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The ANSI Grading System For Door Locks

Tough and tougher

Tough-as-nails door locks are crucial for your home security.

An alarming number of burglaries can be traced to a lock that failed or wasn't locked in the first place.

The first step in choosing locks is understanding the grading system put in place by The American National Standards Institute (ANSI).

  • Grade 1

Top ANSI Lock Grade

Protects business or home

▹ This is the highest level of ANSI grades for door locks. It is typically reserved for locks intended for commercial security. For example, these are commercial grade locks and deadbolts that can be used in some residential applications.

In order to attain this grade, a door knob must withstand 800,000 cycles, six door strikes and a 360-pound weight test. A deadbolt rated as Grade 1 must withstand 250-thousand cycles and 10 door strikes with a hammer.

Master Lock Brand Commercial Locks

So, combining ANSI Grade 1 hardware with video surveillance creates a solid defense against intrusion.

Medeco High Security Commercial Locks   Arrow Lock and Door Hardware


  • Grade 2

Heavy-duty ANSI Rating

Durable security grade

▹ These locks are not expected to be as heavy-duty as Grade 1. Therefore, they may not be appropriate for many commercial applications.

Described as meeting "light commercial" requirements, Grade 2 locks also exceed most apartment building requirements and typical residential requirements. As a result, Grade 2 locks are not quite strong enough to be used on most businesses. On the other hand, they offer more protection than common home locks.

Consider this ranking in combination with advanced access control. ANSI Grade 2 remains a viable choice for those with budget restrictions yet focused on security system durability.

  • Grade 3

ANSI Residential

Meets basic requirements

▹ While this is the lowest grade of locks set by the ANSI, don't assume that these locks are low quality!

You'll find these locks most commonly in apartment buildings as they meet most residential building requirements. They are not as secure as Grade 2 locks and aren't recommended for use on your main entry point. They could be used adequately on secondary entry points.

However, it’s important to note that ANSI Grade 3 is higher quality than ordinary non-ANSI locks.

We strongly recommend you consult a locksmith when evaluating ANSI Grade 3 locks as an option for your residential security needs.


These links open a new tab/window to more information about ANSI and BHMA (Builders Hardware Manufacturers Association):

At Holder's Security, we'll help ensure you end up with locks that properly secure your home or business in Tulsa or NE Oklahoma. We carry high-quality Medeco products and will help equip you with keys, deadbolts, locksets and keyless entry options.


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