Is there such a thing as a locksmith-proof door?
This is an interesting question, especially since it raises all kinds of other questions: what does locksmith-proof actually mean? Is a locksmith-proof door actually a good thing? Does locksmith-proofing actually do what you need it to?
In this post we’ll go through these issues, and you’ll find the answer less clear-cut than you might have hoped.
What do you mean by locksmith-proof?
When you say locksmith-proof, do you actually mean burglar-proof? Or do you mean extremely secure? Or are you afraid that a specific locksmith who has a grudge against you will try and break into your house?
This question is hugely important, and the answer depends pretty much on the reason you’re asking. Let’s go over these answers.
“I want a burglar-proof door”: It’s easy to burglar-proof a door. You’ve just got to make it a little bit difficult to get into. Most burglars will abandon the door straight away, and they’ll try to get into your house another way. They’ll try the windows, the back door etc. Read about keeping your front door secure here.
“I need extreme security”: Let’s say you’re assuming that a burglar or someone else will try to attack your front door. They know you’re not around, they know nobody will notice them. They might try crowbarring the door, battering it, kicking it etc. Depending on where the locks on your door are, they might be successful. In any case, wooden doors would struggle to withstand the force of a battering ram. So you might consider a metal door, which would help with this. Metal doors, too, are vulnerable, though, because they still have locks on them. Which brings me to the last point…
“I’m specifically trying to keep out a locksmith”: A locksmith wouldn’t batter a door down or smash anything. That’s not how they roll, and rightly so. They would try to attack the lock, by picking or by drilling. To keep out a locksmith (or somebody else who doesn’t need to worry about making noise), you’d do well to fit an anti-everything cylinder which is horrible to get into. Though even this can be done, with patience and spare drill bits.
No realistic door is fully locksmith-proof. I’m sure some doors exist that are 200ft high and made out of 100% radioactive plutonium. Those could well be locksmith-proof, but they’re not realistic.
Is locksmith-proofing actually a good thing?
For many people, forgetting keys is much more likely than being burgled. Most people don’t get burgled, but many people lose keys (I’ll raise my hand and say that even I got locked out after I dropped my keys into a gutter by accident…). If you had anti-everything locks on your door, you’d be waiting hours while the locksmith breaks all of his drill bits, and have to pay a fortune as a result.
Burglars don’t tend to drill much, they tend to smash stuff or crowbar things. If you’re more likely to lose your keys than to be burgled, you might consider fitting a copy-protected cylinder for security, which is still to an extent openable by a trained and accredited professional locksmith.
I’m not saying don’t try to get a secure front door, but I’m saying it’s good to think properly about what will realistically happen in the future.
Will locksmith-proofing your door actually do what you want it to do?
Spending a lot of money on an incredibly high-security front door will often lead to one thing and one thing only: complacency.
Unless you also ensure that your windows and back door(s) are safe, you will still be vulnerable. The fact that you have an ‘invulnerable’ front door won’t change the fact that interlopers have all kinds of ways of gaining entry.
If you only have a specific budget, it would probably be best to commission a security survey of the property and to get good security all over the place, rather than excellent security on one door and poor security elsewhere.
The bottom line is to speak to your insurance company about what they would consider good enough for your front door. Then also ensure your property’s other entrances and windows are lockable and locked. Anything above that is a bonus.