The best HomeKit locks for your smart home in 2022

Posted:
in General Discussion edited June 2022
The number of HomeKit-enabled locks continues to grow. To find out which is best, we put several of them to test to come up with our recommendations for your smart home.

The best HomeKit smart locks
The best HomeKit smart locks


All HomeKit locks share some degree of similar functionality. They all can be controlled with the Home app, included in scenes, and automated based on location.

Of the locks we're recommending, each has unique features that set them apart from the rest of the marketplace.



Level Lock Touch Edition

Our most oft-recommended lock for 2022 has to be the Level Lock Touch Edition. Level has two other versions of its signature smart lock, which may be appealing depending on your installation.

The Level Lock Bolt just replaces the internal mechanics of your lock, earning it the title of the "invisible smart lock." The standard Level Lock has the internals, as well as the exterior door hardware as well.

Level Lock Touch Edition is the most capable of the three. This lock stands out by offering several methods of gaining ingress to your home.

Level Lock Touch Edition
Level Lock Touch Edition


You can lock and unlock your door just by touching the outer keyhole of the lock. It checks the Bluetooth connection with your phone to authenticate, then controls your lock. It's easy and seamless.

The other options is using the included NFC key cards. These credit card-sized cards can tap against the door where it will then unlock. This is a perfect solution for those who don't have a smartphone.

As a final option, Level sells a wireless keypad that can be installed nearby. Find it for $79.

If you'd like to buy the Level Lock Touch Edition, you can find it for around $300 on Amazon.

August Wi-Fi

The August Wi-Fi edition has two features that we're in love with that make it an exceptional smart lock.

August locks famously are easy to install, just swapping out the internal throw while leaving the internals and external hardware. Just like with the Level Bolt we briefly mentioned above, that makes it great for rental properties.

August Wi-Fi edition
August Wi-Fi edition


What's unique though is its door sensor. This sensor goes inside the door frame and can detect if the door is merely cracked, or left wide open.

For us, this provided peace of mind out door was always closed. We have dogs and are perpetually worried the door may come open and they could run free. While we're home, we don't always keep it locked.

August Wi-Fi edition will alert us so we don't waste the AC/heat and no animals or small children will escape.

This version also connects over Wi-Fi, allowing access from almost anywhere in your home, including places Bluetooth previously didn't reach.

There is one downside though, which is that HomeKit door locks can't communicate over Wi-Fi. You'll still need a Home Hub within Bluetooth range to remotely control via HomeKit. Only the August app will work over Wi-Fi.

It's available on Amazon for $198.

Schlage Encode Plus

Thus far, the Schlage Encode Plus is the only HomeKit-enabled lock available in the U.S. to support Apple's Home Key technology. While it remains frequently out of stock, it still made it to our list.

Schlage Encode Plus
Schlage Encode Plus


With Home Key support, your door lock's key can be added to the Wallet app on your iPhone and Apple Watch. These can also be shared with guests and visitors and stored on their phones.

Otherwise, this look has all the hardware you need for the inside and outside of your door and boats a built-in keypad for numerical access.

Grab one while you can for $359.99.

Assure Lever

The last lock we want to recommend is the Assure Lever lock. This happens to be the first and only HomeKit lock designed for the interior of your home.

Assure Lever Lock
Assure Lever Lock


With this, you can secure important rooms in your house and control access with HomeKit. A basement, a space bedroom, a home office, and more can have their standard doorknobs swapped for this lever lock. As a bonus, it has a built-in keypad too.

Grab the Yale Assure Lever Lock on Amazon.

Read on AppleInsider

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 14
    rraburrabu Posts: 264member
    The poor support and bugs in August products are so abundant that it really should not be on a list like this. Unless of course AppleInsider is getting paid for pushing this; in which case I wouldn’t trust this list at all…
    Japhey
  • Reply 2 of 14
    neilmneilm Posts: 984member
    I have a pair of August locks and find them quite good. Their only real downside is chewing through batteries at quite a rate.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 14
    oberpongooberpongo Posts: 181member
    By far the best lock ( at least here in Europe) is the Nuki. Installed in minutes with no tools. HomeKit support and great design and features. 
    mbenz1962watto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 14
    mike1mike1 Posts: 3,265member
    rrabu said:
    The poor support and bugs in August products are so abundant that it really should not be on a list like this. Unless of course AppleInsider is getting paid for pushing this; in which case I wouldn’t trust this list at all…

    Mine works just fine. Thank you.

    The lack of examples or details makes me think you work for one of the competitors. Probably one that didn't even make the list.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 14
    I’ve had the Schlage Encode Plus since release and it is wonderful. It’s performed flawlessly so far. HomeKey with my Apple Watch is great when coming back from my morning run since I don’t carry a phone. Still at 95% battery after 2 months or so. I’m surprised the review didn’t mention anything about Thread on the Encode, which makes for quick response and low battery consumption. 
    Only thing I wish it had was something like August sensor so that it wouldnt try to lock and instead notify you if the door wasn’t all the way closed. I do have a Homekit door sensor on that door so there’s probably a way to set up something, but I just haven’t taken the time to figure it out yet.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 14
    wonkothesanewonkothesane Posts: 1,715member
    oberpongo said:
    By far the best lock ( at least here in Europe) is the Nuki. Installed in minutes with no tools. HomeKit support and great design and features. 
    YMMV. I was very happy with my DanaLock. Only because I wanted autounlock I switched to Tedee, and I am super happy. Very robust, very small, smart design, full HK compatibility. 

    Btw.: The DanaLock that went to another door gave in about four weeks out of warranty. When I contacted customer support, they immediately sent me a replacement unit. No questions asked - Great customer service.
  • Reply 7 of 14
    robin huberrobin huber Posts: 3,925member
    Alas, until we replace our builder front door smart locks are not a possibility. The traditional wooden door warps slightly one way in the heat of summer, and the other way in the cold of winter, requiring us to to either push or pull on it to get the deadbolt to throw. None of these is “smart” enough to do that. 
    mobirdwatto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 14
    rraburrabu Posts: 264member
    I don’t work for any lock company. Look in Reddit’s august lock for tons of examples from many people. Personally have the gen4 and it’s junk. Turn off wifi if you don’t want to spend a fortune on batteries and just use HomeKit . It’s super slow. You issue the unlock command and then wait in the rain for 10 minutes. I suppose all is peachy if the whole family uses their app instead but the whole point of HomeKit is so my kids don’t need to sign up with every crappy cloud service!
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 14
    JapheyJaphey Posts: 1,766member
    At this point, it’s Home Key or bust. Any chance the Level Lock Touch Edition can be upgraded in the future to support it, or will that require all new hardware? 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 14
    mbenz1962mbenz1962 Posts: 171member
    oberpongo said:
    By far the best lock ( at least here in Europe) is the Nuki. Installed in minutes with no tools. HomeKit support and great design and features. 
    YMMV. I was very happy with my DanaLock. Only because I wanted autounlock I switched to Tedee, and I am super happy. Very robust, very small, smart design, full HK compatibility. 

    Btw.: The DanaLock that went to another door gave in about four weeks out of warranty. When I contacted customer support, they immediately sent me a replacement unit. No questions asked - Great customer service.
    I can only confirm what @oberpongo says.  I have used the Nuki 2.0 lock used in combination with the keypad here in Germany since April 2019 (right at the 3 year mark now). This lock is great.  It works solidly in the Home app and has additional functionality (GPS fencing and Bluetooth confirmation for auto unlock, keypad with muti-code management, fob integration, and more) that works with their app and doesn't affect Homekit compatibility. This lock doesn't have Homekey, but since the Nuki app allows its own flavor of auto-unlock, I don't need it.

    Doors here in Germany, much like the US, have the door latch thrown when the door is closed to keep said door closed.  Unlike the US, doors here typically have just a bar on the outside and no way to retract the latch (via turning a handle) short of using the key.  The effect is, that once the door is shut, it is, for all intents and purposes, "locked" from the outside.  This "locking" would not stand up to a clever burglar with 2 minutes of unrestricted access and so isn't really locked.  As your average homeowner from the US however, we have been "locked" out many times, especially when we first moved here, because we had not consciously locked the door and so didn't remember to step outside with our keys.  As soon as smart locks became available here with Homekit (I only buy Homekit smart home products), I started looking into them to alleviate this issue and finally decided on Nuki over DanaLock because if you use Homekit you cannot use the Danapad and the Danalock App's auto-unlock feature (according to Danalock's support pages at the time).

    The installation was easy and does not need to be done with tools unless you need to change your lock cylinder.  Set up in the app was easy and connecting external peripherals (keypad) was also easy in the Nuki app. We use the keypad 10+ times a day and the coin-cell battery has lasted these 3 years and the low battery warning still hasn't been triggered.  The lock uses 4 AA cells and these need to be replaced every 3-4 months for us.  I might could squeeze 6 months out if the door were slightly better aligned (slight interference with the deadbolt) and if I just suffered through slow unlocking cycles once the batteries drop below 50% capacity.  As soon as I notice the lock is "chugging", I replace the batteries even though the app assures me that the capacity is sufficient.  Now they even have a rechargeable Powerpack that I will buy once it becomes available on Amazon.

    The only negatives for this lock are (1) the large physical size of the lock motor (somewhat better with the 3.0 version). (2) When changing the batteries, the lock turns a full 720 degrees as part of the reinitialization process regardless of how you have the deadbolt throw set.  My particular deadbolt "bottoms out" at like 710 degrees of rotation and this results in the outside lock mechanism straining at the end of initialization cycle. (3) The beta version of the closed door sensor that was included for free with the 2.0 version of the lock throws "door jammed" errors pretty often.  These are easy to clear, but annoying. Even with these minor issues, the Nuki is an absolute, 100% buy recommendation f
    rom me for users here in Germany.
    edited June 2022 watto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 14
    I'm frankly still a little leery of"smart" locks.  Not only do they require power, in the form of batteries that must be replaced regularly, in order to be as "smart" as possible, if history shows us anything, it's that they will be hacked.

    That said, there's much truth to the notion that locks are only really useful to keep out honest people.  There are few residential doorways that will withstand a concerted effort to break in, and no mere lock of any type will be much of a deterrent to a determined thief.

    So I totally get the convenience factor for some people, probably a lot of people, it just doesn't seem worth the trouble and expense to me.  YMMV, and that's OK.


    watto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 14
    The Level Locks & Touch can be used on interior doors as well, but you have to buy the spacers from Level’s online store. 
  • Reply 13 of 14
    macguimacgui Posts: 2,341member
    For a smartlock to be hacked, someone has to know you have one in the first place. That's why I'd prefer something like the August or Level Lock. From the outside, nobody would be aware you have one, at least not without conducting some surveillance. Even then maybe not.

    It may be that keypads are very convenient or even a necessity in some instances. So there may eventually be some risk.

    The observation of residential doors not being particularly resistant to dynamic entry is valid though a non-sequitur. A smart lock isn't added to increase structural integrity. Obviously it shouldn't reduce it. It's a matter of convenience which will very in degree depending on use case. As a single dweller my need for convenience is low but the desire is very high. For others it may be more than convenience and an actual necessity.

    For something completely different, I've installed on my doors a 'night latch'. I've showed friends how to do this as well. It could be a code violation though. It's simply a blind deadbolt or rim latch lock. The hole for the cylinder is only drilled halfway through from the inside.

    So there's the traditional thumb turn with no keye cylinder required on the inside. From the outside there's no key cylinder or any indication of an additional lock. The door can only be locked from the inside. So yes this could be a potential building code violation in some locals. In the case of an emergency a fire department would generally use their master key anyway.

    For the truly adventurous adding a one-sided smart lock like August or Level would add convenience without the telltale keypad. Of course in the event of a failure to retract...
  • Reply 14 of 14
    neilm said:
    I have a pair of August locks and find them quite good. Their only real downside is chewing through batteries at quite a rate.
    Every word you wrote applies to me as well.
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