Keyless entry systems offer convenience and peace of mind. Plus, installation is typically pretty easy if you’ve ever installed a deadbolt or a doorknob. Keyless locks range from simple push-button keypads to smart locks that let you control everything from your phone, offering a range of versatile solutions for any door.
“These systems also tend to be family-friendly, eliminating a busy parent’s worry of keeping track of their keys or having to entrust their younger children or teenagers to keep ahold of a physical key,” Garrett Lovejoy, VP of product management for Yale US Smart Residential, told The Spruce. "Many of the touchpad options also typically can hold between 15-25 different codes, allowing users to have separate codes for their immediate family, dog walker, babysitters, close friends, etc.”
In our search for the best keyless entry systems, we sought recommendations and advice from a variety of sources, including Lovejoy. We considered basic locks, Bluetooth options, and smart locks, evaluating each product's ease of installation, feature sets, and security ratings provided by organizations like the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and the Builders Hardware Manufacturers Association (BHMA).
Our top recommendation, the Schlage FE595 CAM 626 Keypad Lever with Flex-Lock, is exceptionally easy to set up and use, has a solid security rating, and will lock automatically for security or remain unlocked for ease of access at your command.
Here are the best keyless entry systems.
Best Overall: SCHLAGE FE595 CAM 626 Keypad Lever with Camelot Trim and Accent Lever with Flex Lock
Works out of the box with no programming
Store up to 19 codes
No smart features
The Schlage FE595 CAM 626 Keypad Lever with Flex-Lock stands out from other options with its combination of a strong security rating, premium look and feel, and loads of features. It even works right out of the box with preset codes. The Schlage keypad lock also has a Grade 2 ANSI rating, which is typical of high-quality door locks (the lowest rating is 3, and the highest rating is 1, but this score is rare and mostly reserved for ultra-secure deadbolts).
This lock replaces your doorknob, so it’s best for doors that don’t have a deadbolt. If there’s enough clearance above your doorknob, you can also use it with your deadbolt or a low-profile smart deadbolt. Either way, installation is easy and doesn’t require any special tools or wiring. An included 9-volt battery provides power, and the lock comes pre-programmed with two unique codes, so it’s ready to go right away. When you want to program new entry codes, it’s capable of holding up to 19 at a time. There’s no way to create codes that expire automatically, but you can remove individual codes at any time.
This isn’t a smart lock, so there’s no app and no smart home integration, but it does have some great features. The most important is Flex-Lock, which lets you activate passage mode to keep the door unlocked when necessary or switch to automatic re-locking for greater security. If you’re going to be away for a while, the vacation feature lets you totally disable the keypad. It also has a backlit keypad, the ability to lock automatically, and a physical backup lock, so while the Schlage FE595 doesn’t have any smart features, it’s more than a basic keypad lock.
The Schlage Camelot has an attractive chunky design that’s available in a number of finishes and with several different lever and knob options. If you prefer something with simpler lines, the Schlage Keypad Lever with Plymouth Trim and Flair Lever with Flex Lock is the exact same lock with a less ornate trim style.
Price at time of publish: $109
Best Budget: Kwikset 264 Contemporary Keypad Deadbolt Lock
Temporary user codes
Only six user codes
Not compatible with Kwikset SmartKey
ANSI Grade 3 rating
The Kwikset 264 is a basic keypad deadbolt that looks nice and works well, so it’s an excellent option for anyone who wants the convenience of keyless entry but doesn’t need a lot of extra features. Installation is easy because it directly replaces your deadbolt without additional drilling on most doors. You also program this lock through the keypad, so there’s no need to take it apart to change the code. It can hold up to six customizable codes, including temporary codes that expire after a single use.
This lock has a physical key in addition to a 10-digit numerical keypad that includes a dedicated button for one-touch locking. It also has an adjustable auto-lock feature that will lock the door if you forget to. It doesn't work with Kwikset SmartKey, though, so rekeying requires a trip to the locksmith unless you want to try to rekey the old-fashioned way.
With an ANSI Grade 3 rating, the Kwikset 264 Keypad isn't the best pick for high-security use but is in line with standard deadbolt configurations installed in most homes.
Price at time of publish: $60
Best Fingerprint: Ultraloq UL3 BT (2nd Gen) Bluetooth Enabled Fingerprint and Touchscreen Smart Lock Handle
Fast fingerprint identification
Anti-peep password protection
Wi-Fi bridge available
Difficult to set up without the app
Tough to reach physical backup lock
Short battery life
If you’re interested in keyless entry via fingerprint access, the Ultraloq UL3 BT (2nd Gen) replaces the doorknob on your front door and features a fingerprint sensor in addition to a keypad. The fingerprint sensor utilizes a self-learning algorithm to speed up recognition over time, so it starts pretty speedy and just gets faster the more you use it. It has some difficulty reading wet fingerprints, but the keypad is there for rainy days. The keypad lets you add random digits to hide your real passcode, and it’s easy to use even at night, thanks to a built-in backlight. The lock also has a physical keyway as a backup, but it’s located on the bottom behind a panel, so it's too difficult to access to use it for anything other than emergencies.
This lock has Bluetooth connectivity, which lets you set it up and operate it via a companion app on your phone. You don’t need to use the app, but the setup process is needlessly difficult if you don’t. The app lets you share access with other people via Bluetooth, create and remove codes, and set up temporary codes that only work on specific days and times or that expire at a specified time. Additional smart features are available, like the ability to monitor the lock when you aren’t home, but they require purchasing the optional Wi-Fi bridge device.
Price at time of publish: $140
Best Smart: Schlage Encode Plus WiFi Deadbolt Smart Lock with Century Trim
Good smart home integration
Highest grade lock security
Wi-Fi drains the battery
Doesn't work with HomeKit
The Schlage Encode Smart Wi-Fi Deadbolt with Century Trim is the best keyless entry system to pick up if you’re interested in smart home integration. It’s built around a touchscreen keypad, has a physical key for a backup, and has the highest ANSI security grade possible, but its smart features are what sets it apart. It works well with Alexa and Google Home for voice commands, like asking your virtual assistant to lock the door and other smart home integrations. However, it doesn’t work with HomeKit, so you’ll need to opt for the upgraded Schlage Encode Plus if your smart home runs on Apple hardware. In addition to HomeKit compatibility, the Plus version also adds geofencing (for automatic locking and unlocking when you leave or arrive home), which the base-level Encode lacks.
This lock has built-in Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity, so there’s nothing extra to buy. You can connect your phone via Bluetooth for local programming and operation and connect the lock to your wireless network for remote access. The phone app lets you operate the lock, generate new codes for both permanent and temporary access, see the status of the lock, check the battery level, and more. The app can also alert you if anyone enters an incorrect code, and the lock itself has a very loud alarm that goes off in the event of an attempted forced entry.
Price at time of pubilsh: $270
Best Key-Free: Hugolog Electronic Keypad Deadbolt Lock
Stores up to 20 codes
Bulky interior component
Potentially confusing setup
Not recommended for use in high humidity
The Hugolog JU01 is a deadbolt replacement that ditches the physical key. This compact digital deadbolt is easy to install because it’s a direct deadbolt replacement. The setup process is equally straightforward and done directly on the keypad. However, the button functions aren’t intuitive, so you’ll need to read the instructions carefully. It can store up to 20 unique access codes, including single-use codes for guests or anyone else who needs temporary access to your home. While the keypad is nice and compact, the part of the lock that mounts on the interior side of the door is big and boxy, which may not suit all tastes and door designs.
This lock has some great security features beyond just being bump- and pick-proof due to the lack of a physical key. The keypad includes anti-peek protection, which lets you hide your access code by adding random digits before and after the actual code. For added security, you can set it to lock automatically after a specified amount of time and disable all access when you’re on vacation.
Price at time of publish: $40
Best for Garages: Chamberlain Clicker Universal Keyless Entry KLIK2U-P2
Keypad lights up
Cover slides completely off
Basic boxy design
Doesn't work with all garage openers
The Chamberlain Original Clicker Universal Wireless Keypad adds a keyless entry to your garage without the need to install a new garage door opener. Installation is quick and easy because it runs on batteries and activates your garage door opener wirelessly, so there’s no wiring involved. It works with most garage door openers manufactured after 1993, including all the major brands, and Chamberlain’s own Security 2.0+ system that uses multiple frequencies and encrypted codes to increase garage door security.
The keypad has a removable cover that protects it from the elements, and the individual keys light up for easy access both night and day. The cover is a bit of an issue because you do need to slide it up to access the keypad, which can be a hassle if you only have one hand free. The cover can also slide all the way off, which could lead to it getting lost.
Price at time of publish: $33
Best Design: Yale YRD226 Assure Lock Touchscreen with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth
Sleek, modern aesthetic
Smart features require Wi-Fi module
Bulky interior component
The Yale YRD226 Assure Lock is a keyless entry system that provides both convenience and security while still managing to look good. This lock includes a backlit touchscreen keypad that lets you create and manage up to 25 unique key codes, and it’s protected from tampering by an 80-decibel alarm. It includes a physical key for backup access and passed rigorous testing to achieve an ANSI/BHMI security grade of 2. It replaces your deadbolt, and it’s available in a variety of finishes to match your existing door hardware, or you can pair it with a passage handle set from Yale Security to complete the look.
This lock comes with Bluetooth connectivity that enables a few smart features like auto relock that locks the door behind you. You can also control the lock through an app on your phone as long as you’re within Bluetooth range. Other smart features require an optional upgrade in the form of a Wi-Fi module. The optional Wi-Fi module connects the lock to the internet and your other smart home devices. With the internet connection, you can operate the lock and check its status when you aren’t home, receive notifications when anyone unlocks or opens the door, and even control it with voice commands.
Price at time of publish: $260
Best Mechanical: Lockey USA M210 EZ Mechanical Combination Deadbolt Lock
Doesn't need batteries
Includes mounting plate for easy installation
Only one code at a time
Limited code variety
No backup if you forget code
The Lockey USA M210 EZ is a purely mechanical keyless entry system. This lock replaces your deadbolt with a physical keypad that relies on an internal mechanism instead of electronics. That means it doesn’t need batteries, and there aren’t any electronics to fail or break down over time. It’s a very robust lock backed up by a lifetime warranty. The EZ model includes a mounting plate that simplifies installation but needs additional hardware for some thicker doors.
Since this is a purely mechanical lock, it does have some drawbacks. You can only set one access code at a time, and setting codes is a little complicated. It also has limited code variety compared to electronic models due to the mechanism used to set codes, and there’s no backup access method if you happen to forget your code. However, this lock offers a high level of security due to its all-steel construction and because it doesn’t have a lock cylinder to bump or pick.
Price at time of publish: $143
The Schlage FE595 CAM 626 Keypad Lever with Flex-Lock is our recommendation for the best overall keyless entry system because it’s easy to install and use, looks good, and has a solid ANSI grade 2 security rating. It’s the best option if you want to add a secure keyless entry method to your front door without the complexity of wireless controls or smart home integration. If you do want the option of adding smart home compatibility in the future, the Yale YRD226 Assure Lock is a keypad lock with some useful features, a good security rating, and an optional Wi-Fi module that you can plug in at any time.
What to Look For in a Keyless Entry System
Ease of installation and use
Basic keyless entry systems are about as difficult to install as any other door lock, while keyless entry systems that include smart features are a little more complicated.
“Installation can be very simple; there are many options that are DIY and only require a screwdriver and an instruction manual,” Garrett Lovejoy of Yale US Smart Residential told The Spruce. “With keyless entry systems, if the holes in your doors are already drilled, the installation process is as simple as changing the deadbolt.
”Most keyless entry systems are electronic, so they use batteries. That simplifies the installation process since there’s no complicated electrical wiring, but it complicates the long-term use of the lock since batteries can go dead. Some keyless entry systems let you connect a backup battery or a USB power supply in emergencies, and others have physical locks so you can use a backup key.
“With most locks, however, devices will give users different types of warnings as the battery starts to get low, so be on the lookout for any blinking lights or audio warnings,” says Lovejoy. “Battery lives are typically long, and you will get lots of notice your batteries are low.”
Keyless entry systems are available with a wide variety of entry systems. Electronic keypads with physical keys are common, as are touchscreen keypads. In addition to electronic keypads, some keyless entry systems use purely mechanical keypads that don’t require batteries to operate.
According to Lovejoy, keypads with buttons offer some advantages over touchpads, even though touchpads provide a cleaner look. “Keypad locks (especially those with push buttons) may be more obvious to use to guests, and they don’t leave fingerprints as much as a touchpad/screen,” says Lovejoy. “Those who live in colder weather environments also may benefit from a keypad option—that is, unless users own a pair of ‘smart gloves’ that allow a level of grip needed to properly use a touchscreen.”
Fingerprint sensors are another entry option that is both secure and convenient. “This is a very secure option since fingerprints are all unique and are very difficult to forge,” according to Lovejoy. “It’s also a convenient option for individuals who don’t have to worry about keeping track of all of their different keys.”
However, Lovejoy also warns that biometric sensors don’t always work. “Biometric sensors have come a long way, but some sensors may still have trouble in certain conditions, such as rain/snow, dirty hands from working in the yard, and more. Having a PIN code to use as a backup option for cases like these can provide users with peace of mind.”
Other entry methods include Bluetooth, radio frequency identification (RFID), and Wi-Fi. Keyless entry systems with wireless connectivity require a phone to operate and can include manual operation via an app and automatic operation via the proximity of your phone or another device. In addition to all of these keyless entry options, some also include a physical lock you can operate with a key.
Most keyless entry systems replace your deadbolt, in which case you can leave your existing doorknob or replace it with a knob or lever that doesn’t lock. Keyless entry systems can also replace your doorknob though, in addition to mortise locks, so it’s important to choose one that matches the lock you’re replacing.
Basic keyless entry systems add a way to unlock your door without a key or replace the key with a keyless entry method, but smart locks can also include a wide variety of extra features. Keyless entry systems with Bluetooth connectivity let you operate the lock via your phone, but only when you’re actually at the door.
Locks that include Wi-Fi connectivity allow for smart home integration, which unlocks a lot of other features. “Users should look for a lock that integrates with other products you already have, such as Google/Alexa/etc. so that they can grow the capabilities of their smart home,” recommends Lovejoy.
With a companion phone app, you can operate these Wi-Fi-connected smart locks from anywhere you have an internet connection. Some of these locks also operate automatically based on proximity to your phone or another device, which is a feature called geofencing. Others let you operate the lock with voice commands through your smart home system.
What are the different types of keyless entry?
Common keyless entry methods include keypads, biometric sensors, and wireless control through a Bluetooth or Wi-Fi connection to your phone or smart home system. All of these systems replace your door lock hardware with a new lock system that doesn’t require a key.
“One thing that users may want to consider is whether they want to invest in a keyless entry system that grants them Bluetooth connectivity,” suggests Garrett Lovejoy, VP of Product Management for Yale US Smart Residential. “If they are looking to bring a little extra convenience to their keyless entry system, having [a] Bluetooth-enabled connection to their phone makes the lock even easier to program, easy to unlock, and in some cases, this type of connection makes it easier to remotely set PIN codes.”
What's the difference between a key fob and a keyless entry?
While both a key fob and keyless entry allow the user to open a door without a key, a key fob is a physical, remote control device while keyless entry may include a physical device, like a keypad or biometric sensor, it often is controlled wirelessly via a Wi-Fi or Bluetooth connection.
What’s the difference between a smart lock and a keyless door lock?
Keyless door locks provide an entry method that doesn’t require a key, like a keypad or biometric sensor, while smart locks are door locks that have wireless connectivity that lets you control them via an app on your phone. You can also integrate smart locks with your other smart home technology in many cases.
There is some overlap between keyless entry systems and smart locks, but not all keyless door locks are smart. All smart locks are keyless entry systems because they allow unlocking with an app on your phone at a bare minimum. Many smart locks also include other keyless entry methods like keypads and biometric sensors. Smart locks tend to be more expensive, mostly due to the inclusion of wireless functionality like Bluetooth and Wi-Fi.
Smart locks also provide greater control over your lock and some security features. “One of the major benefits of a smart lock is that if someone uses a PIN, you will have a record of whose PIN was entered and what time it was used,” says Lovejoy. “This type of record can provide more insights than relying on using a physical key. If someone ‘stole’ your code in a tragic turn of events, users will have a record of the specific code used and are able to know to change or disable that code. If the lock is connected via a mobile app, users can even be notified on their smartphone and can make all of the former adjustments remotely.”
Why Trust The Spruce?
This article was written by Jeremy Laukkonen, a freelance writer and product tester for The Spruce. His own front door is secured by a keyless smart lock, and he has over a decade of experience reviewing electronics for outlets like Lifewire and Digital Trends, in addition to the Spruce.
Laukkonen contacted Garrett Lovejoy, VP of Product Management from Yale US Smart Residential, a division of ASSA ABLOY, to receive his expert opinions on keyless entry systems. With Lovejoy’s insights in mind, Laukkonen prioritized factors like entry options and keypads with multiple codes, security ratings and features, and connectivity for a few smart lock recommendations to identify all the best keyless entry systems.