Smart locks are killing me

We’ve got Schlage Smart locks on all our outside doors as well as on each of our 3 guest rooms. There have always been the odd guest here and there who are baffled by the concept of smart locks, but overall they have been an awesome things for self-check-in and many of our guest have appreciated them. I work night shift and am asleep half the day and it simply isn’t possible to always meet the guests on check-in, particularly since we allow very late check-in.

Unfortunately, about a month ago, the lock started acting odd–we’d enter a code for an arriving guest and a little while later, find the code wasn’t working in one or more of the locks. We’d fix it, make sure it was all working, check it later and confirm it was working, but when the guest arrived, the stupid thing wouldn’t accept their code. I’ve had it happen over a dozen times now. From research, it looks like either Schlage or Wink (our hub) or both had an update that screwed things up and the “fix” for it that was supposed to happen a couple of days ago hasn’t fixed it. Has anyone else had this problem?
What smart locks do others here use and have you had any similar kinds of problems with them? I just had to refund a guest tonight–guy arrived at 1AM after a long drive and apparently spent 40 minutes trying to get into the house before finally messaging me at work, extremely irritated that the locks wouldn’t accept his code. Can’t keep doing this, of course, but I’m at a bit of a loss as to how to fix the situation without replacing five $200 locks!

Have used a slightly different version of this Yale Digital lock. Not a ‘smart’ lock in the sense of Internet-connected or updateable software, but this is keyless and has worked well.

Are you able to set a different code for each guest on that one?

Absolutely. It allows you to have two codes - one master and one guest. So ensure you set a different guest code each time.
Of course, in your case, you have multiple guests, you might have to give them all the same code if you use this.

This is exactly why I stick to non technological locks on our doors. I love my tech and the idea of a smart lock sounds amazing to me. But I also know that technology is often unpredictable and buggers up at the worst times. So a simple lock box by the door is always going to be my go to!


Every lock is ‘technology’, it doesn’t grow on trees!

I take it you mean software-controlled and possibly Internet-connected locks: ‘smart’. This (IoT) is an extremely new field, so until its technology matures, these glitches will happen. Which is why I’ve preferred a compromise - using the keyless code-based technology in the lock I mentioned, but not anything ‘smart’.

Some versions of that lock have a key override, which can also be useful in emergencies.

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That’s what we’ve gone with as well; a coded lock but not “smart”. We have a Schlage and we do have to manually enter the codes (and remove them) but I’d worry about it not working properly if it was more high-tech. The one we chose requires you to manually turn the lock after entering the code, and manually turning it after pushing the “Schlage” button to lock it. We specifically chose this type because we read that the batteries last a lot longer that way. We actually stayed in an Airbnb in Palm Springs in March where the battery went dead on a different lock and we had to call for help. Don’t want that to happen to a guest!!

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I use a Wink 2 with the Schlage BE469 and have had a similar problem with it forgetting codes but VERY rarely, it will name them key #1 key #2 etc when it forgets, I name each code the guests first name and have a shortcut that alerts me when their code is used so I know exactly when they have arrived. I would try naming them and see if it ever changes it to key #1 etc and then you will know it has forgotten them.

We’ve had Schlage and KwikSet smart locks on an Iris-by-Lowe’s hub for over a year now without issues. Subscription for the hub is $9.99/month but I don’t mind paying it since the platform is stable. We get emails when the batteries are low which is super helpfuI.

I do prefer the Schlage locks, though - they are quieter than the KwikSets.

We have ‘nonsmart’ keypad locks for exactly this reason. True we can’t change the code after every guest, but the fear of them malfunctioning or the Wifi going out and the lock being useless, is too much for me!

@azreala Can’t you change the code after each guest? Ours stores about 19 or 20 codes so I usually just enter a few stays at a time and take out the previous ones. We have one code for ourselves and then we usually give the cleaner the outgoing guest’s code or the guest’s prior to that. It’s a pretty simple process; doesn’t take long at all although it wouldn’t work well if you are a remote host.

I have been using the Schlage/Wink combo for the past couple of years and (knock on wood) haven’t seen the problems you mention. I -do- update the wink whenever it tells me to … and I keep an eye on the battery strength on the lock. I also keep a manual-combo keybox hidden in a nearby location and plan to use it if I ever have a problem with the lock. So far, so good tho! I love being able to give the guests a custom code that I remove once they check out. And giving the cleaners (or a handyman) their own code lets me know when they’ve come/gone too!
Good luck!

This is one of the things the locks have been doing lately–renaming a lot of the codes to a key number. I had my son remove all of the locks yesterday and do a complete factory reset, wiping all codes and reinstalling the locks. Major pain in the ass, but hopefully worth it. The locks worked perfectly well up until recently!

I had that issue with my Schlage a few months ago. I did what you did - factory reset, etc. - and it’s been good so far (knock on wood!). At the time I was told it was a Wink issue and it had been resolved. I do know that Wink was recently sold, so maybe that will improve things with stability.

Oddly, I had an opposite issue last week. I had a guest inform me in private feedback that they entered in a wrong code (wanted to see what the lock would do, I guess) and it opened!!! Unfortunately I had already deleted that weeks codes, so when I went to check the log it just said “door unlocked”. I have no idea if it was a lock malfunction, or if they just happened to pick another programmed code by sheer luck. It seems to be working fine now…

To do a factory reset you shouldn’t have to remove the locks at all. I haven’t had to reset the locks when the # key thing happens, just delete all the keys on the lock with the Wink app, re-add them, and you should be good to go.

Schlage keypad coded but not internet connected. Works great, I change the code when I turn over the space. I can you’d need another solution if you are remote. Also like it that there is less information floating around that could get hacked.