Schlage Encode Review
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|Pros||Bluetooth key and keypad entry, WiFi built-in, broad smart home compatability||Integrates with your current door lock, convenient geofencing capability||Installs on your current lock, comes with hub, more affordable||Simple keycode access sharing, easy keyless entry, connects to wifi, compatible with most smart hubs||Easy to install, simple operation, inexpensive|
|Cons||Bulky battery compartment, no geofencing, expensive||Hub not included||Unimpressive ANSI grade, limited hub compatibility||Lower ANSI security rating than other models, harder to install||Requires separate hub to access advanced features|
|Bottom Line||Reliable and simple smart features make this a great addition to any front door and one of our favorite locking systems||A conveniently installed smart lock with great connectivity, excellent security and usability, and is compatible with most smart home systems||An inexpensive yet effective smart lock that integrates easily to the Wyze smart home ecosystem||One of the best solutions we've found for sharing and carefully controlling access to your home||A solid budget choice for those seeking a simpler smart home experience|
|Rating Categories||Schlage Encode||August WiFi Smart||Wyze Lock||Schlage Sense with...||August Smart|
|Smart Features (35%)|
|Keyless Entry (25%)|
|Specs||Schlage Encode||August WiFi Smart||Wyze Lock||Schlage Sense with...||August Smart|
|Smartphone Compatible||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||With Hub|
|ANSI Rating||Grade 1||Grade 1||Grade 3||Grade 3||N/A- retrofit|
|Uses Existing Deadbolt or Full Replacement||Replacement||Existing||Existing||Replacement||Existing|
|Backset||2 3/8" or 2 3/4"||2 3/8" or 2 3/4"||2 3/8 or 2 3/4||2 3/8" or 2 3/4"||2 3/8" or 2 3/4"|
|Door Thickness Range||1 3/8" - 1 3/4"||1 3/8" - 2 1/4"||1 3/8" - 1 3/4"||1 3/8" - 2 1/4"||1 3/8" - 2 1/4"|
|Face Bore Hole Diameter||2 1/8"||1 1/2" or 2 1/8"||2 1/8"||2 1/8"||1 1/2" or 2 1/8"|
|Power Requirement||AA Batteries||Pre-installed batteries||AA Batteries
Hub plugs into the wall
Hub plugs into the wall
Hub plugs into the wall
Our Analysis and Test Results
The Schlage Encode is a full deadbolt that replaces your current front door lock. This device is compatible with many other devices, such as Alexa, Google Assistant, and your smartphone.
One of the best aspects of the Schlage Encode's smart features is that you don't need a smart hub to access them. It has WiFi built right in, so it can connect right to your home's network without any potentially problematic intermediaries.
Once connected, the Schlage Encode allows you to lock and unlock the door remotely from your phone. You can create up to 100 unique keycodes to share access with your friends and family, and the app shows you a log so you can tell exactly who accessed the lock and when. You can also grant someone else access to unlock the door from their phone. However, this requires that person to download the Schlage app and make an account, so unless they live in the house full time we found it much more convenient to just share key codes. When you share access, you can also set time limits for it. For example, you can provide a dog walker with a key code that only works on weekdays between the hours of 1 pm and 3 pm.
We found keyless entry to be near flawless. Whether we triggered an unlock via the app or with a keycode, the lock responded almost instantly. The one feature that is clearly lacking here is geofencing, which would allow the door to unlock automatically when your phone gets within a certain distance of your home. This is nice if you walk home with your hands full of groceries, as you won't have to dig around in your pockets in order to get the door unlocked.
The Schlage Encode sports an impressive ANSI Grade 1 security rating. To earn this rating, it must withstand at least six attempts to kick the door in. Locks of this grade are generally considered adequate for commercial use, and it's one of the highest security grades you'll find on a residential lock. You can also set the lock to automatically lock after a set time of inactivity, securing your home even if you forget to lock the door.
We found the installation of the Schlage Encode to be quite easy. We had no issues installing the lock into the hole vacated by the old deadbolt using nothing but a screwdriver, and the process only took about 10 minutes. After another few minutes of downloading the app and linking the lock to our WiFi networks, everything was functioning smoothly.
One potential annoyance with the Schlage Encode is its size. The large battery port juts out quite a bit on the indoor side of the door, and the black plastic covering doesn't look quite as high quality as the rest of the lock. Functionally this does not matter, but if you're picky about your interior decorating, you might want to take this into consideration.
Should You Buy the Schlage Encode?
The Schlage Encode is one of the more expensive models we tested, but most others also occupy a similar price range. Given its reliable and impressive performance, we think it is well worth the money for anyone looking for a fully-featured smart lock — as long as you don't mind not having geofencing capabilities.
What Other Smart Locks Should You Consider?
The Schlage Encode ticks most of the boxes that one could hope for from a smart lock and does so without the extra bother of a separate smart hub. If you'd like a model with geofencing as well, check out the August WiFi Smart — though you'll need to also have a compatible smart home hub. But if you want a smart lock without the hassle of converting your whole home into a smart home, the Encode is a great option.
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