Share this article

print logo

Super Handyman: Adding security upgrades to home doors

A standard door lock may keep some people from getting into your home, but if you want to add some extra security to your doors, there are some inexpensive and easy ways to do so. Here are some ideas you can try.

Sometimes, just upgrading your existing door lock can add security. Many times, you can just change your standard lock to a deadbolt system without a lot of additional work.

You may have to drill the doorjamb a little deeper, but that is the extent of the “construction” required.

You also can add a deadbolt just over your existing doorknob or lock, if you don’t already have one.

Another simple thing you can do is to remove a screw from a couple of your hinges, as well as the strike plate on the door frame, and replace these with longer screws that will reach into the door frame.

Another option is to reinforce your existing lock with a metal strike box. It will be less likely to split than a regular doorjamb. Manufacturers also make other metal parts that can be added to your knobs, locks or door edges to give them an extra layer of protection.

To add extra security from the inside of the door is even easier. Check your hardware store or home center to see what they have.

A slide bolt can be added to just about any door, and usually just requires installing a few screws. These can be placed at the top, bottom or along the side, and work quite well.

The older chain locks still work well to allow you to open the door, but still prevent entry.

You can add a metal flip lock. These are easy to install with just a couple of screws, and when flipped over the door edge, it makes entry much harder. Since they don’t fit into a strike plate or other device, metal flip locks can be used on doors that don’t fit as perfectly as they should.

Add a peephole to your door, and it will allow you to see who is there without ever turning your lock at all!


Q: My driveway is chipping off on the corner. It’s not a big place, but it looks unsightly. How can I “glue” it back together? – K.Y.

A: If you can get under the area, try to shore it up with some concrete, or at least some sand. Then, glue the concrete back together with concrete caulk. If you can’t glue it back together, patch the area with new concrete. Apply a sealer to your driveway to prevent future damage.

A super hint

If you’ve never washed your bed pillows, do it today. You need to do it once a month. Put them in the washer with detergent and a little bleach, two at a time for a balanced load. Air-dry or line-dry afterward.


I have a couple of sources that I use when I need to buy parts for my tools, but I just ran across one that might have everything I will ever need in the way of replacement parts.

The website is the place to go. You’ll need some basic information, but you’ll be amazed at the wide variety of parts you can order directly from them. Check them out the next time you are searching for that thingamajig for the grill, or the doohickey for your power drill!

Got a question or a handy tip? Visit Those of general interest will be used in future columns.