The August Smart Lock 3rd Gen technology functions almost the same as the other August 3rd generation Pro + Connect, except that this basic version doesn’t come with the most essential thing that Airbnb hosts need – the “Connect wifi bridge.”
The August Connect wifi bridge is sold separately for this specific smart lock model. With this, it looks like the drop in price compared to the August Pro, is easily justified by the absence of the Connect wifi bridge and to target a different market – those who do not need remote access.
Just like other smart locks from August, this entry-level smart lock offers retrofitting so you need not throw away your existing single cylinder deadbolt lock, but still be able to use it along with your old keys. People outside the house will not easily think your door is equipped with a smart lock.
Within a few minutes after you install this smart lock, you may use your smartphone to lock/unlock your door without touching the thumb turn.
Who Is It For?
The August Smart Lock is ideally for home/property owners who wish to try an entry-level smart lock that:
- allow users to use their smartphones as a key.
- allow them to still use their existing single cylinder deadbolt locks and keys. (Here is a link you may see to check if your deadbolt is compatible with the August smart lock.)
- can automatically lock/unlock the door within the Bluetooth operating range.
What’s In The Box?
- August Smart Lock
- DoorSense sensor
- 3 Lock Adapters
- Mounting Plate
- Adhesive Strip
- 4 AA Batteries
What Else Do You Need?
- Phillips screwdriver
- August Home App. You can download from the AppStore or from GooglePlay.
- Smartphone with iOS (9.0 or higher) or Android (5.0 or higher) .
How To Install?
For installation of the basic August Smart Lock, download and install the August Home App in your compatible smartphone. Proceed with setting up your account.
Following the visual instructions from the app will be much easier.
- Install The Smart lock
- Place the adhesive tape atop the side of the lock where the key is to be inserted.
- Unlock your existing deadbolt to remove its thumb turn part and other plates/screws.
- Insert the screws of the thumb turn into the front of the mounting plate of August Smart Lock. There are 2 adjustable screw holes on the August Smart Lock plate that can be adjusted.
- Tighten the screws.
- Choose one from the 3 included adapters compatible with your deadbolt lock. Check out this compatibility chart to choose the appropriate adapter.
If your deadbolt brand is not in the chart, slide each adapter on the tailpiece until you find one whose nub will point upward.
- Rotate the Smart Lock’s thumb turn to the unlocked position. With adapter in place, open the wing latches of the smart lock.
- Attach the Smart Lock by sliding it over the tailpiece. If its back part is already flushed with your door, clamp down the wings to secure the smart lock.
- Place The Battery
Remove the smart lock’s compartment cover. With one hand on the batteries to keep them in place, use your other hand to remove the plastic tab so the battery may power up the smart lock. Put the cover back in place. According to August, these included batteries would ideally last for 3-6 months.
- Install DoorSense
DoorSense is basically a magnet accessory of August Smart locks, which will determine whether the door is properly closed, is open, or is ajar. There are two ways to install this accessory: Flush or Surface Mount. You may refer to your in-app instruction guide or you may read the instructions here.
- Calibrate Smartlock and DoorSense via Smartphone
Follow the prompts in the app. It may require you to open and close the door several times.
For further installation instructions, you may check the manual.
How Do You Remotely Grant Access?
An Airbnb host can remotely provide Airbnb guests their individual keyless access ONLY if you purchase the August Connect Wi-fi Bridge. These are the steps once you have the remote access.
- Connect the Airbnb Account to the August Home App.
- Pair the lock to Airbnb Listings.
- Choose the access type you wish to provide for your guests.
- Home Access via the App on Smartphone–An email invite will be sent to the guest with instructions for downloading and installing the August App on their compatible smartphone.
- Home Access via the Keypad–Some guests might not have a compatible smartphone or might not want to use their phone to enter your premises, thus, you may add an August Smart Keypad to your purchase of this Smart Lock so they can lock/unlock the door using the keypad.
It will also email to the guest the personal entry code that the app will generate automatically upon confirmation of booking. This will be the code the guest will enter onto the keypad.
You can offer your guests with great hosting services if you can offer both access types.
To read further about August Smart locks and Airbnb integration, visit here.
How Do You Remotely Revoke Access?
There are different access types available for the virtual keys of August Smart Lock. The “Unlimited Access” is for family members. The “Recurring Access” is for hired service providers like house cleaners and pet walkers. And the “Temporary Access” is for Airbnb guests.
This temporary access will be set according to the guest’s reserved date and time. For any reason that you need to revoke a guest’s access, the App will also allow you to remotely do so. From the Guest List on the App, choose that particular guest’s name and select “Remove User”. You need to follow the succeeding prompts to complete the process.
Again, to gain remotely access, you need to add to your purchase the August Connect Wi-fi Bridge.
Safety Features (by default)
- DoorSense – for detection of whether the door is open/close, locked/unlocked, ajar or not.
- Auto-Lock capability – You can set up the smart lock to automatically lock itself after your selected duration.
- Two-factor authentication – When setting up the lock, this security feature will ensure that it is really you, who is setting up the lock and the App. It involves (1) code sent to your mobile number via SMS and (2) code sent to your email address.
- Two-layer encryption – this involves Bluetooth technology encryption plus another encryption.
- Lost Phone Feature – Losing your phone could mean that your property’s security may be compromised so you could go to lostphone.august.com to disable the August App on your lost phone and associated devices plus the entire virtual key.
What Users Like About It?
- In-App instructions with visual guide.
- Simple and quick installation that can be completed within at least 10 minutes.
- Decent entry-level smart lock that can perform for its price.
- DoorSense detector for monitoring the physical state of the door.
- Reduces Lock/Key-Related Expenses. This eliminates problems such as lost keys (that can compromise the home’s security and could result to additional expenses for lock and key replacements), lock box installation, and more.
- Ability To Unlock Manually – If for any reason, you forget to replace the battery with fresh ones (such as when you disregarded the battery level indicator on the App), you may still manually unlock the door using the keys of your old deadbolt lock.
What Users Dislike About It?
- Auto-unlock feature–This is a common complaint among dissatisfied users. Usually, they claim that they had to wait impatiently inside their cars parked in the garage until the app could detect and unlock the door. However, at least one Amazon reviewer explained that it is a Bluetooth-operated device. Therefore, the smartphone user must be close to the door to enjoy this feature. Most people’s garage might be over 30 to 40 feet from the main door of the house. The solution here is to use the smart lock with August Connect Wi-Fi.
- Remote Access For Added Cost – You would need to spend more money in order to have remote access of your lock. However, as an Airbnb host, you can consider this a business investment that will enable you to remotely keep track of who enters/leaves your property; lock/unlock the door for guests (if necessary such as when they forget their phones inside) and more.
- Buggy DoorSense – Looking at the installation procedure for DoorSense, you will see that there is also a specific placement/location requirement to meet so that this accessory can work just fine. It would need to be re-calibrated every now and then so that you will be guaranteed that it is working properly.
- No Alarms/Lacking in Security. One reviewer noted that since this is a retrofitting smartlock, it will depend on the physical strength/quality of the existing deadbolt lock for the home’s protection against tampering and forced entry. It has no audible alarm sounds that can alert you when such incidents happen. It also cannot detect when the door is tampered or was forced open by an intruder.
- Cannot be used with Z-Wave or Apple HomeKit or related smart home hubs and devices
- Inconvenience for Airbnb guests if they have no compatible smartphone
- Error in operation in cold weather or when the climate is too humid. Yet, this is an issue encountered not only with August smart locks, but other electronic smart locks too.
- Might not work with some deadbolt locks
Out of the box, it seems that the 3rd generation August Smart lock is not meant for Airbnb hosts, especially for someone like us who live miles away from our Airbnb space. In order to remotely monitor this lock (and our guests), we need to acquire the separately sold “connect wifi-bridge.” This bridge is available out of the box when you purchase the Pro + Connect version of this August Smart lock (my review here).
Now, as a “bluetooth key” – I do not think I need it for my Airbnb business. First, I do not want my guests (especially older ones) to be inconvenienced by the whole process just to get the “keyless” access thru their smartphones. They have to download the August App in their compatible smartphone, running in a compatible OS, for them to start having the keyless access when they arrive at my property. On my side, I will not have the peace of mind that my guests have already successfully entered the premises during designated check-in time since not having the “connect bridge” will not make me see the lock’s activities.
This 3rd generation lock might work for parents who just want to monitor their kids’ arrival and departure times. However, this “monitoring” activity can only be done when your phone is within the bluetooth range, which is pretty much useless if you are mostly not at home.
I’d pass on it.
I highly suggest that you check out the feedback of existing users to help verify your purchase decision.
What do you think?
Leave your thoughts below in the comments section!