Published on January 16th, 2015 | by Greg0
Yale’s YRD240, A Secure And Home-Friendly Smart Lock
Beyond wearables and virtual reality, automotive technology and 4K televisions, one area that got a lot of dedicated space at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show was home automations. It’s always had a few booths devoted to the concept, showcasing products and manufacturers and protocols- but this time there were more than we’ve seen in the past and they appeared moving towards an ecosystem that might soon be ready for your average consumer. It’s come down to a couple of basic camps- ZigBee, Z-Wave- along with a host of other smaller competitors.
The best way to dip your toes in is to help upgrade your security. One option is to add some cameras or some lighting and simple controls to keep track of your house or apartment when you’re away. But even easier is installing a smart lock, and it’s immediately useful, not only when you’re trying to keep out people- but also when you’re trying to let visitors in. The Yale YRD240 keyless smart lock has an electronic touchscreen and replaces your regular old deadbolt with a programmable system allowing you to add up to 25 unique user combinations for family or friends. We’ve been testing the Z-wave model, which can connect to your compatible home automation system for more advanced functionality (though it adds quite a bit of cost).
Plus, unlock many other smartlock companies that put technology first, Yale has a sterling reputation- and this model is no exception, as it’s ANSI/BHMA grade 2 certified, a lock first and foremost. We didn’t face many of the installation issues we did previously with the Danalock, and it was quieter than many other deadbolt locks we’ve tried (including the Kevo). You’ll still need a screwdriver, and have to worry about strike plates, and need to set aside ten minutes or so for most situations. The technology side is easy at first too, thanks to very cool voice-guided prompts that take you through the entire process of configuration. On the other hand, it’s far more limited than some locks out of the box- there’s no dedicated app, no easily available log, and no Bluetooth connection to use your phone as a key (though you can have it open when your phone connects to your home network, which is kind of cool). You’ll need to use an existing Z-wave hub to make use of the “smarter” features, but then it can actually outpower most competitors if you take the time to set up commands and ‘scenes’ (like automatically turning on your lights when you open your lock).
The Yale YRD240 is available in three finishes, polished brass, satin nickel, or a dark “oil rubbed” bronze. Ours was the nickel, and it was fairly attractive, with a bright screen that was visible even in daylight. Batteries are easily replaceable, and it won’t look out of place on your door as, say, the Okidokeys system might. For those who want a traditional key as well, Yale offers similar models, as well as cheaper versions without the touchscreen and with physical keys. Plus, we hear that an Android mobile phone-connecting product is in the pipeline. But we’ve been quite happy with the responsive, powerful, Yale YRD240 that’s well worth a look as your smartlock of choice. Find it in stores and online, for around $227.