8 Ways to Lock a Sliding Barn Door (Foolproof Methods)

If you’re reading this, chances are you have a sliding barn door. And if you do, that means one thing: it’s not properly locked. Barn doors are not made to lock and there aren’t many solutions out there. They can only be locked from the outside and once the door has been opened, they get unlocked again automatically.

This blog lists the ways in which you can prevent your sliding barn door to open – without installing an alarm or having someone guard it all day long.

We’ll be covering some ways in which you can lock and secure single or double sliding barn door(s) and which locks to use in different situations. With sliding barn doors being a bit different compared to normal swinging doors, we’ll explain exactly how to get the job done.

How to Lock a Sliding Barn Door

A simple and effective way of locking your barn door is by fitting a hook and eye lock onto it. A single-cylinder rim lock helps for locking the door from the inside or the outside. A simple latch style lock can also work very well to lock up the sliding door.

Unfortunately, most sliding barn doors don’t come preinstalled with locks and you’ll have to sort that out yourself. Let’s go through the best methods of locking your sliding barn door now.

Use A Hook And Eye Lock

Hook And Eye Lock

This is a method that works great for when you’re in an area where you want some privacy, not only for single sliding doors but also for double doors. Hook and eye locks are effortless to install without any specialized tools and fit almost any area or angle in which the door is fitted.

Amazon offers quite a range of hook and eye locks. I found this one to be very durable as it comes with not only two but for holes four screws on each side. This means a more stable product and a more secure area as it can not be easily pried out of the wall or door.

One thing to do with this method of locking a door is to make sure there are no gaps between the wall and door when it’s shut as anyone can easily unlatch it if there is.

So make sure when you install it or if it’s being installed that it’s perfect with no gaps before fitting the hook and eye.

Here’s a great range of hook and eye locks that can work for a sliding barn door.


Use A 90 Degree Flip Latch

90 Degree Flip Latch

These latches are perfect for single sliding barn doors and are mainly used when you’re on the inside of a room like a bathroom or a bedroom. There’s no need to worry whether or not this latch will fit a left or right sliding door as it’s designed to work both ways.

Most of these products come with screws that are small or short. I suggest that you replace those with longer screws for more strength. If you do this, keep the thickness of the door in mind as you don’t want to land up with them sticking out the other side.

As you’ll see here on Amazon, the JQK flip latch it’s not your ordinary flip latch as it has a mechanism on the end where the latch goes, to lock it into place so that the latch can’t be moved after it’s in place just for that little extra security.


Fit A Single Cylinder Rim Lock

Single Cylinder Rim Lock

These locks require a bit more effort and tools to install so you might want to hire a professional to install it for you which might cost a few extra dollars but is well worth it, as the single-cylinder lock offers you a great deal of security.

It’s easy enough to use latches and hooks on the inside of a sliding barn door to lock it but when it comes to locking from the outside of the door, we recommend using the single-cylinder rim lock. You can lock it with a key from the outside when you’re leaving. When you’re in the room, you can simply turn the lock with your fingers to lock it.

If you’re not sure how these types of locks look or work, here is one I found on Amazon that will work for both single and double sliding barn doors and looks like a good product that’ll work to lock your sliding barn door(s) from the inside and outside with ease.


Add A Masterlock Hasp And Padlock

Masterlock Hasp And Padlock

A more affordable method is to use a hasp and padlock. This method is almost as secure as any other method, once again you’re to replace the shorter screws that come with the product with longer ones.

To install the hasp, you’ll need a few things such as a marker to make marks for where you’ll drill the pilot holes for the screws so you don’t split any of the wood when installing the locking eye and the hasp arm to the barn door(s) and/or wall, a drill for the pilot holes and a screwdriver.

Before you fit the product onto the door you’ll need to make sure that it fits flat on the surface and leaves no gaps as this will prevent thieves from prying it off the door(s)

Here’s how the hasp locks look on Amazon.


Alise Flip Latch Double Sliding Doors

Alise Flip Latch Double Sliding Doors

This is one of our favorite ways to lock double sliding barn doors.

It’s made of 3mm thick stainless steel and doesn’t take up much space either. Attach each half to the center of each door so that the locking holes of the latch meet. Then you can put the padlock of your choice through the locking hole.

Check Alise Flip Latch out here on Amazon to see the wide variety available.

These are some strong padlocks that you can use with this latch.


Homode Barn Door Locks

Homode Barn Door Locks

This is a sliding barn door locking system that’s designed more to give you some privacy in your room or bathroom as opposed to keeping thieves out.

I say this because in most cases, someone will be able to stick a flat object through the gap of the barn door and lift this lock upwards to unlock it.

Having said this, we love this lock for what it offers.

A simple and convenient way of keeping your door closed in case one of your family members tries to barge in unannounced.

The slot is placed on the door and the triangular looking piece is screwed into the doorway frame. Then you can swivel the triangular piece back and forth into the slot on the door to lock and unlock it.

For a better picture of how this works, have a look at the illustrations here on Amazon.


Install The Door On The Inside Of The Room

This will ensure that there will not be any tampering with the rail of the sliding doors, it also makes things easier for when you want to fix any type of lock on the sliding door rails.

Don’t get me wrong, there’ll always be a way of breaking in, and sliding barn doors are limited in their design when it comes to security but having the sliding door on the inside of the room will help to make them a little more secure.


Secure Your Sliding Doors On Your Barn

Secure Your Sliding Doors On Your Barn

Barn doors can easily be locked with a flip-lock which you can find here on Amazon. These latches are especially good for sliding doors on your barn outside because they’re so strong and you can use a huge padlock to keep it locked.


Conclusion: How to Lock a Sliding Barn Door

A sliding barn door is a practical alternative to a commonplace ‘sliding glass door’. You can use them as an entry/exit solution that is attractive, sleek, and sturdy, and protect your assets.

Like most people who want to get barn doors for their homes discover, barn doors do not come with locks on them as most standard doors do. This means we have to fit a lock to it ourselves or hire a reputable person to do so.

Nonetheless, a barn door can be secured with a few different types of locks as explained throughout this article.

Sometimes it can be challenging depending on the layout of the room, what type of barn door you want to install in your house, and what type of material the door is made of, wood or steel, or even both.

Just keep in mind that if you do use sliding barn doors in your house, they’ll be less secure than standard doors. They are extremely beneficial with the fact that they don’t use as much space to open and close but if you want to lock them, the methods in this article are your best bet.

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Edward Clark
Edward Clark, with 15 years of hands-on experience, is a distinguished expert in smart locks and home security systems. He holds a B.S. in Computer Engineering with a focus on Cybersecurity and is a member of the Electronic Security Association (ESA). His credentials include certifications from ASIS International, IAPP, CompTIA, NTS, and CEDIA. With expertise spanning risk management, electronic security, and data privacy, he's been featured in The Guardian, Forbes, Wired, and more. Edward's mission: guiding individuals toward secure homes using the latest technologies.

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