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Style and Substance is Igloohomes’ Dead Bolt 2S Electronic Lock

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What is is about electric locks that make them so intriguing? For one thing there’s the Sci-Fi angle; an electronic lock doesn’t look “normal” and certainly stands out from the ordinary doorknob and locks and unlocks itself upon command. Used mostly on front doors, it also says that the owner of the house (or apartment renter, providing that the landlord is willing to allow it) isn’t just looking for key-less convenience, but is also serious about security. So electronic lock makers have taken a cue from this and strive hard to make their products behave in a predictable and easily digestible fashion. That’s because an electronic lock becomes literally a part of one’s home and the first point of entry into said home. So it had better look as good as it works, and work as good as it can. Both of which can certainly be said about Igloohome’s Dead Bolt 2S.

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Now the most daunting aspect of having an electronic lock is installing it — not really but years of conditioning of watching handymen fixing up mistakes made by DIY homeowners have conditioned said homeowners to scream for help even before the problems develop. But putting in an electronic lock — the Dead Bolt 2S in this case — is straightforward enough for just about anyone with patience and time to do it. Plus there’s also YouTube videos. The procedure might vary a bit as per the specific electronic lock, but in general the overall process is as follows: you remove the deadbolt from the door, having first removed screws holding the striking plate in position, and then remove both front and back door plates from their respective sides of the door. The deadbolt is removed and it and other parts of the old door lock are put away. A new deadbolt is sized up, depending on the door, and then put into position with the front and back new door plates being put on (making a physical connection with the deadbolt and each other). Of course there are wires from front to back that must be dealt with as well. Some kind of battery holder then is inserted into the back door plate. In the case of a “dumb” electronic lock — not having anything other than some buttons to press on the front to activate the locking/unlocking of the deadbolt — programming is now done to create the code that activates the deadbolt.

Of course being “dumb” is too dumb for the Dead Bolt 2S. It has a slew of features to make it “smart,” but let’s start with the basics — getting it to open so you don’t have to stand there looking like a dufus. For the analog 19th Century retro person, there’s a small opening for taking a, yeah it’s a key that comes with it. Not that it’s for every day use but having an analog backup is a thumbs up. And the 4 “AA” batteries are rated at up to 9 months (realistically meaning that 6 months+ is easy) and you get an update on the master app every time Bluetooth is used (should the batteries fail just when needed, there’s a trick in using a 9volt battery (remember this which used to power those pocket sized portable radios?) to juice up the lock so you can get in and out of the blizzard.

We’ll get to the app and what it does in a jiff, but here’s a good thing to keep in mind: no WiFi means no wireless hacking or failure to run because the business/home/whoever’s network went down. So how does one get the door to open. By using the app and Bluetooth — still yes we’ll get to the app because we said we would. But others that need to get in don’t have to download that app you’re using because unique PIN codes/Bluetooth yes can be generated and then sent out by email or SMS or FaceBook or WhatsApp for use. Scheduled access is also doable, with hours/days/weeks or all access accommodated. And fingers glom over the keyboard for poking “open sesame.” No matter how it’s going to be opened, what will be noticed is the smoothness of the deadbolt’s movement. It bespeaks confidence.

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So what about security — sure the 2S is slim and attractive, but what’s to keep someone from pulling it off and taking off? The loud siren that’s built into it, is what. So that’s the extreme security, but how about the more sedate as it applies to it being there for use? So okay we already mentioned that it can not be hacked because there’s no WiFi, but what about in normal use? That keyboard mentioned earlier seems a bit problematic, so the company builds in a few safeguards. One being that you can input decoy digits before keying in your code to, ahem, “bug off” any nosy onlookers. And that messing up the numbers a few times because it’s not you pressing the keys makes the keypad shut itself down. For those really worried, kick on the privacy mode which shuts down the 2S and makes it a dumb lock that outside can’t bother with.

And because people forget things (i.e., are not as smart as A.I.fer sure), the 2S will sense when the door’s been closed and left unlocked and will then lock itself. You decide how much time before that happens (for now, because the robot overlords aren’t yet in power).

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So what else can the app do besides letting you look at logs pertaining to the lock being used (i.e, tracking dates and times of visitors entering the home)? It allows Airbnb integration so that a host can synchronize their listing calendars with their igloohome account — making PIN codes able to be generated automatically and sent to guests (no charge for this, good).

The DeadBolt 2S knows what it wants to do and does it efficiently. Plus it is damn attractive and is immune from WiFi sickness. All this for under $200, especially since getting a locksmith to install it just won’t be happening. For more details go to https://store-us.igloohome.co/products/deadbolt-2s-metal-grey?variant=32192338428035

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