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Choosing Locks for Wooden Doors - Sashlocks

Sashlock wooden door devon


Choosing the right locks for your external wooden door is important. What makes it difficult is there are so many options to choose from. In this article we're going to take a look at a very common ssolution, the sashlock.


If you want to know about other locking solutions for bespoke wooden doors take a look at these articles about deadlocks


What is a Sashlock?


A sashlock, sometimes called a mortice sashlock, combines a latch and dead bolt within a metal case. Sashlocks are morticed into the edge of a door and not mounted on the surface. They are operated with a pair of lever handles.


How to Choose your Sashlock for Exterior Wooden Doors


  • Choose a reputable brand. We choose to install ERA Fortress Sashlocks to our custom made wooden doors. We don't have a special relationship with ERA, we just feel they provide a good quality product at a fair price. 
  • The right standard. If you're choosing a sashlock, and at the time of writing this article, you will need to make sure it complies with BS3621:2017. Most insurance companies require door locks that are fitted to this standard as a bare minimum. The standard ensures that a lock is tested against common Burglary techniques such as drilling and picking.
  • Check the backset. This is the measurement between the front of the lock and the spindle that operates the lever handles. Typically you will find 44mm and 57mm backsets.


Euro Cylinder or Standard Key Operation?


Sashlocks can be operated by a small key that fits into a euro cylinder. A euro cylinder is an extra component that fits into a euro sashlock. The convenience with these is that there is a smaller key which is easier to live with. However, it is important that a high quality euro cylinder is used to prevent easy break in. A standard key is a cheaper solution but the key is large which may put some people off.


Are Sashlocks suitable for all exterior wooden doors?


While a sashlock complying with BS3621:2017 is generally a bare minimum for insurance companies it may not be appropriate for all doors. If we are asked to make a door for a change of use or a new build we would need to use a locking system that complies with Part Q of the building regulations. 


Can I improve the security of my sashlock?


Whilst you can't improve the security of a sashlock you can improve the security of your exterior door by adding a deadlock. A deadlock adds another locking point without a latching mechanism. A top tip here is to make sure the locks are keyed alike so you don't need two keys to operate both locks.




Sashlocks are a reliable and proven way to secure external wooden doors. Make sure your lock complies BS3621:2017 and cross reference this with your insurance provider. A sashlock may not always be appropriate for your external wooden doors such as cases of new builds and change of use. If you need to improve the security of an external wooden door with only a sashlock, consider fitting a dealock.


If you need a custom made external timber door with a high quality locking system, call us on 01769 572 134 or drop us a line through our contacts page.