Padlock: Review & Recommendations

Welcome to our big padlock test 2020, where we present you all the padlocks we have tested in detail. We’ve put together detailed background information and also added a summary of customer reviews on the web.

We want to make your purchase decision easier and help you to find the best padlock for you.

You can also find answers to frequently asked questions in our guide. If available, we also offer you interesting test videos. Furthermore, you will also find some important information on this page that you should pay attention to if you want to buy a padlock.

The most important facts in brief

  • With the help of a padlock, you can protect valuables or doors from theft and unauthorized pulling.
  • Padlocks basically differ in their design. Among the most common types are the classic model, the combination lock and the discus lock.
  • The higher the shackle thickness and the higher the quality of the material, the more stable the lock. You should also consider the design and security level when buying.

Padlock Test: Editor’s Favourites

  • The best aluminium padlock
  • The best padlock with high security
  • The best padlock with 3-digit number combination
  • The best padlock with 4-digit numeric code
  • The best classic padlock

The best aluminium padlock

The ABUS 50871 is a padlock encased in black plastic. The corrosion protection and the double locked steel shackle make it particularly secure. The padlock from Abus has a shackle thickness of 6.5 millimetres and is available in black.

Due to the plastic coating of this model, the lock is especially protected against scratches. The metal inside is made of aluminium.

For this reason the lock is stainless and can also be used outdoors. In addition, the surface is protected against scratches. The model has been assigned security level 5.

The best padlock with high security

The discus lock of Burg Wächter has a particularly high breaking open protection due to the thickness of the shackle of 8 millimetres and its design. The lock is particularly suitable for valuable objects with a high theft potential.

The discus lock has a disc-shaped lock body and a circular bolt or shackle. Because the shackle is largely enclosed by the solid body, it provides a small contact surface for cutting tools and is therefore more difficult to break open. The padlock of Burg Wächter is made of stainless steel. The steel shackle is hardened and additionally chrome-plated.

The best padlock with 3-digit number combination

The ABUS 9345 is ideal for securing medium-value objects with an average risk of theft. The owner can set a three-digit number combination to open the lock.

The most common model is the classic padlock, which is operated with a key. The operation of the combination lock is different. With this model, the owner can adjust the lock by means of a usually self-determined number of digits.

The advantage of this variant is that no key is required for opening. By passing on the secret code, several users can operate the lock. The model has been assigned security level 4.

The best padlock with 4-digit numeric code

This padlock is made of stainless steel. Therefore it is suitable for indoor and outdoor use. The weight is 147g. Setting or redefining your personal secret combination is easy to use.

Due to the combination of four numbers the padlock is harder to crack than the 3-digit combination locks.

The best classic padlock

The castle guard Quadro 222 30 SB is a gold-coloured classic padlock. The set of 4 padlocks is available in different shackle thicknesses. It is one of the most common models and can be used in almost all areas.

The castle guard Quadro 222 has the classic design of a padlock. The set is available in the shackle thicknesses 3.5 mm, 5.0 mm and 6.0 mm. The padlock of Burg Wächter is made of solid brass. The steel shackle is hardened and double locked.

Advisor: Questions to consider before you buy a padlock

What is a padlock and how does it work?

With a padlock, also called a padlock, you can secure certain valuables against theft or theft. To protect these objects, the padlock is not built in, but is attached to the shackle attached to the lock.
Frequently, chests, lockers, crates or even cellar doors are protected with various types of padlocks or armoured bolts. Depending on the purpose and application of the lock, different designs are suitable.
One of the most common designs is the classic model of padlock, where a locking cylinder is built into the lock. A key is required to lock the lock.
Another variant is the combination lock, which can be opened by means of a multi-digit number combination, usually individually determined by the user.

Did you know that a combination lock with three wheels, which can display the numbers 0 to 9, has 1,000 different combinations of numbers? With four wheels there are even 10’000 possible number sequences.

In addition to these models, there is also the so-called discus lock or block lock, which, due to their shape, offer greater stability and a smaller attack surface to break open.

Normally the lock can only be opened with the keys supplied. However, many manufacturers offer to install the same lock cylinder in the different locks on request. This means that several versions of a padlock can be operated with the same key.

For this reason, you do not need to store several keys when padlocks are locked together. The situation is different for models with different locks. Each lock can only be unlocked with the matching key.

The padlock consists of a cylinder lock with key or can be opened by numerical code.

Where can I buy a padlock?

Basically you have the possibility to buy a padlock either directly in a specialist shop or online via the Internet. Both variants have advantages and disadvantages. A specialist shop offers you the opportunity to get advice on the spot. You can look at the different models and compare them with each other.
Example locations would be DIY stores like:

Bauhaus
Obi
Conrad
Hornbach

The disadvantage of the retailer, however, is the limited choice and, in addition, usually higher costs. Therefore, online purchasing is highly recommended due to the large selection of offers. Testimonials and reviews can also help you with your choice.

Orders on the Internet can be placed directly with manufacturers, or with well-known online shops such as:

  • amazon.de
  • ebay.de
  • Abus
  • Keeper of the castle
  • master lock
  • PacSafe

How much does a padlock cost?

Due to the large variety of offers, the price varies from castle to castle. Padlocks are available from just a few euros. On average, the costs are between ten and twenty euros. In most cases, online orders are cheaper than buying from a specialist shop.
However, the price basically depends on the equipment, the manufacturer and the material. For example, padlocks made of brass or aluminium are cheaper than models with a lock body made of hardened steel. For more valuable items, it is advisable to acquire a higher quality model. These can cost up to over 100 euros.

Decision: What types of padlocks are there, and which one is right for you?

Basically one can distinguish between three types of padlocks

  • Padlock with key
  • Padlock with number combination
  • Electronic padlock

The modern variety of padlocks does not make it easier to choose the right lock. The decision as to which type of lock you choose depends on what you want to protect against loss or theft. All three types have advantages and also disadvantages, which we will explain to you in the following so that your valuables are optimally secured in the future.

How does a padlock with key work and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

The classic padlock with key is the best known method of protecting valuables from loss. The bolt lock and shackle lock have established themselves as subspecies. The special feature of both subtypes is that the bolt of the bolt lock is straight and is hidden by the housing.

Advantages

Key-lock principle is the most common method
Multiple keys for security or to share access
Wide price range, many models on the market and long tradition
Can be used indoor and outdoor

Disadvantages

Unlocking key may be lost or broken off
Keyhole may be blocked or rusted
Keyhole holds danger of being broken open by wire or similar

In the stirrup bullet, the bolt is formed into a circular ring. However, the basic function of all padlocks with key follows the key-lock principle. The locking mechanism of the lock is released and opened with a suitable counterpart.

How does a padlock with number combination work and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

The padlock with a combination of numbers can be opened, as the name suggests, with a mostly three- or four-digit numerical code consisting of the numbers one to nine. The combination of the numbers can be determined completely individually.

Advantages

High security through individual number combination
Carrying a key is unnecessary
Can be used indoor and outdoor

Disadvantages

The combination of numbers can be forgotten
Number fields can hook or damage
Good lighting conditions and vision necessary to recognize numbers

The combination lock thus dispenses with the classic key-lock principle and eliminates the need to carry a key. The mechanism of the combination lock is highly complex. The digits are usually set by turning and snapping in. When all four digits are correctly engaged, the lock opens.

How does an electronic padlock work and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

The latest variation of the padlock is the electronic padlock, also called Smart lock. This type of lock is usually powered by accumulator or batteries. The owner can connect to the lock via Bluetooth and open it with the supplied app from the manufacturer.

Advantages

High degree of personalization available
High protection through encrypted programming
Opening process with light feedback: Better visibility in the dark
Simple connection via App and Bluetooth possible

Disadvantages

Is prone to technical problems and software errors
Limited outdoor use due to weather conditions
Battery replacement or regular recharging necessary

It is also possible to assign access authorizations with a share function. The opening process of the lock is usually supported by light feedback in the form of LEDs and signals when the lock has been successfully unlocked or locked.

Purchase criteria: You can compare and rate padlocks based on these factors

To help you decide which padlock suits you best, we would like to show you the criteria you can use to compare and evaluate padlocks. We explain each criterion in detail so that you can make the best decision with enough information and a secure feeling.

In principle, the criteria are as follows:

  • Type
  • Colour
  • Dimensions
  • shackle thickness
  • Security level
  • Material
  • Special features

Type

Padlocks are characterised by their versatile design. The most common models are the classic padlock, the combination lock and the discus lock. Depending on the purpose and application, each form has certain characteristics as well as advantages and disadvantages.

The classic padlock is the most common model and has a curved shackle and a rectangular lock body. It is important to check the dimensions of the shackle before buying. The lock is operated with the supplied keys.

The operation of the combination lock is different. With this model, the owner can open the lock by means of a multi-digit combination of numbers, usually determined by himself. The advantage of this variant is that no key is required for opening the lock.

The discus lock has a disc-shaped lock body and a circular bolt or shackle. Because the shackle is largely enclosed by the solid body, it provides a small contact surface for cutting tools and is therefore more difficult to break open.

Colour

Most padlocks have a silver or gold color. In almost all cases the shackle of the lock is made of silver coloured steel. The colour of the lock body varies from model to model. More striking colours such as red or yellow are available, but also simpler colours such as black or grey.

Dimensions

The dimensions indicate the length, height and width of a padlock. You can use these values to measure which lock is suitable for the item you want to protect. On average, a discus or block lock is larger than a combination or padlock.

shackle thickness

The stirrup thickness describes the diameter of the stirrup and is given in millimetres. The cylindrical shackle of padlocks is usually made of steel. For greater protection, many models are additionally hardened and chrome-plated.

The stronger and larger the stirrup, the longer it can withstand a saw or cutting tool such as bolt cutters. On average, the thickness of the stirrup is five millimetres. However, special models from 2.8 to 25 mm are also available.

Security level

The highest security level is level 10 with maximum security. Padlocks differ not only in their dimensions and colours but also in their security levels.

However, this criterion should not be the sole focus of attention. Locks for which no security level is specified can also protect the object or door properly.

It is important that you do not take a lock, which is only made of light material. Otherwise this will not leave a good impression on potential thieves.

“Expert Security Security
Discus locks are particularly secure with their small shackle opening. The special version of the padlocks can hardly be broken open. Like the classic lock, they are opened with a key.
(Source:expert-security.de)

Material

The material of a padlock provides information about security and stability. In most cases padlocks are made of aluminium, steel or brass. Although these variants are cheaper, they have less security protection. For higher protection, models made of hardened steel are recommended.

Due to the higher manufacturing costs of stainless steel, these models are usually more expensive, but offer protection against corrosion and weathering. To protect the lock from scratches, some products are coated with plastic.

Special features

Many padlocks have extras and additional functions so that a suitable model can be found for every application. One of the most important features is corrosion protection.

Most locks are made of stainless steel and are therefore protected against changing weather conditions. This is particularly important if the padlock is to be located in the open air.

Another possible special feature is the fact that the keys are equipped with LEDs. In this way the lock lights up and can be seen better in the dark.

A special protection device is the drilling protection by means of a hardened metal plate, which is mounted directly in front of the locking cylinder. This plate rotates when a drill is applied and thus prevents or hinders the drilling

Trivia: Worth knowing facts about padlock

Padlock as a sign of love

More and more often so-called love locks can be seen on the railings of bridges or fences. Although this type of lock has no practical function, it symbolizes love and cohesion of lovers or couples.

Love locks are available in different colours and shapes. Also romantic motives or individual engravings can be added to the lock.

Alternatives as closure option

There are numerous locking mechanisms to protect you from burglary or theft. For optimal protection, the choice of security technology depends primarily on the object. For example, folding or U-locks are suitable for bicycles. These can chain the bicycle to nearby fences or poles.

To prevent unauthorised access to suitcases or bags, it is advisable to have a suitcase lock fitted as an alternative. These are attached directly to the lock of the suitcase. Another alternative are espagnolette locks for securing furniture such as display cases or cupboards. The lock is screwed and integrated into the piece of furniture.

Did you know that digital padlocks can be opened and locked when you are in a completely different place?
In addition, the access rights enabled by the Share function can also be temporarily limited.