Door Latches Buying Guide: Secure a Property or Improve Privacy within a Home

Your home is like your own personal shrine. Not only does it give you shelter and warmth each day, but it also keeps all of your belongings safe and secure at all times. And sure, you can accessorise it with the latest interior decorations and include all sorts of fancy devices and gadgets but if they’re not fully locked and loaded, it all goes down the drain. Sure enough, curious thieves would want to get their hands on your latest art collection and you need to make sure you’re not giving it to them on a silver platter.

When it comes to protecting your home, most people tend to focus on choosing a security alarm system as their main solution to this issue. While there’s nothing wrong with that, the alarms will likely go off after the damage has already been done, giving criminals a chance to get away with all of the stolen goods. Of course, the police might be able to track them down afterwards but there’s no guarantee that it’ll work out as expected. With that in mind, you’ve probably already heard of the saying that prevention is better than the cure. And that’s exactly what you’ll be doing once you set up a secure door lock latch to keep those pesky thieves at bay. Feeling intrigued already? Good, because we’ve got a lot more to say on this in just a bit.

How Does a Door Latch Work?

man holding door open

Essentially, they’re spring-based mechanisms that are supposed to keep all kinds of doors and front gates fully mobile, meaning that you can open and close them whenever the need arises. This can be achieved in two main ways – either by using a sliding bold that keeps the door from swinging open or by installing a hook that achieves a closed position through both sliding and swinging motions.

Door latches are the key (pun intended!) to fastening your doors and keeping them shut. The fastener itself is attached to both the door and the supporting frame so you can rest assured that you won’t be having any unwanted visitors in the near or distant future. In a world where crime doesn’t seem like it’s coming to a halt any time soon, this can be a real deal-breaker.

What Are the Different Types of Door Latches?

door lock latch close up

As you might have already guessed, there is some degree of variation in terms of design. Each type serves a different purpose and we’ll be giving you a brief rundown on what to expect with each one. This will make things easier when you’re supposed to decide on a suitable model for your entrance.


These types of latches can either extend or retract whenever you turn the knob or key. It doesn’t require a spring to keep the bolt in place. Once the bold has been extended, it can’t be retracted with the use of brute force.

If you want to release the latch from the outside, you’ll have to use the appropriate key. However, if you want to do the same on the inside, all you have to do is turn the knob. So basically, outsiders can’t get in if they don’t have a key whereas you don’t have to unlock the door every time you need to go out. This makes it a lot easier to handle for you but a whole lot harder for thieves to break in.


deadlatch on table

The deadlatch mechanism has two bolts – the main one is used to keep the door closed whereas the smaller one is burdened with the task of preventing anyone from tampering with the main bolt. Both of them require springs to function properly.

In terms of shape, the main bolt is entirely cylindrical whereas the other one is a smaller D-shaped model. When you close the door, the round bolt slides against the frame and locks into place. Unlocking this mechanism is the same as deadbolts which is why deadlatches are also quite common among households these days.


If you’re looking for the highest level of security, you’ve come to the right place. This type of lock latch requires a key on both the outside as well as the inside. In this way, you maximise the safety of both you and all of your belongings.

The only downside is that deadlocks might pose a challenge during an emergency since you’ll have to waste time getting the key out and unlocking the door. But let’s hope it won’t ever come down to that.

How Do You Choose the Right Door Latch?

hand turning door knob

So now you’re familiar with the types but how are you supposed to know which one’s right for you? Don’t worry, we’ll be letting you in on a few key factors that you need to think about before making a purchase.

Latching Mechanism

Your main dilemma will likely be choosing between a slamming or swinging mechanism. The former is also known as push-to-close latching which is more robust and generally used in high-traffic areas. The latter has a somewhat more delicate appearance but it’s just as good at keeping you safe. At the end of the day, it mainly comes down to your preferences on how you want to handle your doors.


While the standard size is 8mm, you’ll probably need something bigger if you have a large gate. Make sure you talk to a professional about the recommended sizing for each door so that you’re able to get the right one. An ill-fitted latch will likely not produce the desired results.