Every padlock must be strong and secure to stop anybody from breaking in and stealing your possessions or trespassing. A weatherproof padlock must be able to not only provide a high level of security but also be able to stand up to harsh weather conditions and continue to function properly.
Aside from just thinking about which lock will be most suitable for you, you have to also consider the type of chain that will be used with the lock.
For a lock to be considered weatherproof it must be able to continue providing a high level of security and functionality, even in harsh conditions. This includes extreme cold temperatures as well as wet weather conditions, snow, and ice. Weatherproof locks must also have some protection against rusting, both to the shackle and the internal components of the lock.
If you’re going to be using your lock to secure something that’s insured, for example, business premises or a garage, then you may want to check what insurance security rating it provides. Some insurers will require locks to meet these minimum standards in order to provide insurance cover.
There are two main standards, CEN and Sold Secure. CEN is the European standard, whereas Sold Secure is the American standard. While it may seem a little confusing to have two different standards, both security standards have a cross over with each other.
Sold Secure has these three ratings: Gold, Silver, and Bronze. CEN, on the other hand, uses a grading system, with 5 being the best rated. A Sold Secure Gold rating is the equivalent to a CEN grade 5. Sold Secure Silver is the equivalent to a CEN grade 4 and Bronze is the same as CEN grade 3.
Be sure to check the rating of your lock when purchasing, it should have a Sold Secure or CEN rating depending on which country you buy it in. Some locks on the market won’t have either rating, so watch out for that. If the diameter of the lock’s shackle measures less than 11mm then it will not satisfy the criteria of either Sold Secure or CEN and have no rating.
CEN and Sold Secure are the security standards for Europe and America, respectively. These are the most well known and trusted standards in the world of locks.
This is a little tricky as there are no agreed-upon standards in the padlock industry, so you may find some locks have a higher rating than others, even though the former might be less secure. This is down to how each lock manufacturer tests and grades them. A lock with a safety rating of 10 might be a lot less secure than one with a rating of 5.
Most locks will display their safety rating, as well as a guide to their ratings, on the packaging or the product itself. If you can find out the CEN or Sold Secure standard it will give you a better idea of the level of security that the lock provides.
A weatherproof lock that has a keyed option or comes with master keys is ideal if you’re in charge of multiple locks. A master key that’s restricted will also minimize the risk of keys being duplicated without your permission. However, if other people need access then a keyless option, like a weatherproof combination lock might be the way to go.
Bigger is not always necessarily better for many things and this applies to locks also. You need to choose the right sized lock depending on what you’ll be using it for, for example, you wouldn’t use a big lock for your luggage, it would be overkill. Likewise, you wouldn’t be using a small gym locker padlock to secure your compound, it just wouldn’t cut it.
Identify what you will be using the lock to secure and consider how big or small the lock should be, then go for the appropriate size. Many people forget to consider the size of the shackle. This is important if you need a longer shackle to fit something like a gate.
Once again, it’s important to consider what you’ll be using it for. For indoor purposes, a regular lock will suffice. If you’ll be using the lock outdoors then you will need to choose an outdoor lock that is weather resistant.
The difference between normal locks and weatherproof locks is what materials they are constructed with. Normal locks will rust and break if used outdoors, whereas weatherproof locks will not.
You must be careful though, as some cheap weatherproof locks can still rust! You’ll often find the body of the lock will be rust-free, however, the internals will become rusted up and the lock will cease working. You can usually tell which weatherproof locks are cheap from the materials used; they typically use brass or lamination and have little protection by the way of plastic.
If you need a weatherproof lock then go for a high-quality one made from stronger materials, like stainless steel, brass or phosphor bronze. These locks will have no issues tolerating harsh weather conditions.
Planning to use your lock out at sea? If you are going on a cruise or work on a ship then you will need a special type of outdoor lock as the standard ones will be no good. This is because the conditions out at sea are different from those on land, as you have a lot more moisture in the air and there is salt in the air and water. If you choose a standard outdoor lock it will rust up and get damaged quickly. Thankfully there are marine grade locks that will be able to handle the conditions at sea.
The answer to that is yes, but don’t worry, it’s not too complicated!
There is very little to maintain when it comes to locks, you simply have to provide a little bit of lubrication a couple of times a year to keep things in good working order. A quick clean here and there will also help extend the lifespan of your lock.
Don’t try to lubricate with a solvent, such as WD40, as this will remove any lubrication in the cylinder. It’s also wise to not use an oil-based lubricant as this can jam the lock mechanism over time, rendering it useless.
We highly recommend using dry graphite powder to lubricate your locks. You can pick this up at any good security store or locksmiths.
If you’re looking for a heavy-duty lock that offers full security at any price point then the ABUS Diskus 20/70 might be the one for you.