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What is a Lever Handle Lock?

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  • Written By: B. Turner
  • Edited By: W. Everett
  • Last Modified Date: 28 August 2016
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    Conjecture Corporation
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A lever handle lock is a hardware device use to operate and secure a door. This type of lockset can be found in both commercial and residential construction, and is widely used on both interior and exterior openings. One of the most distinctive features of a lever handle lock is its lever-style operating mechanism, which replaces the traditional doorknob. The cylinder is built right into the lockset itself, so all components are contained within a single unit that fits into a hole cut in the door.

While they share the same basic features as knob-style locks, the lever handle lock is much easier to grasp. This allows children, the elderly, and those with a disability to operate the lock with ease. In the United States, the Americans with Disabilities act requires the use of lever locks instead of knobs in most public buildings. Some homeowners may choose a lever handle lock because it is simpler to use, while others may just prefer the appearance of a lever over a doorknob.

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When choosing a lever handle lock, buyers should first determine which function they need the lock to perform. Passage locksets are those without a cylinder, which means they can latch the door and keep it closed, but can't be locked. This function is designed for closets, pantries, and bedrooms that don't need to be locked. For locked bedrooms, offices, and entranceways, buyers should look for office function locks. They can be locked from the outside with a key, or locked and unlocked from the inside using a thumbturn or push button.

Storeroom lever locks are designed for mechanical rooms and other areas that must be locked at all times. They automatically lock each time the door is closed, but can always be opened from the inside simply by turning the lever. A privacy function lever lock is meant for bathroom doors. It contains no cylinder, but can be locked from the inside using a push button or thumbturn.

Once the correct function has been chosen, buyers can compare different finish options for lever handle door locks. These locksets are available in chrome, brass, bronze, and other metal finishes to match various home designs. The lever handles used on these locks can be found in a wide variety of styles and finishes, from elegant curved handles to sleek modern designs. It's important to match the handle to the door where it will be installed. Many lever lock handles are not reversible, and most be chosen based on the positioning of the door.

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