How To Lock A Sliding Barn Door: The Ultimate Guide

Are you looking for a stylish yet secure way to lock your sliding barn door? In this blog post, I’ll unveil the secrets to effectively securing your barn door.

Whether you have a rustic-inspired interior or a modern minimalist aesthetic, a sliding barn door has become a popular choice for adding functionality to any space.

However, without the proper locking mechanism, your barn door might lack the essential element of security. Don’t fret! I’ll guide you through a step-by-step process that will leave you feeling confident in your ability to lock your sliding barn door like a pro.

There are multiple locking systems available for this type of door. Hook and eye locks, teardrop privacy locks, and barrel slide bolt locks are most famous as sliding bar door locks. Some more locking system is also available.

How Do Sliding Barn Door Locks Work?

Sliding doors are not like the standard doors or those fancy swinging doors. They are quite different than them.

So, it’s obvious that usual door handles or locks will not work with it and will look awkward. The interior of your house will become a mess.

There is no value in a door without a locking system. When the sliding door was invented, the inventors have founded several locks for locking the door. They have different designs and working procedures.

But at the end of the day, every lock’s basic principle is the same; lock and unlock. Don’t worry; barn door locks will not destroy your rustic farmhouse vibe.

8 Ways To Lock A Sliding Barn Door

The different designs and styles of barn doors made many people think that locking is not possible on them. But that is completely wrong.

Here are some ways to lock a sliding barn door:

1. Hook And Eye Latch

Raswik 4” Privacy Hook

2 layers powder coating, solid iron, sturdy and heavy duty.

Hook and eye latch is the easiest and simplest locking system among all barn door locks. You do not have to spend much money to buy and install this lock.

The style of this lock is quite simple where two sides of it are mounted on two different surfaces pivotally.

You can install this lock on every type of barn door both inside and outside. But, it is better to install the eye side on the door and the hook side on the door jamb or on the wall.

2. Tear Drop Latches

Tear Drop Latches
Tear Drop Latches: Image- Mjchardware

The name says it all. This locking system has a teardrop-shaped metal that is attached to the door or the wall. On the opposite surface, there is a catch plate on which the tear shape of the metal rotates.

This locking system is familiar for the easy installation system. All you need is a drill machine, a screwdriver, and a measuring tape.

Just remember one thing, when you install the lock inside, mount the teardrop to the door jamb. In this situation, the catch plate will be on the door.

3. Barrel Slide Bolt For Locking Sliding Barn Door

Barrel Slide Bolt
Barrel Slide Bolt

Want to lock your barn door with a lock that opens with a key? A Barrel slide bolt is the best answer to your question.

You can avoid the key if you want a keyless option is available for this. But this lock with a key is surely a secure option.

Assemble the sliding bolt and the latch just as the teardrop latch. When you close the barn door, the latch should rotate and catch the bolt.

The bolt with the latch attaches to lock a sliding barn door. With an easy installation process, this is one of the popular locking methods for these doors.

4. Cane Floor Bolt Sliding Barn Door Lock

cane floor bolt
Cane floor bolt

Cane floor bolt locks have a sliding rod which you will see at the bottom of the door. It should be a little lower than the door. For that, you can make a hole in the floor and it will stop the door from sliding open.

Some people do not prefer this locking system as they have to drill a hole in the floor for the rod. Less security is another reason why people avoid this.

5. Flip Latch: Simple Sliding Barn Door

flip latch
Flip latch

Flip latch locks are best for double sliding barn doors. Usually, double sliding doors are not so secured and can be easily opened. A flip latch can make it a lot harder.

The lock hardware will be on the doors and there is a padlock for extra security of both the flip latch and the door.

6. Hasp And Padlock to Lock Your Sliding Barn Door

hasp and padlock
Hasp and padlock

When you have an exterior barn door and want to open it from outside, the hasp and padlock is the better option for locking it.

Well, you might be wondering why I am not suggesting it for the indoors. Because, when you put this inside, every time when you will open the barn door, you will need a key for that.

A little extra tip for you, use longer screws instead of short screws to install this lock. It is easy to rip off the short screws. This lock is compatible with almost every type of sliding barn door.

7. Single Cylinder Rim Lock For Using Barn Door

single cylinder rim lock
Single-cylinder rim lock

Among all types of locks, this one might the toughest one to install. You may need an expert to install this. The tools it needs to install are rare ones to be present in someone’s home.

This might be the safest and the best way for locking your sliding barn door but it will surely cost you some extra bucks for it.

A single-cylinder rim lock is best for locking the door from the outside with a key. From inside, you can lock it just with your finger.

For the easy lock and unlock facility, these locks are so much popular as barn door locks.

If you do not understand cylinder locks, you can read my other door lock comparison between Mortise Locks and Cylindrical Locks.

8. Smart Lock For Sliding Barn Door

Smart Lock
Smart Lock

Smart locks are getting popular for locking sliding barn doors and other standard doors in recent times. These locks offer you maximum protection and other facilities.

Finger scan door locks, app-controlled locks, and keypad door locks with password protection are some of the smart locks. This locking system is convenient and better than a latch lock.

Things To Consider While Installing A Sliding Barn Door Lock

When you install a sliding barn door lock, there are a few key things that you should keep in mind to ensure that it is both effective and secure.

You should have a lock installed on the inside of the door for maximum safety and privacy.

When selecting hardware for your lock, try to choose heavy-duty options that are less vulnerable to tampering or breakage. In particular, when attaching the latch lock, ensure to use strong, sturdy bolts that are larger than those that may come with the lock.

Also, accessibility is key when choosing a lock for your barn door. Make sure that it can be easily accessed from both the inside and outside of the door.

How to Install a Sliding Barn Door Lock?

Necessary tools and materials:

  • A power drill
  • A tape measure,
  • A pencil,
  • A chisel,
  • A screwdriver and screws.

Step #1: Measure and mark the lock’s placement

Using a tape measure and pencil, carefully mark the desired position for the lock on the doorframe. You must ensure the lock is at a comfortable height and cantered on the door.

Step #3: Prepare the doorframe.

Using a chisel, create a shallow recess on the doorframe where the lock will sit. It will ensure a flush fit and seamless operation of the lock.

Step #4: Install the lock mechanism

Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to attach the lock mechanism to the doorframe. Typically, this involves drilling holes and securing the lock with screws. Use a power drill and screwdriver for this step.

Step #5: Mount the lock receiver on the door

Attach the lock receiver to the sliding barn door, aligning it with the lock mechanism on the doorframe. Secure it in place using the provided screws.

Step #6: Test the lock

Once the lock is securely installed, test its functionality by sliding the barn door back and forth. Ensure the lock engages smoothly and securely.


A sliding barn door inside a house gives a vintage farmhouse feel. They are not built to be used as the main door of a house. This is the reason why these doors do not come with a locking system like the standard doors. You can always set a lock on your own.

I have shown you various barn door latches and locks that you can use to lock your sliding barn doors. They are easy-functioning and easy to install.

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