Contrary to conventional wisdom, the deadbolt locks that you see in your local bigbox hardware store are not the best for your security. Usually, those are the cheaper, inferior quality deadbolts.

If you want a deadbolt that is hard to pick or bump and that is hard to defeat with brute force, then keep reading the list below.

All deadbolt locks that describe themselves as high security should be certified as Grade 1 locks, the highest grade in the industry. All of these high security residential deadbolt locks are easy to install and fit in your existing deadbolt cutout.

1. Medeco Maxum

The Best High Security Deadbolt.

This Medeco high security deadbolt is the highest rated residential deadbolt. It’s anti-tampering features that this lock has that set it apart from other high security deadbolts. Medeco Maxum deadbolts were first designed for commercial and government use and then developed for residential use.

See Additional Customer Reviews on Amazon

  • Hardened 1” steel bolt with steel housing provides protection against cutting or drilling
  • Strike plate has a box design and comes with 2” screws (recommend at least 3” long screws)
  • The cylinder – the part with the keyhole – has additional steel inserts for protection against drilling
  • Key cannot be duplicated unless through an authorized locksmith and then only with owner’s authorization
  • Superior pick resistance due to special tumbler pins and a mechanism on the sidebar
  • Some users reported having a little difficulty with installing this lock, mostly enlarging the bore hole.

2. Mul-T-Lock MT5+ Hercular

What is a high security residential deadbolt?

Mul-T-Lock’s newest deadbolt includes their multi-patented MT5+ mechanical key platform. Their previous key platform was the MT5, without the plus, but it was only available in Europe. Now the MT5+ has been released to the North American market and have added a side bar locking mechanism.

The UL437 listed cylinder is pick and drill resistant. The lock comes with a keycard which will allow the owner to present to an authorized locksmith for copies to be made. This sounds like a good security measure but who will remember where they put this card years later?

See Additional Customer Reviews on Amazon

  • With the MT5+ keying system you can have the same key for multiple formats – cylinders, padlocks, locks.
  • Patented Alpha Spring at tip of key engages the pin at the back of the keyway providing an additional security measure
  • Comes with Mul-T-Lock key card that is needed by an authorized Mul-T-Lock dealer for replicating keys, to keep copies out of wrong hands
  • Ball bearings in bolt end reduce space in the box in the frame reducing jimmying attacks.
  • Comes with 3″ screws to attach strike plate.

3. Abloy Protec2

The 3rd best high security deadbolt.

The Abloy Protec2 single cylinder deadbolt is manufactured by Assa Abloy, a Swedish lock manufacturer. They’re also the parent company of August smart locks, Yale locks and Sargent exit devices and many others. The Protec2 is Assa’s upgrade to their Protec keying line.

The lock comes with a reinforced steel box for the bolt in lieu of a strike plate. The frame will need a little modification to allow the box to be installed.

See Additional Customer Reviews on Amazon

  • Abloy rotating detainer disc cylinder allows a large multitude of key combinations
  • Cylinder guard collar spins to deter direct attacks to the cylinder
  • 1″ hardened bolt length
  • Steel strike box is reinforced
  • Bolt comes with protective shield to prevent cutting or sawing

4. Mul-T-Lock Cronus

This Mul-T-Lock Cronus Deadbolt is a high security deadbolt made primarily for residential use but can also be used commercially. But because it is aimed primarily at the residential market it is economical but still offers high security. It is a Grade 2 deadbolt. However, it still offers a lot of security. It has a drill proof cylinder and a steel hardened pin. It also comes with a duplicate card which allows the owner to get a key remade from a locksmith.

This is keyed exterior and thumbturn on the interior. It comes in 4 finishes that are used a lot in residential applications – stainless steel, antique brass, bright brass and oil-rubbed bronze.

See Additional Customer Reviews on Amazon

  • Can be used in residential and commercial applications
  • Comes in 4 different finishes that will fit in any residential decor
  • Drill and highly pick proof deadbolt
  • Keys can only be remade at a locksmith with the duplicate card
  • Economical and affordable high security residential deadbolt
  • Bolt has hardened steel pin to protect against drilling
  • The option to be keyed alike as other locks in your house or can be keyed different
  • Not as high security as the MT5+ but a better security option that either the Schlage or Kwikset

5. Schlage B660P

This is the best high security deadbolt.

This Schlage deadbolt is the best deadbolt in the Schlage door locks family.  The lock has a reinforced metal box strike in lieu of a strike plate and it is attached with the included 3″ screws.

This lock is keyed exterior and thumbturn on interior. For even more security you could get the Schlage B860P that comes with Schlage’s Primus XP UL437 listed high security cylinder that resists many kinds of physical attack.

See Additional Customer Reviews on Amazon

  • Comes with a metal reinforced box and 3″ screws to attach it.
  • 6-pin keyway
  • 3 hour UL fire rating
  • Patented Everest C123 keyway
  • Optional Interchangeable core and Primus XP high security cylinders
  • Comes in 11 finishes making it easier to match with other door hardware
  • Anti-pick shield around cylinder
  • 1” bolt with hardened steel core

6. Kwikset 980

The 5th best high security deadbolt.

Kwikset and Schlage are the biggest names in residential locks in the United States. Chances are if you do have Kwikset on your door it is not this Kwikset 980 deadbolt.

Kwikset has their patented Smartkey technology allowing you to re-key the lock rather than paying a locksmith. This is very convenient when you find out one of your children lost their key or someone you loaned a key to hasn’t returned it.

Like all the other deadbolts on this list, this deadbolt will fit in a standard deadbolt cutout.

See Additional Customer Reviews on Amazon

  • Has Kwikset’s patented Smartkey technology which will allow you to rekey the lock yourself in seconds without needing to call a locksmith.
  • The cylinder has stainless steel side locking bar for added security and to protect against bumping the pins into place
  • Can be ordered as a single or double cylinder
  • The least expensive on this list but not as good as the others on this list either.

If these high security deadbolts are out of your price range, then this list of the best deadbolts on a budget might be worthwhile.

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21 Comments

Henry · October 12, 2019 at 1:19 pm

Hi Bill! I have also arrived to that conclusion you have mentioned at the beginning of your article: those deadbolt locks at our local bigbox hardware store are usually not the best for our security. I’m glad I found your post because you have broaden my perspective of what to look for. After taking some time reading the different features in each one of these, I’ve arrived to the conclusion that the one that suits me best is Abloy Protec2. Thank you!

    Bill Kiser · October 12, 2019 at 2:19 pm

    Thank you for visiting Henry. Glad I can help.

Alblue · October 11, 2019 at 10:32 pm

Oh thank you so much for giving the high security deadbolt locks. My uncle just buy his summer villa and he want to increase the protection. I’m sure I can recommend him some of the locks above, especially the Kwikset 980. The ability to rekey without calling locksmith is absolutely handy, because his children often mess with doorlocks. Thanks

Aaron Skudder · October 11, 2019 at 10:00 pm

Hi

I have had my house burgled twice.  It is the worst experience to come home to a house that has been pillaged.  I wish I had known about deadbolts earlier.  The burglar got in by using a plastic card or something to push the lock, this would not have been possible with a deadbolt lock.  Thanks for the information, once I install your deadbolt, then I can leave home without fear of being burgled.

Fred · October 11, 2019 at 9:54 pm

Bill, we have the kwikset locks on our back doors. After “wear and tear” on the door knob; I replaced both the deadbolt and the handle. Very happy with these locks. 

 Question: We have the automatic wifi-locks on our front and garage doors through our Vivint service. My question is are these safe and durable enough? Or do I need to go back to a conventional dead bolt lock? I want my family to be safe when I am not home and some times I wonder if society’s drive for new technology is not always good thing. 

Thanks for the information. 

    Bill Kiser · October 12, 2019 at 10:10 pm

    The locks that Vivint provides with their service are Kwikset Smart Locks and are Grade 2. There are better locks I would recommend for security like these deadbolts or if you need it to be a smart lock try the Schlage Connect deadbolt.

Andy Zeus Anderson · June 2, 2019 at 12:25 am

You have given me some ideas for securing our home better now that Yuma Arizona is facing increasing threats from home invaders as well as unoccupied home burglars. Do you have recommended specifics on going a step further and adding steel doors and reinforced jams to further increase the odds against door entry or are the deadbolts sufficient deterrent in most cases? I know the robberies around here have been occupied residences and people being dumb enough to open a door for strangers at really early morning and late evening hours. When traffic is a minimum and neighbors are either in bed or otherwise occupied with TV etc..

    Bill Kiser · June 2, 2019 at 12:51 am

    The deadbolt will help but you’re on the right track with wanting to add a better door and jamb reinforcement. I like this complete door reinforcement package made by Armor Concepts. It comes with hinge, jamb and strike reinforcement plates. Plus they have a $500 dollar guarantee that in the event of a break-in it won’t be because their product failed. 

    And you can add a steel door, they’re not solid steel, they’re hollow but you can get them with steel reinforcement channels. But I actually would recommend a fiberglass door, it has the strength of a steel door, less maintenance than a wood door and fiberglass doors can be made with the look of wood if that’s something you like.  

Jim · April 7, 2019 at 4:20 pm

The Abloy Protec2 and Medeco can now be picked. Can the Schlage B860P be bumped or picked?

    Bill · April 28, 2019 at 4:48 pm

    Hi Jim, thanks for question. The Schlage B860P can be picked. Unfortunately, all locks with a keyway can be picked eventually. Like the Abloy Protec2 and Medeco, locks that are advertised as “nearly impossible to pick” are just asking for lockpicking hobbyists and locksmiths to attempt to defeat them.

Triumphant Life TV · January 31, 2019 at 4:15 am

I never knew such kind of deadbolt lock exisrwhich are very strong and adaptive to every form of external force or pressure. All deadbolt locks that describe themselves as high security should be certified as Grade 1 locks, the highest grade I’m the industry. It’s very durable and it can withstand all forms of external or internal force.

Linda · January 31, 2019 at 3:38 am

Hi Bill,

I’ve read your article on the best high-security deadbolt locks with a great deal of interest. I’m feeling the need to increase security at my home due to a rash of break-ins in my neighborhood recently. There seems to be a wide range of prices for these deadbolts. You note that the Kwikset 980 is a lot cheaper but also not as good as the other choices. Feeling safe in your home is incredibly important so I want to make the best choice. Can you tell me which of these models offers the most security? Thanks for the info! 

    Bill · January 31, 2019 at 4:12 am

    The best one is the first one in the list, the Medeco Maxum and the price is in the middle of the five on the list. It lists for $143 on Amazon. The Kwikset 980 is $27.71 on Amazon but it doesn’t have all the security features as the Medeco.

Telma · January 31, 2019 at 3:35 am

What great information you bring to us in this article. I just change my luck from a key deadbolt to an electronic deadbolt. I am telling you, my headaches it over because my daughter lost about 8 key in a period of 24 months; I think this is too much.  

I wish mine works automatic with my iPhone and Alexa, but not, so I am considering buying “Schlage Smart WiFi Lock tats works with Alexa and ring” as you say in your post.

Thank you so much for the excellent tips and a great selection of deadbolts you present to us.

Cheers to your success,

Telma

stefan · January 31, 2019 at 3:24 am

Good thing I have found your post. I’m looking to change the door lock of my front door at home.

I’m thinking of changing into a security deadbolt lock if I find one that matches my needs.

I have a wooden door, and the handles are brass so I think I’ll have to go with a brass lock as well.

I’ll check out the Medeco Maxum on Amazon, I think this is what I am looking for.

    Bill · January 31, 2019 at 4:14 am

    Good, glad I could help. 

Olushola · January 31, 2019 at 3:24 am

Hi Bill,

Just read through your review and I must say I really find it helpful. Most locks I used in the past and even the current one am using right now are not that reliable. I think I will have to check out one of the locks you mentioned above and see if I can get a positive result.

I run a small manufacturing paint company and getting a good lock or Security to my warehouse is Paramount. Once again, thanks for enlightening me more in your great post.

Regards,

Olushola.

francis · January 31, 2019 at 3:23 am

Hello Bill,This is a great review on the high-security deadbolt locks.  You mentioned that the Kwikset 980 allows you to re-key and good thing that it is inexpensive.  I remember that I lost my house keys in a very cold winter night and have to pay $150 for a mobile locksmith.  This is great news that I will keep a tab on your deadbolt locks review so that if I need to change my existing locks, this great review will be my resource.Thank you for the helpful information.

Gracen · January 31, 2019 at 3:22 am

Hi Bill! I appreciate this your article on best high-security deadbolt locks. With the high rate of crime these days, one really needs to safeguard his home, and there is no other better way of doing this than using security deadbolt locks that are strong enough to withstand assault from intruders.  Of all the high-security deadbolt you reviewed, I think I like Medeco Maxum, probably because of it being the highest rated residential deadbolt. However, from your experience, do you think that there is one better than the Medeco Maxum among the ones you listed?

    Bill · February 1, 2019 at 2:50 am

    No, there is not any lock better than the Medeco Maxum. It is the highest rated and has the best security features of all of them.

Dale · January 31, 2019 at 3:21 am

What a great article.  The world we live in today can be kind of scary.  Its sad that it is that way but there is no use fighting it because we need to go on living.The fact of the matter is we need to do everything we can to keep ourselves and our family safe.I just want to say thank you for taking the time to write such a great article.  Its a great go to article for locks we may need around our home or precisely on our doors.I happen to be in the market for actually one dead bolt so I am going to take another look at your article and very possibly I may just go shopping.Dale

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