Which type of Door Bolt should I use?

Which type of Door Bolt should I use?

16th November 2023

Which type of Door Bolt should I use?

Whether it be for security or privacy, for a bedroom or a bathroom, it is important to choose the correct Door Bolt to fit your specific needs. We stock many types of Door Bolts in our range, so we’ll help you figure out which type you need for your next project.

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Straight vs Cranked Door Bolts

When it come to choosing the correct Door Bolt, the first thing you need to know is whether you need a straight or a cranked bolt.

The difference between these two types is mainly the shape of the shank, as the name suggests, Straight Bolts have a straight shank, a Cranked or Necked Bolt has a slight rise or step in the shank.

Straight Bolts are more often used for flush doors and inward opening doors, whereas Cranked or Necked Bolts are used for recessed doors and outward opening doors.


Types of Door Bolts

We take a look the most popular types of Door Bolts, and the projects they are best suited for.

Barrel Bolts

A Barrel Bolt will typically feature a cylindrical or square-edged sliding bolt, with a catching plate on the door frame. When the bolt slides in to this plate, the door is locked.

When used on standard doors, Barrel Bolts are an excellent choice for additional security in domestic properties, as they are easy to install, and even easier to use. However, this type of bolt should not be used for emergency exit or fire doors, or any type of door that provides a means of escape. This is particularly important if this type of bolt is being installed on a timber door, as the wood tends to swell and shrink depending on the season, making these bolts more prone to becoming jammed and more difficult to operate. The most ideal project for Barrel Bolts is doors that require security, but not used as escape routes, including shed doors and storage units.

If a Barrel Bolt is the best choice for your project, you can also enjoy the versatility that these particular fixtures have to offer. Barrel Bolts are available in a wide variety of sizes, so can accommodate for many types and sizes of doors, and can be installed both horizontally and vertically. Better still, the benefits of a Barrel Bolt aren’t just practical.

You can find Barrel Bolts that offer aesthetic qualities to complement any domestic or commercial décor, from ornate designs finished in Antique Black Iron for more period properties, to simple but incredibly durable stainless steel bolts for commercial storage spaces.

Barrel Bolt

Indicator Bolts

Unlike the versatility that Barrel Bolts offer, Indicator Bolts are more often than not used for a very specific purpose.

Indicator Bolts are very commonplace in various commercial washrooms, whether that be offices, student accommodation, or retail and hospitality spaces. As well as the privacy they offer in these types of spaces, Indicator Bolts, as their name suggests, are used to indicate whether a particular space is occupied or vacant, whether that be with text or a coloured strip.

Just like Barrel Bolts, Indicator Bolts are incredibly easy to install, as they do not have to be used in conjunction with other locking devices.

An important consideration to make, especially with Indicator Bolts is that they cannot be opened from the outside, so young or vulnerable people need to be taken in to account when using these kinds of bolts.

Indicator Bolt

Flush Bolts

Flush Bolts are a predominantly used for double doors where one side is not used for an extended period of time. These bolts are fitted flushed and morticed in to the door and the locking mechanism works by moving up or down in the door jamb in the middle of the double doors. You can find both lever action and slide action locking mechanisms in our range of Flush Bolts.

What makes Flush Bolts unique, is that they cannot be seen when the doors are closed. The benefits of this are both practical and aesthetic, offering not only a seamless and unobtrusive look to your double doors, but also completely cutting off access to the lock when the doors are in their closed position, further increasing the level of security the bolts can provide.

Flush Bolt

Mortice Bolts

This type of bolt has a large focus on security, and is ideally suited to doors that also have Mortice Sashlocks, including French Doors and back doors.

Mortice Bolts differ to the other types of bolts previously mentioned as they are key operated, either through a splined key on the inside of the door, or cylinder key options.

Sometimes known as Rack Bolts, Mortice Bolts, just like Barrel Bolts are designed to be used as an extra layer of security, and can be used hand in hand with the standard locks that can be found on doors.

Although this type of bolt is mainly used for security, that does not mean you have to sacrifice any visual appeal, with a variety of finishes on offer to accompany any existing fittings.


Mortice Bolt

Door Bolts can be found in many domestic and commercial spaces, and now it is easier than ever to find the right one for you. Whether you’re looking for a Flush Bolt for a set of double doors in a home, or Indicator Bolts for a commercial washroom, as well as a selection of other Door Hardware Accessories, you can find it all in our range.