Can You Lock A Barn Door From Both Sides? (You’d Love To Know)

Can You Lock A Barn Door From Both Sides

Are you planning to install a barn door in your home? Before making your purchase, there are lots of things that you need to know, perhaps its distinct features and even the cost of materials. Or you may be having questions like can you lock a barn door from both sides?

Through our article, you get to learn about this specific aspect of barn doors so you can easily decide whether this type of door is the right fit for your needs. So, let’s get into the details and comprehend the ins and outs of barn doors.

What are barn doors?

Barn doors are quite different from traditional doors. One of the remarkable features of a barn door is its positioning and usage of materials. Unlike common doors, these are generally hung from tracks with two rollers that are attached at the top section of the door.

This kind of arrangement covers the doorway while still creating gaps between the sides of the door and the wall. Often than not, barn doors are associated with swinging doors because of the way it is positioned. However, barn doors are distinct as these do not make use of hinges as well as a door jamb.

Because of its special features, barn doors have come a long way―literally! This door has always been popular in rural areas with farms and barns. But over the years, these have been widely acknowledged in residential buildings due to their space-saving elements, not to mention, their rustic charms.

Is it possible to lock a barn door from both sides
Image Credit: aplaceforus

Is it possible to lock a barn door from both sides?

A pivotal question when it comes to owning a barn door is privacy and security. And if you’re wondering if it’s possible to lock a barn door from both sides, the answer is yes―as long as you follow the right positioning and capitalize on vital tools like locks and latches.

Aside from that, there are several things that you need to consider to ensure that you lock this kind of door on both sections―from the outside and from the inside. These include knowing that barn doors have different types according to their functionality. There are single barn doors and double sliding barn doors.

Barn door panels and designs also vary, from glass to paneled and flush. And in terms of the locking mechanisms, there are actually a series of locks that are specifically designed for barn doors. You can find them in stores that trade in barn doors. Some hardware shops also sell these locks.

To further understand the locking mechanisms, we will discuss the different locks in accordance with their position―from the outside and from the inside. This way, you’ll have a better grasp on how to choose the type of lock for your needs.

1. Locking the door from the outside

Using the appropriate lock is crucial to guarantee that the door is securely closed. So, in this section, we will first cover the process of how to lock the door from the outside. A door’s locking mechanism is truly remarkable, and there are two major options that you can utilize for your barn door.

  • Using a key

The classic way of locking the door from the outside is to use a key. The good thing about locking a barn door outside is that you can make use of the normal key and lock combination. These are readily available in the market, so nothing to worry about.

  • Without a key

Keyless entry has been growing in popularity nowadays. This high-tech advancement not just locks the door but also makes it easier for you to add a certain level of security to your place. With this modern solution, you simply need a passcode to enter―no traditional key whatsoever.

Since it significantly depends on numbers, you need to create a secure passcode that is known to your family members. Don’t give out this key information to anyone to avoid theft and other accidents.

Locking the door from the inside
Image Credit: rosewooddevelopmentcompany

2. Locking the door from the inside

Now, this is the challenging part, locking the door from the inside. But fret not because there are lots of options at hand.

  • Hook and eye latch

A barn sliding door that is located either in the bathroom or in your bedroom is best complemented with a hook and eye latch. This simple lock design spells out convenience at its finest while also providing enough privacy inside the room.

When locking the door, you just position the hook into the latch, and vice versa to unlock. Although this isn’t the most durable option, it’s definitely a great choice.

Additionally, most hook and eye latches are manufactured from steel and sometimes solid iron. The rustic vibes of these materials make them a perfect match for the wooden charms of a sliding barn door.

  • 90° Flip latch

The next option would be the perfect choice if you want safety above all. The 90° flip latch securely locks the door on one side, either the right or the left area, depending on your choice. To do so, you just lift the swinging bar right into the fitted square attachment.

Because of its features, this type of lock is typically used inside. Since this kind of lock focuses more on security, a 90° flip locking latch often originates from heavy-duty stainless steel. And of course, this particular material is strong and very dependable.

  • Pocket door lock with pull

If you want a barn door latch that is suitable for either right-handed or left-handed doors, the pocket door lock with a pull is the answer to your needs. This particular lock is typically used for pocket doors, although it’s also beneficial for barn doors because of its structure.

  • Cane floor bolt

With unique styles and improved security, this lock hardware hits two birds with one stone. Cane floor bolts are widely used to keep the door lock on both sides. Here, you’d see the bolt lock attached to the door. And to lock it, you simply move the door into the hole that is punctured into the floor.

How to improve the security of my barn door
Image Credit: vikingdoorways
  • Teardrop latch

Part of the many barn door lock options is none other than the tear-drop latch or simply tear-drop. Compared to the previous options, this is a bit stylish with a triangle-shaped design.

To lock or unlock the sliding barn door, you just drop the piece inside its corresponding slot. So, this looks like a part of the latch is attached to the door while the other is linked to the door jamb. Because of their functionality, teardrop door latches are also popular in bedrooms and bathrooms.

  • Mortise latch 

If you want a simple yet secure lock, then a mortise latch is recommended. This lock is highly durable with a solid knob, hence a favorite for closet doors, kitchens, and bathrooms. However, the mechanism of the lock means that the door can be bolted from the inside but it should be locked from the outside.

How to improve the security of my barn door?

Although the locking mechanisms mentioned earlier are top-notch, you can still elevate the security of your home. To improve the safety aspect while you’re away, try to add a padlock. This helps in securing the room from any unauthorized access.

Meanwhile, using a metal bar or a wooden piece is another option if you’re inside the room. Station this along the bottom track of the barn door to serve as an extra barrier. Surely, this makes it more difficult for intruders and burglars to enter your home.

Why are there gaps between the edges?

Along with the locking concerns, many also wonder if the gaps between the edges can be fixed. Absolutely! However, you need to take note that a slight gap between the door and the wall is still important.

The reason for this is that if there is no minimal gap, the door will directly come into contact with the wall. As a result, it may damage both materials. Therefore, instead of completely closing the gaps, you can fill them in.

1. Take into account the right installation. 

Installing the door properly is one of the key ways to minimize the gaps, either at the top or on the sides. According to the experts, you need to make sure that the door is stationed to be at least a couple of inches wider than the opening.

2. Utilize weather stripping. 

Another significant method to close the gaps is to make use of weather stripping. This material helps in sealing air leaks around the door. At times, some use a small wood to minimize the gap. The wood is positioned on the inside section, facing the edge of the door.

3. Add an expanding foam tape.

With an adhesive on one section, this compressed foam strip bungs up the gaps between the barn door and the wall. Conveniently, this kind of tape varies in thickness, so you just pick the right measurement and stick the tape to the needed area accordingly.


Barn doors are definitely an upgrade to traditional doors, from the design to the functionality aspects. This kind of door elevates the interior design while also providing the needed security for your home. So, if you’re interested in getting one, make sure you understand the technicalities of barn doors in general.

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