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6 Best Smart Locks Reviewed: Tested by Art of Lock Picking

Updated reviews of the best smart locks on the market.
Last Updated on May 11, 2023
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How would it feel if you never had to carry a house key again? Or better yet, never again fear locking yourself out?

Smart locks offer that solution.

From providing keyless access to your home to tracking who comes and goes, the best smart locks provide a range of features and benefits that make them the perfect security solution for any home.

I’ve spent dozens of hours researching and testing dozens of smart locks and have rounded up the best of the best. In this guide, we’ll explore the best smart locks on the market (updated for 2023) and what sets them apart from the competition (in both features and security).

Whether you’re looking for increased security, advanced features, or simply added convenience, you’ll find the perfect smart lock to fit your needs.

What Makes a Good Smart Lock?

Smart locks have quite a variety of features and are rarely a one size fits all device.

Here are the top four things to consider when choosing a smart lock.

  • Connectivity and Integrations: It’s important to know the connectivity capabilities, such as Wi-Fi or Bluetooth, and whether it can integrate with your existing smart home ecosystem, like Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, or Apple HomeKit.
  • Type of Smart Door Lock:  There are two types of smart deadbolts: full replacement and partial replacement (adapter-type). Full replacement locks replace the entire lockset, while partial replacement locks only replace a section of the lock (most commonly the interior side).
  • Access Modes: The more access modes available, the more convenient the smart lock will be to use. This includes mobile app access, keypad access, location-based auto unlocking, and voice control. Also, do you want to be able to add and manage temporary access keys?
  • Security Features: While smart locks provide convenience, they can also leave security gaps if not carefully selected and used. Assess whether the smart lock uses secure encryption protocols and two-factor authentication and whether it has features like tamper alarms and automatic locking.

There are various other factors to consider when choosing a smart lock. For a more comprehensive list of considerations, please refer to our smart lock buyers guide at the bottom of this article (see smart lock buyers guide).

What Are the Best Smart Locks?

Here are my top picks for the best smart locks to use this year!

1. Ultraloq U-Bolt Pro Wi-Fi

Best Smart Lock For Most

ultraloq u bolt pro smart lock


  • Connectivity: Bluetooth, Wi-Fi (2.4GHz)
  • Integrations: Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, IFTTT
  • Wi-Fi Hub: Built-In
  • Powered: 4 AA Batteries
  • Entry Methods: PIN, Key, Fingerprint, Mobile App,  Auto Unlock, Magic Shake, Apple Watch

If you're looking for the ultimate deadbolt for your smart home security, you can’t beat the Ultraloq U-Bolt Pro Wi-Fi Smart lock. This lock tops our list as the best smart lock, offering a huge variety of entry methods and unique features you won’t find anywhere else.

Let's briefly dive into this beast of a lock!

Main Lock Features

The Ultraloq Smart Lock is a full replacement lock assembly designed to replace both your interior and exterior deadbolt, and this model has a Wi-Fi hub built into the lock.

One of the most impressive aspects of the Ultraloq is its remarkable variety of methods to unlock the device—each of which also has a ton of functionality.

Unlocking Methods:

  • Keypad PIN: Enter a 4 to 8 digit code using the front keypad to unlock the device. You can create up to 50 codes for family, friends, guests, or anyone else who needs access. The lock logs all PIN code usage, so you can keep track of who accessed the lock and when. Additionally, an anti-peep feature that allows you to enter random digits before and after your PIN to throw off prying eyes. You can also grant visitors temporary one-time access codes or Ekeys that work within a specific date and time range.
  • Biometric Fingerprint Scanner: Unlock the lock by simply scanning your finger. The setup process is simple and straightforward, and you can store up to 100 fingerprints (2 per user) for multiple people in your household. The fingerprint ID uses an AI-based algorithm that continually improves its accuracy over time.
  • Mobile App (Auto Unlock): In addition to controlling the lock with your phone, you can set up "Auto Unlocking," which will automatically unlock your door when you get near and lock when you leave—using Geofencing and Bluetooth.
  • Magic Shake: Uses the sensors in your phone to unlock the door. Simply "shake" your phone side to side, and the lock disengages. This feature is still in beta, so it functions a little rough.
  • Apple Watch Access: While not HomeKit compatible, you can download an apple watch app to lock and unlock the door.
  • Smart Home Control: Connect it to your smart home ecosystem and have your assistant control your lock.
  • Keyed-Access: The lock also has a backup keyed cylinder hidden behind the faceplate.

In addition, it includes an Automatic Locking feature that’s configurable between 10 seconds to 5 minutes.

The Ultraloq lock is easy to install and fits almost any door, with an adjustable backset of 2-3/8" (60mm) or 2-3/4" (70mm) and the ability to fit door thicknesses between 1-3/8" (35mm) to 1-3/4" (45mm).

Connectivity, Integrations, and Battery-Life

The Ultraloq Smart Lock offers exceptional connectivity options, making it incredibly convenient for users. With integrations with popular platforms like Google, Amazon, Smart Things, IFTTT, and ZWave, the lock is able to work seamlessly with other devices. Furthermore, the lock can be opened remotely via a smartphone, allowing you to grant access to friends and family even when you're away from the device.

One of the standout features of the Ultraloq is its impressive battery life. It's capable of supporting up to 8000 unlocks, which gives it an average lifespan of between 3-6 months. In the unlikely event that the battery does die, it can easily be jumpstarted using a micro-USB cord.

The lock and mobile app are designed to be user-friendly, making it simple to set up and use on a daily basis.

Security Features and Quality

The Ultraloq smart lock boasts a tough construction, made of zinc alloy with a plastic finish. The lock cylinder is heavy-duty ANSI Grade 1, so it's very durable, highly kick-resistant, and built to last. It's also protected against dust and water with an IP65 rating and is rated for temperatures ranging from -22 to 149 degrees Fahrenheit.

The concealed keyed cylinder uses a traditional 5-pin Schlage C keyway, so you can easily create new keys. While it can still be picked, it has a raised pin feature that makes it bump-proof. Overall, it's rather secure, and the hidden keyhole makes it a less likely target.

Read my full review: Ultraloq U-Bolt Pro WiFi Smart Lock Review (Bought & Tested)


  • Various unlock options (PIN, fingerprint, auto-unlock, etc.)
  • Built-in Wi-Fi; no hub required
  • ANSI Grade 1
  • Amazing biometric fingerprint scanner
  • Concealed backup key


  • No dual-band support; Only 2.4GHz Wi-Fi
  • No Apple HomeKit support
  • 3-6 month battery life

2. Schlage Encode Plus Wi-Fi

Best Smart Lock For Apple HomeKit

schlage encode wifi smart lock


  • Connectivity: Wi-Fi (2.4GHz), Bluetooth, Thread
  • Integrations: Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, Apple HomeKit, Ring
  • Wi-Fi Hub: Built-In
  • Powered: 4 AA Batteries
  • Entry Methods: Keypad, Home Key, Mobile App, Physical Key

Next up is the feature-packed Schlage Encode Plus Wi-Fi Smart Lock, made by one of my favorite lock brands.

This lock is stunning, and if you're an Apple user, it's hands-down the best smart lock experience you will find for HomeKit—especially if you have an Apple Watch.

Let’s dive in!

Main Lock Features

The Schlage Encode Plus Wi-Fi Smart Lock is a full replacement deadbolt and a wonderful upgrade from its previous model Schlage Encode Wi-Fi. The Encode has Wi-Fi built into the lock, eliminating the need for a separate Wi-Fi hub. Not to mention reducing clutter!

Its most notable upgrade of the Encode Plus is support for Apple HomeKit and Home Key, allowing users to unlock the device by tapping their iPhone or Apple Watch to the lock—without needing to unlock their phone or use an app.

Other core features include:

  • Keypad Access: The keypad allows for PIN codes between 4 to 8 digits and can store up to 100 user codes.
  • Virtual Keys: Create and send permanent or temporary virtual keys that let guests access your home using the Schlage app.
  • Tamper Alarm: Sounds a siren if the lockset is messed with—such as forced entry. The alarm isn't very loud, but it's enough to give any lowlife messing with your lock second thoughts.
  • Auto Lock: Can be configured to auto-lock between 15 seconds and 4 minutes after closing the door.
  • Backlit Buttons: The buttons are large, backlit, and ADA-compliant. However, they are digital, so there is no physical feedback when pressed.
  • Backup Key: Provides an alternative method of entry in case the battery dies or the lock malfunctions.

Access codes and settings for Schlage Encode can be managed in both the Schlage app and through HomeKit. However, HomeKit offers extra advantages, such as receiving notifications that reveal who unlocked the lock and the ability to conveniently toggle on/off codes as needed.

Installation is easy and requires a Phillips screwdriver and about 15 minutes. It’s compatible with any standard door and has an adjustable backset of 2-3/8" (60mm) or 2-3/4" (70mm).

Connectivity, Integrations, and Battery-Life

The Schlage Encode Plus supports Wi-Fi (2.4 GHz only), Bluetooth, and Thread (a low-power wireless communication protocol). It is compatible with the most popular smart home ecosystems, such as Amazon Alexa, Google Home Assistant, and Apple HomeKit.

It can integrate with the Ring app (for those running Ring cameras) and also has Key by Amazon, which allows you to create temporary keys to delivery drivers for placing packages inside your home. If you’re not running a smart home ecosystem, you can still use most of the functionality using the dedicated Schlage app.

The battery life lasts approximately six months but will vary depending on usage and the number of integrations you run. The lock will send you alerts through the Schlage app when the batteries start getting low (around 20%). It runs on four AA batteries (which are included).

Security Features and Quality

At Art of Lock Picking, we’re huge fans of most Schlage products, and the Schlage Encode Plus doesn't disappoint.

The Encode Plus has received the highest BHMA rating of AAA for commercial or heavy-duty residential use. This means it has been thoroughly tested for resistance against drilling and has a 1“ bolt that extends into the doorframe—making it very difficult to kick in.

The backup keyway uses a 5-pin Schlage C keyway, which is a commonly used key that can be duplicated easily at most hardware stores. This particular lock includes four anti-bump spool pins to increase bump and pick resistance (see pick resistance features).

In addition to the tamper alarm, it includes a lockout feature. If you enter the wrong code four times, the keypad will lock up and beep for 15 seconds. With each additional wrong code, the keypad will lock up for a longer period of time.

Read my full review: Schlage Encode Smart Wi-Fi Review (Bought & Tested)


  • BHMA AAA (highest security rating)
  • Apple HomeKit and Home Key support
  • Beautiful lock with multi styles and finishes
  • Tamper Alarm
  • Good battery life
  • Easy to install and use


  • Expensive
  • No tactile feedback on the buttons

3. Wyze Wi-Fi Smart Lock

Best Budget Smart Lock

Wyze Wi-Fi Smart Lock - Partial Replacement Smart Deadbolt


  • Connectivity: Bluetooth and Wi-Fi (2.4 GHz Zigbee)
  • Integrations: Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant (No HomeKit)
  • Wi-Fi Hub: Built-In
  • Powered: 4 AA batteries
  • Entry Methods: Key, Mobile App,  Auto Unlock/Lock, Scheduled

The Wyze Wi-Fi Smart Deadbolt is a budget-friendly and convenient option for those looking to upgrade their home security.

This lock can be installed in just a few minutes and does not require the complete removal of your existing deadbolt, making it a great option for renters or those who want to avoid the hassle of a full lock replacement.

Note: You must have an existing deadbolt to use the Wyze Smart Lock.

Main Lock Features

The Wyze Wi-Fi Smart Lock is designed to use your current lockset and replaces only the interior side of your deadbolt. This makes it easy to install, and there's no visible evidence to outsiders that you're using a smart lock.

Using the Wyze app, you can easily unlock and lock the door and check its status. Plus, since the Wyze is not a full deadbolt replacement, you can still use your current key when needed. There is also an option to purchase a Wyze Keypad that can be installed outside your residence and synchronized with your smart lock, enabling keypad entry.

Here are the main features of the Wyze Wi-Fi Smart Lock:

  • Auto Lock/Unlock: Uses geofencing to determine your location and connects to your phone via Bluetooth to unlock the device. No need to touch your phone or access an app. Also includes auto-locking and lets you schedule when the door should lock/unlock.
  • Share Access: Share and manage access keys with family, friends, or renters using the Wyze app or email. It's also easy to toggle access keys on and off as you need them.
  • Event Logs: Access a log of events showing who, when, and what event occurred, such as device unlocking or the door opening.
  • Open Door Detection: The lock has sensors that determine if the door is open or closed and notifies you via the app or alarm.
  • Smart Notifications: Set up mobile alerts for when the door is locked, unlocked, opened, and closed, regardless of how the device was unlocked (smart access or physical key).

The installation process is easy and can be completed in about 15 minutes. The lock comes with adapters for different types of deadbolts, and the mobile app will guide you through the entire installation process, including what adapter you need to use.

Connectivity, Integrations, and Battery-Life

The Wyze supports Wi-Fi (2.4GHz ZigBee) and Bluetooth. There is no support for Z-Wave. The device integrates with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, allowing you to easily lock and unlock your door using simple voice commands. There is no support for HomeKit.

If you already own other Wyze products, such as security cameras or a video doorbell, you can access them all in the same Wyze app and set up automations between devices. For example, if the door is unlocked, you could trigger a Wyze security camera to start recording, providing an added layer of security for your home. You can also integrate it with a Wzye switch (smart light switch), which is a unique way to control a lock.

In terms of battery life, the Wyze smart lock runs on 4 AA batteries, which are included. With a battery life of 5-6 months, depending on usage and integrations, you won't have to worry about changing the batteries too often.

Security Features and Quality

Because the Wyze smart lock is designed to be installed on an existing deadbolt, it doesn't compromise the physical security of your door. So be sure you use a good deadbolt and follow other best practices to make your door as secure as possible.

The biggest security concern is the integration of the lock into your home network. It's crucial to use strong passwords and take other necessary precautions to ensure that the lock and your network are secure from potential hacking attempts.


  • Cheap
  • Can use existing deadbolt and key
  • Has tons of smart features and integrations for the price
  • Uses low-power ZigBee Wi-Fi protocol


  • No HomeKit support
  • 5 - 6 month battery life

How to Choose a Smart Lock

Smart locks offer a range of features and capabilities that traditional locks do not. When choosing a smart lock, there are several important features to consider to ensure that you get the best possible product for your needs.

Here are the top features to look for in a smart lock:

User Access and Management

One of the best reasons to get a smart lock is the flexibility they provide in regard to user access and management. When choosing a smart lock, you should consider the following:

  • Unique Access Codes: A good smart lock will let you create unique access codes for different users. This can be useful if you need to provide temporary access to your home—such as a contractor, petsitter, or housekeeper. Each user can have their own access code, and you'll have full control over which codes work and when.
  • User Access Management: A good smart lock will make it easy to add, edit, and delete user access codes. You should be able to manage who has access to your home at any time.
  • Scheduling Access: Good smart locks allow you to schedule when access codes are active or inactive. For instance, you can give a code to a babysitter that only allow access on certain days of the week and within a specified time frame.
  • Access Logs: Ideally, your smart lock should come with a mobile app that logs all lock activities, including who's code was used and when.

Compatibility with Existing Smart Home Systems

Smart locks provide awesome features like remote access, smart notifications, and auto-unlocking, but only when they are connected to your network. They can use a variety of protocols, including Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, or Z-Wave. Each protocol has its advantages and disadvantages, so it's worth looking into which will work best for you. Here is a good guide covering each protocol.

It's worth keeping in mind that smart locks rely on a reliable connection to function correctly. Therefore, ensure that you have a stable internet and home network to ensure the lock works efficiently.

You should also consider whether the lock is compatible with any existing smart home systems like Amazon Alexa, Google Home, or Apple HomeKit. Compatibility with these systems will allow you to integrate your smart lock with other smart devices in your home.

Some smart locks also employ geofencing technology, which enables them to recognize when you are close to your house and immediately unlock the door for you. This feature can be convenient when you have your hands full or don't want to fumble with keys.

Finally, consider a lock with a dedicated mobile app that lets you control and monitor the lock remotely. This app should be easy to use and provide you with real-time updates on the lock's status. lock and unlock your door from anywhere, set schedules, and even receive alerts when someone enters or leaves your home.

Full Replacement vs. Adapter

There are two types of smart door locks: full replacement deadbolts and adapter locksets.

Full replacement deadbolts replace your entire lockset. This type of smart lock typically provides you with more advanced features and access methods (such as a keypad) and, overall, tends to be less clunky.

Adapter (or partial) smart locks are designed to replace a few parts of your lock instead of the entire thing. Locks like the Wyze Wi-Fi (see best budget lock) replace only the interior side of the lockset, while locks like Level Bolt replace the internal mechanism but leave the exterior parts of your existing deadbolt.

Adapter locks are typically easier to install, cheaper, and allow you to use your existing deadbolt and key—which means that you can still access your lock manually. It also means you could integrate a smart lock on a high-security deadbolt if you were feeling vicious.

Battery Life and Low-Battery Alerts

The last thing you want is to be locked out of your home because your smart lock's battery died. It's essential to choose a lock that has a reliable battery life or at least has features that alert you when the battery is getting low.

A lock with a low battery indicator is a must-have feature that gives you ample time to replace the battery before it completely runs out. With this feature, you'll receive a notification on your phone or an alert on the lock itself that the battery is low, so you can replace it before it's too late.

Keep in mind that some locks with more features or connectivity options may drain the battery faster. Locks with built-in Wi-Fi will drain their battery much faster than one with a separate Wi-Fi hub.

Additionally, some locks can be opened using a physical key as a backup method (such as a dead battery). Consider if you want this backup option or if you prefer keyless.


Depending on the brand, model, and features, the cost of a smart lock can range quite a bit (from under $100 to over $500)—making it important to consider your budget before making a purchase.

Inexpensive smart locks can be a great option for those who want to dip their toes into the smart home waters. They may offer basic functionality like keyless entry and remote access but could come with trade-offs like fewer features and smart home integrations.

On the other hand, more expensive smart locks may offer advanced features and may also be made with high-quality materials, making them more durable in the long run.

Ultimately, the cost of a smart lock should be balanced against the features and benefits that it offers. While it's important to stay within your budget, keep in mind that a higher-priced smart lock may sometimes result in greater long-term value.

Also, consider researching the warranty and customer support options for the lock in case you have any issues or concerns with it in the future.

Smart Lock FAQs

1. Are smart locks safe?

In most cases, smart locks can be safer than traditional locks as long as they are properly installed and maintained and the user follows best security practices. Most smart locks notify you when your door is unlocked or opened and offer additional security features such as two-factor authentication, encryption, and tamper alerts, It also requires more skill to hack a smart lock than it does to pick a standard deadbolt.

2. Can smart locks be hacked?

Like any technology, smart locks can also be vulnerable to hacking. To minimize the risk of hacking, it's important to choose a good device and a trusted brand. Also, keep your firmware updated, and follow best security practices such as using a strong password, using two-factor authentication, and connecting smart devices to a separate network.

Final Thoughts

Smart locks in 2023 offer an unparalleled level of convenience and additional layers of security for homeowners. The locks featured in this article are the best of the best, combining top-notch security features into an easy-of-use smart device!

I determined that the best-valued smart lock in 2023 is the Ultraloq U-Bolt Pro Wi-Fi. It has six different ways to open the lock, including a PIN code, auto-unlock, biometric fingerprint scanner, and even a physical key. The Ultraloq integrates with Alexa and Google Assistant and has the most features of any other smart lock in its class. It’s a good lock at a reasonable price.

With the right smart lock, you'll never have to worry about losing your keys or forgetting to lock the door again. So go ahead and invest in a smart lock today – you won't regret it!


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