Most likely, the only time you think about different types of locks is when you are locked out or need a new lock. You might search for a “standard” or “regular” lock. However, manufacturers use specific terminology that describes their wares. Here is some common industry terminology to help you be a more informed consumer.
1. Entry lockset function. This is the most common type of lock for home or office. An entry function lock has a small button on the inside of the knob. This lets you manually lock the door when you want. Most types will remain locked even when a key is inserted or used. You will most commonly find them on residential homes, on front and back doors.
2. Storeroom lockset function. This lock is always locked. It requires a key to be used each time you want to enter. There is no button on the inside and does not come with an option to leave the door open. It’s perfect for commercial uses, on a supply closet, because it will ensure that the door is locked, as long as it’s closed. You want your office equipment to be secure!
3. Classroom lockset function. These are in fact used for classrooms. Similar to a storeroom function lockset, the lock has no button on the inside. However, it does have the ability to be left unlocked, but only with a key. A full turn will lock or unlock the knob allowing only the person with the correct key to leave the door open. It’s a great lock for anyone who doesn’t want to leave a door open unless they authorize it to be.
4. Privacy lockset function. This one is used mostly in bedrooms or bathrooms. It is made for privacy. They will frequently have a small hole on the outside and a push-button on the inside. The outside hole enables the lock to be unlocked in emergencies by a pin or paperclip. They are not designed to be used as a main locking device, but just a way to keep someone from walking in when you at an inopportune moment.
5. Passage lockset function. This is hardly a “real” lock at all! This knob doesn’t actually lock. It just keeps the door latched to the frame, so they don’t blow around in the wind. You will commonly find them on closets in a home or doors that just don’t need to be locked in general. Some people will also use them in bedrooms, so you can close the door, but not lock it.
Hopefully, this brief description of lock functions is useful for you the next time you need to buy locks. That way, your home or business can be set up in the exact fashion you want it, saving you time, money and aggravation.