You should definitely focus on things such as the internal locking mechanism and the thickness of the bolt when selecting a new lockset. However, this does not mean that you can overlook the design. Most people assume that it has to be chosen purely from an aesthetic point of view, but this would be a mistake. The design determines the functionality and durability of a locking device to a great extent. That is why when there is a need for lock change, you should pay close attention to this particular factor.
The most widely used design option is the knob. The lock is integrated into the knob which is used for opening and closing of the door. This design undoubtedly gets the highest score for convenience. Maintenance is quite simple too. At the same time, you should be well aware of the drawbacks of this design as well. If something goes wrong with the knob, the lock is highly likely to malfunction too. The other major drawback is that in order to be easy to operate, the device uses a spring bolt mechanism which is easier to overcome compared to a deadbolt.
The door levers are not as compact and elegant as the knobs, but they are even easier to use. You simply need to unlock the door and push the lever down to open it. The lock is actually integrated into the base of the lever. The drawbacks of this door lock design are practically the same as those of the knob. Still, if children or seniors will use the door, it may be a fine option.
The door handlesets enjoy growing popularity at present. They feature a deadbolt lock and a separate handle installed from the outside. There is a lever handle to be installed from the inside plus a thumbturn. With deadbolt installation, you get high security when you are not at home and lock the door. When you are inside, you can simply use the thumbturn to keep the door locked. At the same time, if you need to run out of the house in case of an emergency, you will be able to get out quickly and without hassle. You will not need a key to open the door from the inside.
With both the knob and lever designs, you can choose from three cylinder options. You can have a single cylinder enabling locking only from the outside. A double cylinder enables locking from both sides. Alternatively, you can have a thumbturn from the inside and a traditional keyway from the outside. This third option creates balance between security and safety.
Compare the different designs carefully and make the right choice for your needs to make the most out of the new lock installation.