Keyless Gate Lock Options

Last Updated on May 29, 2024

Keyless Gate Lock
Gate Lock with Code Installed in Phoenix

Considerations before buying | Can you use a smart lock? | When to use a mechanical keypad | When to use an electronic gate lock

There are numerous reasons to use keyless entry locks on your gates. But what are your options? Will the gates need to be changed to support a keyless solution? Let’s discuss.

Keyless gate locks are more convenient to use than keyed locks. You enter a PIN to unlock the gate and do not have to search for or provide keys. Keyless locks are also more secure. They can be auto-locked when the gate closes, and the PIN codes can quickly and easily be changed if desired. Gate modifications are required in almost every keyless entry conversion.

Considerations Before Purchasing Keyless Gate Locks

Is There Power at the Lock

Keyless Gate Locks / Access Control
Keyless Battery Operated Lock

There are three types of keyless locks

  1. Those that have mechanical keypads and do not require power
  2. Those that require low power connections at the gate, and
  3. Those that use batteries (stand-alone, wireless code locks).

Except for high-end applications (parking garages, multi-gate communities, etc…), almost all keyless solutions can be most easily, most affordably, implemented using stand-alone keyless devices.

We recommend mechanical or battery-operated, keypad locks in nearly every solution when there are fewer than 4 gates and when code changes will be performed less than once per month.

Installation is Typically Outdoors

Outdoor gate locks need to be weather-resistant. We know of several homeowners that had installed smart locks on their outdoor gates, but this is a BIG mistake.

Residential Smart Locks are NOT Made for Gates. Only one side of a residential electronic lock is weather resistant. The part of the lock that is normally inside the home, is not. Putting smart locks on outdoor gates results in the failure of the lock.

A Gate Box

Configuration of the Gate Frame

Will the frame need a gate box?

Gate boxes are metal boxes with holes that support the lock. If the lock has a standard door prep (where it needs a hole to mount to, like the door locks in your home), modification may be required. Normally, this includes welding in a metal box to support the lock.

Are the frame posts thick enough to support a non-standard-bore lock?

Many gate locks with codes are designed to be mounted to the posts of the gate. The dimensions of that post, will determine if you can mount directly to it and if you can, which locks you can use.

Can the lock bridge the gap?

Any installed lock needs to cross the open gap between the swinging post and the stationary post. On many old gates, the gap is too wide. This gap can often be adjusted, but if it cannot be reduced small enough to support the desired lock, gate modifications may be needed to latch the gate shut.

Will You Need a Gate Closer

Kant Slam Closer on Aluminum Frame

You will usually want the gate to auto-latch when closed so that it automatically locks. If you own a pool, this is a pool code requirement. For this, you will need a closer that swings the gate shut and latches it.

You can find gate closers priced well on Amazon and most do not need to be welded.

Will you Need a Pass-Through Barrier

If the gate’s framing has large gaps between posts or is short enough to reach over, someone may be able to reach through the gaps, or over the gate, and open the lock from the inside.

Double-sided keyless gate locks, one that has a keypad on both sides, prevent this, but may not be allowed by building code if they prevent free egress.

If double gate locks are not allowed, then a restrictive barrier will need to be attached to the gate to prevent reaching through/over.

What type of Gate is It

The type of gate can dictate which keyless entry system you can use. We are going to focus on standard metal-framed / aluminum gates here.

If you have a chain link fence, check out our article on locking chain link fences.

When to Use a Mechanical Code Lock

Benefits of Mechanical Keypad Locks

Our Favorite Mechanical Keypad Side Gate Lock
Available on Amazon
  • Mechanical gate locks are less expensive than their electronic counterparts.
  • Many come with lifetime mechanical warranties. Meaning, you’ll never have to pay to replace it if it fails.
  • Some can be installed on the posts/frames of residential gates without needing to modify them with a gate box.

Limitations of Mechanical Keypad Locks

  • You get a single code to enter, you can not issue individual codes
  • It can be difficult to change the code because the locks must be taken apart and a series of wafer pins rearranged.
  • No remote monitoring

The best keyless lock to use on a side gate of a home is a mechanical keypad lock. They are the most affordable option, homeowners typically only need one gate code, and they may not require any gate modifications.

Check out our easy installation video of our favorite, affordable, no-weld solution (well-priced on Amazon), which can be installed on any gate frame with a post width of 1″ or more.

A note on this locking solution. It’s our favorite affordable, no-key solution, but the lock operates like a deadbolt. It has to be manually thrown to lock the gate. When we install these, we often leave the top auto-latching mechanism in place. This is especially important if you have a pool.

Leaving that mechanism there allows the gate to latch for safety should you forget to throw the deadbolt to lock the gate.

Easy DIY Mechanical Keyless Gate Lock Installation

Easily Installed Keypad Lock for Side Gates


Heavy Duty Keyless Lock for Commercial Gates

The best mechanical keyless gate lock for a commercial metal or aluminum framed gate, when you have a 1.5″ post width and the gap between the swing and stationary post can be made less than 2″ wide, is the Lockey GL2.

The Lockey GL2 is a heavy-duty, no-weld, single- or double-sided) mechanical lock with a lifetime functionality warranty. For a commercial lock, it’s affordable and easy to install.

We offer this gate lock for sale on our website with free shipping.

When to Use Electronic Gate Locks

Trilogy Stand Alone Gate Lock

Benefits of Electronic Locks

Electronic locks offer all of the advantages of mechanical, no-key gate locks. But they have the additional advantages.

Use a battery-operated, electronic keyless gate entry when you must have more than one user code, you anticipate code changes often, and you want to monitor who entered that gate and when. They are ideal for communities and businesses with a large number of employees.

Limitations of Electronic Locks

Electronic locks are the most expensive locks available. Not only are the locks themselves costly, but the frame almost always needs to be modified using a gate box to mount the lock. That modification requires welding.

Marks Lock

Check out our review of our favorite commercial stand-alone code locks to see if these locks are right for you.

These are heavy-duty locks, best used in high traffic areas, and get up to 100,000 cycles before needing to change the batteries.



Disclosure: As an eBay / Amazon Associate I may earn from qualifying purchases.


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