*Pin Lock for Sliding Glass Door*
28 April 2017
I've lived in a lot of apartments over the years and several have had sliding glass doors. I don't like sliding glass doors since they are after all just glass and can be smashed like a window and the locks on this type of door aren't the best. I've used sticks placed in the track but if you can flex the frame a little you can reach in with a stiff wire and flip the stick or rod out of the track and slide the door open. Keyed pin locks and thumb screw track locks are also available and work but if an intruder really wants in all he has to do is smash the glass.
The current apartment has a sliding glass door with a key lock on the outside. The landlord didn't have a key so unless we're going in and out the back this door is always locked from the inside. I didn't want to go thru the expense of having the cylinder re-keyed on the lock, the landlord is constantly loosing keys (and I never gave him the key to my front door after I changed the locks), and since I don't know who might have a copy of the key to the sliding glass door I installed a simple pin lock. This type is not the most secure but it will keep someone with the key who doesn't want me knowing they are coming and going out.
These locks can be purchase at hardware and big box stores. To install the lock all you do is drill the appropriate size hole and screw on the face plate and then put the pin in the hole you just drilled, done. A chain keeps the pin attached to the wood trim moulding so it is less likely to be lost (I managed apartments and even if it was chained down some tenants could still loose it). On this one I also drilled holes in the door so that the door can be locked in place, one large enough for the cat to go in and out (cheaper than the swinging cat door for sliding glass doors) and one so that air can flow thru but keep the cat outside, I marked the door with black marker so I can easily position the door to lock it in one of the extra holes. The latter two holes are only used when we are awake at home since someone could simply reach in with a long stick and pop the pin out of the hole. When we aren't at home the cat either stays in or out, my choice not his. At night we close and lock the sliding glass door and drop the stick in the track.
Not the most secure lock but for a place that's not a forever home it will do.John1lt
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