{diy with style} A Smart Front Door Makeover

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

I don't normally get that excited about tech-y stuff ... that's more my husband's territory. But a few weeks ago we gave our front doors a high tech makeover that I'm just over the moon about because it's already making our lives easier, our home safer, and dang if our doors don't look much prettier in the process! I am so grateful to Schlage® for sponsoring this post, but as always, all ideas and opinions are my own.

Front Door Makeover Schlage
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As I'm sure many of you have experienced, life with preschoolers is full of challenges, but getting locked out on the front porch while checking the mail shouldn't be one of them. Nonetheless, my two little superheros have managed to lock me out more than once, and then giggled like crazy as I begged them to unlock the door. Never again though, thanks to our new Schlage Sense Smart Deadbolt

We live in an urban neighborhood, which has a lot of perks. Within two blocks of our house is an adorable library, lots of fantastic restaurants, our favorite ice cream shop, and a weekly Farmer's Market, and my boys preschool is walkable as well. During the spring, summer, and fall, my boys and I often go days at a time without needing to drive anywhere. I absolutely love the convenience that comes with living in the city, but on the other side of the coin, being a city dweller has always made me hesitant to hide a key. 

When walking with my boys, I like to keep my hands free to hold their little hands. I can easily pocket money and my phone, but my keys are bulky and not so easy to carry without a purse. In just one afternoon, we solved all of these problems by installing a new Schlage Sense keyless deadbolt!

But before I show you our smart and stylish front door makeover, let's start at the beginning. Not only was our old keyed deadbolt so 2008, the doors had also seen better days.

Before installing our new keyless deadbolt, we first had to remove the existing lock and handle. This turned out to be much easier that I expected. It was just a matter of removing a handful of screws in the correct order - first from the deadbolt thumb turn {new lingo for me}, then the deadbolt faceplate, the the door lever, and lastly the bottom of the handle.

how to uninstall a deadbolt

As we were removing all the screws, I was crossing my fingers that the builder had stained the door before installing the deadbolt... sadly this was not the case.

Uninstalling a deadbolt and handleset

Since the our new Schlage® lock and handleset was going to fit the door differently, despite using the same bore holes, I had to sand and stain the raw wood areas of the door. One thing led to another, and I ended spending about an hour re-staining the outside of both doors. Even though I hadn't planned to fully stain the doors, this was a blessing in disguise because the doors really needed this refresh, and they look so much better now!

While we waited for the stain to dry, I looked over the instructions for installing our new keyless deadbolt and handle. I also downloaded the Schlage Sense app onto my phone, and watched a very informative, step by step installation video.   

Watching Schlage Sense installation video

After watching the video, installation was a breeze! We simply screwed in the deadbolt, screwing the faceplate in place using the existing screw holes from our prior lock. Before, moving on to installing the keypad, we used a screw driver to test the deadbolt from the outside, ensuring that it lined up properly with the existing strikeplate and that the bolt was able to fully extend without hitting or catching.

How to install a Schlage keyless lock

Once we confirmed that no adjustments were needed, we proceeded to place the touchscreen keypad on the outside of the door and secured it using the support plate on the inside of the door. We connected the keypad cable and installed the alarm assembly on the inside of the door. After adding the batteries, we were ready to test the lock using the default codes that were noted on the instruction manual.

Keyless deadbolt keypad

The lock worked perfectly, and we were ready to set up our own codes. One of my favorite features of the Schlage Sense is that we can program multiple codes {up to 30 at a time}. We were even able to program a code for our house cleaners that is only valid one day a week during specified hours. I love the piece of mind that it provides knowing that we can control access to our home so much more than by simply handing out a copy of our key.

When we leave the house, we can lock the door by simply touching the Schlage® logo on the keypad, and when we return we can unlock the door using our code. Or I can let Siri do the work. Our new lock works with Apple HomeKit technology allowing us to control the lock by simply telling our iPhones "lock my door" or "unlock my door" {which the kids think is pretty much the coolest thing ever}.

Opening the front door with no key

I love when function and style can coexist, so I was thrilled that Schlage® offers a range of style and color options. I chose the streamline and modern Century style in matte black. I was really tempted to choose the Satin Nickle {silver} finish, which would have provided more contrast against our dark front doors, but I ended up picking the Matte Black because it matches all of the other black doorknobs throughout the house. After this high tech makeover, our front door is a whole lot smarter, and a whole lot prettier. I love that the new lock and handle better match the modern style of our home!

Stylish new keyless deadbolt touch screen and handle

As I mentioned before, my husband is usually the one to get excited about tech-y stuff around the house, but I have to admit that when I'm cozy in my pajamas and watching tv in bed, I find it very exciting to simply be able to check the status of our lock via the app to know for sure that the front doors are locked and the house is secure for the night.  

Checking status of door lock with phone app

There are so many features of the Schlage Sense that I'm excited about, but let me just quickly run through a few of them for you. 
  • There are no fees or subscriptions required. {This was very important to me!}
  • Using the app, we can see an activity log that includes the most recent 100 events. This means that when we give someone a unique access code, we can keep track of how and when it has been used.
  • The deadbolt has built-in alarm technology that will alert us if someone tries to force the door open.
  • We can program the lock to chime when the door opens and closes, giving added piece of mind with little ones in the house.
  • As the kids get older, if we find that they have trouble remembering to lock the door when the come and go, we can enable the Auto-Lock feature that re-locks the deadbolt after being unlocked for a certain period of time.

smart front door makeover keyless lock

If we decide to purchase AppleTV in the future, we'll be able to check the status and control our new keyless lock remotely from anywhere {rather than just when we are within Bluetooth range}. I have a feeling this is what my husband will be asking Santa for this year, and then we'll be able to add other Apple HomeKit compatible technology to continue making our home smarter and smarter.

Of course, I really want to add Schlage® keyless locks to the other exterior doors on our house now, but in the meantime, we can have the backup key that came with our new lock rekeyed to match the existing locks in our house.

Schlage® products are available online at Amazon.com and Build.com, as well as in retail locations including Home Depot and Lowe’s. For more information, please visit www.schlage.com.

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Schlage®, but as always all opinions are my own.


  1. This definitely looks handy to have when you have littles who lock you out!

  2. I just read this whole thing to my husband. Seriously SO cool. My boys would think that using the phone to lock the door was awesome, too. :) There are so many great features to that lock system. It might just have to go on our Christmas list.

    1. Definitely do! It's a great gift that would benefit the whole family!

  3. Aren't you locked out if the batteries fail?

    1. Great question, Victoria. The lock has a low battery warning system (after you enter your code, you hear a series of beeps and the Schlage button flashes red). So, as long as you take note and change the batteries timely, there should never be a problem. However, the lock also comes with a traditional key which I carry on my key ring. I love the convenience of not having to carry my keys if I go out to the yard, go for a walk in the neighborhood, or take the kids to the park, but anytime I am leaving the house for a longer period of time, my keys would be in my purse.

  4. This seems like a must have for parents of little ones, much safer than hiding a key out front. Or perfect for forgetful people like me who do it to themselves son the regular, lol

  5. I love everything about this makeover! I want to do this as well. But first, I need a whole new front door!

  6. This is seriously the perfect lock. I love it. Oh and I adore your front doors!

  7. Your front door is gorgeous. And I love the idea of a keyless entry!

  8. That looked like a great door lock to have and I'll definitely look into it. Love the Front Door Makeover.

  9. Thanks for the information. Where did you get the rugs on your front porch? I love them!

    1. Thanks! The door mats are from the Better Homes and Gardens line at Walmart. I love them too!

  10. I love the idea of a keyless entry door. I am forever forgetting my keys and this would make getting into the house so much easier

  11. I love how it looks now! That is gorgeous hardware, and I love the keyless entry option.

  12. Super cool!! I had to change to a keyless system after I was locked out of my house.....with the kids inside! It only took one time and the entire house was changed. hahaha

  13. Smart look & Smart security.
    Adding an electronic door lock to your home security is a great additional step to take to keep your home secure.


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