I installed my Yale assure smart door lock over a year ago with healthy skepticism, but the lock has been working without issues for over a year and still on the original set of batteries.
Why to replace your deadbolt with a smart door lock
For a long time I resisted removing a perfectly fine working deadbolt with a smart device. I was skeptical about how well they worked and if the convenience was worth the money.
I finally decided to replace my deadbolt with a smart lock because I was putting in a new front door that I couldn't rekey my other locks with. I didn't want to have to carry an extra set of keys so I started to look for locks I could open with a code or smart home integration.
Other convenience factors to consider include
- Generating temporary access codes instead of a key that could be duplicated to friends, tenants, contractors, house sitters.
- Fewer keys to carry
- Remote unlock / lock
- Smart home routine integration
Important considerations for smart door locks (to me)
- Not a toy, must have a decent ANSI grading
- Not require a separate hub
- Not super bulky or dumb looking
- Alexa integration
- Backup key in case of battery failure
My requirements narrowed the field down quite a bit allowing me to quickly arrive at the Yale assure smart door lock.
It has an ANSI Grade 2 rating (superior security for residential usage).
ANSI Grade 3 would be minimum grade and ANSI Grade 1 would be found more in commercial heavy duty applications.
I have an Amazon Echo plus which includes a hub. The Yale Assure model I have includes a zigbee module which will wirelessly connect to the Amazon Echo plus' built in hub for integration with my smart home. No need to purchase something like a Smart Things hub.
Lastly, I don't want to worry about dead batteries locking me out of the house so this model also has a keyhole for backup.
How to the Yale Assure smart door lock
Detailed unboxing and instructions for the Yale smart lock are in this video tutorial below.
Yale includes everything you need including batteries and mounting screws for the deadbolt. As shown in the above video, you just need to unscrew your old deadbolt and put the new lock hardware in place. If you are installing the Yale lock in a new door drilling templates are included as well.
Install the red zigbee module before installing your batteries.
The zigbee module won't be detected if you install it after you place the batteries in the smart lock. Once, batteries are installed you just set your master code for programming and other code for your family.
Yale and Alexa pairing and programming
Getting the Yale lock and the Echo plus to work together for Alexa voice control is easy to do as shown in this video below.
- Enter your master code
- Press 7 on the keypad then 1.
- Yell at Alexa to discover your devices
- The Yale lock will start beeping.
- In the Alexa app on your phone you should see your lock appear.
You can now ask Alexa to lock or unlock your door as well as check the status of it. To unlock your door Alexa will have you set an audible code so a burglar can't just loudly shout to open your door.
Real performance after a year of ownership
As mentioned at the top of the article the Yale Assure smart lock is still on it's original batteries. It gets daily usage and hasn't had any issues.
The only problem I have with it is sometimes when I swing the door closed my hand might graze the keypad causing the door to accidentally lock itself as the door is swinging shut causing the deadbolt bar to slam on the door frame. Despite this, I haven't broken anything.
If you are setup for Z-Wave for your smart home it might be worth looking at the Schlage (Z-Wave lock)[https://amzn.to/2tkiST4] as well, but I am very satisfied with the Yale.
If you are in the market, and found this article helpful, consider purchasing the Yale smart door lock through my affiliate link to help support my site. Thanks for reading!