Door Hardware Trends – Lock Styles

Door Hardware Style – Trends

A New Contemporary Lever with Hard Lines and Edges
If you haven’t seen our article on the Latest in Door Hardware Finishes, including antimicrobial coatings, it is a good compliment to this article and should be read before or after going through this article.

Here, I’m going to discuss the trends in lock styles, that is, the actual look of the lock sets that are gaining in popularity among our locksmith customers.

The major trends in home door hardware style today is a shift from smooth edges and curves to hard edges. Door hardware style is also moving towards individual (swappable) pieces of hardware.

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Door Hardware Style – Appearance

Kwikset San Clement Line in Satan Nickel Available on Amazon
Door locks styles are now becoming squared and angled. Lock manufactures are shooting for a more contemporary look with their product lines.

You’re most likely familiar with circular deadbolts and rosettes (a rosette is that part behind the knob or lever that holds the hardware against the door), and levers with wave-style patterns. That’s all changing.

The lock industry is shifting towards clean lines and often sharp angles, like the beautiful San Clement Series from the Kwikset Contemporary line. The San Clemente style handle set is very popular, and comes in the three most popular finishes we discuss in our Lock Finish Trends article, Matte Black, Satin Nickel, and Venetian Bronze. The lines here are straight and clean, and the angles are square.

Door Knob Style Comparison – Pismo Knob is on the Right

What is in style for door knobs? Even when the new lock models are rounded, such as with a door knob, the design style is trending towards harder lines. Like in this Pismo Knob by Kwikset available on Amazon. The knob no longer flows, but has hard breaking lines giving it more of a cylindrical appearance.

A similar line of contemporary-styled locks from another manufacturer is Schlage’s Century Collection levers and deadbolts. These, too, have a clean design element, but not quite as hard as the quickset locks. There is a slight curve to these locks on the vertical elements of the escutcheon plate that is reminiscent of the Art Deco period styling.

Schlage Contemporary Style Available on Amazon
Their Greenwich Collection moves this slightly curved element to the horizontal sides. This slight design-style difference provides you with more flexibility to accommodate your preferences.

There are several different options in the Kwikset and Schlage collections for knobs and lever styles like these levers shown for the Schlage line.

Two very popular new product styles by Kwikset are the Vedani (see on Amazon) and the Lisbon Lines (see on Amazon), both of which have the reintroduced the bright chrome finish option.




Though the trends are towards these harder lines, lock manufactures continue to make traditional styles to support existing product appearance.

Schlage Contemporary Style Lever Options

And, if you are not yet ready to make the jump into the bold hard-edged contemporary products, both Schlage and Kwikset door hardware manufacturers have introduced transitional lines of products. The style of these locks sits between the traditional and contemporary look. These are lock styles that are ideal for those of us that take time adjusting to new trends.

Even though most of these new design styles look different on the exterior, not to worry. They are installed using the same holes that currently exist for your current door hardware and in the same way as your current hardware, with the few exceptions already notes above.

Door Hardware Style – Individual Hardware Pieces

Additionally, for the most part, various lock manufactures have gotten away from integrated handle sets where the deadbolts and levers where contained within one piece. They are now separate components. It makes for a much more universal installation and swapping out of parts later on if desired.

A Couple of Schlage Handle Set Options
But be cautious if looking at Schlage handle sets. Some of the Schlage handle set locks are integrated with the deadbolt, so if you are replacing existing hardware, you need to be sure that the spacing of the holes in the door are matched to the new hardware you are considering. And using this style of handle set can cause potential mismatch/finishing issues down the road if you every decide to change the lock style.

The same is true if you are replacing an old Schlage handle set, your current door hole patterns may not accommodate new locks without modification. These can be a bit of a nightmare really, more information on this is on our brief article discussing the Schlage E-series lock replacement..



This problem is eliminated, mostly, by the separate design, because you can install them into existing universal lock component holes so long as the holes for the deadbolt and handle set are merely a minimum distance apart, rather than an exact distance apart.

Door Handing For Levers – More Flexibility

The Reversible Halifax Lever by Kwikset.
If you don’t want the expense of a handle set (they are the most costly), current door hardware style is to use levers instead of knobs, such as this Halifax entry lever by Kwikset. Just keep in mind, you’ll need to buy two pieces for the door, the lever and a matching deadbolt sold separately.

Residential door levers are now, more often than not, field-reversible. This means that the handle on the door can be made to point in either direction so it will fit either left or right-handed doors. This makes the purchase of door levers much easier, as you no longer need to take door handing into account when buying new door hardware.

While this is true of the most common door hardware styles and brands by manufacturers such as Kwikset and Schlage, for high-end, highly cosmetic brands like Emtek and Baldwin, door handing may still need to be taken into consideration. You can read our article on How to Determine Door Handing if you choose a brand that is not field reversible.

Also, dummy levers (levers used on closet doors that don’t typically turn and don’t have an inside piece, are always handed so you’ll need to know the handing of the door.


Door Hardware Style – Smart Locks

Most all of the new door hardware manufactures have smart lock versions of the deadbolts and/or levers available that match nicely with their newer product lines.

New Electronic Deadbolts Don’t Cover Footprint of Old Deadbolts
The lock industry is finally settling in on an electronic lock style that makes sense for the homeowner. The newest smart locks are easy to use and should not see significant changes for the several years to come.

We have a detailed review of our favorite Yale Connect by August Lock here on our website. A detailed review of the other new locks is in the works. All of these are very good locks.

The newest smart locks are all touchscreen, lending to a clean look particularly suitable for the contemporary lock styles becoming popular.

The one thing that bothers me tremendously is that the new smart deadbolts do NOT cover the old footprint of even the most common standard deadbolts. This leads to a bit of scaring and touch up needing to be done to the door so that you can’t see the indentations of the old lock not covered by the new lock.

On the plus side, Yale, Kwikset and Schlage are now making smart deadbolts that can be synced to your smartphone via your home’s wifi – WITHOUT needing a separate HUB that had been required up until just a few m months ago. That’s one less piece of hardware to buy, integrate and connect to get your locks working like you want them to work. These below three smart deadbolts are the best of what’s available. Choose the brand that matches your current locks so that the override key can be made to work from your existing house key (take it to a local locksmith before installation)


With the locks now directly connecting to your internet, you can be easily setup to lock and unlock the door remotely, change codes remotely, and even monitor if the door is open or closed at that moment, in just a few minutes. A very welcome advancement in residential smart lock design.


Does the Exterior Door Hardware Need to Match the Interior?

No, the exterior door hardware does not need to match the interior. One of the simplest ways to update the look of you home is to simply replace the front door hardware. If there is another door or closet that is close to the door you are swapping the door locks on, and you are concerned about the flow of the home if you swap the exterior door hardware do these two things:

  1. Buy new door hardware in a finish that matches the existing hardware. The will create a more subtle changes.
  2. Go for a new design style that is in a manufactures transitional line. You’ll get an updated look that trends towards the more hard lines with some of the softness already present in your older style of hardware.

Conclusions:

As always, styles and finishes will continue to be introduced to meet the current needs and desires of consumers, but the door hardware styles that have all recently been introduced seem poised to stay current and trendy for many years to come.

If you want to see the latest in Latest in Door Hardware Finishes, including Antimicrobial Coatings, it is a good compliment to this article.

Thanks for reading!





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