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Installing the August Smart Lock is simpler than you'd think

Adding a smart lock to your home might seem like a major undertaking, but it's actually pretty easy. Here's how to install the August Smart Lock.

Chris Monroe/CNET
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Smart locks come in all shapes and sizes. Some models have their own deadbolt hardware, while others, like the second-generation Apple HomeKit-enabled August Smart Lock, retrofit to a wide variety of standard deadbolts. Replacing a deadbolt -- or just the locking mechanism that rotates an existing deadbolt in and out of position -- is fairly simple. But August's Bluetooth version is the easiest smart lock installation we've encountered to-date.

Here's how to

install August's second-gen Smart Lock in five easy steps

:

1. Make sure your deadbolt is compatible.

This may seem obvious, but you'll want to make sure your deadbolt is compatible with the August Smart Lock before you buy. If it's a standard deadbolt with a thumb-latch and separate door handle below, it will likely work. Still, here's a complete list of the deadbolts that work with this lock.

2. Remove the thumb-latch on your old lock.

In most cases, the thumb-latch, otherwise known as that hunk of hardware you turn to lock and unlock your door from the inside, is secured to the door with a couple of long screws. Grab a screwdriver, remove the screws and then remove the entire thumb-latch. Note: You might want to hold the key hole on the exterior side of your door while removing the thumb-latch, since it could shift during this step. Another option is to cover the key hole with some duct tape -- that way, you can feel confident that it won't move around.

3. Attach the August mounting plate to your deadbolt.

Since August's lock is a bit larger and heftier than your old lock, a mounting plate is included with your purchase. This extra piece of hardware allows you to attach the Smart Lock with ease. Simply line up the mounting plate with the deadbolt and use the original lock screws you just removed to secure the plate to the door.

4. Attach the adapter to the back of the lock and lift the wing latches.

August also provides three adapters that link the Smart Lock with the tail piece of your existing deadbolt. The specific adapter you use will depend on the brand of your smart lock. I have a Kwikset deadbolt, so I attached the corresponding adapter to the back of the smart lock and then raised the latches on either side of the Smart Lock. Note: Check out August's installation guide to see what adapter you'll need.

5. Connect the lock to the mounting plate and flip down the wing latches.

Install the Smart Lock over the mounting plate -- you'll feel it snap into place. Lower the wing latches and that's it, your August Smart Lock is fully installed.

For more details on how to configure the app post-install, including remote Siri control, check out my full review of the HomeKit-enabled August Smart Lock.