A Utility Lock for Every Use

Dec. 19, 2022
Padlocks, cam locks and other types are essential in certain applications.

“Utility Locks & Hardware” is a unique product category that can include devices used for nonstandard security applications that are encountered regularly by the locksmith. Utility locks might not always be glamorous, but they’re essential.

Utility locks come in many configurations for specific residential and commercial uses. The level of security required, convenience of use and aesthetics are considerations when you select a utility lock.

It’s possible to integrate auxiliary locks aesthetically and functionally with compatible mechanical keys and electronic components so they fit seamlessly with the physical security of a premises.

Don’t fall prey to the idea that it’s acceptable to use a low-security type lock mechanism that can be bypassed easily.

Critical and possibly hazardous items might reside behind a nondescript cam lock  that can be manipulated by using a paper clip and  a screwdriver.

Here are some interesting locks that might work for your utility applications.

ABUS products

Many locksmiths’ familiarity with ABUS might be limited to the company’s proprietary controlled keyways. However, ABUS also has a full line of security products, including padlocks, hasps, KeyGarage key cabinets, chains, cables and bars.

The requirements for a padlock vary depending on the application. ABUS Granit padlocks even can be used for applications where the padlock is exposed to up to 10 tons of tensile force.

Keep in mind that the security rating of a hasp always should match that of the padlock. High-security hasps have concealed screws, for example. Hardened steel loops that take the shackle of the padlock are concealed inside the hasp and thus provide optimal protection against attempts to break the lock open.

Chains and cables are a good add-on for a padlock. They enable you to lock up multiple objects, such as chairs, tables or bikes, while using only one padlock. They also are useful if the two locking elements of a gate or a sliding door are too far away from each other to use a hasp.

File Cabinet Bars can help to secure multidrawer filing cabinets. Just close the locking mechanism and use a padlock to lock the bar. The file cabinet locking bar is available in different lengths to accommodate filing cabinets that have up to five drawers.

Finally, the KeyGarage key cabinet provides an intelligent and secure solution for storing keys. The cabinet is secured by an individually set code, and the steel-plate housing protects keys and code cards against unauthorized use.

More info: abus.com/us

Codelocks KL1000 G3 NetCode

Codelocks’ KL1000 G3 NetCode locker and cabinet lock enables administrators to generate temporary date- and time-sensitive access codes for short- or long-term access.

Features include a key-override function, easy access to the battery compartment and the option to include a Slam Latch for fast “push shut” closure.

Private and Public functions make the KL1000 G3 NetCode suitable for environments, such as schools, offices and gyms, where lockers and cabinets might be allocated for multi- or single-use occupancy.

KitLock by Codelocks KL10 / KL15

The KL10 provides mechanical keyless access suitable for a variety of lockers, cabinets and cupboards.

This mechanical lock is compact, durable and can be fitted as a new install or retrofitted to existing cam locks. Changing or resetting the code can be completed while the lock is on the door.

The KL10 is suitable for use in Private Function, where the same code will be used repeatedly.

The KL10 is provided with a straight cam, hex nut and screw as standard. An additional fastener pack that contains a cranked cam, metal clip, washer and two screws is available. The KL15 delivers mechanical keyless access, with Private and Public Function models suitable for a variety of locker and cabinet applications.

The KL15 can be surface-mounted by using an ergonomically designed trim plate that provides additional grip, which allows for ease of opening. If a sleek look is preferred, the KL15 can be flush-fitted.

Marine by Codelocks

The Marine by Codelocks range of locks has been enhanced to withstand harsh outdoor environments and coastal applications.

They’re the same convenient, easy-to-use locks as in Codelocks’ standard lineup, but they have a tougher exterior. The marine-grade black finish has proven to be resistant to moisture and salt spray after rigorous salt-spray testing for up to 1,000 hours. Marine by Codelocks locks are suitable for external applications, including outbuildings, construction sites, boat marinas and homes by the water.More info: www.codelocks.us

HES lineup

HES offers a wide variety of electronic and electromechanical cabinet locks for various applications.

The KS200/210 Server Cabinet Locks protect physical assets, data and access to critical infrastructure. They use Wiegand (KS200) or RS-485 OSDP v2.1.7 (KS210) communications.

The server cabinet locks come with lock monitoring and use a small-format interchangeable core (SFIC) that has a mechanical key override.

Meanwhile, the wireless K100 and wired K200 Series Cabinet Locks bring electronic access control to swinging and sliding cabinet doors and drawers. They come standard with locked-state and tamper monitoring, optional mechanical-key override and more than 150 pounds of holding force.

Electromechanical options include the HES 610 cabinet lock, which is used to secure indoor, low-abuse, sliding or swinging drawers or doors, and the HES 660, which is suitable for corporate and government applications including lockers, cabinets and display cases.

On the mechanical side, the KP20 Cabinet Lock is a flexible, cost-effective solution for stand-alone, battery-operated, keypad access control for low- or medium-security applications that require no more than 75 pounds of holding force.

The KS-M Mechanical Server Cabinet Lock installs easily on most cam-activated swing-handled server cabinet doors that are equipped with a standard 150 x 25mm lock prep. The lock provides support for a six- or seven-pin SFIC mechanical key override.

More info: www.hesinnovations.com

Securitron locking solutions

The MCL is a compact, versatile asset management cabinet locking solution that’s aimed at extending access control to sliding or swinging cabinet doors and enclosures. Typical applications include jewelry cases, museum displays, gun cabinets, pharmaceutical storage cabinets or cash drawers – indoors or out.

The durable M32-SS split-strike electromagnetic cabinet lock has 600 pounds of holding force (300 pounds per strike). It’s aimed at extending access control to secure large double-door cabinet and enclosure outswinging door applications that share a center latching point. The M32-SS can be used indoors or out.

More info: www.securitron.com

Medeco Cam Locks

Medeco High Security Cam Locks use hardened, stainless steel inserts throughout the cylinder to provide the ultimate defense against drilling, pulling and other forms of vandal attacks.

Patented key-control programs prevent the unauthorized duplication of keys and maintain system integrity.

Medeco cam locks can be keyed alike, keyed different or master keyed. The line encompasses a wide variety of sizes and functions to meet your specific demands.

Cam locks also are available for the Medeco XT and Classic CLIQ Intelligent Key System formats. Both systems provide for audits, scheduled access, accountability and system management.

Medeco All Weather Padlock

The Medeco All Weather Padlock (AWP) has the highest level of severe weather protection. The body is solid 303 stainless steel and is available with either stainless steel or boron shackles.

A weatherproof cylinder seal cap, attached by a stainless steel cable, seals the cylinder from harsh environments.

Multiple mechanical and intelligent-key technologies are available. The AWP is a high-security padlock when a Medeco 4 (M4) cylinder is included. M4 cylinders provide the benefit of patented key control and resistance to surreptitious attacks. Meanwhile CLIQ and XT cylinders add audit and control features.

Medeco Traffic Cabinet Locks

Intelligent Traffic System (ITS) cabinets located at every street corner contain hardware that control city streets. Cyberattack is a constant threat to these installations.

A simple retrofit lock solution, such as the Medeco XT Traffic Cabinet Lock, is the quickest, most cost-effective way to add the accountability necessary to help to eliminate tampering with the advanced equipment contained within these cabinets.

Medeco mechanical traffic cabinet locks resist attacks, such as picking, drilling and bumping. In addition, Medeco keys, with their unique and individual cuts, can be duplicated only at an authorized Medeco Service Center and only with proper authorization.

More info: www.medeco.com

Capitol Industries Weatherproof Magnetic Padlock

The Capitol Industries Weatherproof Magnetic Padlock is designed to withstand the harshest conditions and most corrosive environments. The Magnetic Padlock works when necessary and won’t be affected by moisture, dirt or other contaminants.

Features include no keyway, so no easy picking, and more than 250,000 magnetic key codes. They have the capability to have the shackle changed in 5 seconds, and four different shackles are available.

Capitol Magnetic Cam Lock

Capitol’s Magnetic Cam Lock is a solid replacement for any cam lock application that requires additional security. The cam lock uses the company’s patented magnetic technology, so it’s pick-, tamper- and vandal-resistant.

The cam lock is available in 5/8-inch, 7/8-inch and 1-1/8-inch shell lengths and has more than 1,500 magnetic locking combinations.

In addition, the cam lock is resistant to glue, dirt and other contaminants, and it can be

retrofit from any standard cam lock.

More info: capitolindustriesinc.com

SDC E300 Series Micro Magnetic Cabinet Locks

You can eliminate keys and expand the reach of access control systems to drawers, cabinets and lockers by using SDC E300 Series Micro Magnetic Cabinet Locks where the application of a compact, specialized electromagnetic lock provides a higher level of security.

SDC’s E300 is a connected access control solution that’s virtually maintenance-free and has a lock status output for remote monitoring and system application requirements.

More info: www.sdcsecurity.com


The innovative BOLT series of locks can streamline the workday and improve security for owners of compatible Chevrolet, Ford, Jeep, Nissan, Ram or Toyota vehicles.

Each BOLT, which is short for Breakthrough One-Key Lock Technology, lock is programmed permanently to the ignition key the first time the key is inserted into the specially made lock cylinder to provide convenient, one-key access to multiple locks. Patented technology allows the cylinder to be coded uniquely with the help of spring-loaded plate tumblers that are specific to each ignition key.

BOLT Locks have a proprietary design that resists picking and bumping. The materials used in BOLT Locks are rugged from  the automotive-grade stainless steel lock shutter, protective rubber shell and six-plate tumbler sidebar. This makes each type of lock strong and durable enough to stand up to even the most demanding jobs.

More info: www.boltlock.com

Tim O'Leary is a security consultant, trainer and technician who has been writing articles on all areas of locksmithing and physical security for many years.

About the Author

Tim O'Leary

Tim O'Leary is a security consultant, trainer and technician who has also been writing articles on all areas of locksmithing & physical security for many years.