Author Topic: Home hardening - longer screws. How long and which type?  (Read 9792 times)

Offline Erigorn

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Home hardening - longer screws. How long and which type?
« on: March 12, 2013, 12:51:27 PM »
This may be a silly question but is there any specific screws that should be used on the door jams and such?
Is any standard 3 or 3.5 inch screw ok? I was initially going to use the standard gold screws you get at HD or Lowes. My wife pointed out that black (like sheetrock) would match better. Any reason one is better than another?

Thanks

This, selective window film and a security system are almost to the top of the to-do list.

Offline kevo

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Re: Home hardening - longer screws. How long and which type?
« Reply #1 on: March 12, 2013, 01:02:44 PM »
whatever it takes to reach into the studs. sometimes a 3 inch will do just fine.

HOWEVER, installing a door jamb reinforcement product should be on the top of that list too. They are metal and screw in to the inside of the door jamb. This is where you would also use the longer screws. The reason for this is that the door jamb where the lock is really only supported by less than 3/4 inch of wood. This reinforcement adds metal to that.

Also, I'd look for some stronger hardware. There are 3 grades they sell at the big orange or blue box stores. Grade 1, 2, and 3. I'd suggest to go with Grade 1 if you're going to shop at the big boxes.

Offline soupbone

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Re: Home hardening - longer screws. How long and which type?
« Reply #2 on: March 12, 2013, 02:54:06 PM »
While you are at it, look for security hinges - they have a pin on one arm that fits into a hole on the other, so when the door is closed, it is locked into the door frame. Those, and a deadbolt lock should secure your doors fairly well. If you install a deadbolt lock, however, do not use a double key lock - You, or someone else, may have to get out in a hurry, and Murphy guarantees the inside key will be unavailable, broken or missing.

soupbone

Offline soccer grannie

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Re: Home hardening - longer screws. How long and which type?
« Reply #3 on: March 12, 2013, 03:38:43 PM »
If you install a deadbolt lock, however, do not use a double key lock - You, or someone else, may have to get out in a hurry, and Murphy guarantees the inside key will be unavailable, broken or missing.

soupbone
For a few years, we lived in a house that was built in 1910. The front door had a window type glass half way down it. We installed a deadbolt that required a key to open from the inside. In order to always have a key handy (other than the ones on the key rings) we attached a key to a cord and hung it within reach of the door but not in reach of someone who might break the glass trying to break in. If we had anyone stay overnight, we always told them about the key in case of emergency.

Offline creuzerm

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Re: Home hardening - longer screws. How long and which type?
« Reply #4 on: April 01, 2013, 02:50:10 PM »
I'd suggest not using those black sheetrock/deck screws. I don't know how many of them I've twisted the heads off of while putting them in. I think they are untempered high carbon or something. Very hard, but easy to snap.

The gold screws seem stronger to me for this application. You are more likely to strip out the head. They bend a lot further without breaking like the black ones do.

The strongest screws I've found are the blue concrete screws. They go into wood just fine and are very strong.

A bit of paint on the head before you install them may help hide the color missmatch.

Offline Mexican_Hippie

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Re: Home hardening - longer screws. How long and which type?
« Reply #5 on: April 01, 2013, 02:56:05 PM »
Don't use the sheetrock screws they seem to break easily.

I disagree on the double key lock.  If you keep a key nearby the door but not within arm's reach it will be fine.

Offline Dawgus

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Re: Home hardening - longer screws. How long and which type?
« Reply #6 on: April 01, 2013, 07:05:38 PM »
I have to agree on NOT using a double key deadbolt; and I have two instances as to why. 1-I had a neighbor die in a house fire because (assumed) he couldn't locate the key from the smoke. He was found in front of the door and the key was still hanging just a few feet away. 2-an elderly friend lost her key that fit both the side and front doors. Her daughter (who was on vacation) had the spare, and she needed to get out to go to the store. I forget what the locksmith charge was, but it was certainly more than another spare key.
 It's easy to forget that while added security will make it harder for someone to get in, it can equally make it more difficult to get out.

Offline kaiserb

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Re: Home hardening - longer screws. How long and which type?
« Reply #7 on: April 02, 2013, 07:04:17 AM »
Don't use the sheetrock screws they seem to break easily.

I disagree on the double key lock.  If you keep a key nearby the door but not within arm's reach it will be fine.


Sheetrock screws have very little shear strength which is what is needed for a door jamb.   You may want to look at the exterior structural construction screws.  I used deck screws for all of my doors and they are rock sold.    Dont forget to put an aluminum or steel backing plate all the way down the door jamb on the latch side as that will bind the frame together and prevent kick-ins.