It can be hard to select the right lock even if you know the difference between the three main options. We’ve put together some tips and tricks that should make it easier to find an affordable, high-quality lock that’s perfect for your situation:
Shop online. Don’t buy locks from the storage unit company or your local hardware store. Their prices are attractive, but the locks are often low-quality. Amazon has your best options.
Go heavy. If choosing between two nearly-identical locks, go with the heavier option. It’s a sign that the lock uses stronger metals.
Use the ‘lost key’ test. When looking for a lock, ask yourself how hard it would be to break into your unit if you lost your key. If you think you could bust open the lock with a hammer or rock, chances are a robber could too.
Stay away from combination locks. Thinking about a combination padlock? Forget about it. These locks might be easy on your wallet, but the low quality makes them magnets for bad guys.
Don’t be (too) cheap. Everyone likes low prices, but use some common sense and basic math. If a thief can buy bolt cutters for $30, your storage unit lock should cost at least that much. The more valuable your belongings, the more expensive your lock should be.
Pay the brass tax. If your storage unit is outdoors, rain and snow will gradually weaken the metal on your lock. Brass locks offer the best protection against the weather.
Don’t jump the gun. Ask your storage unit company what size lock you need. Size requirements can vary by company, so it’s important to nail down the details before purchasing a lock.
Think of your lock as a last line of defense. Locks are essential, but a top-notch storage facility has several extra security layers. Look for a self-storage company with gates, an electronic keypad at the entrance, and plenty of video surveillance. The best self-storage companies make it difficult for burglars to reach your storage unit.