by Robert Fox
I'll give it to you straight: I needed a durable, keyless deadbolt lock for my property.
A few months back, there had been some break-ins on properties around mine and my family's, right on my street.
We were concerned we'd be next on the "hit list".
That's when we got a little self-conscious about some of the locks on our home, particularly on my workshop in the back, which contains a lot of valuable stuff of both mine and my wife's.
Up to this point, we were kind of going about our home security strategy the typical way with keyed locks everywhere, until we tried a keyless model on the front door. More on that momentarily.
My wife and I are both from sleepy rural towns originally, so we grew up pretty trusting and often left doors unlocked.
The break-ins changed our minds a bit. We are, after all, now living in the big city!
We still felt relatively safe, but we knew that we had to make some adjustments if we wanted to get complete peace of mind.
So we began asking and shopping around and came across several recommendations for Samsung's keyless deadbolt, the Samsung SHS-3321 Digital Door Lock.
You are probably familiar with the name Samsung.
There is a good chance you've used this South Korean company's digital products, although normally they aren't associated with door locks or home security, or so we thought.
More commonly people think of TV's or other electronic devices when they think of that name, and maybe some elderly folk can remember the days when they sold dried Korean fish back in the 1930's.
This is part of the reason I was skeptical, at first, to try the Samsung SHS-3321 Digital Door Lock, which looks like this:
Was the same company that provided us with our first black-and-white television going to be able to provide my home with security I can trust?
I was about to find out, and now that I've spent some time with it, I am able to provide you with a thorough Samsung deadbolt door lock review that should give you some insight into whether this lock might work for you and your family.
I suppose it was presumptuous, writing Samsung off from the get-go, just because I didn't think of them specifically as a lock-making company, but neither myself or anyone in my family had heard anything of Samsung being a maker of quality locks.
The recommendation came from a fairly tech savvy member of my family, my Uncle Bruce.
Uncle Bruce, although a bit of a know-it-all, does know a thing or two about technology, having worked in a science lab for 35 years.
I was surprised he would endorse a foreign company like Samsung, as he has some interesting opinions about foreign policy, but he assured me this lock would give me peace of mind.
I looked into the company and in fact, Samsung is, by revenue, the largest information technology company in the world.
They make consumer electronics like stereos, televisions, phones - just about anything you can think of. But if you're reading this, chances are you know this.
Anyway, if it's digital, or runs electronically, Samsung probably makes it, and they make quality products, by all accounts.
Some of the smartest people in the world are from South Korea and they design and make chips and other devices for the company.
That said, I was still not sold on whether they would make a good deadbolt for my workshop.
"What does B, C, and D mean?", was my response. He just told me to shut up and get it. Trust him, he said.
Well, my wife liked the look of it, so we end up getting it eventually, after some debate. (even though it's my workshop, my wife chose the lock - go figure)
After buying the lock, I was quite surprised that a number of my work buddies were fans of Samsung and wanted to hear how the lock worked out.
One thing I liked straight away about the Samsung SHS-3321 Digital Door Lock was that it was extremely user-friendly, sleek and stylish and modern out of the box, with exceptional durability.
This lock, I thought, was almost too sleek, so I did some tests on the durability for the purpose of this review, and let me tell you, it held up.
I was getting a good feeling already. As for their electronics, I find that Samsung and Panasonic electronics hold up the longest over time. So this lock is electronic! Great!
So you might ask, why wasn't I going to put this lock on my front door? The answer is that my front door already has a decent lock, the Schlage BE365.
An argument ensued as I talked with my wife about replacing the BE365 with this lock, or maybe buying another Samsung deadbolt to ensure a uniformity between the workshop in the back and the front door lock.
My wife and I finally agreed that we may as well leave the Schlage BE365 on the front door, and use the Samsung on the workshop. The buildings are far enough apart that it doesn't matter that they don't look alike, and besides, we like the BE365 where it is.
I guess as a bonus, we could now see how these two locks stacked up against each other. If we ended up liking the Samsung enough, we might consider replacing the Schlage BE365.
Once we installed the lock on the workshop, time passed, and we all started to get to know the Samsung SHS-3321 Digital Door Lock a little better.
My wife is always going back to get things in the workshop, and my eldest daughter practices drums back there. It's a big space, and we all need access to it.
We all like the keypad on this lock. It's smooth, easy to use, and you can program up to 71 codes into it. We've used about 4 of the codes up now.
We'll never need 71 different codes, but I guess other people would use this lock for different applications, so it makes sense to me to some degree. Businesses perhaps?
On our other Schlage BE365, the keypad is more like punching on the physical digits. It's a nice lock, but the Samsung is way smoother and style-wise, even my daughters like how it looks. They think the Schlage looks a bit outdated, but of course they're 14 and 17.
Now, no one has to worry about losing their keys. It's just a matter of remembering your code.
I'll talk more about the installation of this lock momentarily, but here I just want to talk about my appreciation for the finer points of this electronic keyless deadbolt.
Two things to mention sooner than later are the bump proof nature of this lock, and the fact that it's RFID-compatible.
Bump proof locks are a great thing to have, I've learned. Bruce was right, after all. This Samsung SHS-3321 Digital Door Lock is bump proof, because it has no keyhole.
The idea behind bump proof locks is that if thieves have a keyhole, they can use some special tools, get in there, and basically jog the locking mechanism until the deadbolt disengages. This is a scary thought!
I definitely feel some added security with this lock, since it is bump proof and has no keyhole to "bump".
In terms of the lock being RFID, I know now that RFID means that the lock comes with some remote control fobs that you can use to add double authentication to the lock.
This means, you need to know the code, for one, and you need the fob, or RFID tag, for two, to open the lock. The fob, or tag, doesn't need to touch the lock, but you do need to have it with you.
I personally don't use the RFID feature, because I don't feel the need to. However, if it gets to a point where I feel like I need the double authentication feature, it's certainly nice to have it.
I need to mention our front door deadbolt again, the Schlage BE365, which is a keyless lock.
That's all well and good, but that lock is NOT bump proof, theoretically, because it has a keyhole.
So while you don't need a key for that lock because you can punch in a code, it's still not keyless in the sense that you CAN use a key, or a tool (like a drill) to break in.
The thieves who broke into our neighbours' home in the middle of the night, who I mentioned earlier, apparently had a criminal toolkit for such purposes. Not exactly re-assuring!
They stole a bunch of stuff and caused a lot of damage before heading back into the night, those bastards. Luckily, no one got hurt.My wife also was not pleased to hear about this, to the point where she was starting to develop panic disorder when we'd hear a noise at night.
She is also happy to learn about this "bump proof" lock stuff.
Safety is also a mindset that comes when you know you're secure, and it's my job to make my family feel 100% safe.
What it boils down to is this. If there is a keyhole, there is the potential for lock-bumping. No keyhole - no "bump key", and therefore no lock bumping is possible.
This Samsung electronic deadbolt lock qualifies as "bump-proof", based purely on the fact that there's no keyhole. So that made my wife feel better about using it, anyway.
The installation of this lock and programming its codes and all that jazz is not something a non-handy person could tackle alone, I don't think.
According to some people I talked to about this, we agree that this lock hasn't got such a great manual in terms of how it's all laid out, so the easiest way would be to have someone handy nearby while you do it.
This is really only if you haven't done it before. If you've installed deadbolts before, this will be no big deal to you. It wasn't a big deal to me, and I'm no expert. I was able to Youtube it and it all worked out fine.
That said, there is some mildly challenging installation involved and then you will have to program it.
People kept asking me, is this a heavy duty deadbolt? I'd say…not really. I'd say it's a strong lock, but after doing more research after the fact, I discovered that there are more heavy duty locks than this one.
I didn't see an ANSI Grade 1 anywhere on the package. ANSI is the lock grading system used to determine how strong a lock is, with its own set of parameters.
You can't mess with ANSI Grade 1 locks, and Grade 2 is pretty tough as well. But this lock isn't really going by those standards, as far as I know.
All this ANSI stuff is based on testing where the locks are put through the paces. Can they handle X pressure and so forth? How many anvils can you drop on them before they are destroyed. What type of battering ram will take the lock out?
This is all fair enough, and I'm glad there is an organization for this.
With that said, I will say that there are a number of features that make up for there being no specific ANSI rating for this lock.
Lastly, I want to talk about whether this Samsung lock is smart.
From what I know, "smart" products usually means you can access the product (ie. lock) with an app on your phone or by using your laptop. Not the case with this lock.
At the same time, It has RFID technology built in, and this lock performs a number of amazing little tricks where I'd say, yeah, it's a pretty smart lock. Now, there's no smart features, like apps, or whatnot, involved here.
It's simply an electronic lock that is pretty tough, and has a number of great security features to boot. We love it, overall.
I would highly recommend this lock, after using it for several months.
I also wanted to give some last few tidbits or helpful ideas to further secure your home, that I use myself at my home.
I find that these things have helped, and have, in at least one case, proven to scare off one actual burglar.
|Schlage Be365Cam619 Be365 Camelot Keypad Deadbolt, Satin Nickel|
|Kwikset 92640-001 Contemporary Electronic Keypad Single Cylinder Deadbolt With 1-Touch Motorized Locking, Satin Nickel|
|Tacklife Electronic Deadbolt Door Lock, Keypad|
|Samsung Shs-3321 Digital Door Lock, Black, Keyless, Electronic, Deadbolt|
Thieves are attracted to shadowy, unlit places because they can hide here.
Most crimes are crimes of opportunity. This means thieves look for easy ways to get what they need; or the easiest possible way, anyway.
Motion-sensitive lights are ideal because they don't burn energy all the time - just when someone sets off the trigger.
Maybe your bedroom faces the darkest part of your yard or driveway and you don't want bright light shining in there all the time.
These lights are also guaranteed to get your attention - or at least definitely the attention of your dog.
As soon as that light gets triggered, the thief will flee the scene.
Even if you don't have these things, signage will be a huge deterrent.
Thieves - the smart ones, anyway - will scour a scene before entering it, so they know what's going on.
They're going to go in there with a plan of action. The first step is seeing if their plan is at all feasible.
When the first thing they see is "You are being watched," they are 100% going to leave that scene immediately.
You may not be a dog person, but they can be fiercely loyal (whether genetically or through training) and highly sensitive to sound and smell.
They have animal instinct that will indicate when something is strange or not right. This is especially useful when you're sleeping. Their barks will intimidate most people, provided it's a large dog.
At my house, we have the opposite of a large dog. We have a small yappy one, which thieves, I believe, hate even more, because they will not shut up.
If you really couldn't stand to have a dog at home, the motion-sensitive floodlight and signage combined will be more than enough to deter thieves and criminals.
Read the article, "7 Yappy Dogs that Might Make Good Guard Dogs"
Well folks, that's it. I hope this review helps some of you out there reading this. If you have any comments, please add them below!
If you had a good or terrible experience with the Samsung SHS-3321 Digital Door Lock, let me know in the comments, and I'll try to respond!
About Robert Fox
Rob Fox is a former hydro worker who used to teach self defence in Miami for 10 years. He's currently enjoying his retirement, playing cribbage and golf with his buddies, locksmithing and home security in his spare time. Rob is an avid reader, and has even written a few books on the subject of self defence.