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Home & DIY Safety Supplies

Best Mortise Locksets Review and Buying Guide (2021)

Mortise locks are making a great comeback after the reign of the bored cylindrical locks since people have finally understood that these types help bolster home security while adding an attractive touch to the home entrance.

Here we reviewed today’s most popular mortise lock sets and shared how well they fared when installed. This is your gold get the best home security lock and stop an intruder dead in their tracks!

Best Mortise Locksets : Top 10 Reviews

01 Wright Products VMT115PB, BRASS Serenade Style Mortise Set

Wright Products VMT115PB

Why It Stands Out to Us

This one stood out to us with its excellent design and overall superb versatility. We mean, just look at this set. The design is exquisite, and you just can’t ignore the sheer quality of materials used here. It’s a top-notch product.

Our Experience with the Wright Products VMT115PB

  • One thing we loved when trying it out was the ease of installation. It didn’t take us much time to install it, and that’s saying something.

Although we didn’t try it with all mortise styles, the manufacturer claims it can replace almost all sets. And we believe them given how seamless our Experience was.

  • We also have to say something about the design. It’s sheer class. When installed, it looked exquisite and stylish. We are sure no matter what kind of aesthetic you have, it will fit it in.
  • Since it’s a single-cylinder model, it worked well with non-glass paneled doors.
  • Day-to-day usage was great as well. We didn’t notice any kind of wear and tear or quality issues with it.

What We Didn’t Like

  • The only minor gripe we have with this model is the lack of color options. It comes in one single gold color, which looks great, but more options would have been better.

Who Is It Great for?

Anyone looking for a lock to install on a door without any glass panels will love this one.

What Could Be Improved and Why

  • Adding more color options to future models would do wonders. It will give consumers more choices.

Our Recommendations

  • If you’re looking for a high-quality mortise lockset that can be installed easily on a non-glass paneled door, get this one. You won’t regret it.

Specifications

  • Brand: Wright Products
  • Color: Brass
  • Finish: Satin
  • Weight: 1 lb
  • Dimensions: 11” x 3.25” x 5.25”

Pros

  • Durable build quality
  • Great color finish
  • It fits with most sets
  • Easy to install
  • Handles wear and tear well

Cons

  • Lacks color options

02 Defender Security E 2311 Mortise Keyed Lock Set

Defender Security E 2311

Why It Stands Out to Us

This set will easily replace an antique lockset and will look good doing it. We loved the left-handed and right-handed installation and also the premium build that comes with a glass knob.

Our Experience with the Defender Security E 2311

  • The build of this one is sheer quality. The materials used are alloy steel and brass, which gave it exceptional durability during our testing.
  • We also loved the chic-looking glass knob. So, both left-handed and right-handed people can use it.
  • The lock bolt key can be activated from both sides. This was another thing that impressed us since we were able to lock and unlock it from the inside and the outside as well.

What We Didn’t Like

  • The installation process isn’t as seamless as some of the other models we reviewed.

Who Is It Great for?

Want to replace your antique lockset? Then this one is perfect for you. Just keep in mind that the installation can be a bit of a pain.

What Could Be Improved and Why

  • A more seamless installation process would have made this one a no-brainer.

Specifications

  • Brand: Defender Security
  • Color: Gold
  • Material: Brass, Glass, and Alloy Steel
  • Weight: 8 lbs
  • Dimensions: 13” x 7.63” x 7”

Pros

  • Durable build quality
  • Glass circular knob
  • Operated from both sides
  • Fantastic color finish

Cons

  • Difficult to install

03 Prime-Line Products Classic Bronze Prime-Line E 2495

Prime-Line Products Classic Bronze Prime-Line E 2495

Why It Stands Out to Us

Want something that looks absolutely phenomenal but also won’t break the bank? Then look no further. This one from the guys over at Prime-Line fits that bill perfectly.

Another reason it stood out to us is you need to operate it with a key for locking and unlocking both.

Our Experience with the Prime-Line Products Classic Bronze Prime-Line E 2495

  • We loved how easy this one was to install. This is excellent news for those who need to buy a mortise lockset as a replacement for one they already have. From start to finish, it only took us a couple of minutes.
  • Since the knob is round, we didn’t have to worry about the orientation when installing it. Both right-handed and left-handed folks will feel right at home with this one.
  • The design is something we adore. Although this is a more subjective topic, the overall brown color finish gives it a somewhat classy look.
  • Build-quality was top-notch as well. We loved the brass materials used in the construction and are sure they will last for a long time.

What We Didn’t Like

  • Although installation didn’t take us much time, we have to say that it can take you some time if you aren’t particularly handy.

Who Is It Great for?

  • Users who are looking for something that will work for both left-handed and right-handed users will love it.

What Could Be Improved and Why

  • Making the installation easier for non-professionals is the only slight improvement left for this already great lockset.

Specifications

  • Brand: Prime-Line
  • Color: Classic Bronze
  • Weight: 4 lbs
  • Dimensions: 38” x 7.63” x 7”

Pros

  • Good build quality
  • Circular knob
  • Not that expensive
  • Minimal maintenance required
  • Works well for both new and old doors

Cons

  • Installation can be a bit tricky

04 Defender Security E 2496 Mortise Keyed Lock Set

Defender Security E 2496

Why It Stands Out to Us

Another great choice with a circular knob, except the knob is quite fancy. It’s a glass knob which gives it a bit of character. The lock bolt key can be activated from both inside and outside.

Our Experience with the Defender Security E 2496

  • Just like all the other products in this list, we loved the build quality of this thing during testing. Although we weren’t too harsh on it, we think it will do just fine dealing with daily wear and tear.
  • The glass doorknob not only looks luxurious, but its usage was seamless as well. Both left-handed and right-handed people should be able to use it.
  • Mounting is reversible on it. This meant that we were able to install it on a left and right swing door. That’s pretty neat if you ask us.
  • The ability to install it on new or vintage doors gave us more flexibility. This will work well for those who don’t want to replace the door just for the lockset.

What We Didn’t Like

  • The glass doorknob looks elegant but can be prone to breaking. We would recommend you to be careful.

Who Is It Great for?

If you need versatility, then get this one. Its ability to work on left and right swing doors is not to be taken for granted.

What Could Be Improved and Why

  • The glass knob is excellent, but some protection or a higher quality glass would make it better. Don’t get us wrong; it isn’t flimsy by any means.

Our Recommendations

Those who are looking for something classy and stylish with the ability to mount on different swing doors should look into this one.

Specifications

  • Brand: Defender Security
  • Color: Nickel
  • Finish: Satin
  • Weight: 85 lbs
  • Dimensions: ‎13” x 7.63” x 7”

Pros

  • Classy glass knob
  • Easy to install
  • Works on both new and vintage doors
  • Durable build quality
  • Can be installed on both right and left swing doors

Cons

  • Glass knob is prone to breaking

05 FPL #3-45-S Sliding Glass Door Replacement Mortise Lock

FPL #3-45-S Sliding Glass Door Replacement Mortise Lock

Why It Stands Out to Us

The size options are one of the best things about it. It comes in four different sizes, which allows us to mount it on different types of doors. This one is a perfect choice for glass doors as well.

Our Experience with the FPL #3-45-S Sliding Glass Door Replacement

  • We tested this set with a glass door and were impressed. It fit in perfectly and worked like a charm, no complaints here.
  • A glass door isn’t the only option. We were able to install it easily on wooden and vinyl doors as well. So, it’s a pretty versatile product.
  • Installation, for the most part, was seamless too. There is a faceplate included. The whole process didn’t take us long. This is good news for busy people.

What We Didn’t Like

  • Adjustment was a bit of a hassle during testing. Other than that, everything else was great.

Who Is It Great for?

If you have a glass door and want a durable and high-quality mortise lockset, this gets an easy recommendation from us.

What Could Be Improved and Why

  • Better adjustment during installation will make it easy for all users.

Our Recommendations

  • Get this one if you have glass doors that need a new lockset. The quality and ease will surely impress you.

Specifications

  • Brand: FPL
  • Color: Brass
  • Weight: 08 Ounces
  • Dimensions: ‎ 5” x 1” x 2”

Pros

  • Durable lockset
  • Comes with a faceplate
  • Great for humid or coastal areas
  • Adjustable hook
  • Low maintenance

Cons

  • Adjusting is a bit tough during installation

06 PRIME-LINE E 2294

PRIME-LINE E 2294

Why It Stands Out to Us

This one is the younger brother of one of our previous Prime-Line locksets. We loved it for how well it works for vintage doors.

Our Experience with the PRIME-LINE E 2294

  • Just because your door is vintage doesn’t mean you can’t have a nice new lockset. And this one is just that. We loved how easy it was to install on our vintage doors.
  • The durable build quality also impressed us. It uses case hardened steel for its construction. That makes us pretty sure it will handle daily wear and tear like a champ.
  • We were able to reverse the latch easily for opposite swinging doors. So, if you need something that has that versatility, this one is a great choice.

What We Didn’t Like

  • This one is a great set, but it’s only meant for interior use. That might be a bummer for some.

Who Is It Great for?

Anyone who is looking for a mortise lockset for vintage doors will fall in love with this one.

What Could Be Improved and Why

  • If the design and build allowed it to be used on the exterior, it would have made it all that much better.

Specifications

  • Brand: Prime-Line
  • Color: Gold
  • Finish: Antique
  • Weight: 3 Ounces
  • Dimensions: ‎ ‎13” x 0.87” x 5.5”

Pros

  • Durable build quality
  • Easy to install
  • Great for vintage doors
  • Can be easily reversed for opposite swinging doors

Cons

  • Only for interior use

07 PRIME-LINE Defender Security E 2330

PRIME-LINE Defender Security E 2330

Why It Stands Out to Us

The sheer build quality of this one is impressive in its own right. There are a lot of other things that stood out to us as well. For example, we loved the easy installation process and also the minimal design.

Our Experience with the PRIME-LINE Defender Security E 2330

  • This lockset uses a high-quality and durable steel build. So, naturally, it means this is one tough cookie. We loved the robustness of this one.
  • The circular knob will also make it easier to use for both right-handed and left-handed people to operate this lock when we were testing it.
  • Although color and design may not directly impact the operation, we loved how chic it looks. It should fit in with most house aesthetics.
  • The lock mechanism was super smooth, which made for a joyous experience using it. That’s something we are sure you would love just as much as we did.

What We Didn’t Like

  • This set will work for sliding windows and internal doors. So, you don’t get a lot of versatility with this product.

Who Is It Great for?

If durability is your top priority, you can’t go wrong with this one. The steel build is phenomenal.

What Could Be Improved and Why

  • Making it suitable for use in different scenarios will be a welcomed improvement.

Specifications

  • Brand: Prime-Line
  • Color: Nickel
  • Material: Steel
  • Weight: 5 lbs
  • Dimensions: ‎ ‎ 38” x 8” x 7”

Pros

  • Great build quality
  • Easy to install
  • Circular knob
  • Satin finish
  • Fits 1-3/8″ – 1-3/4″ doors

Cons

  • Only for sliding windows and interior doors

08 Marks Hardware 91A-RH Mortise Lock, Right Hand

Marks Hardware 91A-RH Mortise Lock

Why It Stands Out to Us

How about an electric mortise lockset that won’t cost you an arm and a leg? This is it, and it stands out to us for its build quality, affordability, and also cool features like the lock body that fits any knob.

Our Experience with the Marks Hardware 91A-RH

  • Thanks to the brass used, durable build quality made this a very tough little lockset when we were testing it out for ourselves.
  • Another cool feature we also liked was the ability to lock it both from the inside and outside.
  • The design also impressed us. The classy and aristocratic design means it will fit right in with any door and will look good doing it.

What We Didn’t Like

  • Instruction manual that it comes with isn’t that well written and is hard to understand.

Who Is It Great for?

Those who are looking for an affordable electric mortise lockset will love this one.

What Could Be Improved and Why

  • Better instructions that are well laid out and easy to understand will be appreciated in future revisions.

Our Recommendations

  • Want the benefits of an electric mortise lock but don’t want a hole burning in your pocket? Then get this one. Just keep in mind that the installation instructions aren’t that good.

Specifications

  • Brand: Marks Hardware
  • Color: Gold
  • Material: Brass
  • Weight: 5 lbs
  • Dimensions: 11” x 5” x 4.25”

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Durable construction
  • Can be locked from the inside and outside
  • Cool looking design

Cons

  • Instruction manual isn’t that well written

09 Mortise Lock Entry Lockset Deadbolt for Residential Commercial Backset 2-1/2″ (Right Hand)

Mortise Lock Entry Lockset Deadbolt for Residential Commercial Backset 2-1/2

Why It Stands Out to Us

Solid brass construction and a circular knob for easier operation are all wrapped up in a good-looking package. That’s what pretty much stood out to us when we tested this one.

Our Experience with the Maxtech Mortise Lock Entry Lockset

  • The construction is solid brass, making this set easily one of the most durable locksets in this review. We loved the robustness it has.
  • Its design is also very minimal and classy. We loved the look and how well it fit anywhere, you install it.
  • Installation was a complete breeze for the most part. It didn’t take us more than a couple of minutes to put this thing together.
  • And, of course, the circular knob also meant we didn’t need to worry about the orientation when installing it.

What We Didn’t Like

  • Set is a bit on the heavier side.

Who Is It Great for?

Users who want a solid mortise lockset that comes with an outer plate and faceplate will love this one from the guys over at Maxtech.

What Could Be Improved and Why

Making the set a little lighter is the only slight improvement we can think of.

Specifications

  • Brand: Maxtech
  • Material: Brass
  • Weight: 4 lbs
  • Knob: ‎ ‎ Circular

Pros

  • Circular knob
  • Durable build quality
  • Easy to install
  • Looks gorgeous
  • Nice color finish

Cons

  • A bit heavy

10 Pacific Doorware Storefront Door Mortise Lock

Pacific Doorware Storefront Door Mortise Lock

Why It Stands Out to Us

These are great for heavy steel doors, and that’s what exactly stood out to us when we tested them. The build quality was superb, and the overall installation and usage were not tedious either.

Our Experience with the Pacific Doorware Storefront Door Mortise Lock

  • A lock is meant for security. And that’s what this one does exceptionally well. The five-ply steel bolt is absolutely robust and managed to give us maximum protection.
  • It’s the same durable materials that make it a very durable lockset as well. When we tested it, we were indeed impressed by the sheer robustness of this one.
  • Package contents were also good. We found everything that we would need to get us going.
  • Installation process was simple and easy for the most part as well. All in all, we can’t complain about this one.

What We Didn’t Like

  • Design of this lockset sort of left us wanting. It doesn’t look that bad but compared to others on the list; it’s a bit bland.

Who Is It Great for?

If you’re in the market for a lock that prioritizes security, then this is the one to get.

What Could Be Improved and Why

  • A better design would really make it stand out among all the other locksets.

Our Recommendations

  • You can get this one without any hesitation. It’s easy to install and also gives you excellent security.

Specifications

  • Brand: Pacific Doorware
  • Material: Steel
  • Color: Silver
  • Weight: 97 lbs
  • Dimensions: ‎ ‎ ‎7″ x 3″ x 2″

Pros

  • Easy installation
  • Complete package
  • Offers great security
  • Durable build quality

Cons

  • Design isn’t that good

Best Mortise Locksets: Buying Guide

Best Mortise Locksets Buying Guide

1. Measuring the Backset and Centers

Mortise locksets will only fit doors that have a specific backset. So, before you pull the trigger on one, make sure you get one that fits your door. To find out, you first need to measure the backset and center.

The number you’re looking for is the distance from the door’s edge to the center of the lock hole. If it’s compatible with the lockset you want to get, then you’re golden. Otherwise, you might end up with a lockset that won’t fit right or won’t fit at all.

2. Door Thickness

The same principle applies here. Mortise locksets will support different door thicknesses. They aren’t a one-size-fits-all affair, though. Make sure you check your door’s thickness before buying a lockset.

This will help you determine how big of a lockset you need to get to ensure compatibility.

3. Knob Style

Knob style is an aesthetic thing. A good-looking knob will surely bring the whole package together and also compliment the décor. So, if aesthetics is something you care about, we recommend paying attention to the knob style.

A mortise lockset can last you for a long time. It’s definitely worth getting one with a nice design since you won’t replace it often.

4. What the Packaging Includes

What the package includes is another essential consideration. The thing to remember here is the more, the better. Look for faceplates and other necessary stuff that you need to get started.

5. Included Keys and Rekeying Possibility

Here is the thing about locks and keys, there is a very high possibility that you might lose the keys. When buying a mortise lockset, make sure to check that it comes with included keys.

Also, you want one that has rekeying possibility. That way, if you happen to lose the keys, it won’t be a problem.

6. Type of Door

Some locksets are great for vintage doors, while others work well with wooden or glass doors. Be sure to keep that in mind.

7. Mechanical or Digital

You have the choice to go for either mechanical or digital locksets. This one is a personal choice, of course. Mechanical ones are sometimes more durable and have manual and tactile feedback.

Digital ones are more modern and are perfect for futuristic homes. There isn’t a right answer for this one. It depends on your personal preference.

8. Versatility

Lastly, there is versatility. The ability to be used for both interior and exterior uses are always a good thing. You can also check to see if the lock can be operated from both the inside and the outside.

Quick Tips for Dealing with Lock Brake When the Door Is Closed

1. Use a Picking Set

A lock picking set is one of your best options dealing with lock brakes. But not everyone can use a lock picking set. It does require some skill.

Nonetheless, if you own a picking set, you can deal with lock brakes easily. A tension pick set works great.

2. Hex Wrench

Hex Wrenches work great on interior door locks. Purchase a hex wrench set and fit the long end of the wrench right inside the hole.  Now turn the wrench to open the door.

3. Use a Credit Card

This is one of the oldest tricks in the book. Use a laminated card to slide it onto the door’s side. When you pull it down at the right angle, you can open the lock easily.

FAQs

1. Are smart mortise locks better than regular locks?

Ans. Smart mortise locks have more smart features. But as far as security goes, there isn’t a single winner. Smart locks can also mess up sometimes, and so can regular locks. Just make sure you get a high-quality lock with top-notch durability.

2. Can you change a mortise lock to a regular lock?

Ans. Yes, you can. All you need are the right tools and a free afternoon.

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