What Locks Do I Need for Insurance? – A Full Guide to Insurance Approved Locks
As an experienced Locksmith based in Barnet in North London it never fails to amaze me just how unaware the general public are of the importance of having insurance approved locks. Many customers admit to me that they didn’t know they had to choose locks to comply with their insurance policy. I’m pretty sure this is the case across the UK. We need to stop allowing insurance companies to take our hard earned cash by not paying up for claims!
In this article Uswitch gives an insight into what insurance approved locks insurance companies require. You may also want to read about graded safes for insurance.
We are MLA approved security specialists experienced in insurance approved lock installation. In this post we aim to answer all the questions you may have about insurance approved locks. We will explain the jargon and buzz words that you will find in your contents insurance policy. This will empower you to make informed decisions when you call a locksmith.
What Does Insurance Approved Locks Mean?
Don’t be baffled by insurance approved lock jargon. Read our no nonsense guide to getting the best insurance approved locks at the right prices!
We will explain everything you need to know about insurance approved locks;
- The importance of having insurance approved locks.
- Door locks for insurance.
- Window locks for insurance.
- Insurance approved lock installation musts.
- How much insurance approved locks cost.
1) Why are Insurance Approved Locks Important?
Quite simply if you are do not have locks that are in compliance with your contents insurance policy the company will not pay out in the event of a burglary.
What if I Have Insurance Approved Locks But Forget to Lock Them?
This is an all too common mistake! If you have insurance approved locks but they have not been locked at the time of a burglary your insurance company will not pay out. The amount of times I see people with the right locks but not using them is quite shocking! Good locking habits can really pay off.
I do despair when I come across cases where a property has installed the correct insurance locks, and have maybe even invested in more expensive lock brands such as Banham, but fail to use them. You can have the best locks in London but if you don’t lock them they are useless.
2) Insurance Approved Door Locks
Is an Insurance Approved Lock The Most Secure Type of Door Lock?
An insurance approved door lock which is fitted correctly by a professional is the most secure. The lock type and method of fitting the lock is an official British Standard and is required by most insurance companies. There are other locks that can be added to improve security further.
What are Approved Door Locks For Insurance?
In order for a door lock to be insurance approved it must meet British Standard 3621 (BS3621) and be fitted correctly in accordance with the guidelines.
How Do I Know if My Door Lock is Insurance Approved?
If a door lock meets the required standard it will display the BS3621 Kite Mark. If you can’t see the appropriate British Standard kite mark then your lock is not insurance approved.
What are BS3621 Locks?
BS3621 door locks are 5 Lever Mortice Deadlocks, commonly referred to as Chubb Locks. They require a key to lock and don’t just slam shut.
What is 5 Lever Mortice Deadlock?
Some people ask what is the difference between a mortice lock and a deadlock? They are the same! They are commonly known as “Chubb Locks” which are now owned by the lock brand Union.
A 5 Lever Mortice deadlock is a lock that is fitted so that the lock is morticed (cut into) into the door and a keep into the door frame, where the bolt would lie when locked.
The internal locking mechanism is made of 5 levers meaning there is in excess of 2000 different key combinations.
Are Thumbturn Locks Insurance Approved?
Although traditionally thumbturn locks are not insurance approved there is a British Standard BS8621 which allows the use of a tumbturn lock for internal front doors in flats. These are most commonly found in new build flats. It would be advisable to check with your insurance company if they would accept this for your particular property.
3) Insurance Approved Window Locks
Window locks are as important as door locks for insurance purposes. It is common for intruders to gain access through windows as well as front doors so it’s important to secure all external doors in your property with insurance approved locks and to secure all windows with a key operated lock.
It is really important to check your insurance policy for window lock requirements.
What Window Locks Do I Need for Insurance?
All windows should have key operated window locks. Key operated locks are available for all types of windows from sash windows, upvc windows and even velux windows.
4) Insurance Approved Lock Installation
The method and standard of lock installation is as important as the type of locks you choose. If insurance approved locks are poorly installed they make your property susceptible to burglary and your insurance company may not pay up!
Fitting a 5 lever deadlock in particular is a job for a lock fitting specialist. It requires chiselling your door and if it goes wrong you risk;
- A damaged front door
- A front door susceptible to burglary
- An insurance policy that could be invalid
Can I fit My Own Insurance Approved Locks?
Unless you are skilled at lock fitting your should not attempt to fit a 5 lever deadlock. You can read more about DIY lock changes here.
Can My Builder Fit Insurance Approved Locks?
Builders often fit locks and I am often called to repair locks fitted by builders. It is very important to use an experienced specialist for fitting insurance approved locks.
Choosing a specialist for fitting insurance approved locks will provide the best value. You can read more about more about builders fitting locks here.
Choosing a Locksmith to Fit Insurance Approved Locks?
There are so many rogue locksmiths in the UK it is obscene! Choose a locksmith very carefully. You can read more about choosing a locksmith here. Choosing an MLA approved locksmith guarantees;
- DBS Checks
- Fair Prices
5) Insurance Approved Lock Prices
Lock costs can vary and you do need to be wary and know what to expect to pay.
Where Can I Buy Insurance Approved Locks?
To get the best value for money locks it is advisable to buy from a trusted security specialist. You many think you can save a few quid by buying the locks yourself but it is a false economy as there will be grey areas with regards the guarantee of the lock. You can read more about the importance of buying high quality locks from a specialist locksmith here. It is also very important to choose a high quality branded lock, such as Union.
How Much Should Insurance Approved Locks Cost?
This will give you an idea of what you should expect to pay for insurance approved locks.
Insurance Approved Door Lock Prices
- A high quality branded 5 lever deadlock should cost between £30.00* and £80.00* +vat (depending on the lock needed for a particular job and the level of quailty selected by the customer. Our locks brand preference is Union which was formerly Chubb locks)
- 5 lever deadlock fitting costs should be in the region of £130* upwards +vat depending on the lock and requirements for the particular job.
Insurance Approved Window Lock Prices
- High quality window lock prices range from £15* to £35* +vat (depending on the lock).
- Window lock installation costs can range from £70* +vat labour for jobs taking up to an hour. Fixed prices are quoted for larger numbers of locks that will take over an hour. It varies depending on how many locks are being fitted.
*Price are based on estimates at the time of writing.
Be wary of locksmiths charging much more than this.
How Long Will Insurance Approved Locks Be Guaranteed?
You should expect an insurance approved lock to have;
- A 12 month manufacturers warranty.
- A 12 month workmanship guarantee.
That is assuming you have chosen a reliable locksmith to fit your locks.
Insurance Approved Locks in Summary
In summary my tops 5 tips for buying insurance approved locks are;
- Check your insurance policy for details of the locks required.
- Choose an approved security specialist experienced in fitting insurance approved locks.
- Check what you should expect to pay for insurance approved locks to avoid getting ripped off. It is a common problem.
- Choose a well known brand of lock. Union insurance approved locks are our preference.
- Make sure you get everyone in your home in the habit of locking the front door deadlock and windows every time they go out!
If you would like us to put your mind at rest by checking that you have the correct locks for insurance call us to arrange an appointment.
We are experienced Master Locksmiths based in Barnet covering London and Greater London and would welcome the opportunity to offer you reassurance about your locks for insurance!