schlage smart lock not unlocking

Is your Schlage smart lock not unlocking? That will render the whole point of having a smart lock unbearable.

Fortunately, most of the time, the situation is fixable by doing simple procedures.

A Schlage smart lock that does not unlock can return to work by changing its batteries, resetting it, updating its firmware, or inserting its original user code. Other methods include using physical methods to release the latch or inspect if the lock has entered lock override mode and vacation mode.

As you can see, there is no reason to panic once you check that your Schlage lock has become locked.

Most of the causes involve software malfunctioning, and we will teach you how to work around those.

Schlage Smart Lock Not Unlocking – Reasons

reason schlage not unlocking

Sometimes the Schlage smart lock won’t unlock. That can happen for varying reasons and always unexpectedly.

Before we proceed to the most common fixes, we must learn what the causes are:

Low Battery

Once the internal batteries are low, it is common for certain functions not to function through.

Bad Programming

Since the smart lock requires programming, there is a possibility that the current programming is interfering with the ability to unlock.

Firmware Issue

Smart devices that rely on firmware might get defective due to some internal bug.

Connection Issue

If you try to unlock it remotely, you must ensure your network and the devices connected to it are fine.

Physical Obstructions

A warped door or a misaligned latch will prevent the smart lock from doing its job.

How To Fix Schlage Smart Lock Unlocking Issues

how fix schlage smart lock not unlocking

Most issues that prevent your Schlage smart lock from unlocking have to do with programming or electricity.

Thus, the door is not physically stuck, meaning the solutions are easy to go by.

1. Replace The Batteries

One of the most common causes of the Schlage Smart Lock failing to unlock is the batteries being low.

Since the Schlage locks use non-rechargeable batteries, you must buy new ones.

replace lock batteries

To ensure you buy the correct batteries, check the lock’s voltage specs and the original battery’s physical fit.

Then, after you have the new batteries, do the following:

  1. Locate the battery cover on the inside of the lock;
  2. Use a small screwdriver to gently pry it off;
  3. Take out the old batteries;
  4. Insert new batteries into the battery compartment (align positive and negative tips correctly);
  5. Press the Schlage button on the keypad to check that the lock is working properly;
  6. Snap the battery cover back into place.

When taking the old batteries out, you must watch out for damaged batteries and damaged battery compartments.

Ensure that all is fine before you put in new batteries. Also, don’t mix old and new batteries, even if one of the old batteries looks like it can work a bit more.

Alert: Don’t use rechargeable batteries, as their electrical specs differ from those Schlage recommends.

Solution #2: Factory Reset The Schlage Lock

factory reset schlage lock

When the Schlage’s batteries are fine, a common cause that will make the device’s functions go crazy is a firmware issue.

Firmware issues can be solved in two manners: 1) resetting the lock or 2) updating the firmware. 

First, check how you can reset, which is the easiest.

  1. Open the battery cover and take out the battery;
  2. Press the Schlage button on the keypad;
  3. Reinsert the battery while holding down the Schlage button for ten more seconds.
  4. Release the Schlage button.

While you do the steps above, you must pay attention to the blinking light. It must start red, then go blue, and then finally stop. 

Note: After a factory reset, all your programmed codes should be gone. That is a good way to check if the reset was successful. After that, you will have to program all codes again.

Solution #3: Update Your Lock’s Firmware

As already said in the topic above, one possible solution can consist of updating the lock’s firmware.

update the lock firmware

Even though it won’t require you to reprogram everything afterward, it can also take some work.

Here is how you must proceed:

  1. Download the Allegion Engage app;
  2. Log into it;
  3. Go to the “Sites” screen;
  4. Select your property;
  5. Select the unit (the malfunctioning lock);
  6. The bottom of the screen must display “connected”;
  7. Select “Update firmware”;

Keep in mind that the Allegion Engage app has partnered with Schlage. Even though the brand does not make it, it works with many of its locks.

If your lock cannot connect to the app, it is because it doesn’t use Bluetooth or Wi-Fi but exclusively Zigbee or Z-wave. If those criteria are not met, performing a reset is more guaranteed.

Note: Updating the firmware is only possible when the lock is still responsive. It also might require you to add the lock to the app before its signs of malfunction. 

4. Open By Physical Intervention

open with physical intervention

If the smart lock is not opening with an app command or the programming codes, you can open it physically.

Of course, you will later need to assess what is going on.

However, there are some emergency measures you can put into practice:

  • Find the lock’s key and use it to open the lock;
  • If you don’t have the key anymore or it is not around, you can insert a paperclip into the small hole (close to the keyhole), as it should release the latch and open the lock;

Alternative Emergency Procedure

A third emergency method to open your lock is a bit riskier, so you must understand enough about electricity not to damage the lock’s inner components.

Here it is:

  1. Remove the lock’s back panel;
  2. Locate the two terminals;
  3. Touch the negative and positive terminals to an AA battery;
  4. It will create a current ability to release the latch.

Of course, the third method supposes that your lock’s electric circuits still function well enough.

5. Check The Original User Code

check original user code

Schlage locks work with many codes, and we have already talked about how the device’s internal firmware might fail occasionally.

In that case, it is safe to assume that some bug has made the lock forget your customized user code.

With that suspicion in mind, do the following:

  1. Grab your Schlage lock’s original package;
  2. Find the user guide;
  3. Look for the user code (it is the code used to program the lock for the first time);
  4. Insert the user code.

Did it work? If it did, then we recommend the following: 

  • Assess the lock’s physical installation by checking the lock’s fit and the electrical components because electrical malfunction might be causing the lock to reset by itself;
  • Reset the lock and reprogram all the codes you’ve had before.

6. Inspect If Lock Override Is Active

inspect lock override

Lock override is a feature that will not allow any codes to open the door.

It is a good function for when you are away from home and don’t want people to try and enter your house by forcing random codes.

Do the following:

  1. Remove the battery cover;
  2. Carefully take the batteries out;
  3. Check the override slot and turn it from “normal” to “lockout” (use a flathead screwdriver to turn the switch);
  4. Reconnect the batteries and cover.
Tip: Sometimes you might have activated the mode accidentally, or the lock glitched and entered that mode without notice. The steps above will work regardless.

7. Exit Vacation Mode

exit the vacation mode

Another mode that might be preventing your lock from unlocking is the vacation mode.

Fortunately, making the lock exit vacation mode is effortless:

  1. Go to the keypad;
  2. Type your current programming code;
  3. Wait for a green light to blink and a beep.

Your lock is ready to be used again.

What We Learned

Why is the Schlage smart lock not unlocking? The main reasons are probably linked to the device’s firmware malfunctioning.

Other times, some physical malfunction causes the lock to enter lock override mode or reset itself without your knowledge.

However, there is a way of working around all of those.

Read Next: How To Program Schlage Lock?

Nicole B