Security on uPVC doors - what can be done? Adjusting the lock so it can close easily

Hello,
Unfortunately my mother's house has a uPVC front door - ugly,
ghastly thing. Now, the door is fitted with an elaborate lock where
one lifts the handle when the door is closed and some latches lock
into the (none-too-substantial) uPVC door frame. Keeping the handle
up, the key is turned and a flimsy deadlock bolt also slides into
place. Now, the frame is obviously too soft for a standard door chain
too offer any protection should some miscreant come to the door and
decide to kick it in when mother opens the door. We are thinking about
CCTV in the door. However Q1 is there some physical "latch" that can
be attached to the door so when she opens it the effect is like a
standard door chain so she can see the visitor but they can't push
into the house?
I did see a system once where the chain was within the door frame
and when the door was opened, unless you turned a latch, the chain was
always engaged. No rubbish screws on the wood, this thing was fitted
inside the door and inside the frame. Seemed like a much more secure
system to me. This mechanism wouldn't fit inside the uPVC door my
mother has.
Separately, I once had to fiddle with the door for 10 minute because
it would not lock. The dead-lck worked fine (I.e. lift handle, hold,
turn key) when the door was opened. However, the lock wouldn't engage
when the door was closed. Looking at the door frame there are some
metal brass-like "sockets" attached to the frame into which the
"hooks" and the bolt (?) engage. I am guessing the socket into which
the lock bolt slides has come out of alignment and the bolt won't
slide into place. The sockets have two screws with hexagonal allen
key holes and + and - on them. Q2 Are these what I fiddle with to
adjust the alignment of the socket? How do I know what to turn and by
how much? Is this adjustment a pro-job?
Thanks
Clive
Reply to
Clive
I've seen a floor-mounted device for this. A peg slides in a quadrant groove recessed into the floor. With the door closed, the peg can be slid out of the way, but when the peg is slid along the quadrant it stops the door being opened, and the door pushes against the peg so it can't be moved until the door is closed again. Being floor-mounted might not withstand a shoulder charge.
However any form of 'door chain' can be a problem when it stops keyholders getting in if the occupant is taken ill.
Owain
Reply to
Owain
Sometimes the weight of the door causes it to sag at the hinges, your idea of adjusting the striking plates isn't far off but it can be easier to adjust the hinges. Most can be adjusted by using an allen key.
Reply to
Scabbydug
The allen key adjustments need doing on our door from time to time - the door is normally OK unless it gets really warm, in which case it's quite "grating" to engage the locks - unfortunately i've done all I can to adjust it, but it's still a little "rough" but usable (but well greased to help as much as possible).
They allen keys simply spin cams, upon which the sockets sit, and allow a few mm of horizontal adjustment, which can help, so there's nothing lost trying to play with them :-)
Reply to
Colin Wilson
In message , Colin Wilson writes
Having once, for my sins, been employed as a uPVC door fabricator I can add the following.
When a door is made on the bench the sash is made to overlap the frame by about 8-10mm all round. The hinges and locking mechanisms are then adjusted. The door will drop when installed and the glass is added but this is taken up on the hinges normally.
What you need to do is draw pencil lines in each corner of the frame about 10mm from the edge of the opening so that you can see how the sash lines up with the frame and adjust the hinges accordingly. Do this before adjusting anything else. It can also help to draw lines midway up the frame if you have a centre hinge.
Use the hinge adjustments to align the door equally within the pencil lines on all 4 corners and then adjust the strikers if necessary.
A correctly aligned door will seal when closed and compress the seals slightly when the handle is raised. The rollers of the lock do the sealing and the claws, if fitted, only help prevent the door from being forced.
Reply to
Phil E. Stein
On Fri, 05 Oct 2007 12:28:41 -0700, Clive wrote:
Does she own her own home? Or moved into it recently?
If she owns her home then she could pick a new door and have it installed and have lots more security.
>one lifts the handle when the door is closed and some latches lock >into the (none-too-substantial) uPVC door frame. Keeping the handle >up, the key is turned and a flimsy deadlock bolt also slides into >place. Now, the frame is obviously too soft for a standard door chain >too offer any protection should some miscreant come to the door and >decide to kick it in when mother opens the door. We are thinking about >CCTV in the door. However Q1 is there some physical "latch" that can >be attached to the door so when she opens it the effect is like a >standard door chain so she can see the visitor but they can't push >into the house? > > I did see a system once where the chain was within the door frame >and when the door was opened, unless you turned a latch, the chain was >always engaged. No rubbish screws on the wood, this thing was fitted >inside the door and inside the frame. Seemed like a much more secure >system to me. This mechanism wouldn't fit inside the uPVC door my >mother has. > > Separately, I once had to fiddle with the door for 10 minute because >it would not lock. The dead-lck worked fine (I.e. lift handle, hold, >turn key) when the door was opened. However, the lock wouldn't engage >when the door was closed. Looking at the door frame there are some >metal brass-like "sockets" attached to the frame into which the >"hooks" and the bolt (?) engage. I am guessing the socket into which >the lock bolt slides has come out of alignment and the bolt won't >slide into place. The sockets have two screws with hexagonal allen >key holes and + and - on them. Q2 Are these what I fiddle with to >adjust the alignment of the socket? How do I know what to turn and by >how much? Is this adjustment a pro-job? > >Thanks > >Clive
Reply to
Mogga
Thanks for all the detailed, helpful suggestions (I especially like the idea of replacing the door !). I'll have a go at fiddling with the adjusters and see what happens.
Clive
Reply to
Clive
Now, the frame is obviously too soft for a standard door chain
Have you considered a video entry system? That way your mum could see & speak to callers before opening the door.
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Reply to
The Medway Handyman

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