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Disk locks vs. Cylinder locks

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  • Disk locks vs. Cylinder locks

    Hello everyone. There have been some issues recently at our facility that have us considering changing our customer lock policy in order to beef up security. We currently have the typical slide latch and the customer uses a lock of their choice. We are going to either require disc locks for each unit or completely change our setup to cylinder locks. My concern with the cylinder locks are customer ease of use and the fact that anyone with a drill bit can get past them. Maybe I am looking at this the wrong way. Obviously the disc locks would be much cheaper of a conversion, even if we offered them at no charge to existing customers. Any feedback is much appreciated.

  • #2
    Anyone can get past any lock if they have the right tools. And if they can't get past the lock they will destroy the latch instead.

    In my opinion as an operator the cylinder locks are a little harder to remove. The ones from Chateau seem to be good. However I prefer the ease of use of a good disk lock for my customers.

    Cameras, gate, fence bright lighting are all as important (maybe more so) than the quality of the locks themselves.


    • #3
      Yes, agreed -there's no substitute for good security. I'm leaning to the disc locks because it's less of a conversion headache... Just wanted to make sure I'm not overlooking a huge benefit to cylinders.


      • #4
        The typical Chateau and other companies disc locks are made in Japan or China. The design alone makes it tuff but the metal compound is softer and I can cut one off with a 3 foot bolt cutter. We use the ABUS disc lock, made in Germany. Harder metal compound and I have tried 2 times to cut one with my 3 foot bolt cutter but I could not. We have never had a break in here, 25 years. We charge an $18 admin fee for the lock and the tenant keeps the lock when they move out. We make $3 per lock profit but they are safe and my tenants love them.
        "Never let the inmates run the asylum!"


        • #5
          I understand that with a decent cylinder locks they are little more secure against picking and cutting but as has been mentioned if they get at they can either cut it or rip off the whole hasp. The best you can hope for is to make it difficult as they may look for easier pickings than a place with layered security. The one good thing on some of these cylinders is they have the overlock key function so you can lock out someone who hasn't paid without the liability of having a key to their unit. I don't own a facility and am the IT/graphics guy so this is just what I remember from our lock manufacturer at the trade shows.
          Burt Abreu

          All From 1 Supply
          Building & Maintenance
          Products for Self Storage


          • #6
            There is no 'theft free' lock. I wish, but cylinder locks are great and so are disc locks. Depends on what level of 'stuff' you want to deal with at your facility. Do you want to change everything to cylinder? $$$$. I'd just stick with disc lock, but take Pac's advice and get the German ones.
            Even duct-tape can't fix stupid. But it can muffle the noises.

            WA State


            • #7
              I have been asked and answered questions here with members about the ABUS locks. I have recommended them to members and so far, every member that got them thanked me for the recommendation. They are more expensive but they are tough and worth it. I have had tenants that moved out and kept the lock come back and thank me for the lock.
              "Never let the inmates run the asylum!"


              • #8
                I've even had an entire door ripped from it's frame! Pickup chained to it and ripped it into the aisle!

                I've been requiring the purchase of a Disc Lock for 15 years or so. I've had two instances of the latch cut off and I think both were a result of a domestic dispute.


                • #9
                  Cylinder locks for me. Every unit remains locked. We have in the lease about a one time $10.00 lock rental. This has paid for the locks at the beginning.
                  We now most times waive the lock rental. Customer happy we know unit does not have a bread tie for a lock.

                  BTW. We have had 3 attempted break ins with none successfull. I really think it is the locks.
                  Joe Krezdorn
                  DAK Self Storage
                  Leesport, PA 19533


                  • #10
                    I currently work at a facility that has both locks. From the thefts that have occurred, if they cant cut the lock they go to cut the hasp. So, it didnt matter if it were a disc lock. We have one ac building that has cylinder locks only. We have not had one breakin there. Yes, you can drill out cylinders, however, the time and effort isnt to a thief's does require about ten or so minutes to drill out, that is a deterrent....riskier chance of being heard and getting caught. Plus if the first unit they break into turns up to be nothing....they'd have to do it again risking alot for the chance of coming accross a good unit. I think that the last facility I worked at had a set up where they had to key in to unarmed a door alarm and key out to re arm their door was an excellent addition to security. If they piggyback in at gate and dont key in and they open their door...alam in office sounds. I do have too many break ins now and looking at all our options before presenting to DM. I have break ins during daytime as well as evening. . I honestly wish they'd convert over...its a selling point to me


                    • #11
                      Doorkeeper , you talk like thefts are regular occurrences at your facility. Where is that facility and why is there not better security like more difficult to even enter the facility and security cameras and brighter lighting and maybe even mobile security checking the grounds and units at night?
                      "Never let the inmates run the asylum!"


                      • #12
                        Can't tell from your original post, but be sure to get the latches that accept both cylinder locks and traditional locks (see photo below). That way you have a lot more flexibility.



                        • #13
                          Both cylinder and disc locks are great and have a much shorter list of cons then the traditional shackle locks.

                          However, I'd go the path of least resistance first and just require the discs. This way you don't have to go through the immediate cost and time of conversion. Then you can also make sure you're security addresses any other priority areas first.


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