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How to Secure Your Apartment Door?

Fact checked by Teddy B.Miller

How to Secure Your Apartment Door

Do you want to know how to secure your apartment door without hurting your pocket and without professional help? One of the best and less costly ways is to upgrade your door lock to a heavy-duty deadbolt lock.

Compared to a spring bolt lock, a deadbolt lock cannot be easily opened since it cannot be turned into an open position except by rotating the lock cylinder. With the help of this tutorial, you can install the lock on your own, which will save you more money.

What You Will Need


Before we start, you must first check if you have the appropriate tools needed for the installation. You won’t have a hard time looking for these items since they are always available in the market.

Deadbolt Lock and template

There are different types of deadbolt locks that you can choose from, so make sure to pick the one that offers the highest security. A single-cylinder deadbolt has only one key slot on one side while the other side is a turning mechanism. It is easier to use, but not advisable if your window is near your door.

On the other hand, a double-cylinder deadbolt has key slots on both sides. In case a burglar breaks the window, he cannot open the door from the inside unless he has a key. However, you should always leave a key to a family member so that they won’t be trapped inside the house.

Usually, a template is included once you purchase a deadbolt lock. You will be needing it during the installation since it includes reference points that work for doors with different thicknesses.

Drill and drill-bit set

The kind of drill you need will depend on the type of door you have. If the door is made of wood, you can use a drill driver to create holes and drive screws. Since it does not have a hammer-action feature, it cannot work on tough materials like concrete.

If your door is made of tough materials, it is advisable to use an impact driver since it has a high torque capacity. Aside from that, it can also protect your wrist from any damage.

Most deadbolts require a 1-inch spade bit; however, you must refer to the instructions included in the lockset since this may vary. Typically, a spade bit has a paddle-like cutting end that’s ideal for woodworks.

Tape measure

You need to have a tape measure for measuring. In terms of accuracy, tape measures are divided into Class I, Class II, and Class III, in which Class I is the most accurate. Tape measures that are not included in the three classes are called unclassified.

Being in an unclassified category does not mean that their measurements are automatically incorrect but the accuracy and precision are not tested. For a precise measurement, you can use Class I or Class II tape measures.

Hole saw

A hole saw is required when installing a deadbolt lock since it can cut precise holes and it is ideal for large diameter holes. You can use a carbon steel hole saw since it is suitable for soft materials like wood.

However, if your door is made of stainless steel, you can use a constant pitch smooth cut since it has high-speed steel with an alloy body. For an aluminum door, a variable pitch bi-metallic ensures safety by preventing shattering.


There are different types of chisels designed for various purposes. In this case, you will need a mortising chisel. It has a rigid and sharp blade ideal for creating deep holes. Aside from that, it can endure hard blows, especially when you are using a mallet.

Also, make sure that the blade of your chisel is made of high carbon steel since dull cutting edges usually tear the wood fiber instead of shearing them. If you want to experience comfortable feels, a wood handle is suitable. A heavy-plastic handle may be challenging to use.


A screwdriver is significant during the installation of the deadbolt lock. Most locksets already include mounting screws and bolts. To know what kind of screwdriver and screw bits to use, you should check the screw head.

Aside from that, if you have an electric screwdriver, use it for long screws since it will make your work easier and faster. If you want an electric screwdriver, you can choose from corded or cordless ones, depending on your preference.

Steps to Secure Your Apartment Door


Place the template

First, you need to place the template in the right spot. Usually, a deadbolt is placed 6 inches or a foot above the door knob. To get the exact location, use your tape measure. After getting the right spot, fold the template then put it on the edge of the door using tape.

Saw through the template

The common size of the hole for deadbolts is 2 ⅛-inch. To be sure, you can check the manual’s instructions. In creating a hole, just put the hole saw in the drill then carefully drill a hole to the spot indicated in the paper template. Have a pause now and then while drilling the hole to have a smooth finish.

Make the latch hole

To create a latch hole, you need to drill using the spade bit. Place the spade bit in your drill then make sure that the door is firmly in place as you drill through the paper template and the wood. Continue to drill until you reach the first hole that you made.

Make a spot for strike plate and bolt

You cannot go wrong with this step since it will cause some problems once you get it wrong. You have to outline the inset area on the door jam by using the strike plate and bolt included in the lockset.

After you are done with the outlining, chisel ⅛ of an inch into the area. Chisel it deeper into the jamb to the depth of the bolt. You can also check the instruction manual to be sure regarding the required depth since it may vary.

Screw the deadbolt lockset in place

First, install both halves of the deadbolt mechanism on the door. Find a friend who can help you hold the two halves of the lock while you are screwing with your screwdriver the bolts that join them.

As a reminder, don’t overtighten the screws since they can affect the performance of the deadbolt. Assess the smoothness of the bolt. If you think that the bolt is too hard to engage or disengage, you can loosen the screws that joined them together.


Have you enjoyed upgrading your deadbolt lock? By following the instructions, you can certainly know how to secure your apartment door. You won’t have to worry, especially when you are on vacation or at work.

If you find this tutorial helpful, why don’t you share your thoughts and experiences with us by commenting on this post? Also, you can share this article with your friends, so they will also learn to secure their apartment doors.

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