Chronic key misplacers (and all-out key losers) have a chance at changing their lives with the right smart locks in their arsenal.
Forget your keys? No problem. Need to unlock the door to let in a friend or service provider? Easy peasy. Forgot to lock the door before heading into bed? Don't you worry. The best smart locks for your doors will handle any of these scenarios with ease (and a mobile app).
With a smart lock at your door, you can manage all of that with an easy voice command or the tap of a button to unlock the door, offering you security, convenience, automation and peace of mind. But which smart lock option is right for your doors?
Picking the best smart lock for your home depends on a few things. For some, scheduling and user code limits will be important. For others, having a door lock that can be retrofit and not replace the deadbolt on doors is a must-have. We've tested the best smart locks on the market today and these are our favorites.
Best smart lock overall
August Smart Lock Pro and Connect Bundle
The $279 August Smart Lock Pro and Connect bundle includes a retrofit August Smart Lock Pro, a Connect Wi-Fi module and a DoorSense open-close sensor.
This August smart lock supports the Z-Wave wireless protocol (smart hub not included) and works with Apple HomeKit. With the Wi-Fi module set up, you'll get Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant compatibility, as well as remote access for the option to lock and unlock your doors from your Android or iOS devices when you're not home.
The Smart Lock Pro is a capable, easy-to-install smart lock and the winner of our CNET Editors' Choice Award.
Note: August just announced its newest lock, a 45% smaller August Wi-Fi Smart Lock, so keep an eye out for an even better, more compact model this year.
Read our full review of the Lock Pro.
Best for apartment dwellers
August Smart Lock and Connect
August's $200 third-generation Smart Lock and Connect bundle comes with a DoorSense open/close sensor and Connect Wi-Fi module. The low profile, retrofit design means you won't need to replace your deadbolt and installation is easy, offering convenience for renters.
The August Smart Lock with the Connect setup works with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa and is controllable remotely through the August mobile app. You won't get Apple HomeKit compatibility or Z-Wave smarts to connect to a smart hub. Still, this August Smart Lock is a moderately priced, capable smart door lock for keyless entry.
Read our full review of the August Smart Lock.
Yale Assure Lock SL Key Free Touchscreen Deadbolt
Yale's SL Touchscreen Deadbolt has a small, sleek design with a touchscreen keypad that looks good on nearly every door, and it comes in three finishes. The newest $299 smart deadbolt bundle includes August smarts with a Connected by August Kit (Wi-Fi module and DoorSense sensors) to connect with the August app to unlock your door or for locking it. This keyless lock works with Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant and HomeKit.
There's also a version with interchangeable modules for Zigbee or Z-Wave if you need to connect your door lock to smart home devices. Those modules cost $50 each.
Read our full review of the Yale Assure SL Touchscreen Deadbolt.
Best for simple setup
Schlage Encode Smart Wi-Fi Deadbolt
The $235 Schlage Encode doesn't do it all. You won't get HomeKit compatibility, and you're limited to 100 user codes. Still, I'm a big fan because you won't need Z-wave devices or a Zigbee hub or Wi-Fi module to connect this door lock to your smart home.
It includes built-in Wi-Fi and works with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant with simple account linking through their apps. It's also compatible with Amazon Key providing convenience for in-home delivery services. The sleek keypad design is available in both modern and traditional styles and multiple finishes.
Read our full review of the Schlage Encode Smart Wi-Fi Deadbolt.
Other models we've tested
In our search for the best smart lock, these are some of the other products we've tested out:
Nest Yale Lock: Nest and Yale partnered up for a Google-centric smart lock with a touch keypad. This $279 smart door lock has the good looks of Yale's earlier models, but it isn't quite as capable as a keyless lock when it comes to smart home integration.
Kwikset Kevo Bluetooth Deadbolt: Kwikset's $222 second-gen Kevo is a good Bluetooth smart lock and a simple answer to smartening your door if you don't need remote control access. If you do, you'll need to purchase the Kevo Plus connect module. You can use the mobile app or the key fob for keyless door entry.
Schlage Sense Bluetooth Deadbolt: Schlage's $175 Sense smart lock is affordable but clunky, and not as simple to set up as its Encode sibling. You'll also need a Schlage Wi-Fi adapter to connect with Google Assistant or Alexa.
Things to remember
Smart locks add convenience, but it's important to remember that this option is first and foremost a security device. It's important to take security features seriously. Use a PIN code for any voice commands unlock, and make sure you only give access codes to unlock the door to people you trust. Enabling the auto relock feature is also a good idea, so the door will lock behind you if you forget.
If your smart home is based in Wi-Fi voice assistants and you don't use hubs, I'd recommend a lock that works with your Wi-Fi network (or at least a Wi-Fi adapter). Consider whether you'd like a keypad and can replace your deadbolt (you'll need a new physical key for locking), or prefer a simpler, retrofit design.
No matter which smart lock you choose, adding one to your smart home offers a lot of advantages. With these tips and the best smart lock on your door, managing access for family members, roommates, service providers and guests is a breeze.
Now playing: Watch this: Your guide to buying the right smart lock 1:43
- Smart lock buying guide
- Are you setting your smart lock up for intrusion?
- The best smart garage door controllers for 2020
- Top 6 cheap home security devices in 2020
- Best home security systems of 2020 (plus DIY kits, video doorbells and more)
- The Best Smart Lights of 2020
- The Best Smart Home Devices of 2020
Originally published earlier this year.
CNET Smart Home
- reading • The best smart locks of 2020
- Mar 7 • How to buy a range or oven
- Mar 6 • Philips Hue is killing off support for the original Hue Bridge
- Mar 6 • Meet the Wi-Fi 6 routers that support 802.11ax
- • See All