Security Locks – what are the different types?

When planning your perfect home, security is one of a number of aspects to think about. There are a lot of different factors that go into security, but one of the most important is the locks themselves.

That’s why we thought it would be a good idea to go through the different types of available locks in order to help you make a more informed decision.


There are three main types of deadbolt: single, double, and lockable thumb turn. Single cylinder deadbolts make use of a key cylinder on the outside and a thumb turn on the inside to open the lock. Double cylinder deadbolts use a key cylinder on both the inside and the outside of the door. The final type of deadbolt is a form of hybrid between the two other kinds, the lockable thumb turn: considered the most flexible.

Mortice locks

This type of lock used to be extremely common and can still be found in a variety of British homes. Mortice locks require a key to both lock and unlock, and there is usually a gap between the key and the edge of the lock. One of the main benefits of mortice locks is that they are harder to break, making them ideal for external use. If you are going to use a mortice lock, though, it’s worth making sure that it complies with British Standard BS3621: this will often be required by insurers, as some older versions are considered less secure.

Night latches

These are also known in some cases as ‘secondary’ locks and in general they come in two different forms: standard and deadlocking. The standard version locks the door automatically unless you choose to hold the latch back. The deadlocking version, meanwhile, locks automatically and requires a key to open the door from both inside and outside. Needless to say, the deadlocking version is considered more secure. It’s worth noting, however, that night latches are primarily used as an extra layer of security and should not be the only lock on any main door.

Multi-point locking systems

These are frequently found on UVPC doors. Multi-point systems have a minimum of three main locking points that are all locked simultaneously with the turn of one key. They are commonly found in external doors, especially in things like garages and patios. You’ll also find them frequently used in traditional front doors, as many people consider them more secure than the mortice variety.

Cylinder locks

These are possibly the most common locks in UK domestic properties. They are very easy to install, offer good value for money and can be used for both internal and external purposes. They are also quite versatile and very suitable for use with UVPC and composite doors. However, they are not quite as secure as some other locks and can be susceptible to a technique called lock snapping.

Get in touch

It’s important to get the security of your new windows and doors absolutely right; which is why we definitely recommend giving Livingwood Windows & Doors a call today on 01284 764045.

Our specialists will guide you through every part of the process, ensuring you end up with nothing less than the perfect new set of windows or doors.