One of the first things we did at our new home, Farmette 825, was change out the locks. This should always be one of the first things you do when you move because you never know who the previous owners gave a spare key to. I decided to go with a Touchpad Keyless Entry deadbolt instead of simply replacing the traditional lock set that was already there. At our old house we always entered and exited through the garage, so it was different adjusting to remembering to lock the front door on our way out. I like that with the touchpad I no longer need my keys to lock the door, and can use them to start cooling down my car... still adjusting to that no garage life. My wife likes that she no longer needs the keys to unlock the door, therefore she doesn't have to stand there digging through her purse to find the keys while holding the baby/ groceries/ kids' junk.
We went with the Kwikset Powerbolt2- it was midrange in price, available in three different finishes, and I liked that it features the SmartKey re-key technology. With the SmartKey you can reprogram your lock to go with any other Kwikset key, provided that you have the key that currently unlocks that lock. For example, I also replaced the lock on my backdoor with a standard Kwisket deadbolt. I then used the key that came with the Powerbolt to reprogram the key for the backdoor so that they would be the same, thus I would only need one key to unlock both doors. (Basically, this would be the equivalent of purchasing a package with two locks and one set of keys.)
The Powerbolt2 was easy to install with just a screwdriver (the case for most standard doors) and takes four AA batteries (not included). I first removed the old lock- unscrew from the back, remove the front, and pop out the center piece. After this has been removed, you can set the middle piece of the new lock and attach the front and back pieces. The most important part of installing this lock is to ensure that the deadbolt extends into your door frame without restriction. If it rubs or cannot fully extend then the lock will not operate properly.
After you've fully installed the lock hardware, follow the simple instructions provided to program the keypad. You can set up to six user access codes for family and guests. I set up a code for my wife and a different code for myself; I didn't want the same buttons being pressed and start to show signs of wear, revealing our passcode. For this reason, I recommend setting at least two codes that will be used regularly. (Though it does come with lifetime mechanical and finish warranty, and 1 year electronics warranty.) Another cool feature is that you can set up a one-time temporary code for a single entry, say for a contractor/dog walker etc.
We've been using our Electronic Touchpad Deadbolt for a few weeks now and I don't know how we ever managed without one. It is so convenient and I don't have to worry about accidently getting locked out of the house or forgetting my keys. It will also be a great solution for the kids when they get older, no need to worry about them losing a house key. Keyless entry is the way to go and I highly recommend this product.
Read about some of the other projects we completed during our first month at our new home.