You may be surprised to hear that choosing the right padlock to meet your needs is not as easy as you think. A padlock is a padlock, right? Well, yes and no. They can be used in many places and have many materials or functions, so we decided to draw up a list of six basic suggestions to help you choose the one that suits you.
1. Consider the value of the protected asset.
This variable will determine the security level required for the padlock, which depends on the following criteria, etc.:
– Mainly used for the material of the lock body and the buckle. Steel is the most commonly used material for high-security padlocks, especially when it is surface hardened or hardened. Brass, zinc alloy, stainless steel, and aluminum padlocks are used for medium security products.
– The size of the padlock. Generally speaking, the bigger the padlock, the safer it is. The size provides greater resistance and sawing resistance.
– Shackle fixing mechanism. The standard shackle fixing mechanism is based on a double block with a spring. However, a more secure padlock uses a steel ball at the connection between the main body and the buckle to prevent attempts to open the padlock with force.
-Lock. For keyed padlocks, dimple keys can prevent attacks (such as lock picking) better than flat keys.
The key is retained. When the padlock is opened, the system keeps the key in the lock. For example, this is a common aspect of industrial safety padlocks.
2. Measure the inner space of the ring or mount where the padlock will be installed.
If the lock buckle is thicker than the space in the ring or the installation location, it is not good to choose a padlock. Measure this space before purchasing a padlock. If the installation space does not meet your requirements, you can replace or install the buckle at any time to consider the thickness of the padlock shackle you need.
3. Make sure that the shackle is long enough.
In terms of length, the padlock can have a short lock (also called a standard length), a long lock, an extra-long lock, or an adjustable length lock. Just as we recommend measuring the internal space of the ring or mounting part, it is also a good idea to consider whether it can be easily reached, so the padlock can be opened easily. In a small space, a padlock with a long or extra long shackle is a good choice.
4. Is the padlock used outdoors or indoors?
If the padlock will be used outdoors, we recommend using a corrosion-resistant padlock. Padlocks made of stainless steel are most able to withstand various factors. Nickel-plated brass padlocks are also suitable for outdoor use, albeit to a lesser degree but highly acceptable. All other common padlock materials guarantee good durability in indoor environments.
5. Select key or password padlock.
There is no doubt that keyed padlocks are more secure than password padlocks. On the other hand, the convenience of password padlocks for protecting suitcases, gym lockers, etc. is undeniable, and it means an obvious risk of loss when carrying keys. The most common are those with three or four 10-digit dials, giving 1,000 or 10,000 possible combinations in each case. It is also worth mentioning that the combination lock has a security key and even a padlock that can be opened with a magnetic key.
6. The keys are different, the keys are the same or the main keyed padlocks. Which one to choose?
– Type is different. Padlocks are usually sold in this form. Each padlock can only be opened with the key provided in the box or blister pack (unless of course these keys are used to make a copy). This is because many users only need to buy a padlock, and there may be few people around who need to use a padlock.
– The keying is the same. Suppose one or more users need to install several padlocks close to each other. Having to switch the key every time you want to open or close a different padlock is not ideal; a better system is to use a single key.
– Master keyed padlocks. They are used in installations or buildings that require a large number of padlocks and need to create an access hierarchy system. Therefore, a master key can open all padlocks in the system, while a lower-level key can open various padlocks or only one padlock.