How to choose a lock for an interior door

8 min

When choosing and buying an interior door, great attention should also be paid to the selection of the right fittings. It should not only correspond to the style of the room as a whole and the characteristics of the door leaf, but also be extremely functional. The main element of an interior door is its lock, but often its choice is not treated as carefully as the choice of a lock for the front door, and you will have to use it very often. Naturally, fewer requirements are put forward for this kind of locks, so many do not expect any trouble from them. But an incorrectly selected or poor-quality locking mechanism can not only constantly irritate and be inconvenient, but also make the owners hostages of some room. So, what should you consider when choosing a lock for interior doors?

choose a lock for an interior door Initially, it is worth deciding what function a particular door and a lock on it perform. Here, as a rule, there are two main options. Most often, it is necessary for the lock to simply hold the door closed and prevent it from being opened by a draft. In this case, the simplest mechanisms are used, which often come with the door. If it is necessary to create a personal space and protect it from unwanted intrusion, then it is already worth using more complex locks, which can be fixed in the “closed” position or even locked with a key like locks on the entrance doors.

In addition, attention should be paid to how harmoniously the selected type of lock will look with a specific type of door and room. The name of the manufacturer engaged in the manufacture of such accessories is also important. Taking into account all the above parameters, you can easily choose the required lock.

Types of locks

Depending on what goals are pursued in each particular case, and to which room this or that interior door leads, different types of locks are chosen. Let’s dwell on their main types.

Simple latches

choose a lock for an interior door This is the simplest type of lock, which, as a rule, is supplied to all interior doors, even the cheapest ones, and the mechanism consists of a cylinder and a tongue. These locks are used on doors leading to walk-through areas such as the kitchen or living room. Their main purpose is to prevent unwanted opening of the door, for example, from drafts, and to keep it closed when needed, to close the door more tightly than to lock it. A simple mechanism gives a complete guarantee that you will not become a hostage of some room when the lock suddenly jams.

latchMost often, such locks are installed together with a handle, when pressed, a tongue is activated, which holds the door in a closed position. Such locks are of the type of latch, and they consist of a handle, oblique tongue and spring. In addition, there are latches that do not rely on handles to work. The tongue can be either metal or plastic. The second option is preferable when it is necessary to make the door opening and closing process as quiet as possible.

Locking latch

This type of lock can be called a modification of a conventional latch. This design is equipped, in addition to the tongue, actuated by a spring or magnet, and also a latch that can fix the lock in the “closed” position. Such locks are installed in those rooms where there is a need to be locked from the inside: these are most often baths, toilets, sometimes bedrooms or offices. Unlike the previous type of lock, here there is a possibility that the lock will simply jam, and therefore the choice of such a mechanism should be approached as carefully as possible. So, before buying, you need to check how softly and smoothly the tongue moves, as well as whether there is enough spring or magnet force to return the tongue inside the door leaf.

lock retainerThe lock with a latch has the form of a wide flat bar with holes for a handle and a latch. Usually, one turn of the latch is enough to lock the door. Locking mechanisms of this kind are often used in knob knobs, and the latch itself in this case can be lever or push-button. Lever is preferred because it is more reliable and easier to handle. At first glance, the push-button latch is also convenient and has good aesthetic properties, but there is a high probability of accidental slamming of the door when the button is triggered at an unnecessary moment.

Mortise locks

mortise lockMortise locks for interior doors are also sometimes called turnkey cylinder locks. In fact, they are a copy of a conventional front door lock, only they have a much simpler mechanism. They also resemble latches with a lock, only a key hole is created instead of the hole for the lock. Such mechanisms are necessary when the room needs to be securely closed on both sides, which is why interior doors with such a lock are installed in the bedroom, study, pantry, etc.

A mortise lock consists of a cylinder and a lock block, and the design of the cylinder may vary. If the lock is not used very often, then a “key-key” type cylinder is installed, but if the lock is used frequently from one side, it will be much more convenient to install a “key-spinner” type cylinder.

When choosing a mortise lock for an interior door, it is important to pay attention to the softness of the tongue’s movement, and the fact that it is completely hidden inside the door leaf. In addition, it is necessary to take into account the parameters of the installed or vending door: it is important that the thickness of the leaf matches the parameters of the locking mechanism. An optional but desirable feature is the so-called striking flaps. With their help, the tongue is held more tightly, which provides a more reliable fixation of the door.

Magnetic locks

magnetic lockA magnetic lock is by far the most expensive option, but it, in turn, is able to provide the most silent operation, since there are no moving parts in the locking mechanism. That is why such locks are indispensable in rooms where it is important to maintain maximum silence: bedrooms, children’s rooms, etc.

A ferrite core is installed inside the bolt of such a lock, which comes into action only when the door leaf is closed, when a negatively charged magnetic strip is nearby. No noise is generated when the key elements of the locking mechanism interact. In addition, such locks are characterized by high reliability, wear resistance and durability, which explains their growing popularity. Such mechanisms are also called the most aesthetic and safe, because the tongue does not peep out of the door leaf.


špingaletThe espagnolette is also a kind of lock for interior doors. Despite the fact that it was originally used to fix one of the parts of double doors, it is still very popular for locking bathrooms and toilets. The mechanism of operation of such locks is so simple and familiar to everyone that it does not need additional explanations. Almost everyone can install such a lock, without any special skills. Moreover, this is the most cost-effective way to protect some rooms from sudden intrusion. The espagnolette is still very popular and is installed on the doors in sanitary facilities, especially since the designers are developing very stylish and original models that can be selected for a specific style of interior.

Overhead locks

patch lockFeatures of these locks can be understood from the name. The mechanism itself is attached here to one side of the door to provide reliable protection against penetration. This option cannot be called the most aesthetic, but in some cases it is simply irreplaceable. So, in communal apartments, such mechanisms have been and are very popular. Less often, but such locks are installed on cabinet doors.

Sliding door lock

sliding door lockWe should also mention locking mechanisms for sliding doors. Their main task is to securely hold the canvas so that it does not move along the walls with the slightest extraneous influences, such as vibration or draft. When turning the locking mechanism, the latch enters the opening of the strip on the box, securely fixing in it. Due to the fact that the latch is in the form of a hook, this type of mechanism is often called a harpoon mechanism.

Top lock manufacturers

Often the quality of a particular mechanism, the durability and reliability of its operation depends on the person who made the lock. Today, there are a lot of domestic and foreign manufacturers on the market, whose products deserve close attention. However, we will highlight only a few of them.

  1. Abloy is a Finnish manufacturer that has been delighting customers with consistently high quality products for several decades. Interior locks of this company are highly durable, withstand temperature extremes. The locks are chrome-plated or powder-coated, open with a key or a turntable (thumbturn). All variants of interior locks from this manufacturer have a neat appearance, suitable for use in residential and office buildings.

  2. choose a lock for an interior door Viatek is a Ukrainian company specializing in the production of various security systems. Among other products, there are also locks for interior doors. The range includes overhead, mortise and magnetic locks.

  3. AGB (Alban Giacomo SpA) is a large Italian company that produces mechanisms for closing windows and doors. The names of various products are so wide that it is difficult to find analogues of this company. There are locks for interior doors of various types and prices. Great importance is attached to research, which allowed the company to offer its customers locks with a polyurethane tongue, the peculiarity of which is their absolute noiselessness.

  4. Fuaro is the largest manufacturer of interior door hardware, which pays close attention to locks. The range includes products such as handles, latches, latches, latches, latches, etc.

  5. Morelli is an Italian company that has been producing handles and locks for doors for over 70 years, and during this time has managed to earn trust and recognition on the European and domestic market. The assortment of the company includes magnetic locks, locks with a plastic tongue, latches, latches and other types of mechanisms.

  6. Archie-Sillur is a manufacturer that has been on the market for about 20 years. It has established itself as quality door hardware at an affordable price. Today the company has two factories at its disposal: in Spain and in the South of Asia. The choice of locks for interior doors is impressive: there are latches, and mortise locks, and magnetic mechanisms. Moreover, the manufacturer’s mortise locks differ in secrecy levels, which allows you to protect your personal space as reliably as possible without violating its aesthetics. By the way, each model is available in several colors so that the buyer can find the best option that best suits the interior style of a particular room.

In conclusion

Interior doors are not only interior decoration, but also a way to create a protected personal space. And in order for this to be fully possible, it is necessary to pay no less importance to the door hardware than the choice of the door leaf itself. The lock, the most important piece of furniture, requires particular attention. Assessment of the nature of the room, its features and interior nuances will allow you to choose the optimal mechanism that will, to the extent necessary, protect the room from drafts or unwanted penetration.

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Passionate about DIY for over 10 years and all the new tools, I give you through this blog all my advice, tips, tests in all areas: carpentry, electricity, masonry, gardening, home automation ...


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