Are you designing a new home or looking to upgrade your current locks? In recent years, mortise locks have caught back on in domestic applications. The advantage of a mortise lock is not only its elegant appearance but the level of security it provides. Through proper installation, the best mortise locks will add style and function to your home. Plus, there are even mortise smart locks available for both commercial and residential applications.
The purpose of this article is to introduce to you the top mortise locks currently available for your home, apartment, or commercial space. Firstly, homeowners who need to replace broken or worn-out locks on decades’ old doors should look here first. Because there’s no reason to scrap a classic door when there’s the possibility to replace the old lock with a new one recommended below. Also, you might find that you’ll save a good chunk of change compared to a local quote.
Top 5 Mortise Locks
Best Mortise Lock Reviews
Now that you’ve had the chance to get an idea of what’s available to you, it’s time to take a closer look at each lock to see what they offer. In each review, you’ll get a clearer picture of:
- What to Expect
Mainly, the locks above are great for all applications including residential and commercial installations. Additionally, you’ll find solutions for storm doors, old doors, and even vacation rentals. Let’s start with a great mortise lock for residential applications.
#1) Segal SE 27580 Entrance Mortise Lockset
First, you’ll discover the heavy-duty Segal entrance lockset. Primarily, this lock brings a vintage style to the table with modern-day security. The double cylinder design, advanced keyway, and strengthened internal components make this lock a great choice for entrance door security. All of that, while the lock manages to match interior vintage locks you might already have installed in your home.
Next, the split spindle knob system provides an extra layer of security to prevent outsiders from accessing the lock’s interior components. Beyond security features, the handsome polished brass finish is sure to please most homeowners who require a brass finish to match their homes. Lastly, Segal provides detailed installation instructions for handy homeowners and DIYers who are ready for a new challenge.
- Left and right-handed models available
- A healthy blend of vintage style and modern security
- Split spindle knob system for enhanced security
- An affordable alternative to expensive mortise locks
- Clear installation instructions
- Compatible with antique storm doors and wrought iron doors
- Disassembly instructions could be clearer
- You may desire more security
- May require professional installation
#2) Marks 22AC Double Cylinder Iron Gate Ornamental Mortise Lockset
Another trustworthy mortise lock brand is Marks. Firstly, if you need to replace a Marks lock on an old door, then model 22AC is a good choice. It’s available in both left and right-handed depending on the model number. Be sure to verify the orientation of your current lock to match it to model 22AC LHR for left-handed installations and 22AC RHR for right-handed installations.
After that, it’s important to note that the 22AC sports a polished brass finish similar to the Segal lock above, as well as being a double cylinder model. Overall, the security of this lock is about on par with the Segal lock above, though, you may find that this lock feels sturdier after installation. Finally, if you’re torn between this lock by Marks and Segal’s, take a moment to consider where you prefer the knob.
If you prefer to have the knob above the keyway, then the clear choice is Marks’ 22AC model for your home.
- Sturdy and solid
- Perfect replacement for old Marks mortise locks
- Easy installation for doors with existing Marks locks
- Handsome polished brass finish
- Several installation options for all door types
- Available in Satin Chrome as well
- Small chance of compatibility issues
- Currently costs more than Segal’s similar lock
#3) Yale 8800 Series Mortise Locks
If you landed here today looking for the best mortise lock for apartment doors, then the Yale 8800 Series is a great selection. First, this lock is built with security in mind and to meet construction requirements for commercial applications. The lock features an ANSI/BHMA Grade 1 certification to ensure that the 8800 Series lock stands the test of time.
You’ll find that the reinforced stainless steel deadbolt is no joke, along with the tamper-resistant trim that sits neatly against your door. Next, expect extremely smooth operation from the lever. Regarding design, Yale offers 17 different finishes in the 8800 Series to accommodate all architectural designs. Additionally, the 10-year warranty from a trustworthy company is good to have on board.
Furthermore, you’ll find that this lock offers a higher level of pick resistance with its 6-pin cylinder. Also, there’s the option to beef up the security even further by selecting a 7-pin cylinder. All things considered, the 8800 Series is great for new apartment buildings, renovations, or even apartment owners who want to upgrade their current locks.
- Butter-smooth operation
- Clean finish and design
- Reinforced stainless steel deadbolt for ultimate security
- 6-pin and 7-pin cylinders are available
- 17 finishes to choose from
- 10-Year Warranty
- More likely to require professional installation
- Higher upfront cost
#4) Igloohome Mortise 2+
Next up is the best mortise smart lock for all applications. Primarily, homeowners who are upgrading their homes to include smart home components will find the most value here. Also, Airbnb hosts on the hunt for the best smart lock for Airbnb will find equal value here. Firstly, the advantage of a smart lock is to avoid using keys. This means fewer keys on your keyring and no more fumbling around in your purse or pocket to locate your key.
Entry options for the Mortise 2+ include reliable fingerprint access, PIN, Bluetooth, or a keycard. Plus, there is still the option to fall back on a physical key. Next, the Mortise 2+ lock uses innovative locking technology that does not require an internet connection to function. Beyond those basic elements, this mortise smart lock brings an interesting package of features into the fold.
Several of the most interesting and handy features are automatic relock to avoid leaving home with an unlocked door, a built-in tamper alarm, and a safety fire alarm that automatically unlocks your home in the event of a fire. As for Airbnb and vacation rental hosts, you’ll enjoy the ability to generate temporary PIN codes for guests. One final note is that the lock is fully compatible with the Igloohome mobile app.
- The perfect choice for homeowners who desire a smart lock
- Great for Airbnb hosts who need temporary PIN codes
- Functions without internet for enhanced security and ease of use
- Customizable within the Igloohome app
- Packed with safety features, including an alarm
- ANSI Standard Strike & Face Plate included
- Highest upfront cost
- Its large size
- There’s a learning curve
#5) Wright Products VMT115 Serenade Mortise Lock
Finally, Wright Products’ VMT115 Mortise Lock is a great choice for storm doors. Currently, the lock is available in both Satin Nickel (VMT115SN) and Polished Brass (VMT115PB) to match your existing interior door hardware. Common storm door brands that are compatible with this lock include Anderson, Pella, and Larson. However, it’s highly advisable to compare this lock with the lock you intend to replace or contact Wright Products to ensure compatibility.
Comparatively, this lock isn’t as heavy-duty as the preceding locks, which makes it the better choice for a storm door as opposed to a front door. The beauty of this lock is its universal nature. The reversible levers make this single unit compatible with both left and right-hinged doors. Next, the overall design of the lock is both low-profile and elegantly slim.
For security, the lock does feature a deadbolt, though, the keyway is not as secure as you’ll find on mortise locks designed for front doors. Yet, you do get the added benefit of a locking deadbolt ahead of your primary entry door.
- The top mortise lock for storm doors
- Available in Nickel and Brass finishes
- Reversible lever for left and right-handed installations
- Slim and low-profile design
- Compatible with most major door brands
- A good affordable solution
- Installation may require slight modifications
- Lower security than other locks in this article
- Compatibility issues may arise
How to Choose a Mortise Lock
Mortise locks were commonplace in the 1800s before bored cylindrical locks became more commonly used by contractors. Homeowners with vintage doors are the most likely to need replacement mortise locks. Yet, mortise locks are great for more than just residential applications. Alternatively, they make great apartment door locks in new apartment buildings and entrance locks for businesses.
An innovation in mortise locks came in the late 1800s via the pin tumbler lock that moved the tumbler and bolt mechanism to inside the lock, resulting in shorter keys. Nowadays, mortise locks are growing in popularity because of their vintage style, high level of security, and the design is advantageous for smart locks that require additional internal components.
Below, you’ll find a list of items to consider when choosing a mortise lock:
- Door Thickness – Always check to make sure that your door is compatible with your desired lock
- Backset – This is the distance between the keyhole and the edge of your door
- Materials – Reinforced stainless steel deadbolts provide a higher level of security than inferior materials
- Cylinder – A cylinder with more pins provides a higher level of pick resistance
- Finishes – Most lock models are available in multiple finishes to match your existing locks
- Warranty – Trustworthy companies provide longer warranties with clear warranty terms
- Door Types – Check which type(s) of doors the lock is designed for before making your final decision
- Compatibility – Lock manufacturers are the most likely to know whether the lock is compatible with your door
- Orientation – Always check to ensure whether you need a right-handed or left-handed lock
All in all, those are the most important points to consider.
Choosing the best mortise lock for your home, apartment, or commercial space comes down to your taste, desired level of security, and compatibility needs. Clearly, someone who’s incorporating mortise locks as part of a new construction design will have more flexibility than someone who is replacing a mortise lock on an old door. For this reason, homeowners looking to replace outdated or broken mortise locks should ensure compatibility before they buy. This way, you’ll know that either you or a professional will be able to install the lock without any hiccups.