Do you ever need to give access to your house when you aren’t home? Maybe a neighbor is feeding your cat whilst you are away, a workman needs to complete a job or someone is coming to walk your dog? Maybe you have a teenager who needs a key to let themselves in, but you are worried they may lose the key. All of these scenarios involve a risk that your key may be lost, stolen or copied and end up in the wrong hands. One solution to this dilemma is to install a digital deadbolt and create temporary access codes that you cancel when they no longer need it.
I recently had the opportunity to test out the YRD120 Touchscreen Deadbolt T1L with Z-Wave from Yale. This was great timing as I wanted to be able to give my Middle Schooler a way to get in to the house independently, but considering the rate at which he loses sweatshirts I wasn’t convinced he would manage to keep a physical key safe for very long.
The lock comes in 3 color choices and I picked the Satin Nickel. The installation of the deadbolt was quite straightforward and similar to installing a traditional keyed deadbolt. The kit comes with a template to show where to cut the holes if installing in a new door. If you are lucky when replacing a traditional deadbolt you may just be able to re-use the same holes. In our case the holes were in the right location but we needed to enlarge them just a little to fit the new deadbolt. The lock is powered by 4 AA batteries, which are included.
Once you have installed the lock you need to create a master passcode- this then allows you to create other passcodes and control the unit. You can create up to 100 user codes. With the master passcode you can create or cancel other user codes, set or unset automatic re-lock and enable all code lockout mode. If all code lockout mode is enabled the master code is the only one that will open the door, useful if you want to be extra secure at times.
At first I was a little nervous about having a totally keyless system, what if we were away on vacation and the batteries ran out ? How would we get in? It turns out Yale have thought of that, there is a low battery warning, but if you are away and miss it there is an emergency back up option. On the bottom of the lock there are attachment spots for a 9v battery- you can use this to power up the lock and enter your code as usual.
Most of the time the lock is in sleep mode – showing just a plain black face, to activate it you wave your hand over it, or touch the position where the check mark is. Individual access codes can be 4-8 digits long and I like that there is no indication as to whether a code is correct or not until the whole code has been entered followed by the enter key.
It takes a little practice to memorize your passcode but once you have done it a few times its like dialing a phone number, the muscle memory comes into play and you can tap out the code by feel without even really thinking about it.
I like the ability to set and unset automatic re-lock – it is a useful security feature to have on most of the time, but when my children are playing in the garden or driveway I like to switch it off so they can come in without needing to ring the bell.
I have found having the Digital Deadbolt has made leaving the house much easier and quicker. Instead of finding the key, locking the door and double-checking I’ve successfully locked it, all I have to do is wave my hand over the lock and I hear it securely clicking into place.
It has been a great option to use with my teen – on the rare occasion that he gets home and no-one is in, he knows he can let himself in and I don’t have to worry he’ll lose his key. It also feels much more secure if I have to give anyone else access whilst I’m out, as I can just cancel that passcode after they have used it.
I like how it looks too- it is very sleek and modern looking, my only problem is my old door handle looks very dated next to it, but luckily Yale has a whole range of matching door handles available so I’m going to upgrade that to match it too.
This lock is Z-wave enabled so can be used with security systems that work with Z-wave, I have not been able to test this as I don’t have a system set up to connect with it. It is nice to know however that this could potentially be integrated into a future #connectedhome system.
Overall, I am very happy with the YRD 120 Touchscreen Deadbolt T1L from Yale, it looks stylish, is straightforward to install and set up, it is easy to use and feels like a more secure way to give access to your home than sharing keys. I would highly recommend the Yale YRD 120 Touchscreen Deadbolt TL1 to bring your home security firmly into the 21st century.
NOTE: A product was supplied by the company for review purposes, no other form of compensation was received, all opinions stated in the review are those of the author and have been offered honestly.
Mary is originally from England but now lives in California with her husband, dog, cat and three children. Mary and her family love Apple products and own an iPad2, iPad3, iPad Mini, iTouch, iPhone5 and several MacBook Pros. They also love cub scouts, skiing, camping and hiking. The family iPads are also used for therapy for their daughters Apraxia (speech disorder).