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Using a Physical Key With Your August Smart Lock

With the proliferation of the internet has come an explosion of little tools and gadgets that help us through our day. While some of these gadgets are cool just to have, others, like smart locks are made specifically to make our everyday lives just a little bit easier. The August Smart Lock prevents you from needing to carry a house key around any more, but what happens if the August deadbolt runs out of battery, or you break you rphone?

The August Smart Lock allows you to lock and unlock your door with your smart device through a Wi-Fi connection. Your deadbolt’s physical key still works, since the August goes on the inside of the door and only works the mechanism.

This convenient technology helps you and your family be safe, but you need WiFi and a smartphone to access.  What happens when your phone is dead?  Or the WiFi Network is down in your house?  Does this mean you are out of luck and locked out of your house? Or does it mean you’ll need to have a locksmith rekey your lock like we’ve warned about before? Luckily, the creators of the August Smart Lock have thought of these dire situations. 

How August Smart Lock Works

August Smart Lock Breakdown
“august-smart-lock-02” by Scott Lewis is licensed under CC BY 2.0

The August Smart Lock connects to the deadbolt lock on the interior of your door and once it’s installed, it can be controlled using an app on your smartphone.  Using your home’s WiFi network, the app connects with your lock to open or close it on command. Since the lock stays connected to your internet, you can access it anytime and anywhere using the app on your smartphone. 

You can be thousands of miles away and still lock and unlock your door with ease.  The app will send your August Smart Lock a code telling it to lock or unlock. One of the great features of an August Smart Lock is that it can unlock and lock automatically depending on your proximity to the unit, although, it’s important to note that you have to set it up to function this way.

Put simply, you won’t need to physically open the application and press the “unlock” button to get into your home. If your phone is in close proximity to the lock, assuming you’ve set up this feature, it will automatically unlock or lock for you. In other words, as you get closer and closer to your home, it will automatically unlock and no button-pressing is necessary. This may sound small, but it’s really pretty futuristic stuff!

The app for the August Smart Lock allows you to do more than just lock and unlock your door. For instance, you can temporarily grant access to other people who need to gain entry into your house. Obviously, this applies to a plethora of different circumstances, including if you have to allow a dog walker into your home when you’re away, or maybe you’d like to let a Walmart delivery person drop the groceries off inside.

Furthermore, it’s actually possible to set up the lock in such a way where it unlocks automatically at the same time every day. Another very useful feature is that you can actually see on the application whether your door is open or closed, locked, or unlocked. The possibilities are endless when it comes to this feature.

Keep Your Old Key as a Back-Up!

The August Smart Lock is an incredibly convenient gadget that allows you to ditch your house key.  While you may want to get rid of it forever, there is one reason you may not want to. In the event that your WiFi network is spotty or your cellphone battery dies, you will need your traditional key to manually unlock and lock your door. 

Spare Key Options

Since one of the biggest perks of the August Smart Lock is not having to carry your key with you everywhere (more on how to manage them in our guide), it would be wise to invest in a great hide-a-key option for your spare. There is a wide range of hide-a-key options that keep your spare key safe and out of sight, many of which are very inexpensive on Amazon,


This fake rock hide-a-key (on Amazon) is a little better than other models for one main reason.  This option actually looks and feels like a fake rock, rather than a cheap plastic imitation. It has natural coloring and is made of sturdy and realistic materials so that strangers cannot easily find it. A small tray underneath the rock slides out to reveal a space for some keys.


If a rock seems too cliché for you, or maybe you’re concerned burglars are privy to such tactics, try using a thermometer hide-a-key (on Amazon).  This hide-a-key option is actually a working thermometer that you can affix to the exterior of your house.  The front cover slides off to reveal an interior space with two hooks available to hang keys.

With the cover in place, you could never tell that the thermometer is hiding something. Assuming you’re dealing with experienced criminals who know the ins-and-outs of home security, using a thermometer hide-a-key is a much better option because most people wouldn’t think a thermometer would be hiding a key, whereas rocks and the “under-the-rug” trick are far more ubiquitous.


Another popular hide-a-key option is one that hides underneath the undercarriage of your car. This hide-a-key is a sturdy case that is made from extremely strong neodymium magnets.  This small case, which you can find on Amazon, can attach to the undercarriage of your car so that no one will ever find it.

The only problem with this kind of case is that your car has to be home in order to access the spare key.  Put simply, if someone you know, like a friend or a family member, needs access to your home and your car isn’t there, they won’t be able to get in. With that said, there is nothing stopping you from having more than one type of hide-a-key model.

Our Recommendation

If you want to be able to leave your house without a key, and do not want to rely on the battery charge of your smartphone, we suggest using a product that does not require either, for instance, the keypad deadbolt lock like this one from Amazon.  Multiple different codes can be programmed to unlock your door, and no key or app is required.

If the reliable and reputable August company is something you want to stick with, then consider purchasing the battery-powered keypad add-on from Amazon. This August keypad attaches to the outside of your door, allowing anyone with a code to unlock and lock your door.  That way, you can create a unique code to access your lock when your phone’s battery is not charged.

The smartphone app also gives you the option to create unique codes for one-time use only. Wrapping things up, most of these devices are relatively inexpensive if you buy them online, so if you’re adamant about having multiple ways of getting into your home, you could always buy more than one hide-a-key product, while at the same time using a Smart Lock.