Are you always forgetting your keys when you leave the house? The Yale Assure Lock SL could help; it's a key-free smart lock that comes with an August Connect module that wirelessly connects the lock to your Wi-Fi and the August app. This also provides support for controlling the lock from Apple HomeKit, Amazon Alexa and Google Home devices, so you can control or check the lock from an Amazon Echo, a Google Home or your smartphone. As long as you remember the code, you'll never get locked out, which is why this is one of the best smart locks you can get that doesn't need a key.
The Assure Lock is a smart, well-designed lock that has a minimalist front panel with a touchpad. This lock is is available in three finishes: Satin Nickel, Oil-Rubbed Bronze and Polished Brass, all of which have a smart, clean design that works well on a painted or stained-wood door. They are more minimalist than designer, though.
The keypad lights up when you touch it, but it does not offer a manual key option. It's a chatty little device, offering beeps and voice prompts that tell you what's going on. Touch the keypad, and it chirps when the keypad lights up. Take too long to enter a keycode, and it primly announces, "Time expired."
One thing that we did notice is that it often took a couple of touches to wake up the touch screen. To save battery, the lock goes into a standby mode after a few minutes without any interaction, to be awoken by a touch on the touchpad. This doesn't always work, though, as we found that it often needed a couple of touches or a palm touch to wake up.
Setup & Installation
We found the installation process to be simple and straightforward, taking about 25 minutes on a standard wood, exterior door. The rear side of the lock is a large case that holds four AA batteries and the locking mechanism. It has an attractive, rounded design but takes up quite a lot of space on the back of the door.
A neat feature called DoorSense uses a small magnet attached to (or embedded in) the door frame to detect when the bolt has slid into place, locking the door. That means the Assure can detect if someone has triggered the lock but left the door ajar. It can't automatically close the door for you, but this feature provides a useful reassurance that the lock has worked when you trigger it remotely.
The lock can store up to 50 key codes on its own, but the addition of the August module increases this to 250, which should be enough for anyone. These can be in the form of keys stored in the app or as key codes only. Either way, they can be set to allow access only at certain times, on certain days or for one use.
But what happens if the batteries inside the lock die while you're outside? You can connect a 9-volt battery to two terminals on the bottom of the keypad to give a temporary power boost to the lock — enough to get you inside.
Smart Home Compatibility
Because it links to August's system, the Yale Assure SL can take advantage of all of that app's smart home compatibility, which includes Alexa, Google Home, HomeKit, Amazon Key and SmartThings.
Those looking for a keyless smart lock will find a lot to like in the Yale Assure SL. It has an attractive exterior design and works with all the major smart home platforms. We wish it had the same security feature as the Kwikset Obsidian (which has you press extra digits before entering your code, so other people can't guess at your code). But overall, the Assure SL is the best key-free touch-screen deadbolt.