the hardware nor the knowledge are common among average thieves. Most thieves simply kick in a door (or find an unlocked one) or break a window. Very few use even lock picks, which are much simpler to operate than an RF sniffing system and which cost far less than the RF hardware.

For ordinary residential use, RF or other remotely operated locks perform as well as standard, non-automated locks. If you are protecting a multi-million dollar home or a jewelry store, look into a more secure solution. If you want an automated solution that is truly difficult to compromise, deploy a system which requires "something you have plus something you know". For example, you could install a lock which requires both a code and a finger print. But for that much trouble you could just buy a standard, high security Medeco lock.

Reply to
Robert L Bass

Not to be picky but...

There are three levels of authentication. Each is considered more secure than the preceding.

  1. Something you know. Passwords are easily shared and once more than one person know them it is difficult to have any confidence in authentication when presented.

2 Something you have. Keys, cards and other physical objects can be copied but sharing is more difficult than a password. A physical object can become a 1 if it is not kept secure, like leaving a key under the door mat.

3 Something you are. Biometric authentication like fingerprint, hand and retina scanners are considered the most secure since the item presented for authentication cannot be copied or borrowed.

A code and a fingerprint are 1 and 3.

Reply to
Lewis Gardner

Ignoring, of course, how readily most fingerprint systems can be compromised. And once compromised, the key CAN'T be changed. As in, once someone hacks your fingerprint you're screwed from being able to use it reliably anywhere again.

Reply to
Bill Kearney

FTR, I don't copnsider added information "picky" -- it makes the thread more useful.

  1. Agreed.

  1. cf #1

  1. If the system is efficient at excluding unauthorized personnel AND permitting authorized personnel to enter, "something you are" can be a very secure requirement. The problem for most folks reading CHA is that very effective biometric solutions tend to be very expensive. Mid to low priced solutions are generally more prone to errors, so they should be combined with something you know, such as...
Reply to
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