How to Choose the Best Mortise Locks in 2021

Best Mortise LocksBuying Guide

If you’re going to buy a mortise lock, then it only makes sense for it to be of the best quality, right? So before making your purchase, consider the following factors.


There would be no point in getting any sort of door lock if it didn’t match the dimensions of your door, would it? Accordingly, the most important factor is to consider your door’s design, construction material, and, most importantly, its thickness.

If the door in which you plan on fitting your mortise lock is built from glass, aluminum, or uPVC, then you most likely won’t be able to. When it comes to wooden doors, unless it’s built from a very strong wood like maple, installing the mortise can affect its structural integrity.

Finally, the door thickness is important to consider as the mortise cylinder is attached not to the surface, but to the internal casing. If the mortise lockset ends up being too small, the door surface and keyhole surface won’t be parallel.


The number of levers inside your mortise lockset determines, to a great degree, its security. This is because the higher the number of levers, the more difficult it is for duplicate keys to unlock it. A five-lever set is the most desirable; moreover, the lock should be doubly resistant to picking with the integration of hardened steel plates.

ANSI Rating:

ANSI means the American National Standards Institute, an organization that specializes in measuring the security levels of various products, services, and systems. ANSI categorizes lock security as 1, 2, or 3.

Grade 1

As this is the highest ANSI security rating given to a mortise lock, it’s also the most secure. Grade 1 locks have been subjected to one million open-and-close cycles and can tolerate ten strikes of 75 pounds maximum.

Grade 2

Grade 2 locks are usually made from high-quality materials, have been tested for 800,000 open-and-close cycles, and can tolerate five strikes of 75 pounds. This is the most common ANSI rating for mortise locks.

Grade 3

As the lowest ANSI security rating given to a door lock, these are usually constructed from flimsier materials, making them weaker. However, they do provide good indoor protection.

Smart Capabilities:

If you’re tech-savvy, then you can already imagine the benefits of investing in a smart mortise lockset. With the benefits of passwords, PINs, and fingerprint/facial recognition, smart locks offer lots of extra layers for security.

Furthermore, smart locks can usually also be controlled remotely with the help of Bluetooth and Wi-Fi. This allows you to let people in even when you’re not home, such as handymen or maids. In-built cameras allow you to see who is coming into and going out of the house.

That all sounds great, right? It is, but it’s also important to remember that a smart lock doesn’t necessarily do away with the problems of a poorly-built, weak lockset. Moreover, smart systems are also susceptible to hacking. So even if you go for a smart mortise lock, first remember to ensure the strength of the lock itself.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is a mortise lock, and how is it different?

Mortise locks are characterized by their insertion into a pocket (or mortise) that is cut into the door’s edge. They have heavy-duty capabilities that single-cylinder locks don’t, and are more secure as a result. 

2. What are the benefits of using a mortise lock?

Generally, mortise locks are more difficult for intruders to work with. Furthermore, their dual locking system also enhances security. They’re great for entry doors.

3. Do I have to perform maintenance on my mortise lock to keep it in working order?

Although frequent maintenance isn’t a must, it’s still a good idea. External components of the lock should be wiped with a damp cloth while bolts, latches, and keyholes should be lubricated.

4. What construction material is best for mortise locks?

Stainless steel and brass are the most popular options thanks to their longevity and strength. A protective coating can also prove to be very helpful.

5. Is it better to go for a smart lock for higher security?

Thanks to the integration of passwords/PIN codes, cameras, and remote operation, smart locks offer greater functionality. However, they don’t ensure higher physical fitness of the lock itself.


When it comes to the best mortise locks, it’s important to choose one that is built from sturdy, durable materials, and is compatible with the door on which it will be installed. Although it might be tempting to go for a cheaper lock, remember that when it comes to mortise locks, the quality is usually reflected in the price.

Good luck, and we hope you find the right fit for yourself!


About the author

Hi, this is Jeremy; your main author for EliteHardwares. Exploring different home hardware and fixture have always been my deep passions. In this website, I want to focus on different types of hardware and things that makes home life easy. As my main motive is to make people choose the right type of home hardware for their regular needs.