Today we’re going to review the strongest and best heavy duty deadbolts we’ve come across, including some by true high security selections from two titans in the industry – Schlage and Medeco.
To clarify, if a deadbolt is “heavy duty”, that doesn’t mean it’s just for super high security situations, or for people who own super yachts and want one for the door on their panic room.
Heavy duty means you can of course use it for any standard size door on your home, and these deadbolts are indeed made expressly for both residential and business situations.
They just happen to claim to be the toughest of the tough as well.
When it comes to deadbolt locks, some might assume that any deadbolt is a “heavy duty deadbolts”, just because it is a deadbolt, and the word deadbolt has connotations that it is something that cannot be tampered with or broken.
This assumption would be incorrect. Deadbolts are by no means created equal. Some can be easily overcome by a few simple tools like paperclips, knives, and other little tools that your common thief would have.
If a petty criminal can get in your door with little effort, then that’s pretty much the opposite of “heavy duty” anything, isn’t it?
The truth is, if a deadbolt is going to call itself “heavy duty”, it needs to be qualified as such. And not just by the company making the deadbolt. That’s the same as the word “gourmet”. How does a company qualify that, exactly?
“Gourmet” burgers aside, if you want to make sure that you have the toughest and most impenetrable deadbolt door lock for your home or business, then you need to know what to look for.
Otherwise, you are going to end up with a deadbolt that isn’t going to do the job that you want it to, and, worse cafe scenario, may lead to you getting robbed or something terrible along those lines.
And, when it comes to the safety of you and your family, you want to make sure you have the absolute best.
What to look for when choosing a high security deadbolt lock?
So, how do you determine what are the best dead bolt locks? You have to know what to look for:
- Key Control – Having a lock with key control means that you have the ability to control who has access to make duplicate copies of your key. If a locksmith makes copies of the keys they are required to keep a record of it.
- Double-cylinder – A double-cylinder deadbolt requires a key to unlock the door from the exterior and interior. This makes it so a burglar cannot crack a window and reach in to unlock the door.
- Beveled Casings – When a lock has a beveled casing it causes destructive instruments like a hammer to slide off the lock.
- Anti-drill – If you want high security deadbolt locks then you need a lock that someone won’t be able to drill out.
- Longer “throw” – You want the “throw” or bar on the deadbolt to be at least 1-inch long. If it’s shorter than this it’s possible to use spreader bars to open the door.
- Bump proof – Lock bumping is the process by which you can take a “bump key”, insert it into a lock, and with a few taps, have the lock disabled. This was originally a technique used by locksmiths, but the criminals caught on. There are a couple ways to ensure your lock is bump proof, which we’ll explain in this article.
The last and most important thing that you need to look at when finding the best high security deadbolt is the ANSI grade.
ANSI stands for the American National Standards Institute. You can read more about them at the tail end of this review.
Basically, without ANSI, any company could claim to have heavy duty door locks.
Luckily, ANSI has a strict code for what qualifies as a strong or heavy duty lock. They have created a grading system based on rigorous testing.
In this review, we wanted to talk about some of the absolute strongest deadbolts on the market. And, the best deadbolts are ones that ANSI labels as Grade 1.
How it looks Name Price Features Buy Now Schlage Connect Century $$$
Built-in alarm technology
Comes in a variety of colors
Medeco Maxum $$$ Schlage B60N 619 $
Literally, getting past one of these deadbolts would be quite a feat. Grade 1 deadbolts are used in the highest security situations. They are made to take a beating.
Your average burglar cannot get past them. They would have an easier time going through your wall.
Each of the following heavy duty deadbolt locks received an ANSI Grade 1 rating. This means they are the best residential deadbolt locks available to consumers.
Not only that, but commercial ventures should be able to use them as well, as there is no higher rating than ANSI Grade 1.
Medeco Vs Schlage
Before we get into the actual reviews themselves, we want to address this idea of a Medeco vs. Schlage debate.
Since they are both such known entities in the lock world, people are often pitting them against each other, trying to determine if one is clearly the better lock maker.
So, is one actually better?
Unfortunately, at this point, there can be no closure to this debate. There are simply too many models made by each lock, with different functionalities and aesthetics, to clearly point to one brand being the clear “alpha” lock maker.
That said, both Schlage and Medeco have been in the business for a long time, and they both know a thing or two about heavy duty lock technology, which is why it’s no surprise to find both of their models on this list.
Here are more details on each of the heavy duty deadbolts in question.
Schlage B60N 619 Single Cylinder Deadbolt
Schlage is one of, if not the top shelf maker of deadbolts out there today.
The B60N 619 is a very popular model made by Schlage, with a near cousin and close contender here being the B560, but we prefer the B60N 619.
We think you’ll find that this Schlage B60n cylinder deadbolt is made to withstand anything, and is one of the Schlage deadbolts out there.
This Schlage ANSI-Grade 1 deadbolt has a keyhole on the exterior of the lock and a thumb turn on the interior.
It is simple to use, looks great, and is meant to provide an added layer of high security to any door. It can be easily confused with the Schlage
The installation of this deadbolt is quite easy. It has a special “Snap ‘n stay” design which keeps the lock held in place.
The Schlage B60N 619 fits any standard size door and is designed to fit pre-drilled holes. It comes complete with an adjustable universal latch which fits 2-3/8″ or 2-3/4″.
Once again, these Grade 1 ANSI/BHMA high security deadbolts are designed to specifically ward off any type of brute force attack. This includes from the use of a crowbar, hammer, saw, wrench, lock pick, or kick in.
Similar deadbolts to consider: Schlage has several locks that are similar to this one. If you are looking for the best Schlage deadbolt there are several you can look at.
For example, you could read about the Schlage B660P, and that would sound a lot like this one.
- If you’re looking for a “smart” deadbolt to go with your smart home, this isn’t it
- Customer service can be frustrating for some (long waits, closed / open??)
Medeco Maxum Residential Bump Proof Deadbolt
Medeco is a trusted name in deadbolts, and this Medeco 11TR50319 Maxum is their #1 model. It’s similar to the Medeco Maxum 11*603, but slightly better reviewed.
The Medeco 11TR50319 Maxum is designed as a high security deadbolt residential lock. It’s complete with triple-locking security featuring a Medeco 3 cylinder.
With an updated look, the Medeco Maxum 11TR50319 has a keyhole on the exterior with a thumb turn on the inside of the lock.
This lock has been designed to be pick and bump proof. This is a huge advantage, as some people can be pretty paranoid about burglars trying this “trick”. That said, these types of “attacks” have become more widespread, as videos for how to do this are everywhere these days.
This ANSI Grade 1 Medeco lock will fit all doors that are 1-3/4″ to 2″ thick. And, it includes two Medeco 5-pin security keys. It’s also UL437 listed.
We feel that no list of heavy duty residential door locks would be complete without this one.
And, there is an ongoing debate between Medeco vs Schlage because Medeco is one of the few deadbolt manufacturers who can compete with Schlage in terms of being the best of the best.
- Can be a lot of red tape and runaround in getting new keys made
- Some have found this model hard to install
Medeco Maxum 11R503-19-1 Deadbolt
If you’re thinking that the name of this lock sounds exactly like the one above you’re almost right. Both of these deadbolts are from the Medeco Maximum series, but they aren’t identical.
This lock was designed to hold up against attack, not that anyone wants to think of that happening, but it’s always good to be prepared just in case. It has hardened steel inserts for the highest degree of drill resistance, 1″ hardened steel bolt to resist attacks from saws and crowbars, and a strike plate with 2″ screws.
This deadbolt also has a key hole on one side and thumb turn on the other. It has a slick and modern design as well.
- Since this model is so similar to the other Medeco Maximum it comes with the same cons. Some people found that it was difficult to install and it only comes with two keys. Obtaining additional keys can be difficult and costly.
Schlage Connect Century Deadbolt
Well well, here we are once again with another Schlage deadbolt rated ANSI Grade 1. The difference is this on is a touch screen model.
The Schlage Connect Century deadbolt that we got our hands on has a matte finish, with a highly durable and resistive touch screen which is protected against any sort of smudges or fingerprints.
Keep in mind this is a “smart” deadbolt, meaning it is meant to be work with your smart home set up. The Schlage Century works with systems such as Nexia, Connect (Staples), Vera, Zipato, Honeywell, Iris (Lowe’s), Wink, and more.
With an anti-pick shield to protect against any kind of lock tampering, the Schlage Connect Century comes in a variety of finishes, including Aged Bronze, Bright Brass, Bright Chrome, Matte Black, Satin Chrome, Satin Nickel. Each brings a whole new look to this lock.
This is a fully automated deadbolt which unlocks or locks only if the correct user code is entered. It has built-in alarm technology and sends an alert to the property owner if it detects a problem.
Each package comes with a single back-up key, 4 AA batteries, as well as a user guide and instructions for installation.
- Costs more due to being “smart”. If you’re not trying to set up a smart home, might not be the best option.
- Not compatible with Samsung SmartThings
- Again, some people have complained about being on the phone with support for infuriatingly long periods of time
If you didn’t notice, Schlage is a big name when it comes to deadbolts. This is the 3rd one that made our list and there’s a good reason for that, the company has been in business for almost a century.
While this deadbolt is a Grade 2, the B500 series is advertised as one of the toughest locks in the business. It was designed by locksmiths to make it easy for locksmiths to use. This series of locks is able to work with any cylinder from Schlage on the market. It was designed to be easy to install and fit pretty much every door that you have.
The deadbolt has a lock on one side and a thumb turn on the other. It’s also enhanced for strength on the door jamb. It has an anti-pry shield that will protect the latch when someone is trying to break in.
- This lock is rated a Grade 2. That means there are other locks that are considered stronger on the market.
- The Schlage B560P is not a smart lock.
C.R. LAURENCE D50ENTBN CRL
Featuring a Schlage ‘C” 6-pin keyway, this Grade 1 ANSI lock by manufacturer C.R. Laurence is completely resistant to any kind of forced entry.
The look of this lock is a little different, so it may not be suitable for your front door. Instead, you may find it a better fit for a closet, office, or some other type of business application.
The D50ENTBN CRL is a non-handed, reversible lock which has a special “clutch” feature which will disengage the out lever when the latch is locked.
It is also worth noting that this lock has a 3-year warranty and is UL listed.
If you are looking for a deadbolt that has some high tech features with it then the Schlage S-6000 is a great option.
This deadbolt has a very modern and sleek look to it, but that doesn’t mean that it can’t stand up against a potential attack. The lock can store up to 8 different PIN codes in it and also allows you to use a fob or card to unlock it. All of these options come with the lock when you purchase it.
There are also additional features built in to increase the safety of this lock. For example, it has an alarm built-in that will sense if there has been forced entry to the house.
And, if you are someone that constantly forgets to lock your door this lock will take care of it for you. Once it has been unlocked for a certain time period it automatically locks.
But, if there is an emergency the door easily can unlock from the inside by turning the lever.
It’s weather resistant and easy to install. It provides you with a level of control that you don’t get from many locks on the market including offering a double lock. And, you don’t have to worry about having a key with you.
- It’s not just a simple keyed entry. If you don’t want to worry about creating and remembering a PIN then this might be more than you looking for.
- The lock requires batteries that you will need to keep your eye on because you don’t want the battery life to die if you are trying to access the inside of your house quickly.
To Know Heavy Duty, You Have To Know ANSI
As we’ve said, ANSI is critical in determining standards for deadbolts. Without them, it would be a free-for-all of anyone labelling their product “heavy duty”, regardless of how weak the product actually is.
If you want some historical context, here’s a video that will give you an idea of who ANSI is, and why we need them.
When it comes to deadbolts, as our friends over at Schlage tell us in their grading guide, there are basically three ANSI grades when it comes to locks.
The difference between 1, 2, and 3, relates to testing how much force can be put on a deadbolt before it gives in.
Without putting you to sleep from boredom, here is a breakdown for what the different ANSI Grades mean. It’s worth a read…
Mid Grade Vs. Heavy Grade
ANSI Grade 1
Usually, this grade is reserved for commercial applications. This includes commercial grade deadbolts or high-level residential applications where the most secure locks are often needed.
Grade 1 lock are tested for one million open/close cycles and have a 1-inch latch bolt. It can also withstand ten strikes of seventy-five lbs. of force / one hundred fifty foot-pounds.
ANSI Grade 2
These are considered “mid-grade” locks and are priced slightly lower than a Grade 1 lock. That said, Grade 2 locks can be used for both commercial and residential applications, and are tested for 800,000 open/close cycles with a 5/8 inch latch bolt.
A Grade 2 lock can withstand five strikes of seventy-five lbs. of force / one hundred twenty foot-pounds.
ANSI Grade 3
This is considered a “secondary” security measure for a residential door. Grade 3 locks are meant to withstand 800,000 open/close cycles and have a 5/8 inch latch bolt.
They can also handle two strikes of seventy-five pounds of force or ninety foot-pounds.
Here’s a video that will give you a real appreciation for what we’re talking about here in regards to those open/close cycles.
Now here is a video (below) from Medeco which gives us an idea of how these ANSI Grades actually go into practice, eg. intruders attempting to break in via brute force.
If you are looking to purchase a “heavy duty” deadbolt, be sure to check out the lock’s UL listing as well. This will indicate the underwriter laboratories standards when it comes to your deadbolt.
The best and most heavy duty deadbolts have a rating / UL listing of 437, which certifies that the lock meets all standards for overall toughness and security.
What’s Best For Your Home
You can comb through the documentation available about both Schlage and Medeco locks, and still feel like you can’t tell what the most heavy duty protective deadbolt is.
That’s because the bottom line is the “best” lock is going to come down to your personal preference once you cross off all the requirements.
There are multiple brands that offer Grade 1 locks that will do the job of protecting your house and everyone in it. It’s the finer points you’ll want to pay the closest attention to when making your final choice.
So, once you get past that point of analyzing what the lock can do or cannot do, it will then come down to design and style, which is also very important to most people.
We suggest not putting style before substance though.
Follow the advice included here of the top rated deadbolt locks and then choose the style you appreciate the most. If you stick with this plan you will have found your solution.