Q: What are Power Door Locks?

December 17, 2013 12:53 PM

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Power door locks are also sometimes referred to as central-locking or electric door locks. These types of locks allow you or the passenger to unlock or lock all of the doors in the vehicle simultaneously by simply flipping a switch or pressing a button in the vehicle. The control panel that allows you to control all of the vehicle's locks is typically situated on the inside of the driver's side of the vehicle. This type of system is available in 2-door models, as well as 4-door car models.

The first power door locks were presented in 1914 on the Scripps-Booth. Power door locks did not become a common inclusion on luxury vehicles until 1956 when they were introduced once again by Packard. Almost all of today's new car models offer power door locks. The earliest power-locking systems were capable of only locking and unlocking the doors on the vehicle. Many vehicles today include a power-lock system that can also unlock other areas of the vehicle, such as the fuel door or the trunk. With this option, the cover on the fuel cap can be released with the activation of a button or switch. Many vehicles today will also automatically activate the power door locks when the vehicle attains a specific speed.

An exterior keypad was introduced by Ford in 1980. This type of entry allowed you to enter a number-based combination to unlock the vehicle doors without needing to use a key. The number combination could be preprogrammed or could be programmed at a later date by the owner. Many new cars also now feature a keyless system that works remotely on a specific radio frequency. This system allows you to simply press a switch using a remote control that is located on your key fob to lock/unlock all the doors, or, for your safety, simply unlock the driver's door.

These days, most remotes will also unlock your car's trunk or rear hatch as well as the doors. And some cars will even recognize the key without you even taking it out of your purse or pocket just touch/pull on the door handle and the car will lock/unlock as you desire. Vehicles are also now available that allow you to remotely raise or lower the windows by using a control on the remote key fob. Most remote locking systems can confirm the locking or unlocking of the vehicle has been either successful with a honk of the horn or a flick of the lights.

There are numerous benefits associated with power door locks. Among the top benefits is the safety to the driver and passengers. Power door locks are often a popular choice for families with young children to ensure the doors in the back of the vehicle where children are seated are locked. Power door locks that automatically lock doors at certain speeds are often included in vehicles that are designated as popular family cars. Power door locks can also be advantageous when you are traveling alone because they allow you to secure all of the vehicle's doors at the same time.

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