Residential Lock Colors

What color lock do I need?

The color of the lock is referred to as the finish. An important factor in determining finish is climate. Salty air, corrosive vapors, or constant high humidity may have a damaging effect on metal finishes. How long a finish will hold up will be influenced by the base metal and finishing process as well as the different methods of cleaning and care. For example, a non-clear coated finish should not be cleaned with soaps or solvents whereas a clear coated finish may be cleaned with a mild, non-abrasive soap and buffed lightly with a clean cloth. It’s best to check with the manufacturer to obtain the recommended cleaning instructions for your hardware. Finishes will vary slightly between manufacturers and you may even see finish differences between a lock and its cylinder, strike plate, or screws.

Use high quality finishes

Some manufacturers now have a bright brass finish which may be referred to as “Lifetime”. There are differences between the manufacturers on the warranty of the finish, but the “Lifetime” is generally 25 years or more. Although similar to the 605 BRIGHT BRASS finish, each manufacturer does have their own finish number designation. Be sure to specify the “Lifetime” or “Anti-tarnish” finish when ordering hardware. You should use this type of hardware on your front door. Whether you are selling the home next week or in ten years, the front door is usually the first door seen by prospective buyers. Don’t scrimp on the front door lock. Get high quality locks and if you are going with a brass finish then get the “Lifetime” finish. Nickel and pewter finishes are popular these days as well.

Lock Color Designations

There are numbers, the 600-Series, designated by the Builders Hardware Manufacturers Association (BHMA) for each of the finishes. Generally these numbers are the standard when referring to lock finishes. Some manufacturers still use the old U.S. equivalent code. The following descriptive list will contain the BHMA code, followed by the nearest U.S. equivalent code designation in parenthesis ().

  • 605 (3) BRIGHT BRASS, Clear Coated
  • 606 (4) SATIN BRASS, Clear Coated
  • 609 (5) ANTIQUE BRASS, Satin Brass, Blackened, Satin Relieved, Clear Coated
  • 610 (7) BRIGHT BRASS, Blackened, Bright Relieved, Clear Coated
  • 611 (9) BRIGHT BRONZE, Clear Coated
  • 613 (10B) OIL RUBBED BRONZE, Oxidized Satin Bronze, Oil Rubbed, No Coating (called a living finish as it will wear and change in appearance over time)
  • 619 (15) SATIN NICKEL, Satin Nickel Plated, Clear Coated
  • 612 (10) SATIN BRONZE, Clear Coated
  • 616 (11) ANTIQUE BRONZE, Satin Bronze, Blackened, Satin Relieved, Clear Coated
  • 626 (26D) SATIN CHROMIUM PLATED, No Coating
  • 629 (32) BRIGHT STAINLESS STEEL, No Coating
  • 630 (32D) SATIN STAINLESS STEEL, No Coating
  • 620 (15A) ANTIQUE PEWTER, Satin Nickel Plated, Blackened, Satin Relieved, Clear Coated
  • 625 (26) BRIGHT CHROMIUM PLATED, No Coating


  • We sell, service, & install locks, doors & door related hardware, closed circuit television (CCTV), video intercoms, telephone entry systems, and a complete line of access control systems, both mechanical and electronic. (audit trail may be available). We are a Medeco Service Center.


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