Best Shed Door Locks in 2020: For Increased Security and Theft Deterrent

A shed is a wonderful asset to have on your property. It provides valuable storage for gardening equipment, lawnmowers, tools and a host of other equipment, freeing up your garage for other uses. You might even be able to use it for its intended use, storing your car.

But while sheds can add valuable additional storage space to your property, they also can be targets for thieves. Sheds can be vulnerable to break-ins if they aren’t properly secured. In this guide, I’ll examine best shed door locks, how they work, and the best security options for your shed.

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Best Shed Door Locks

Why You Need a Shed Door Lock

If you’ve gone to the effort to either build or purchase a pre-built shed for your property, then chances are it’s because you care about the stuff you’re putting in it. After all, you didn’t spend all that money on a shed just to store junk you don’t care about.

You might be using your shed to store expensive equipment such as a snowblower, cordless lawnmower, or ceramic BBQ. If you use your shed as a workshop, then you probably have hundreds if not thousands of dollars worth of tools stored in there.

Maybe the shed is a studio or backyard oasis for your wife. Using your shed as a man cave or home office? Then it likely houses expensive computers and electronics not to mention sensitive financial documents.

Whatever your shed’s use, thieves know that valuable things are stored in them. They also know that sheds are often poorly secured, making them an effortless target. This is why it’s important to make sure your shed is properly secured.

Different Types of Shed Locks

Padlock

With improvements in technology over the years, standard padlocks have become much stronger. They now come equipped with sturdy cores and hardened steel shackles that are very difficult to defeat.

Just remember, shed padlock is only as good as the hasp that it’s locking. If a thief can pry the hasp apart from the shed, then it makes little difference how strong the padlock is.

Rim Lock

Rim locks are attached to the inside of the door using wood screws and offer a very low profile look from the outside. It secures the door by using a catch that slides into a lock plate.

Rim locks are sometimes found incorporated into the doors knobs of the front or back doors of homes. Rim locks provide moderate security but can be forced. That said, innovations with Rim locks that incorporate steel bolts have made some rim locks much more secure.

Combination Locks

Are you someone that has a hard time keeping up with keys.? Do you find yourself in situations in which you’re cursing loudly while frantically searching for a set of keys? You certainly don’t want to be locked out of your shed.

A combination padlock might be the answer for you, assuming of course that you don’t have a problem memorizing combinations. These locks offer the same strength as their key-operated cousins, only with a combination instead of a key. There are also combination door locks that are integrated with door handles, although these locks typically do not offer the same level of security.

Hasps

A hasp-style lock comes in two pieces: a hinged metal bar that is the hasp, which is fixed to the door, and the staple that the hasp closes over, which is fixed to the door frame. Both pieces are attached to the face of the shed or shed door with the screws covered when the latch is locked.

Hasps come in a variety of metals ranging from mild steel to hardened steel, with the latter being much more difficult to cut through. A padlock is used to secure the hasp when closed.

Hasps are great options as shed door locks. They will also work well with wood sheds.

Deadbolts

It’s rare to find a home that isn’t protected by a deadbolt lock. Deadbolts have been the lock of choice for front and back doors on homes for decades now. That’s a testament to their ability to withstand a significant amount of force.

But just as it’s rare to find a home that doesn’t use a deadbolt, it’s just as rare to find a shed that does have one. That’s because most sheds aren’t equipped with doors thick enough to support a deadbolt.

Unless you happen to have a shed door that is similar to the front door of a home, don’t attempt to fit it with a deadbolt as it won’t function properly.

Because of their installation requirements, deadbolts are not appropriate for use as shed door locks. If you’re using a shed as an office, workshop or she-shed, it’s probably equipped with a standard door, making a deadbolt the perfect option for securing the shed.

Shed Security Bar

Storage shed lock bar adds an extra level of protection that goes beyond that of a simple padlock. They consist of a steel bar that is locked in place across the front of the door. This bar prevents the door from being moved outward, providing additional protection that goes beyond the lock.

It should be noted, however, that door bars are typically secured in place by a padlock. So, while a bar that is several inches wide may seem like great security, it’s only as secure as the padlock you choose to lock it into place. Also, keep in mind that a bar across the door will detract from the aesthetics of your shed.

Because they need to be installed to more substantial structures, door bars are only appropriate for use with wood sheds with framing that can provide a suitable place to mounting them.

Electronic Door Locks

Looking for something more technologically advanced for your shed? Not afraid of having to do a little wiring to make it happen? You might consider an electronic lock.

An electronic lock allows you to enter custom codes that allow for the door to be locked and unlocked. They also include added features like autolocking, so you don’t leave your shed unlocked.

That said, also consider that the more technology involved, the more opportunity for things to go wrong. What happens when the batter in the lock dies? What if it shorts out being after being exposed to the weather? You may end up having to pry an electronic lock off your door.

Door Handles with Built-in Locks

These handles are the latches or round knobs you typically find on the doors of homes. They include locks that are built into the handles that are unlockable using a key. A latch that you turn on the other side of the knob toggles it from locked to unlocked.

This style of locks offers the convenience of a lock and knob combined into one piece. They also are one of the more attractive options for your shed door. The problem with door handle locks is that they offer significantly less security than a deadbolt.

For some, all it takes is a simple credit card to defeat the lock. For that reason, door handle locks are often paired with deadbolt locks for an extra layer of protection.

How to Choose the Best Door Lock for Your Shed

Consider Shed Door Material

How compatible a lock is with your shed depends largely on the material of the shed door. Wood, for example, works well with locking door handles and deadbolts. These types of door locks are bulky and wood provides a substantial base for the hardware to attach to. Plastic doors or thinner word doors, on the other hand, will work better with a padlock or hasp-style lock that can be attached to thinner materials.

Lock Material

How the lock is made goes a long way toward determining how strong it is. Cheaper grades of steel are easier to cut through and won’t provide as much protection as hardened steel, which is considerably stronger. Thicker metal bars, of course, provide better protection than smaller hasps.

Type of the Lock

Different types of locks for sheds offer different levels of security, ease of use and visual appeal. Whereas an iron bar will provide maximum protection, it will detract from the aestheticism of your shed. A rim lock might be visually appealing but won’t do as good a job of protecting your stuff. Choose a lock for shed door that fits with your needs and does the job you need it to do.

Price

Price is an issue to consider. And, when buying shed security locks, cheaper isn’t the way you want to go. A cheaply made product that is easy to defeat is a waste of money, whereas an expensive lock that will keep your stuff secure is worth every penny. That said, you may not need to spend exorbitant amounts of money to protect your shed. There are plenty of options out there that will do the job without emptying your wallet.

How Easy to Install

Ease of installation can vary significantly from product to product. Whereas a hasp lock might take very little time to install, installing a dead bolt can be more complicated. If you go with an electronic lock, you might even have wiring to contend with.

Remember, an improperly installed lock is worse than no lock at all as it gives you the false impression that you’re securing your shed when you’re not. Make sure to choose a lock type that you feel comfortable installing on your own.

Best Shed Door Locks Reviews

1. Master Lock 40DPF Stainless Steel Discus Padlock

shed lock
Master Lock, one of the biggest names in locks, offers one of the most affordable options for securing your shed with its 40TRI Shrouded Stainless Steel Disk Padlock. This key lock features a hardened 3/8” in diameter hardened steel shackle.

One of the nice attributes of this lock is that it’s shrouded. What does that mean? It means that most of the shackle, the most critical part of a padlock, is protected by a steel cover. The part of the shackle that’s exposed on the 40DPF is just 3/4” long.

Why does this matter? The more shackle that’s exposed, the more accessible it is to bolt cutters. This lock also has just a 5/8” space between the shackle and the lock body. This is just enough space to attach your lock to a shed door latch but not so much that a would-be thief could slide a crowbar into it and pull it apart.

The 40DPF also features a four-pin cylinder, making it more resistant to lock picks. With stainless steel construction, the 40DPF is also weather-resistant, making this an excellent option for your shed.

 

2. Padlock – 4 Digit Combination Lock

4 Digit Combination Shed Door LockHate trying to keep up with those darned padlock keys? Would you much rather have a padlock and set a combination you can easily remember? This 4 Digit Combination Lock might be the answer for you. This padlock features a four-digit programmable combination, giving you 10,000 possible combinations for excellent security.

And if color is important to you, it comes in five different colors. As with other padlock types, this lock works with your shed door’s latch.

How well will this little lock secure your stuff? This lock offers moderate protection. If you’re in a neighborhood that has seen a lot of shed break-ins, this may not be enough to keep it secure. While combination locks are convenient as they don’t require keys, they can also be susceptible to thieves who know plenty of tricks for figuring out the lock’s combination.

Also, make sure you use a combination that you can easily remember. Combination locks offer great convenience right until the time you forget the combination. You don’t want to be standing at your shed door frustrated as you go through the birthday of every family member searching for the correct combination.

 

3. Master Lock 730DPF Heavy Duty Hasp

Storage shed locksJust because you’ve found the right padlock for your shed, doesn’t mean the job of securing your shed is done. Remember, your padlock is only as secure as the weakest part of the system. A strong shed padlock means little if the hasp it’s securing can be easily cut or pulled apart.

You can feel good about Master Lock Heavy Duty Hasp, which is made of zinc-plated hardened steel for strength and weather resistance. The mounting screws are protected by the hasp when it’s closed. And unlike other hasps, the 730DPF includes a recessed mounting plate that helps to further discourage the use of a pry bar.

It is important to remember that a hasp needs to be well secured to your shed in order to prevent it from being pulled out by the mounting screws. With that in mind, hasps such as this one work best with wood shed that offers solid wood framing for secure mounting.

And, of course, the hasp itself won’t keep your belongings safe. You need to add a padlock to it. Make sure you choose one that will complement its security and will of course also fit.

 

4. Kwikset 980 Single Cylinder Deadbolt

Shed door boltDeadbolts like the Kwikset 980 single cylinder deadbolt can be very effective storage shed locks. You might recognize the Kwikset name from the deadbolt locks on your front door. It’s one of the most popular brands of deadbolt locks on the market.

As with the deadbolt locks you find at home, one side of the lock uses a latch, although it’s doubtful you’ll be using that latch much. Other than the occasional desperate attempt to escape the children, it’s unlikely you’ll feel the need to lock yourself in your shed.

The external side of the lock is unlocked using a key. While a deadbolt lock is an excellent way to secure shed door, it only works if you have a door that is similar in size and structure to the exterior doors on a home. Your door and door frame both need to be beefy enough to support the hardware that a deadbolt like the Kwikset 980 requires.

This model can be easily rekeyed if your key is ever lost or stolen. If you already have Kwikset locks on your home, you could even match all your locks to one key.

And if aesthetics are important to you, this model comes in a variety of different finishes to suit the design of your shed.

 

5. Schlage B60N 619 Single Cylinder Deadbolt

Shed security locksThis deadbolt lock is made by venerable lock company Schlage, which has been making locks for close to 100 years. This deadbolt functions as most do with a latch on one side and a key lock on the outward side.

The attraction of this lock is two-fold. It provides excellent security and is also one of the more attractive options out there. It comes in a variety of finishes to match the style of your shed. If you have the right door to support the hardware for this lock, then it’s an excellent option.

The B60N 619 installs quickly on standard pre-drilled doors. And, with this particular deadbolt lock, you get maximum security. The Schlage B60N 619 comes with a grade one ANSI certificate.

What does that mean? The American National Standards Insitute applies security ratings to locks and other building hardware. Grade 2 locks, for example, are suitable for home use. ANSI’s grade one certificate is reserved for commercial grade locks, making the B60N 619 a great option for keeping your shed secure.

 

6. Berlin Modisch Door Handle

Lock for shedIf aesthetics are essential to the look of your shed, then the stylish Berlin Modisch lever-style door handle might be an option for you. With a brushed nickel finish, this handle is certainly one of the prettier lock options out there.

Just keep in mind that you’ll need a standard door to make this door handle work for your shed. As with deadbolt locks, this handle needs the bulk of a wood door to support the hardware.

That said, this won’t be as secure as a deadbolt lock. Door handles that incorporate locks are much more easily defeated that a deadbolt lock. As such, the security it offers is pretty modest.

This will keep kids and the casual passerby out of your shed, but it won’t stop a determined thief. This makes this a great option if you live in a low crime neighborhood or are storing items of little value in your shed. Otherwise, you may want to augment this door handle with a deadbolt lock for added security.

 

7. GateMate 149 Gate / Shed Lock

With its thick steel bar, the GateMate 149 just looks like an excellent lock system. With a beefy square bar and a thick steel hasp, thieves will be hard-pressed to force their way into your shed. The lock installs to the inside of your shed door and is lockable from both sides.

And if maintaining the aesthetics of your shed is important, the GateMate is a great option as only a small lock cylinder is visible from the outside. This lock works best with a wooden shed as you’ll need a wooden frame on which to mount the lock and the staple securely. Remember, proper mounting of this style of lock is critical to prevent it from ripped from the door frame.

The GateMate also features six pins over the more common five. What’s the difference? It has to do with the number of possible key shapes that can fit the lock. A 5-pin lock has 100,000 different possible configurations. A 6-pin lock has 1 million. Needless to say, a 6-pin lock is much more difficult to pick than a 5-pin lock.

 

8. A29 Cast Iron Horizontal Rim Lock Set

Storage shed lockEasy to install and one of the more attractive locks you can put on a shed, this cast iron horizontal rim lock is a good option, especially if your home has a historic classic look that you’re trying to match with your shed. Installation is simple.

Just mark the pilot holes for the mounting screws, drill and install. This lock will work with doors 1 1/4” to 1 3/4” wide. Just keep in mind that this rim lock cannot be attached to the front of your shed door. Doing so would make the mounting screws very vulnerable to thieves.

And although this rim lock is made out of heavy-duty cast iron, a power screwdriver will defeat this lock in seconds.

For that reason, this lock would need to be installed inside of your shed to hide those screws, which takes away much of the aesthetic appeal of this style of rim lock as the lock mechanism will be hidden inside of your shed.

It’s also important to understand that though this shed door lock uses a deadbolt, it is not meant to protect your shed door from being kicked in. Whereas a standard deadbolt lock is protected by the wood in your door and door jam, a rim lock is only reinforced by a couple of small screws.

 

9. SoHoMiLL Electronic Door Knob with Backup Mechanical Key

Shed door security
If you’re in the market for something a little higher tech than average storage shed lock, then you might consider this electronic doorknob from SoHoMill. This electric knob incorporates a 12-digit keypad through which you can program a master code and up to eight user codes that unlock this doorknob.

The LED keypad lights up, making it easy to use at night. The doorknob is battery powered, so you’ll need to remember to change batteries from time to time. Worried about being locked out if you forget to change the batteries? This knob includes a mechanical backup key just in case of such an event.

And, for those of us who are absent-minded, this doorknob includes an auto-lock feature to make sure your forgetfulness doesn’t leave your shed unsecured. Because this functions similarly to a standard doorknob, this knob will only work with a shed that uses standard exterior doors.

There are also some limitations to its weather durability. The manufacturer advises that this lock not be directly exposed to rain or snow.

 

10. Garden Shed Door Security Bar

Shed security bar
Sometimes you need maximum security for your shed. If you don’t mind the decidedly urban look that comes with mounting a steel bar across its door, then you might be interested in Garden Shed’s 1800mm heavy duty steel security bar.

This bar will prevent your shed’s door from being kicked in. Just keep in mind that it will only provide security if installed correctly. It works best with a wood shed with framing that can support large bolts.

While this lock bar may be near impervious to cutting attacks, you don’t want a thief to be able to rip the bar from the shed. Also, make sure to use the carriage bolts included with this bar to attach the bar mounting brackets as the bolt heads will be accessible.

Carriage bolts ensure that the bar fasteners cannot be unscrewed from outside the shed.

Finally, storage shed door lock bar is only as effective as the padlock that goes with it. All that steel won’t make much of a difference if you use a cheap padlock to secure the bar in place. Don’t skimp on the shed lock.

 

Additional Security Measures for Shed Doors

The type of locking mechanism isn’t the only thing to consider when determining how to secure a shed door. The hinges of your shed door are also a common way thieves can gain access to your shed.

If you shed has hinges that are mounted externally, then the screws on those hinges could easily be removed, allowing a thief to remove the whole door, rendering that heavy-duty lock you have on the door-latch useless.

With this in mind, consider replacing a few of your hinge’s fasteners with carriage bolts. Carriage bolts have a rounded head, making them impossible for thieves to remove from the bolt head side.

Check out my tutorial on how to secure double shed doors for more information.

Reinforcing shed doors with a locking bar can also beef up your shed’s security.

Of course, locks and locking bars may not help much if your shed door is so flimsy that it can be kicked apart fairly easily. If you’re serious about security, then you may need to replace that flimsy shed door with something stronger. You can build your sturdy shed doors with the help of my guide here.

Conclusion

Shed is an excellent and relatively inexpensive way to create additional space on your property for a whole host of uses ranging from home office space to storage for gardening equipment to a workshop to support all of your DIY home projects.

But the sad fact is, sheds typically present an easy target for thieves as most are inadequately secured despite the fact that many people store expensive equipment and personal items in their sheds.

With that in mind, securing your shed’s door should not be an afterthought. With a minimal investment in any of above listed shed door locks, you can prevent your shed from becoming a victim of theft.

If I had to choose the best shed door lock from my list, I’d select the Master Lock 40TRI Shrouded Stainless Steel Disk Padlock. It’s made from stainless steel with hardened steel shackle for maximum protection from thieves. It provides with high level of pick and pry resistance and protects against bolt cutters.

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