Schlage vs Kwikset: Comparison of Leading Lock Brands (2024)

Schlage and Kwikset are two industry giants that collectively dominate over 95% of residential locks, making them fixtures in almost every hardware store in America.

Choosing the right lock for your home is a decision that directly impacts your peace of mind and security, so we tested out two of the most trusted names in the lock industry and checked out their fair share of key differences. 

Here’s an in-depth comparison of Schlage vs Kwikset to make it easier to decide which reigns supreme. 

Schlage & Kwikset Compared

schlage smart door lock

Schlage tends to command a slightly higher price tag but has earned a reputation for exceptional durability and premium finishes. It holds the title of being the most trusted lock in America [1].

Schlage and Kwikset offer smart home devices, but Schlage Sense Smart Deadbolt and Schlage Smart Lock are better than Kwikset SmartKey. Schlage deadbolts excel in smart home compatibility, and its designs offer many choices.

Kwikset smart locks may be hard to pick, but since it uses the same type of screws, bolt, and housing as the regular Kwisket deadbolt lock (common lock), it can be easy to compromise with any forced entry methods.

On the other hand, Kwikset offers affordability with solid materials and finish options. While it has good durability and design diversity, its smart lock integration might need to be improved. 

Both Schlage and Kwikset have positive reputations, making the choice between them largely dependent on individual needs and budget constraints.

Read also about the Differences between Schlage Encode and Encode Plus

Kwikset vs Schlage Cheat Sheet

AspectSchlageKwikset
Material Quality & FinishKnown for high-quality materials and premium finishesOffers a range of finishes with good quality materials
Key Control OptionsHigh-security key control systems availableOffers key control but with fewer options
Average PriceTypically moderately pricedGenerally Affordable
InstallationEasy to install but may require professional installation for some modelsGenerally straightforward DIY installation
Smart Home CompatibilityCompatible with various smart home platformsOffers smart home compatibility but may be more limited
Durability & Design OptionsWide range of durable and aesthetically pleasing designsDiverse design options with good durability
Smart Lock IntegrationKnown for integrating well with smart lock technologyOffers smart lock integration, but with varying compatibility
Accessibility FeaturesSome models feature user-friendly accessibility optionsMay have accessibility features, but not as comprehensive
Ease of Re-keyingRe-keying can be relatively easy with specific modelsRe-key applicable, but ease may vary
Star Rating★★★★☆★★★☆☆

How They Differ 

Kwikset Powerbolt Electronic Door Lock

Reputation

Schlage was founded in 1920 by Walter Schlage and holds a more substantial reputation in the industry. Schlage Locks has been a trusted name in locks for over a century, and their locks feature ANSI-grade security certification. 

Their locks often receive high praise for longevity and resistance to tampering, contributing to their stellar reputation. Additionally, it is known for its premium finishes, enhancing aesthetics and protection.

On the other hand, Kwikset has established a good reputation and offered excellent security since 1946. 

They are known for producing affordable and different types of locks, but they don’t quite match Schlage in terms of durability and security.

Forced Entry vs Non-Forced Entry

Schlage demonstrates superior resistance to forced and non-forced entry compared to Kwikset. 

Schlage locks are renowned for their robust construction, often featuring hardened steel bolts and innovative tamper-resistant technologies to compensate for loopholes in lock manufacturing. 

It makes it substantially more challenging for potential intruders to breach a Schlage lock through brute force attacks. 

Schlage locks often feature advanced security mechanisms that make them more resistant to lock manipulation techniques such as lock picking or bumping. 

The precision engineering of Schlage locks and their intricate pin and tumbler systems provide an added defense against bump keys and pick tools compared to the Kwikset lock mechanism. 

While generally reliable for standard security, Kwikset locks may be more susceptible to forced and non-forced entry.

Unfortunately, it was quickly opened by a slotted screwdriver and a small wrench. The vulnerability of the hardware makes it easier to bypass the lock through bumping.

Drill Resistant Plate

Schlage generally outperforms Kwikset in terms of drill resistance. Schlage locks incorporate a drill-resistant plate, a hardened metal component surrounding the lock’s cylinder.

During the lock manufacturing process, the thin metal plate is placed to thwart drilling attempts by intruders, making it considerably more challenging for them to breach the lock through this method.

The Kwikset deadbolt lacks a drill-resistant plate anywhere on its housing, making it notably susceptible to drilling. 

Both the screws and the cylinder of a Kwikset lock can be easily drilled open, and the lock easily falls when we try using a bigger drill bit, underscoring the difference in security between the two brands.

Deadbolt Screws

For enhanced security, the Schlage lockset is preferred over the Kwikset lockset.

The screws of the Schlage deadbolt lock are longer and thicker, anchoring the lock securely and providing robust protection against forced entry.

In contrast, we observed that Kwikset’s deadbolts use shorter and thinner screws, which makes them more vulnerable to intrusion attempts. 

Bolt Size And Strength

Kwikset Smart Door Lock

When we examined the Schlage bolt compared to the Kwikset counterpart, Schlage’s bolt is notably larger and more robust than Kwikset’s. 

Its size ensures a snug fit within its plate on the door frame, minimizing any potential door movement, especially when we tried bumping and lock picking.

We also noticed that the Schlage bolt automatically deadlocks when fully thrown.

Screw Size

Schlage takes the lead by offering a larger screw size, making it significantly more challenging for intruders to compromise the lock through drilling or forceful entry.

Schlage’s screw size measures #10-32, 2-1/4″ long while the screws for Kwikset deadbolt are a #8-32, 1-1/2″ long.

Schlage locks provide an additional layer of security with their drill-resistant plate protecting the screws. 

Lock Housing

Schlage stands out with its sturdy and well-engineered lock designs, emphasizing durability and resistance to tampering. 

These locks often include additional security features like drill-resistant plates, offering comprehensive defense against intrusion attempts. 

In contrast, Kwikset’s lock housing is generally more straightforward, somewhat hollow, and lighter, making it easier to drill through.

Most customers compared Kwikset locks as good as the $4 cheap lock at Walmart, claiming the lock housing is unsafe and unreliable.

Cylinder Tolerance

When the lock is locked, the cylinder can be rotated a bit (called cylinder tolerance), and the more cylinder it can turn, the easier it is to pick.

Both locks can be picked as much as any other locks; however, Kwikset locks have greater cylinder tolerance than Schlage, making Kwikset hardly a challenge to pick.

Schlage’s locks are renowned for their tight cylinder tolerance, ensuring a precise key-cylinder fit that reduces the risk of unauthorized key duplication and imitation.

Security Pins

Security pins are pivotal in lock design, bolstering protection against picking and intrusion techniques. 

Schlage distinguishes itself by employing an array of security pins, including serrated and spool pins strategically placed in the cylinder to fortify resistance against burglars’ break.

Schlage has 4 security pins, while Kwikset uses only 2. Since Schlage has two more security pins in the cylinder, it is harder to pick than Kwikset.

Smart Features

schlage encode smart wifi deadbolt

Regarding smart locks, Schlage smart locks are better than Kwikset. Schlage tends to have a more extensive range of smart lock options and excellent compatibility with a smart home lock system.

Schlage features Schlage Connect, which works with Siri, can operate the door remotely, and enhances your security as it is compatible with other smart home devices.

Kwikset provides reliable features but with a somewhat narrower selection. The Kwikset touchscreen smart lock can be programmed with access codes and has technology to prevent lock bumping.

Smart lock system has become more popular because it offers greater security [2] than traditional and standard deadbolt. Home security will be more reliable and effective using access codes and more security pins.  

Warranty & Customer Support

Both brands offer lifetime mechanical and finish warranties, but we are more impressed with Schlage’s customer support’s responsiveness, troubleshooting, and inquiries. 

There were a lot of complaints about Kwikset entry locks. While customer service is also excellent and responsive, customers will agree that there are better things to do than ask for replacements for their defective locks.

FAQs

Why is Schlage more expensive than Kwikset?

Schlage locks tend to be more expensive than Kwikset due to its superior security features, durable materials, tight tolerances, great security pins, and robust deadbolt screws. 

The Kwikset deadbolt is good quality, but the quality of Schlage housing and door locks justifies the higher cost. 

Which is better for interior doors, Schlage or Kwikset?

Schlage is often considered a better choice for interior doors due to its reputation for durability and security features [3]. 

It provides a range of options for high-quality lock and door hardware that can enhance the security and longevity of interior doors. 

Can Schlage and Kwikset use the same key?

Schlage and Kwikset locks cannot use the same key because they have different keyway designs. 

The keyway is the shape of the keyhole, and it varies between door lock manufacturers. 

This design difference means that Schlage keys generally won’t fit in Kwikset locks and vice versa.

Can I replace Schlage with Kwikset?

Yes, you can replace a Schlage lock with a Kwikset lock since they both have an adjustable backset (2-3/8″ to 2-3/4″) that will fit all standard door preps.

However, getting locksmith services [4] is better to ensure the lock mechanism will not be damaged. 

Final Verdict

In the comparison between Schlage and Kwikset, Schlage wins, offering superior security, durability, and a reputation for home security. 

Schlage’s emphasis on robust security features, including drill-resistant plates, security pins, and sturdy deadbolt screws and lock mechanism, makes it the top choice for those prioritizing safety. 

Its century-long legacy and positive customer reviews further solidify its industry authority. Regarding lock housing, Schlage’s designs provide an added layer of protection. 

Kwikset offers affordability and a wide range of style options, making it a popular choice for those with diverse aesthetic preferences and budget considerations. 

While it may not match Schlage regarding certain security features, Kwikset provides reliable locks suitable for standard security needs.

Ready to enhance your security with professional installations? Contact us today for expert advice, customized solutions, and a safer tomorrow.

References:

  1. https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/schlage-selected-americas-most-trusted-lock-fourth-year-running-301734463.html
  2. https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/how-to/how-do-smart-locks-work-are-they-really-secure-heres-everything-you-should-know-about-smart-locks/articleshow/96050201.cms
  3. https://www.britannica.com/technology/security-and-protection-system
  4. https://dictionary.cambridge.org/us/dictionary/english/locksmith

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